The Locked Room Part 5

by Jon Peters

The church was ablaze. Pews were lakes of fire, blackened bodies slumped over benches like decayed stuffed animals. A priest with flamed robes bellowed in pain, his screams mingling with the shrieks of the undead. To our right was a large iron cage with the door ajar.

My eyes watered from the smoke. Evelina touched my shoulder and I jumped.

“I thought you were one of them!” I shouted over the roar of the fire and shrieks of the zombies.

“We should see if there are any survivors. There are rooms in the back of the church.” Evelina walked through the smoke and fire, motioning for me to follow.

“Are you crazy?” I yelled after her but followed anyway. “How do you know there are rooms back there?” I admit it was a strange question under the circumstances.

“I used to sneak in here and have sex with one of the priests,” Evelina yelled back over her shoulder, dodging a zombie at the same time. He moan-howled, his head in flames.

“I really want to hear that story sometime soon but right now we gotta dodge the dead. Onward!” I shouted, pointing with my hand like it was a sword.

We moved through the pews, smoking bellowing around us, choking us. At the back near the dais, a giant red curtain strapped to the top of the ceiling caught fire. Evelina found an invisible slit in the curtains and pulled them apart, revealing a wooden door. She burst through it and disappeared down a dark hallway. I followed closely.

We checked three rooms with no luck. Same with a small kitchen. The fire hadn’t spread to the back of the church yet and I just hoped that there was an exit somewhere.

The last room we arrived at was locked. Evelina didn’t wait for anyone to answer. She kicked the door in, her powerful leg splitting the wood near the lock.

An old lady crouched near a bed, knife in hand, jabbing at something underneath.

“You’re going to hell!” The old woman shrieked.

“Umm, would you like some help?” I asked, not sure what to make of the situation.

“Brother Michael was caught last night fornicating with one of the undead children. I’m sending him to hell!” She bared her teeth at us, drool dripping down her lip.

Alright. I’d had enough. I looked around the room. Next to a framed old sepia photograph of a young nun was a lit candle. I grabbed it and flung it at them. First the old lady and then the bed caught on fire, followed closely by a shadowy figure underneath. Evelina and I stood and watched in fascination. We finally backed out of the room and shut the door.

“I understand why you’d light the priest on fire, but why Lady Macbeth?” Evelina asked, her hair damp and matted to her forehead.

“Eh, she was as good as dead anyway with that zombie horde outside. I just helped her out.”

We found a door to the outside world and exited the church.

(To be continued)