Send In The UCAVs

Everyone in New York City was dead. Same for Buffalo, Newark, Philly, Groton, Newport, Boston, Baltimore, and all the others in the northeast US. From Main, to the Eastern Shore, as far west as Pittsburg, the virus was everywhere. It spread through human saliva. No one knew how it started. Everyone knew how it spread. Nearly ⅓ of the country was dead.

“You sure we can pull this off?”

“Yes, sir!” I could have asked if he needed personal coaching and critiquing by Miranda Kate. But I don’t speak that way to my CO. We were safe, sitting 20 miles east of Breezy Point, on the US Zumwalt. “At least we don’t need pilots.” That was the good thing. We weren’t putting lives at risk.

He nodded, his nervous smile, and solid voice projected the air of confidence. We weren’t going to kill people to complete our mission. Unless the virus had a cure.

“The ‘scouts ready?”

“Yes, sir.”

Every Fire Scout on board was prepped for flight at 50 feet altitude, into Manhattan. We had orders from Cheyenne. They called it the Dead Sea Games. I still wasn’t used to the capital being in Wyoming, but it was the safest place in the US. Certainly safer than DC. DC was in the kill zone.

“All eight courses are mapped. The scouts will do their jobs.” Yeah. Destroy eight power stations in the New York City area, without risking human life, and along the way, kill any of the infected they encountered. Send in the UCAVs to kill the infected.

The infected. Better than calling them the walking dead or zombies. Certainly better than citizens, humans, friends, neighbors, men, women, and children. The infected. A name. A label. So we wouldn’t feel anything about blowing them to bits, or filling them full of holes.

The captain spoke into his radio, “‘Hawks staged yet?”

That was the other part of our orders. Blow up everything that floated in Hudson Bay. Sink it all. So nothing could take to the water.

“The Dead Sea Games are a go, Captain.”

“Time to kickstart the zombie apocalypse by publishing the Dead Sea Games,” the captain spoke calmly into his mic. “Launch ‘em. Launch ‘em all.”

We did. in a giant ball of smoke and fire, as the flat packs on the fore and aft decks emptied their contents. 130 missiles, launched in seconds. I’d never seen that. It was an overwhelming display of power. Raw power.

“Send in the UCAVs, Lieutenant. Time to go hunting.”

I spoke into my mic, “Scouts, go.”

Autonomous helicopters, and GPS guided missiles. We’d just killed thousands of the Infected, and hadn’t risked a human life. Everyone had always thought the Zombie Apocalypse was going to end the human race. It wasn’t. Our robot children would protect us.

As the Scouts disappeared over the horizon, I couldn’t help but say, “Good bye, New York. Wish I could have visited you at least once.”

492 Words

I wrote this for Zombie Mechanics 2014 Zombie Apocalypse Flash Fiction Contest. It’s just one of a host of Zombie Tales. Please, go read the others, and please, leave comments for the writers, letting them know how you feel about their carefully crafted words.

You can find the other stories here:

Zombie Mechanics Zombie Apocalypse Flash Fiction Contest 2014

#ThursThreads Week 116 : Be Right There

“Honey! I’m waiting!”

“Be right there!”

I didn’t want to lie to her, but I didn’t really have a choice. Oh, don’t get me wrong, I’d have loved to zipped up the stairs, slipped into our room, got naked, and hopped into bed with her. It was what I wanted to do. It was what I couldn’t do.

I turned off the downstairs lights, ending at the front door. I quietly opened it, stepped outside, and pulled the door too behind me, making sure it locked before getting in my car, and driving away.

She’d figure out I didn’t have my phone with me. She’d hear it ring on the sofa. I knew she’d get upset. I imagined she’d scream. Then she’d get angry. Eventually she’d cry, then call her friends. She’d stay awake, waiting for me. Waiting to ask me where I’d gone.

“I’m sorry, my love. I’m sorry.”

I drove to the Great Dismal Swamp wildlife refuge, parked at the Washington Ditch, and walked the 4.5 miles to Lake Drummond. I pointed my penlight at the north star and waited for the ship to pick me up.

It was time for me to return to my people. My 15 year mission was complete. My people would live. The antibodies in my blood guaranteed that. Human antibodies she’d passed to me. Antibodies my people needed to survive the deadliest virus we’d ever been infected with. The human influenza.

237 words

I wrote this for Siobhan Muir‘s #ThursThreads, Week 117. Please go read all the entries in this week’s #ThursThreads. They are good reading.