Death after Midnight
by ken altabef
Gazing at the midnight sky, the stars so far above, my thoughts turn to the possibility of space travel. How easy it would be if you didn't have to breathe. How easy it would be if you didn't have to eat, if you had a spaceship and all the time in the world.
"Nice night," says George, a fellow stargazer. "Beautiful."
"Mmmmnn," I say.
"Hard to believe it's been thirty years."
"Hard to believe," I agree. "Hard to believe."
Hard to believe it had only been thirty years. Thirty years since the virus got loose, since the dead rose up hungry to kill the living, twenty years since the last survivors were overwhelmed. They tried to make their stand, to fight, to hide, but the dead were millions strong and all it took was a bite or a good deep scratch and the living joined our ranks. All the world had become a mortuary, a mass grave with the occupants above ground, shambling, searching, starving, always starving.
I was different. Cold and dead, just like the rest, and hungry too, but I could still think. Surrounded by mindless, lumbering corpses, I wandered alone for a long time until I found others like me among the multitudes, a few in every town.