The Embers Burn, and Gentle is the Arrow’s Stinging, by Jason Andrew
This story was previously published in A Quick Bite of Flesh: An Anthology of Zombie Flash Fiction (Hazardous Press, September 2012).
@Bree The Embers Burn, and Gentle is the Arrow’s Stinging ‘Neath the evening sky. The wind is in my face. I am free.
11:08 PM Oct 17th via phone
@Bree Sparkles burn out of my eyes. The cola is flat. I can barely swallow it. I won’t let it win. I’ll jump out the window first.
09:08 PM Oct 17th via phone
@Bree Aspirin kills the fever for a few hours. Six pills left in the emergency kit. You still there? Please be there. Can’t be alone.
05:08 PM Oct 17th via phone
@Bree Managed to get to the attic. They can’t reach the hatch, but my arm has a scratch. Don’t know if it’s a bite.
04:03 PM Oct 17th via phone
@Bree Run! Don’t try to make it here! I can hear them banging on the door!
02:31 PM Oct 17th via phone
@Bree Leave him! If Jake has the fever, he’ll die like Clay! I read on the wiki that if he doesn’t have the fever, we can burn out the wound to prevent infection.
02:04 PM Oct 17th via phone
@Bree What’s left of Clay is screaming.
01:33 PM Oct 17th via phone
@Bree Should have paid attention in class. This Russian guy knows what he was taking about. Thy foes encircle thee and watch with gleeful laughter and bended bow. Just like them. All at once. No mercy. I thought they were moaning or crying. All I hear now is laughter.
01:24 PM Oct 17th via phone
@Bree When are you getting HERE! Cable’s out. Power’s out. The only left if the generator and I don’t know how to set it up. I need to hear a voice. A human voice. A living voice.
01:19 PM Oct 17th via phone
@Bree I’m alone.
01:14 AM Oct 17th via phone
@Bree I handcuffed Clay to the wall in the basement. I couldn’t do it. Not with a shovel. I can’t still see bits of him in there. Don’t know what to do.
01:01 AM Oct 17th via phone
@Bree I’ve never seen him cry before. His eyes turned white. The infection spreads too quickly. I gave him one of the hits of acid. Don’t want him to face this in pain.
12:47 AM Oct 17th via phone
@Bree They broke through the window. I didn’t hammer in the nails deep enough. Clay killed three of them. Ran of out bullets and time. You ever smell one of them? Like a dead wet dog. I think one of them was our neighbor. She bit Clay’s arm. We’re trying to clean the wound.
12:17 AM Oct 17th via phone
@Bree Forgot the fucking cigarettes! There will be no survival! Seriously, thinking of going to the car to get my extra pack.
11:39 AM Oct 17th via phone
@Bree We just fought one of the gangs. Killed Zombie Nelly. Didn’t feel as bad as I should. Clay picked up more gas for the generator. Should be able to survive for a few days until help can arrive.
11:37 AM Oct 17th via phone
@Bree Be careful. The radio says that the streets are still pretty bad even with the military. Make sure you bring the Molly. If the world’s gonna end, I don’t want to be sober. All we have is a couple hits of acid.
11:20 AM Oct 17th via phone
@Bree The only thing to read is a book on Russian poetry. The world might be ending, but I’m not that desperate.
10:11 AM Oct 17th via phone
@Bree Can’t get a signal for the phone, but we can text out. Weird, huh? Are the dead really rising? You don’t think it’s a joke? Come over for a party!
09:17 AM Oct 17th via phone
Jason Andrew lives in Seattle, Washington with his wife Lisa. He is an Associate member of the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America, Active Member of the Horror Writer’s Association, and member of the International Association of Media Tie-In Writers.
By day, he works as a mild-mannered technical writer. By night, he writes stories of the fantastic and occasionally fights crime. As a child, Jason spent his Saturdays watching the Creature Feature classics and furiously scribbling down stories. His first short story, written at age six, titled ‘The Wolfman Eats Perry Mason’ was severely rejected. It also caused his Grandmother to watch him very closely for a few years.
His short fiction has appeared in markets such as Shine: An Anthology of Optimistic SF (Harper Collins), Frontier Cthulhu: Ancient Horrors in the New World (Chaosium), and IN SITU (Dagan Books). In 2011, his story “Moonlight in Scarlet” received an honorable mention in Ellen Datlow’s List for Best Horror of the Year.
In addition, Jason has written for a number of role-playing games such as Call of Cthulhu, Shadowrun, and Vampire: The Masquerade. His most recent projects include Hunters Hunted 2 (The Onyx Path), Anarchs Unbound (The Onyx Path), and Atomic Age Cthulhu: Terrifying Tales of the Mythos Menace (Chaosium). He currently holds the position of Developer for the Mind’s Eye Theatre line published through By Night Studios.