The Locked Room Ch 9

by Jon Peters

The bar was empty save the three of us. We were dirty, smelly and slightly terrified. But Crab Bay was to be our personal paradise from the zombie horde invading the outside world.

“Want a beer?” Christina asked, popping a cap off a Lonestar and taking a swig as if she were on her front porch enjoying a hot July, Sunday Texas afternoon. Which it was, but that’s not the point of this story.

“Just water for me. Kat?” Evelina asked as she reached over the wooden bar and grabbed two pint glasses, knowing my answer already. She walked behind the bar and filled both mugs with ice and water from the soda gun.

She slung my glass down the bar toward me like they did in those old western movies from the last century, and I gulped down the ice-cold water. It had a slightly sweet taste to it-Dr. Pepper, I knew instantly-a consequence of using the soda gun. Fuck it, though, I didn’t care.

“Filler’ up,” I said, flinging the glass back to Evelina, who had downed her own water even faster than me and was going for seconds herself.

“Jesus, what the hell happened to you guys?” Christina asked, sipping her beer, looking at us as if she just noticed we’d been chased for miles by zombies.

“Other than running into a mad preacher, a burning church, a zombie horde, and a crazy zombie baby, not much,” Evelina deadpanned. “How are you holding up?” Evelina finally sat down on a barstool, her shoulders slumped. I joined her, tension pressing inward on my temples.

“Sounds like a party,” Christina belched. “You guys seen the news yet?” she asked as she turned on the thirteen-inch T.V. in the corner of the bar. If Evelina was calm under duress, Christina was practically comatose.

Black and white wavy bars slithered through the television screen, and each turn of the nob produced the same outcome.

“When is that neckbeard of an owner of this joint going to join the twenty-first century and get a real T.V.?” Evelina barked just as Christina found a working station. A cheery blonde woman’s face appeared on the screen, a stark contrast to the shrieking violence of her cackling voice.

“And the DEMOCRATS...” shouted the bleached woman from of the screen.

“We’re in the middle of a zombie apocalypse and all we got is Fox fucking news?!” groaned Evelina. Christina switched the channels again until she found the local station, channel 8. A man in a disheveled black blazer appeared on the screen, his shouts intermittently cut by a distant howling. He was backing away from the camera and pointing somewhere behind the cameraman.

“Behind you!” the man screamed just before the camera dropped to the ground, the reporter’s feet disappearing in the distance. The camera man screamed off camera as red liquid splashed the lens.

“I do not approve,” I said vociferously. Christina chuckled. Evelina cracked a smile. And I needed to pee.