The Cottage Cheese Zombie Story
This story relates a recurring dream I used to have when in my late teens and early twenties. Any time I had a fever, I would have this exact same dream. I also had prophetic dreams during this time. Dreams that would come true exactly as I dreamed them, up to and including the words that were said. That being the case, I was spooked with the reality of this dream, thinking it too might come true.
This particular dream begins with my being at my parent's house, along with my sister Joyce. The whole family is listening to news reports detailing how a new disease is sweeping through the nation. Extremely contagious, with no known cure. It begins with a fungoid infection, which rapidly spreads across the body. As it spreads, the diseased person loses voluntary control over the body portions covered by the fungus. The new disease seems to spread by contact. All non essential personnel are urged to remain in their homes. There are reports of violence and looting, citizens are to remain calm and barricade themselves within their homes if necessary until further instructions.
Immediately my father decides the safest place in the home is the attic. No glass windows there which can be broken in, and the only entrance is through the pull down staircase in the garage.
Locking all doors into the house, we pull down the attic stairs and begin loading supplies into the attic. Food, water, flashlights, radio, etc. Next we barricaded the door from the attic to the house. The only remaining entrance to the garage was the large 2 car garage door. It was a stout wooden door, with steel reinforcement.
The attic was stuffy and uncomfortable, so we decided not to enter it until absolutely necessary. The folding 2 car garage door was up, and the family was sitting around the base of the attic stairs, looking out on the street while listening to news updates on the radio.
Neighbors were frantic. Cars were slamning into each other as they raced to some unknown destination. Shouts and screams filled the air. Mom went on upstairs to the attic, trying to make it as comfortable as possible. We had an electrical outlet there, and she plugged in a box fan to provide some air movement.
Suddenly we heard a shout outside. "Bud! Help!" Now Bud was my father's nickname. His actual name was Jerome Burton. He hated the name Jerome, saying it was a black man's name. And Burton was the name of his uncle, the black sheep of the family. One day as a child, not knowing what to call him (as even then he refused to answer to his actual name), someone said "Hey bud, come here for a minute." He answered, and ever since his name was Bud.
Rushing to the garage door, my father looked out, and saw an employee of his named Tom, running down the sidewalk toward our house, with a horde of the infected people chasing after him. Tom was staggering, clearly exhausted. My father raced out, and I was right behind him.
Quickly reaching Tom, each of us grabbed an arm, half carrying him. The infected people chasing hissed, and one of them tore off a portion of the fungoid infection from himself, throwing it at us. Fortunately his aim was poor. Yet the portion he tore off had dozens of hairlike tendrils hanging from it.
My dad and I glanced at the garage door. No way we could get inside with Tom before those things caught up. We had to get some distance between us. Locking gazes with me, he shouted, "Round the block! Circle and come back!"
I nodded and set to it. The infected were clumsy runners, as if unfamiliar with their host bodies. Even so we gained ground slowly, as Tom was totally exhausted and little more than a dead weight. He did manage to watch behind us, and warn whenever they attempted to throw more of the white leprous looking goop at us.
Eventually we managed to circle the block. I was relieved to see none of the affected had decided to stay and wait for our return, or worse yet, enter the garage where Mom and Joyce were. Joyce stood at the garage door holding a revolver. She was in a panic, literally jumping up and down, urging us to run faster.
Easy for her to say! Tom was not a heavy man, but he was over six feet tall, and medium build. Trying to half carry such a person at a dead run was no simple task!
We reached the still raised garage door. Poppa and Tom staggered inside. All three of us were gasping for air. I started to turn and make sure we were alright, when I felt the impact in my lower back. Immediately I lost all sensation from the waist down, and my legs gave out. Falling to the ground, I looked back, and saw the white leprous ooze spreading across me.
Joyce came running out, still holding her revolver. "Shoot me!" I shouted. "You can't help me, and I don't want to become one of them! Quickly, do it now!" I frantically screamed.
Tears streaming down her face, she raised the gun, sighting on my head, and blackness engulfed me.
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