Flash fiction piece
The Face of Death
I hid in the rubble of what used to be the local corner store. I sat there curled in as tight as I could get, hugging the wall, hoping against hope to just be invisible. Hoping that they would just keep moving. “Please…. Oh God, please let them keep moving.” I prayed as tears fell silently down my face.
I gripped my crude blade, rusted and jagged tight in my hand. There was no way it would kill those things, but there was no way I was going to go down without a fight. I rested my head against the wall and held my breath.
I held my breath and waited. Listened. And counted the seconds that passed by so slow I thought time had stopped.
I heard a scraping sound come from the opposite side of the building, the beast was surely running its claws along the wall. No doubt playing with its food.
I curled myself tighter and tried to camouflage myself with the wall. A sob almost escaped but I bit it back, biting my lip so hard that blood ran over my tongue. I clenched my eyes shut, tight against the world. Hoping that not seeing them would protect me. Wishing for a time long past when I believed that if I couldn’t see you then you couldn’t see me.
But I knew it wasn’t true. I knew those creatures could hear me. I knew they were going to kill me, just like they killed my brother a week ago. He sacrificed himself to save me. I both loved and hated him for it. If he just let those things kill me then I would be away from this hell on earth. I would be in heaven with the rest of my family. Instead I live in fear every second of every day.
Hiding. Running. Scavenging.
The shuffling of feet against gravel made me wish I could stop my heart from beating. I heard their grunts as they communicated to each other, their breath was ragged and foul. I could smell them clear on the other side of the building. As the sounds drew closer I had the overwhelming urge to peak around the corner to see just how close to death I was.
Luckily I fought temptation and instead focused on breathing even, like Kane taught me. I gripped my knife to my chest and prepared myself to charge.
When a wail broke the silence and the beasts went scampering after a louder meal. I breathed a sigh of relief, thankful I was safe for one more day. I waited a count of ten before I even dared to move. I coaxed myself to look around the corner to make sure the coast was clear and came face to face with my dead brother.