Random Scribbles

Posted: November 22, 2013 in Fiction, Writing

Every now and then I start a story and never get far beyond the opening paragraphs. Sometimes I get back to them. Other times I leave it too long and my interest for the story wanes. To be honest, I have more of these start and stops than I like to admit. Here, have a wordburp:

“Somebody screwed the pooch,” says the Bossman. “Casey’s crew over near Jersey City is getting careless. Fuckin’ zombies crashed three sites.”

“How bad was it?” I ask.

“We brought down a building over on Washington, corner of Morgan. The horde made it up four flights of stairs; couldn’t take the chance they’d reach the roof. The other two managed to hold the hordes back. We probably lost fifty people, all told.”

Bossman looks at me, gin blossoms reddening. The skin around his eyes draws tight, his hands, resting on the desk between us, clench and unclench. Clench and unclench. “Block,” he says. “Go find Casey, and you ask him how he nearly lost three buildings. Then, when you got an answer, you make certain it doesn’t happen again.”

The office door opens and in comes a couple clean-cut guys I never seen around before. They give me the once-over and look to the Bossman. I do the same. Boss nods his head, quick, shallow, but the tension doesn’t leave his face. That’s my cue to leave. I turn, move past the mugs at the door, and hit the stairs to the roof. Forget the clean-cuts. I gotta go make fifty people dead count for something. These weren’t soldiers or made-men. Not even street thugs. These people who died were men, women, and children, each one under the protection of the Poverelli family. Fifty dead. And now I gotta go make it fifty-one.

My name’s Spencer Blaylock, but everybody calls me Block. Not sure if it’s ’cause I’m big as shit or if people’s just too lazy to say Blaylock. Either way the name suits the muscle for the head of the Poverelli Family, the Bossman. It’s my job to make sure none of these mooks foul up and let the dead run riot over our little rooftop paradise.

Ya see, in this line of work it ain’t the zombies down there on the streets you gotta worry about. It’s the guy beside ya still breathing. Zombies? They’re easy. Only one thing on their wormy little minds and that’s eating. Guys I work with, yeah, they gotta cope with hunger, but there’s also greed, lust, fatigue, you name it. The human condition’s still a condition, zombies or no. It’s what makes us human sometimes makes us a liability. And that’s where I come in.

Enjoy it? Yeah. Me, too. I’m actually working on it again. Perhaps I’ll finish this one.

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