Short Story: Walking Alive

I stumbled into the house, my wrist throbbing. I went to the bathroom first. I know it’s useless, but 28 years of cleaning cuts aren’t broken in a day. An hour? Anyway, I clean out the wound and wrap some gauze around my wrist. I weave my way past the boxes of dry goods I’ve collected. Damn and I just found that pallet of fruit loops too. My favorite. It took me a whole day to get that pallet back here.

I go into the living room and pull out paper and pens. I want to leave some notes for people. I don’t know if mom will get this letter, it’s been years since I saw her, but I have to hope. Hope is all that kept me going this long.

I finish the letter to my parents and write some letters to some of my new friends. I want to let them know how sorry I am. I failed and I always hated failure. I didn’t handle it will at any time in my life, this is an even bigger failure. I don’t want to hurt anyone. I finish my letters and go back to the bathroom, wrap another round of gauze around my wrist.

I stand there, staring at the gauze and put it on the counter, my decision made. I can’t change my future, but I can help out whoever finds me. In one of the half-buried closets I pull out a pair of high heels that literally make the wearer balance on their toes. I set these by the door and go into my bedroom. I put on my armpit holster and put my favorite pair of guns into the holsters. I’ve never worn 2 guns on this thing before and take several minutes to resettle them. I load up spare weapons clips and slide them into my pockets.

Underneath the bed I have three machetes. Two of them have these awesome case things, one I slide over my head so it fits against my spine. The other I strap around my waist and clip the bit over my knee. I look at the third one, but for the life of me – oh wow that’s a bad pun – can’t think…

I stuff my jacket pockets, one of those military style coats with eighty pockets, with match boxes, my favorite travel food kit, and my paperback copy of The Life of Pi, one of my favorite books now. I make sure the book is on the inside pocket hopefully a safe place. The last thing I put on is an old lanyard with my house key on it.

I go to the kitchen and from under the kitchen sink I pull out some duct tape.  I tear off three long strips about a foot long each. I then carefully wrap the four fingers of my left hand.  I look at the high heels and sigh. Damn, I need to go ahead and put them on. It’s awkward to put the heels on and I wobble horribly as I stagger into the kitchen. I tape my right hand’s four fingers.

My stomach growls so loud and insistently I see red for a moment. I groan with the hunger. I grab one of the pieces of tape and wrap my left hand’s thumb against the rest. I have to use my teeth to get the right-hand thumb and I lick my lips as I look at my own flesh being hidden beneath the grey grunge tape.

I use my hands like the levers of a forklift to pick up the last piece of tape. I totter as I try to keep my balance and awkwardly, I put the tape over my mouth.  I tap it into place and half-stagger, half-drag myself between the boxes to the front door. I can barely open it and stumble outside. Underneath the balcony I hear my siblings asking me if I’m hungry. And I am. I am so hungry…maybe I should go eat Mr. …. so hungry….

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