The stench of burning hair and flesh filled the air, the sound of eyeballs exploding in their sockets could still be picked out amongst the screams of the dying as the flames at their bodies. The thick smoke was thankfully being blown in the opposite direction today, away from the crowd, all family members and friends of those being burned.
Each week at the town census meeting everybody who was left underwent the series of stringent government tests, and anybody who failed was immediately removed from population and isolated until it was time for the "cleansing" as it had been termed by the WHO not long after its introduction.
Today was only a small pile, 52 bodies from the 6 neighbouring towns but it didn't lessen the emotion. Over the years people had adjusted themselves to the continual threat, the chance that loved ones could be gone within a heartbeat, but one thing that was never adapted to was the fact that they had to be alive when the fires were lit. Fire was the only way to kill the infection, and killing them before was not an option, the virus took control of them instantly, and could sadly only be destroyed whilst in its dormant state.
The sun was getting low in the sky by the time the last of the screams finally died down, and although they were more likely to be the result of gases escaping the charred remains than people still struggling with life, everybody remained. It was an unspoken law that you remained until the end. Today would be pushing it however, because once the sun set, they would come in their droves, the smell of the freshly roasted sweet meat would be too intense for them to ignore.
There was no time for burial, and as the mourners turned to leave their sobbing increased as they all saw the first few shadows standing on the horizon, charging ravenously towards the feast that had been laid on for them.
"Quickly, get into the cars, we need to leave . . . now!" The vicar shouted, pulling out his revolver as he spoke. He was ready and willing to put a bullet between the eyes of any zombie that got too close to what remained of his flock. "Get to the church, it will hold them off until morning." He screamed.
Locked within the confines of the church, the cowering group of were forced to listen on helplessly as the bodies of their loved ones were devoured with gusto by the undead, whose appetite would never be satiated. They would be back and eventually they would claim them all, that was how the virus worked, you never saw it coming. . . it was airborne now and none of them even realised.