The Musings of a Hideous Mind is also avaialble for a free preview on Bookbzzr.com

Monday, 20 September 2010

Office Hours

It all started with a sneeze; an innocuous bodily function. Nobody thought anything of it, by the end of the day the entire office was sneezing, but it was winter. We always managed to think up something to tell ourselves to make it all seem so innocent.

Walter Simpson was the first to fall, he stood up behind his computer and simply fell down, stiff as a board. Soon Tariq Al Ekorhi and Frances Dix followed suit, one spluttering into his coffee before collapsing on the keyboard, the other simply ran down, like a clockwork toy, she went limp in her chair without even so much as a whimper.

None of us knew what was happening, but the trend continued, moving from desk island to desk island, and like dominos they all fell.

I stood alone, surrounded by the bodies of my former colleagues, unsure if I should be scared or relieved that I was alive. Should I run or stay calm and call the police.

I heard a crashing sound outside, the sound of large amounts of metal travelling at high speeds coming to a series of sudden halts. The world was dying one person at a time, and there was nothing that we could do to stop it.

There was a noise behind me. I spun around, thinking that someone else had survived. It was dark out suddenly, I hadn’t noticed how quickly the time had passed. It was almost 16.00. They had been dead for almost six hours now.

Only….

They weren’t dead anymore. The sound I had heard was not a survivor but the clumsy sounds of the dead rising. Paul Hooper stared at me, his eyes dead, lips snarling, saliva dripping from his overweight jowls like a junk yard dog ready to attack.

Now, it has been two days, I have cornered myself in the corner of the office, blocking myself in with filing cabinets and desks. Luckily, I guess I would still call it that, they all seemed to be incapable of thought, their minds dead, the only thing driving them was the hunger for living flesh. My left hand shook terribly as hunger and thirst wracked my body, the stapler I was holding rattled, giving sound to my fear.

What hadn’t I used the corner with the water fountain and vending machine I asked myself constantly.

Outside the world was dead, no cars moved, not planes flew, smoke billowed from the fires that were raging untended in almost every building I could see from your office on the fifteenth floor.
The only company I had was the computer screen, and even that had started to do nothing other than blink at me. Repeating the same two phrases over and over again.

VIRUS DETECTED

SYSTEM SHUT DOWN PROCESS INITIATED.
I spent most of my time willing myself to start sneezing, I prayed for a cold, but I had never been sick in my life, and in the end I knew there was nothing for it but to move the desks to one side and allow them to end my life.

I hope I taste good I thought as I moved the filing cabinet and stood with my arms spread wide, ready to embrace them when they came.

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