Teaser: Claire C. Riley #SummerofZombie

ODIUM III The Dead Saga Excerpt

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I reached the first one, side-stepping as it stretched its one bony arm for me. The other arm was barely a nub of bone left jutting out of its socket, yet it still moved. I managed to get behind it and I raised my katana high, slamming it through the back of the deader’s neck before it could turn around. The force of my blow knocked it to its knees but didn’t cut it all the way through, and I grunted as I struggled to wrench the katana free from the thick flesh and bone of its neck. I pressed down, begging the sword not to snap.

Finally the blade cut right through and the head fell from its shoulders with a resounding splat. The body slumped forward with a thud, and thick black gore that smelled like rotten eggs and three-day-old sewage pumped slowly from out of the hole in its neck. The mouth of the head continued to snap, and I slammed my sword through the side of its temple to end the deader’s eternal misery and then I moved on to the next one.

Nova was surrounded by two deaders and the ankle-biter, and I hurried across to help her. I jogged to her side, ignoring my own slow-moving deader, and I stabbed through the ankle-biter’s skull. Ankle-biters were scary, because you never freaking saw them coming. I had drawn the attention of Nova’s two deaders, but she stabbed one in the back of the skull before it could even take a step toward me, and the other followed swiftly afterwards.

I turned back to my one, sidestepping it and letting it follow me until its back was to Nova. She used both knives to hack either side of its neck in one swift movement, and the head popped up into the air like a jumping bean and landed on the ground with a small thud. It was still moving, jaws snapping away as it persistently tried to get to me, and I grimaced. It was possibly once a fairly attractive male. Cloudy blue eyes stared up at me hungrily, its teeth still relatively normal instead of broken and black. Even its skin, though pale and sallow, was still covering a full face, instead of having rotted away in parts, leaving us with a gory view of what lay underneath. I presumed this man had died from injuries other than the more standard facial bites, which were what usually got people killed.

Death brought on the zombie infection, not saliva or blood transference, and a chunk out of the face or neck was almost always a sure killer.

Nova’s boot made contact with the head and sent it flying through the air and into the fields to the left of us. Black blood trailed through the sky in an arc and she whooped and fist-pumped the air.

“Touchdown!” she yelled ridiculously. She raised her hand in an attempt to high five me.

“That’s not cool. You need to go find that head and end it.” I bent down and wiped my blade across the now headless deader’s body, cleaning it free of the gore.

“What? Why?” She bent down and cleaned her knives on a different deader’s back. “You’re just miserable. You’re always miserable, especially when you’re sick,” she huffed.

“You don’t know what I’m like when I’m sick.”

Nova rolled her eyes. “Well you’re sick now, and you’re a moody and miserable, so looks like I was right.”

“Whatever. You can’t leave a dangerous head out in the wild like that. What if someone is walking through here and doesn’t see it? What then? A dangerous head like that could kill someone.” I scowled and stood back up, releasing a hearty sneeze. “Go find the damn head.”

Nova stood back up, giving me a hard glare. “No, you go find the damn head if it’s so important to you.” She turned away and started looking through the pockets of another of the dead bodies at our feet, looking for anything useful. “No one would be stupid enough to walk through a field barefoot anyway. People wear shoes, Nina!” She pocketed several items, not bothering to show me what they were, which only pissed me off more, since we were supposed to be sharing everything.

“That’s a dangerous head, Nova. Go kill it.” I bent back down and started to fumble in my deader’s pockets, finding some gum and a lighter, plus a picture of a pretty woman. The picture did nothing to temper my growing anger. “Do they not deserve any goddamn respect?” I muttered to myself more than her. So I was surprised when Nova replied.

“No, no they don’t. I hate them all and they deserve to die a horrible death.”

My eyes snapped to hers. “You’re being a dick now.”

“Since when did you become a union leader for the Undead Society? These aren’t humans anymore,” she snarled.

 author head shoht

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The stench of rotting flesh is in the air! Welcome to the Summer of Zombie Blog Tour 2015, with 30+ of the best zombie authors spreading the disease in the month of June.

Stop by the event page on Facebook so you don’t miss an interview, guest post or teaser…and pick up some great swag as well!

Giveaways galore from most of the authors as well as interaction with them!

#SummerofZombie is the hashtag for Twitter, too!

Teaser: Shana Festa #SummerofZombie

Excerpt of Time of Death Book 2: Asylum

ToD2-Asylum-Cover-Final-MED

Daphne stood on the seat next to me and let loose with a growl. The fur on her back was raised and she looked toward the dock. We were on our feet in an instant and turned to see what was going on.

“Shit!” swore Jake, running for the helm. “Get the poles!”

A muffled bump and scrape sounded as the boat butted up to the dock. My eyes widened with fear and disbelief when I leaned over to see three undead close enough to step onto the lower deck. Vinny, Meg, and I grabbed our poles and flew down the stairs to push them back while Jake got the boat fired up and out of the danger zone.

“What the fuck happened?” shouted Vinny as we reached the bottom.

There was no time to answer, because two of the zombies had found their way onto the deck and the third was right behind them. We came out of the stairwell in between them. Meg and I struggled with the long poles to push the closest one to the edge and at the same time block the opening with its body so the other couldn’t board.

That left Vinny cut off behind us, dealing with the one that had traveled farther on deck. The end of Meg’s pole was a narrow point, not sharp enough to do any damage to living tissue, but when it pressed into the dead flesh of the zombie it slid through like butter. It made a popping sound, like a hardcover book slamming shut, as the point protruded from the zombie’s back. While the zombie continued forward, the pole slid through its torso and rustled like two pieces of paper rubbing together.

I renewed my efforts to drive it backwards with the net at the end of my pole, regaining a few precious steps at a time, until it finally reached the edge of the decking and lost its footing. With the pressure of the final zombie at its back, it remained upright, and the resistance on the pole grew forceful enough to bend the net downward.

The zombie had reclaimed only a foot when the engine caught and Jake put the boat in reverse. When the momentum hung up on the starboard anchor, the boat jerked, working in our favor. We plunged forward, off balance, and the two zombies disappeared into the water below. I heard the anchor winches work as they rose up from the sea bed, and the boat jolted back into motion.

“Get it off me!” screamed Vinny. It was the shriek of a terrified man.

The movement caused him to fall backwards to the deck, and the third zombie landed on his legs. Meg froze in place, screaming wordlessly, and I ran to him. Nearly there, I heard Vinny scream again, but this wasn’t a scream of terror; it was one of pain.

“No!” I bellowed.

Grabbing the zombie by its ankles I dragged it off him and as close to the opening as I dared. Meg was paralyzed, crying hysterically at the site of her brother lying on his back and screaming profanities. The zombie clutched at the smooth fiberglass for purchase. Finding none, it turned on me, and I kicked its midsection off the boat. Too big for the opening, the zombie folded in half, bending at an unnatural angle, and fell from view.

The rev of the engine lessened and the boat slowed to an idle a few hundred feet away from the dock. I was still bent over, hands on my knees, trying to force air into my burning lungs when Jake bounded from the stairs leading to the upper deck. His sudden appearance brought me back to the moment and I remembered Vinny.

I passed Meg, wide eyed and begging God to not take her brother, and reached my brother-in-law.

“Oh Jesus, oh Jesus,” he was babbling, struggling with trembling hands to get his pants off and kicking off his boots at the same time.

Jake grabbed him beneath the armpits and, with superhuman strength, lifted the huge man to his feet. Vinny tore at the button on his waistband and it popped off, hard enough to whiz by me and clank against the far railing.

“Where did it get you?” yelled a frantic Jake, inspecting his bare legs in a frenzy. “Fuck, I can’t find it. Where are you bit?”

“My shin, the left one.” He pointed at his leg, but couldn’t bring himself to look down.

Jake breathed out something I couldn’t understand and sat back against the wall, laughing in relief.

“Thank fucking Christ, Vin, it didn’t break the skin.” Jake marveled, his laugh turning to cries as the adrenaline rushed out of him. A collective sigh escaped us all, the moment too heavy to form words.

Meg, who had been the first to lose control of her emotions, was also the first one to bounce back.

“So, Vin, Tuesday, huh?” Her voice had a playful tone.

I had no idea what she was talking about and was about chock it up to temporary insanity, but Vinny turned away from me to face her with a questioning look, and I burst with laughter when I figured it out. Jake caught it too, and was bellowing with me.

“What the fuck is wrong with you three? Have you lost your fucking minds?”

“Nice…” Jake started, needing to catch his breath before continuing. “Nice underwear, bro.”

Vinny was wearing day-of-the-week underwear. In big letters around his ass, read Tuesday.

“You do know today is Saturday, right?” stated Meg.

“Yeah, well, I put ’em on Tuesday.” His statement made us laugh even harder and step away from the five-day old underwear-clad Vinny.

Shay2

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The stench of rotting flesh is in the air! Welcome to the Summer of Zombie Blog Tour 2015, with 30+ of the best zombie authors spreading the disease in the month of June.

Stop by the event page on Facebook so you don’t miss an interview, guest post or teaser…and pick up some great swag as well!

Giveaways galore from most of the authors as well as interaction with them!

#SummerofZombie is the hashtag for Twitter, too!

Teaser: PM Barnes #SummerofZombie

cover

Searching for food had gotten easier and easier, with fewer zombie spotted each time. It was one of the only reasons that the council had allowed her to accompany this particular search party.

Fucking council, what a joke Claire thought.  What it really amounted to, was the last bastions of old world macho bullshit.  The few survivors who had lasted through those first hard months had banded together and started to rebuild.  Not rebuild so much as just survive.  And of course, in the face of uncertainty antiquated ways had returned.

Part of the reason for the power dynamic, was that out of the hundred or so people in the enclave, only 15 were women.  In a situation where humanity needed to be rebuilt entirely by their group, you had to protect the breeders.  Or so Jack the council leader kept saying.

Even though they had yet to run into any other groups, Claire had a hard time believing that they were the only survivors.  Partly because it was so depressing and partly because the idea of spending out the rest of her days leaning to the whims of the all-male council would be too much.

She also had a sinking suspicion as to what would be coming in the next stretch.

Now that the running and constant fear had ebbed, she knew it was just a matter of time before the other 14 women and herself, got to the next part of their “duties”.

In the first days following the turn of events that had lead the world to this low place, no one had even thought about babies.  What would you do with them?  They would only be a liability…too loud and too needy.

But now…now.  She didn’t want to think about now.  So she had volunteered, met with a little resistance, but ultimately made it into the party.  What she hoped was to take her mind off of what the future might hold and possibly…possibly see for herself that no others remained.

Their destination was about 15 miles out from the enclave.  For the most part the areas within that distance had already been cleaned out of anything worth taking.  With such a small group they had been able to ration items pretty well and rarely felt the crunch of not having food or other necessities.

Truth be told the mid-sized apartment complex they had taken over had offered more than enough room and to this point privacy.  Other than the boredom and the sense of pending troubles, her life was pretty easy.  She almost felt a little guilty to be thinking of a way out.  Shouldn’t she be glad she was alive, had food to eat, shelter?  It could have been so much worse.

In those early days before she made her way to the enclave, the things she had seen.  She still woke up nights, sheets clinging to her nude body, shivering, thinking about Bruce, checking her body for bites.  Yes, she was lucky.

She snapped back to the here and now.

Even though the previous parties had reported little to no zombie activity, she still knew enough to know that not being alert could get you killed, or worse in this new world.

me (2)

*   *   *   *   *

The stench of rotting flesh is in the air! Welcome to the Summer of Zombie Blog Tour 2015, with 30+ of the best zombie authors spreading the disease in the month of June.

Stop by the event page on Facebook so you don’t miss an interview, guest post or teaser…and pick up some great swag as well!

Giveaways galore from most of the authors as well as interaction with them!

#SummerofZombie is the hashtag for Twitter, too!

 

Teaser: J.E. Gurley #SummerofZombie

Teaser for Jake’s Law by J E Gurley

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Jake Blakely was a Pima County Arizona deputy when the Staggers struck, the parasitic disease from the frozen tundra that first killed the infected, and then reanimated them as staggering, stumbling zombies. Unfortunately, the undead quickly became fast, deadly predators, killing everyone they encountered. As a die-hard survivalist and a loner by nature, Jake had prepared for an apocalyptic event, but a zombie plague had been low on his list of possibilities. In spite of the unlikely scenario, Jake was resourceful. He had food stockpiled. He had weapons and ammunition. His impregnable home in the mountains had water and solar power. He had a small patch for growing crops and pens for livestock. He hunted and scavenged. He established a personal set of rules to live by, Jake’s Laws. Law #1 – Aim high; shoot straight. Law #2 – In a lawless land, the biggest gun makes the laws, and Jake had a big gun. He wore his great-grandfather’s Arizona Ranger star to remind him that times had changed. The Arizona Rangers meted out justice from the barrels of their guns. Jake would follow their example. He survived by not challenging the thugs that preyed on the hapless, avoiding zombies when he could, and ignoring other survivors. It didn’t make him a wonderful person, as his ex-wife would attest, but it kept him alive. The one thing he didn’t expect was the loneliness.

Excerpt, Jake’s Law –

Jake was intent on reaching home, so intent that he almost failed to see the woman racing across the road, pursued by three fast zombies, Runners. He slammed on the brakes, sliding to a halt to miss her. One of the creatures focused its attention on him rather than the girl. Jake grabbed his crossbow and leaped from the jeep. His arrow struck the creature in the right side of its temple and passed completely through the skull in a fine spray of blood. The zombie took two faltering steps, teetered, and collapsed beside the road, rolling into a ditch. Before it hit the ground, Jake was in pursuit of the other two creatures.

The woman was fast, but she was clearly tiring. She stumbled, righted herself, and then stumbled again, this time falling and rolling across the ground. She picked herself up and saw that her pursuers were gaining. Changing directions, she raced toward a nearby building, limping slightly.

Jake stopped long enough to eliminate a second zombie with a bolt through its head, but the other Runner was too far away. He raced to catch up. The woman scrambled up on the flat roof of the building using a Palo Verde tree as a convenient ladder. At least she has more sense than to get herself cornered inside a building, he thought. When he got within range, he took steady aim and dropped the last Runner, who was intent on getting at the woman, clawing at the tree in rage. The woman noticed Jake but made no effort to vacate the roof.

“Come down. We have to go before more show up.”

She still didn’t budge. He was on the verge of leaving her, when she began to climb back down. As she did, a branch snapped, and she plunged ten feet to the ground. Jake watched her fall in slow motion, knowing he could never reach her in time. She landed with a sickening thud on her right side and lay there groaning. He rushed to help.

She was young, perhaps twenty-two or twenty-three, slim and athletic, but looked as though she had missed a meal or two lately. She looked up at him and grimaced, as she tried to sit up.

“I think I sprained my shoulder,” she said.

“Lucky you didn’t break your fool neck,” he replied a little harsher than he had intended, but continued, “What were you doing out here unarmed and baiting zombies?”

“I don’t like guns,” she said.

“Then keep dying a horrible death real high on your list of things to do, ‘cause that’s what’s going to happen to you.” He raised his crossbow into the air. Her eyes followed it. “Either you kill them, or they’ll kill you. Being a pacifist nowadays is a death wish. You can’t always depend on someone who doesn’t share your disdain for self-defense to help.”

“You’re a cop. Isn’t that what you do, save people?”

He didn’t feel like repeating his great-grandfather story about the badge. “I’m not a cop, and I normally don’t save people. Today was your lucky day. Now, why were you running?”

“My friends and I were holed up in a house a couple of miles away. Ben got careless on a food run and zombies followed him back. We didn’t know they were there until they broke the door down. One grabbed Liz.” She paused and closed her eyes. After a few seconds, she continued, “Ben tried to save her. They both died, horribly,” she added, looking up at him with a sneer. “I ran.”

She was angry with herself for deserting her friends. He decided to wise her up. “Smart move. They’re dead. You’re not.”

Some of the anger drained from her face. “I would be if not for you. By the way, my name is Jessica.”

Her sudden shift from disdain to praise caught him off guard and embarrassed him. He helped her to her feet using her good left arm. “You had better come with me, Jessica. I’ll see what I can do about that shoulder. Can you walk?”

She took a few uncertain steps. “I can manage, but my shoulder is numb.”

He noticed her right arm dangling loosely at her side. “You’ve dislocated your shoulder. Here.”

He handed her his crossbow, and then grabbed her right arm. Before she could protest, he pulled it outwards and up. She yelped in pain, as the bones slipped back into place.

“That hurt like hell,” she snapped, drawing back from him.

In the Army, he had become a Jack-of-all-trades. A little medical knowledge went a long way fifty clicks from the nearest medic. He knew how much pain he had caused her. “It will heal,” he replied. He took his crossbow from her. “Let’s go.”

She followed, limping badly. She had run a couple of miles wearing shorts and sandals with hungry zombies in hot pursuit. Her legs were covered with numerous scratches and scrapes. Several prickly pear cactus spines protruded from her flesh. Her t-shirt was ripped in several places, exposing one of her small, naked breasts through the fabric. He tried not to stare at it, but the sight stirred something in him. He fought it down, as he wrapped his arm around her waist to help her walk. She didn’t protest.

Back in the jeep, he offered her water and a protein bar he kept handy in case of an attack of hypoglycemia. She accepted both eagerly, downing the bar in three quick bites.

“Thanks,” she said, still chewing. “What’s your name?”

“Jake Blakely.” He fished another bar from his bag and handed it to her. “You can’t go back home,” he said.

She shook her head. “No, Jake, I can’t.” She glanced around. “I know the area. I’ll find some place safe.”

“And starve?” he asked. She didn’t reply. “Look, it’s not safe here. I’ve got a place north of here that’s secure, and I have plenty of food.” He wrinkled his nose. “I’ve got hot water for a shower, too. I don’t make any promises, but at least you’ll have a meal, a shower, and a place to sleep tonight.”

She looked at him undecided. He guessed at the reason for her caution.

“If I wanted to rape you or kill you, I could easily do it now, and I wouldn’t have had to waste precious protein bars.”

She smiled sheepishly at him. “You’re right. I’m being foolish. I accept.”

“Just as long as you know I’m not adopting you. When your wounds heal, you’re gone.”

“Fair enough. I don’t want to be a bother.”

“Too late for that,” he replied, as he cranked the jeep, mentally kicking himself for ignoring Jack’s Law #4 – Don’t bring home more problems than you left with. Especially a good looking problem, he added.

 

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The stench of rotting flesh is in the air! Welcome to the Summer of Zombie Blog Tour 2015, with 30+ of the best zombie authors spreading the disease in the month of June.

Stop by the event page on Facebook so you don’t miss an interview, guest post or teaser…and pick up some great swag as well!

Giveaways galore from most of the authors as well as interaction with them!

#SummerofZombie is the hashtag for Twitter, too!

Teaser: Armand Rosamilia #SummerofZombie

Dying Days 5

DYING DAYS 5

Armand Rosamilia

Chapter One

Sally was bleeding out and all Mitchell could think about was if the zombies could smell it. He’d been covering her mouth for an hour, pushing down hard every time she tried to scream.

“You’re hurting her,” the little Puerto Rican bitch said for the fifth time in the last twenty minutes. Her New Yaw-Rican accent was getting on Mitchell’s nerves. If she wasn’t so damn hot, he would cover her mouth, too, but also her nose, until she died.

He hated having such vile thoughts. He was one of the good guys. “If she cries out, we’re dead. I heard noises outside.”

“There’s always noises outside,” the wimpy dude with the cracked glasses said. “The world moves around us.”

“Man, whatever drugs you’re taking, please share with me,” said the Puerto Rican chick. “Or else shut the fuck up with your Matthew McConaughey crazy talk. You’re not nearly as good looking.”

Mitchell put his hand up when he heard another noise. He was sure of it this time. Someone was right outside the door. Something…

There were seventeen people crammed into the bathroom of the Chinese restaurant, and it only had two stalls. Not nearly enough room to survive for long. With Sally sliced open and stinking like death it was only a matter of time before they were found out. Despite what Mitchell and a few of the more intelligent members of the group wanted, no one would let them toss Sally out into the restaurant or the street to be eaten. She hadn’t been bitten. She’d taken a nasty fall off a roof onto a wrought iron fence.

Sally was dying and she was going to get them all killed.

“Everyone please be quiet,” Mitchell said. He pointed at the door, which had no lock on it. They’d piled the garbage cans and wedged a chair under the door handle like someone had seen in a movie once, but Mitchell knew it wasn’t going to hold against anyone with a bit of intelligence. Like the fucking zombies roaming around lately.

Why had he joined with this sorry group of people anyway? Mitchell was doing just fine on his own. He had a little bit of food and water. He was sleeping on the roof of the Staples building across the street. He’d found two computer keyboards inside and he was keeping them as his weapons. So far he hadn’t had to use them. The break room vending machines were his source of food and drink. Until he’d emptied them.

There was a knock at the door.

One of the women went to go to the door, but two men held her down.

“Maybe it’s someone who needs help?” she asked, struggling to break free. “My poor son could be out there.”

“Or a zombie messing with us,” one of the men said. “I’ve been face to face with a smart one. They’ll screw with you, chase you down like an animal, and then bleed you out for hours. Stay away from the door.”

“You’re talking too loud,” Mitchell said. He waved his hands for everyone to back up into the far end of the bathroom.

There was a second knock. “Is everyone alright in there? I heard some talking. You people need any food or water? We set up a base camp just up the road.”

“We’re saved,” the woman said with a faint smile. “I knew my prayers would be answered.”

Mitchell shook his head. “No one speak.”

“Hello? This is the National Guard. We’re here to save you. The zombies are retreating back to Canada. Order will be restored. God has saved us all,” the voice said. “But we need to move fast. We’ll be heading out in a few hours.”

Now several people were coming forward, relief on their faces.

Mitchell knew it was all bullshit. He shook his head and put his arms up but no one was stopping. “It’s not real. There are zombies on the other side of the door. Don’t you get it? We’re being duped into opening up and letting them feed on us. All of us. I’m not going to do it.”

“Get out of the way,” a large man said, sweat streaking down his face. He’d been sitting against a sink since Mitchell had gotten here, and he hadn’t said a word. Now he was coming at Mitchell and gaining momentum. “I’m getting rescued.”

“Seriously, this is a mistake,” Mitchell said before the man pushed him out of the way. “We’re all going to die.”

“This isn’t a trick, is it?” an elderly woman was shouting.

As if they’d tell you the truth, Mitchell thought. No, we’re lying. This really is a trick. Haha. He moved to the back of the bathroom as the people scrambled to open the door and invite death inside.

Just as the door was cleared, something heavy slammed against it from the other side and everyone surged back.

People murmured and the large man put both hands up and tried to hush the crowd. It didn’t work.

“Open the door already. I’m having an episode,” a woman said. “I don’t like cramped spaces.”

“You’ve been here for three days without complaint,” someone else said.

Mitchell tried to blend into the wall, knowing there was something really bad about to go down.

“Please don’t open the door,” someone else said but they were drowned out by murmuring. “This isn’t going to end well.”

Another knock at the door and everyone fell silent.

Mitchell slumped down to the floor. He didn’t want to see people getting ripped apart, and it was going to happen.

“Hello?” a deep male voice said from the other side of the door. “Can I have your attention, please and thank you?”

It wasn’t the same voice as before. Whoever was talking had a bigger presence to Mitchell. An authority figure. Trouble.

“I can hear you in there. At least a dozen, maybe more. I have good news and bad news. What do you want to hear first?”

“Good news,” the big man finally said when no one answered. He’d stepped up to become their leader, and Mitchell was fine with it.

I should’ve stayed on the roof across the street, Mitchell thought.

“Alright. First, the good news… you didn’t open the door. Smart move. There were three zombies out here, ready to kill everyone in the bathroom. It would’ve been really bloody and quite the mess. So… you’re welcome. I wiped them out. But watch where you step when you exit the john because there might be a few puddles and limbs on the floor.”

Mitchell covered his head with his hands and pulled his knees close to his body. Could this get any worse? He knew it was about to.

No one made a sound, staring at the door.

“Hello? You still in there? Someone needs to ask about the bad news now,” the voice said.

“What’s the bad news?” Mitchell heard the big man say.

“Well, here’s the kicker. I’m also considered a zombie, except I’m more powerful than the ones bothering you. So powerful, in fact, I dispatched them with ease. Which was good short-term for you. Long-term? That would be up to you.”

“Don’t… open… the… door,” Mitchell yelled hysterically.

“Before everyone freaks out and tries something ridiculously stupid like attacking me, there are a couple of things you need to know. I’m not here to kill you. I’m actually here to make you an offer you can’t refuse. Interested in hearing my sales pitch?”

Mitchell stood up. Had he heard right? Was the fucker playing with them now?

“What do you think?” the big man asked and shrugged his shoulders.

“I’d rather not destroy the door, to be honest. But I will if you make me count to three,” the voice said. “Regardless, I’m going to chat with you for a bit.”

Mitchell pushed through the crowd. His hands were shaking. He couldn’t take this anymore. If they were going to die, so be it. But this teasing was literally going to kill him.

He was expecting someone to stop him as he put a hand to the door, but everyone was busy holding their breaths. Mitchell glanced around before turning the knob and pushing open the door.

It was a sharp-dressed man in the hallway. Not a bloody monster, although he did have some crimson spots on his royal navy suit. His dress shoes were covered in gore and the bottom of his pant legs was ruined. But he was smiling.

“Hey, thanks for opening the door. I really do appreciate it.” The man motioned, with his hand, for Mitchell to come out. “Let’s talk in the main room. Away from the smell of the hallway and the bathroom. I have a proposition, like I said.”

Mitchell stepped over what could be an arm but he didn’t want to spend too much time staring at it. He was afraid he’d pass out and fall face down in a pool of blood while the rest of his companions stepped over him.

The group was led into the restaurant, the man going to where the front doors used to be. He stood in the entryway in the darkness and now Mitchell could see his glowing red eyes. “I’ll get right to the point. I was like the mindless zombies and then I smartened up. Quicker than the rest. It was beneficial to me. I spend my nights roaming the area. I search out the zombies and destroy them.”

“Why?” Mitchell asked skeptically. He figured he had nothing to lose and no one else was stepping up to ask any questions. He wanted the guy to get to the point.

“Because I’m no longer a mere zombie. I’m so much more. I have powers you can only imagine. I can sense things. I can control things. Read minds. Manipulate the world around me. Understand more than the human brain could ever hope to learn and process. I have become the evolution of the race, and there can only be one of me.”

“You sound more like a vampire than a zombie,” Mitchell said.

The man smiled. “If it helps you by putting a label on me, so be it. It doesn’t really mean anything. I am what I am. And I am offering you all a chance to live.”

“Keep talking,” a woman said.

“I am building a new life. A safe haven where the zombies won’t be able to touch us. A place with food and water and electricity. Somewhere you can raise your children without worry,” the man said. “And in return I ask for your loyalty. Nothing more.”

“Nothing more?” Mitchell asked. “Then what’s in it for you?”

“A community to help protect me, of course. There are millions of zombies and they’re all heading to Florida. I can’t destroy them all myself. I need people on the walls of the compound to keep them at bay. I need help in keeping the human race alive.”

“To what end?” a woman asked.

The man chuckled. “I no longer need human flesh to live. I no longer have the horrible sexual urges of my lesser brethren. But I do need the blood. I won’t die without it, but I will survive longer with it.”

“You are a fucking vampire,” Mitchell said. “Holy shit.”

“If you come with me tonight, I offer safe passage to Daytona Beach to live and flourish. I won’t force you. If you choose to stay, I have no problem with it. But then you will become an ongoing source of blood for me. I hope you understand. Our human numbers are dwindling and I have so many big plans to expand where we live. We have a garden but need more people to help with crops and to gather supplies. Does anyone have any construction experience?”

Three men held up their hands.

“Excellent. We’ll be starting expansion in the next week. We’d love to have you be a part of the team. I will protect you.  Will feed and clothe you. In return, you will help me. Any questions, or shall we go? I have a team waiting for you outside in a school bus to transport you to Main Street.”

“Who are you?” Mitchell asked.

“I am The Lich Lord.”

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Armand Rosamilia

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The stench of rotting flesh is in the air! Welcome to the Summer of Zombie Blog Tour 2015, with 30+ of the best zombie authors spreading the disease in the month of June.

Stop by the event page on Facebook so you don’t miss an interview, guest post or teaser…and pick up some great swag as well!

Giveaways galore from most of the authors as well as interaction with them!

#SummerofZombie is the hashtag for Twitter, too!