Here is the last instalment of Eternal Zombielands! For anyone who has been keeping up with the Help Me section of these forums, one of the characters should seem very familiar to you.
Instalment one can be found here http://www.eternal-lands.com/forum/index.php?showtopic=53815
Instalment two can be found here: http://www.eternal-lands.com/forum/index.php?showtopic=56012
and for the tl:dr crowd: Yours truly has been fighting zombies for the past few Halloweens and has been running into familiar faces in her travels to find and kill the head zombie and bring EL back to what it should be.
Eternal Zombielands 3:
This is the End, My Zombie Friends, The End
“Get out of there!” I yelled at Ace as I hammered on the door. “Come on. You've been in there forever. I have to go too!”
Ace emerged from the outhouse while peeling off dung stained leather gloves. “Geeze. Sorry. I didn't know you had to go.”
“You were poo picking in there?!” I asked incredulously as I swung in and slammed the door shut. “We're running from zombies. Why the heck would you stop to harvest dung?”
“I dunno. In case we need... saltpeter? Or maybe.... black powder?” He replied through the rough wooden door. “It's just what I do! I have uncontrollable harvesting urges.”
I finished up and swung back out again. “I'm pretty sure neither of us has the skills to do anything useful with it. Maybe try to harvest some veggies or something useful if you can't control your harvesting urges. Let's go. You walk downwind from me poo picker.”
“Go where?” He challenged “I'm sick of going and never getting anywhere.”
I stopped and turned, unsure of what to say. In truth I was also sick of going and going and getting nowhere. We'd been at it for a month, trying to find this head zombie. We'd gotten bogus leads from every non zombified person we'd met so far. Once they understood what we were looking for everyone was SURE that the first person they'd seen change was the first person ever to change. Idiots. We'd chased every single one of them down even though we knew none of them were the right person. Idiots.
No one had been willing to join our search either. Cowards, all. Content to hide and hope rather than take action. No matter how frustrating the search became I'd still pick action over cowardice any day. If that meant that I'd be doomed to walk Draia and kill zombies for the rest of my days, so be it. It was better than any alternative I'd seen so far.
“Well do you have any suggestions Mr. Whiny?” I asked peevishly and Ace shook his head. “Then we stick with what we've been doing till one of us comes up with something better. Let's go.”
We trudged along the road for the next uneventful hour. It was a rare and welcome respite from the dozens of zombies that we'd become accustomed to avoiding or hacking through. Suddenly Ace stopped in his tracks. I happened not to be looking ahead at that moment and ran into his legs with a dull thud. “What the hell?” I exclaimed.
He shushed me. “Did you hear that?” He asked.
I stopped, holding my breath for a few long moments. “No.” I finally answered.
Ace still didn't move. “There is something in those bushes.” He indicated a large clump off the side of the road.
“There's nothing....” I started to say before I did hear something rustle, and saw the bushes move. Immediately I wished again for Radu's AK47 as I took my bow off my shoulder and grabbed an arrow from my quiver as something pushed it's way out and onto the road. I'm pretty sure it was a Dragoni. It emerged from the bushes with sticks and leaves in it's hair, torn and dirty clothes, and a stupid look on it's face. A broken, stubby, rusted sword was gripped in it's hand. It was basically just a sword hilt.
“I did it.” It said as it shuffled toward us. “Now I can have it, right? You said I could have it if I did it.”
Ace and I looked at each other and shrugged. “What the hell are you talking about?” Ace asked it as it shuffled around and slashed the air with it's piece of sword. I kept my bow trained on it, ready to drop the bow and grab my own sword if it got too close.
“I are ta best at killing.” It said as it jousted with it's own shadow. “I kill all. I are ta best. TA BEST!”
“What is it?” Ace asked as he watched it turn a circle to try to look at it's own rear end. It was still muttering nonsensically.
“I don't know. Is it a zombie or is it a person? I can't tell.” I was starting to get a major headache just from watching and listening to... whatever the thing was. “It's stupid like a zombie.”
It came towards us, dragging it's rusted old stubby sword behind it. “I gots brains!” It said. “I gots lots of brains. I are ta smartest person alive! I are the best at all things! I are ta smart!”
“Zombies don't really talk.” I reasoned. “They just shuffle around calling for brains. This can't be a zombie.” For some reason the longer I listened, the harder it was getting to think clearly.
“But have you ever known a person like this? I mean, I've known some idiots in my day, but this... Well it's almost beyond comprehension.” Ace said as whatever it was charged over to him swinging it's sword piece. I couldn't tell what it was screaming, but I think it was mad that we weren't properly worshipping it's self proclaimed mental prowess.
As it got closer Ace leaned over and put his hand on it's forehead, stopping it's advance. It gave a frustrated scream and continued to try to slash at him with it's tiny piece of sword but Ace's arms were longer than it's reach so all it accomplished was making a lot of noise and swinging wildly at what it couldn't get to. “What should we do with it?” He asked between chuckles.
“This is pretty entertaining, let it keep going. When it tires itself out, we'll kill it, because even if it's not a zombie, it shouldn't live.” I put the arrow back in the quiver, slung my bow over my shoulder again and waited. It took a surprisingly long time for it to tire itself out. Ace was yawning by the time it finally gave up and stopped pushing it's head into his hand.
“You said!” It screamed as it flung it's piece of sword at Ace and sank the the ground wailing. “You said I could! I could, could! You saaaaaaaaaaaaid!!!!!!!!! You said if I do it, I can have it!”
“What the hell is it talking about?” I asked, watching it writhe grotesquely on the ground.
“Who knows? But I think I'm getting dumber every second I listen to it.”
“Yeah. This is just as dangerous as a zombie.” I drew my sword and waited till the creature turned it's head toward me. When it did, I gladly put the tip right through it's left eye, effectively ending the idiocy once and for all.
“I think everyone is better off now.” Ace said as I sheathed my sword again.
“Yeah. Someone should probably have done that a long time ago.” I agreed. “No one should have to listen to that. But we do have to deal with those.” I pointed over Ace's shoulder at the small horde of actual zombies that were now advancing on us. The thingies tantrum must have drawn them over. I grabbed my bow again, nocked an arrow onto the string and slowly drew it back.
“Wait!” Ace cried. “Something is happening to them, look!”
I lowered the bow and watched as the slowly shuffling group came closer. “They look like zombies to me.” I said and raised it again.
“No!” He slapped it back down and held it there. “These aren't moaning.”
“So?” I argued as I kicked him in the shin to make him let go.
He plucked the bow from my hands and hung it up on a tree branch that was too high for me to reach. “And now some of them aren't shuffling.”
I made a futile jump for the bow and looked again. It was true. Some of the zombies that had been shuffling toward us mere seconds ago were now walking normally, although a little unsteadily. Others were closing their eyes and shaking their heads, as if coming out of a dream. Suddenly, one of them spoke. “What...what...what happened? Did you get him?”
Another looked down at the heap of arms, legs, and torso on the ground in front of us. “They did!” He exclaimed and turned toward the bleary eyed group. “They killed him! We're all free!”
“What the hell are you people talking about?” Ace asked over a round of cheers from the group. It was clear now that they were people again.
“That's what has been changing people.” Someone else said, pointing at the body on the ground. “He wanders all over these lands spewing nonsensical stupidity as if it were absolute truth. It's like a black hole for intelligence. He just sucks the IQ out of anyone he gets near and compresses it into an unusable singularity. You don't even have to talk directly to him, just being near enough to hear him is enough! You're left as a hollow shell of a thing that just craves it's brains back. Also, you like the taste of live flesh for some reason. Oh and anyone you nibble on goes dumb too. It's all very confusing and horrible and none of it makes any sense! Thank you, thank you, thank you for saving us!
The crowd suddenly swarmed us and lifted us onto their shoulders, carrying us off to the nearest tavern for a celebratory everyone-got-thier-brains-back drink.
Later on, Ace and I took a very long time coming to terms with the fact that all the people we had killed on our quest to find the head zombie weren't zombies at all. Eventually though we were able to take comfort in the fact that while they hadn't been zombies, they'd still been trying to eat our brains so it had still been them or us in all situations. Sometimes I still have trouble sleeping at night though. I see all their faces over and over again in my dreams.