Allen Weathers used to like his job as a pathologist. The dead were poor company making the morgue a lonely place at times. The world expected little of him and he preferred it that way. All that changed when the dead inexplicably began to rise.
Now, two years from the initial rising, little is known of why or how this is happening. The only two sure facts are that to put the undead to rest the brain must be completely destroyed and that the deceased rise exactly 6 hours, 6 minutes, and 6 seconds after dying.
Knowing the time limit has allowed the world to regain some semblance of control, but it has redefined Allen’s job description. He’s been thrust reluctantly into the spotlight. He is a disposer of the dead. Every day is a gruesome game of beat the clock. Gone are the days when nobody was counting on him, because if he fails at his job, if he can’t stay ahead of the game, the dead will rise up and overrun the city.
“We should try to make a run for it too,” Alice said. “My car is pretty close to gate, we could…,” she cut off seeing Josh shaking his head.
“They followed me down the stairs to the basement. I had to barricade the door to get away. I was trying to find you guys so we could try to make a run for it through the ER.”
“The ER is overrun too,” Allen replied numbly.
“So what do we do?” Josh asked.
They all looked at Allen. The weight of their stares threatened to crumble him. He wished it were just him. He knew what he’d do if he were the only one left, but being responsible for three young people made it a hard decision. Still, he knew there weren’t many other options. They could arm themselves and try to fight their way out of the hospital, into the parking lot and take their chances in a city that is surly overrun by now. They could barricade themselves in the Morgue and hope that help comes, but that seemed unlikely.
Or they could try something reckless to try to save the city; something that would take sacrifice. He looked them each in the eye in turn.
“I may have a plan,” he answered.
About Kirk Jolly
Kirk Jolly is a horror writer from Ogden, Utah. During the day, he spends his time crunching numbers for a construction company. From an early age, he loved reading any and everything he could get his hands on, but the books he loved the most were the dark and scary ones form the likes of King, Koontz, and Straub. These types of books weren’t a big hit with his religious parents forcing him to sneak to the library alone and hiding the books in his room only reading at night while everyone else slept.
It wasn’t until the seventh grade when the honor students of his school had a chance to hear Ray Bradbury speak that he decided he wanted to be a writer. He has been struggling towards that goal ever since. After a few short story publications and becoming an associate member of the Horror Writers Association, he gained enough confidence to self-publish his debut novella 6 Hours, 6 Minutes, 6 Seconds in May 2013. His first full length novel, The Twins and the Raven, the first book in a planned trilogy, is nearing completion and will be out by September 2013.
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I don't want to say too much about this story because it is a novelette and I don't want to give away too much. The title intrigued me, the premise even more. This is a very exciting novelette or long short story, and in short story fashion it leaves you with an ending that will have you thinking long after: Well? Was he or wasn't he? I hope Mr. Jolly will develop this idea into a novel or zombie series. It really is unique in the overpopulated world of Zombies.
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