STAGE ONE

Posted: May 2, 2014 in Dark Silo News
Amp, firing at a zombie archery target.

Amp, firing at a zombie archery target.

Ever wonder what it would be like to turn into a zombie? How would your perception of everyday events change? What would it feel like? That perspective, often ignored, is the focus of one Fort Collins, Colorado Polaris school student (Amp). What makes Amp’s story so extraordinary is the seamless way normal events become quietly horrifying. Below, you’ll find an excerpt from what could be a novella, written by another one of teacher Ryan Grindel’s students. Each year, Dark Silo visits the Polaris school, and each year, we come away amazed. Read on. You’ll be amazed, too.

STAGE ONE

“Papa!” Laurence yelled as he ran to embrace me.

“Son!” I yelled back as Laurence plowed into my shoulder as fast as his legs could carry him. His short Brown hair flopped into my face.

“I missed you so much papa!” he said, big green eyes staring at me.

“I missed you too, son. My word, you look so much bigger. I think I might be holding someone else’s child. Why you look to be at least 10.” I spoke in a serious voice with a laugh at the end.

“Silly papa I’m only 7. Say, papa, did you get one for me, did you?” Laurence grinned so big I thought he might hurt himself.

“”Get what? What do you mean?”

“Come on papa!” He punched my chest with a frown on his face.

“Do you mean this?” I said as I pulled out a bar of chocolate wrapped in aluminum foil. “I got this from a merchant down by the docks.” I handed him the bar of chocolate. As Laurence’s grin came back, he hugged me very hard and said thank you countless times.

“Alright Laurence, get off your father, he must be exhausted.” A woman joined them, standing behind Laurence.

“Nora!” I walked up to her and gave her a kiss on the check as Laurence was occupied with the bar of chocolate. But staring at the bar of chocolate didn’t occupy him for long. He began asking if he could eat it right now. “Ask your mother first,” I said as I patted Laurence on the head.

“Look mama, look” Laurence said as he showed Nora the bar of chocolate. Nora looked at me with a face that would scare the devil. I could tell that she really didn’t want Laurence to eat it. All I did was give her a puppy dog face while Laurence begged. Nora sighed and looked at me, then at Laurence, then back at me. She closed her eyes and put one hand on her hip and the other on her forehead. When she looked back at Laurence she sighed again. “One piece only. You can have the rest after you finish your chores.”

Laurence’s grin got even bigger—I thought he just might end up hurting himself. He started to unwrap the aluminum foil. Nora told him to, “be careful, that’s sharp,” but by that time it was too late. Laurence burst into tears, and Nora glared, saying “See I told you so.”

She knelt down and looked at his finger. I walked over to see it as well. Just a little cut, barely enough to redden the the index finger. Nothing to cry over. Laurence squeezed it, and blood started to come out of the small cut. The crimson liquid began to pool, and finally started to stream around his finger. The crimson red trail made its way from the tip of his finger, staining everything that was under the blood. Laurence’s crying and Nora’s talking grew faint, as if they were leaving somewhere, and as the voices got quieter and quieter the blood on my son’s finger got brighter and brighter. I could smell it—such a sweet smell and it seemed like it would taste very sweet as well. The thump of Laurence’s pulse became as loud as cannons and as his heartbeat got louder, so did the whispering in my head. I couldn’t make out the words. The blood pooled up on the tip of the finger and what should have taken seconds took minutes as the blood started to swell. Bigger and bigger it swelled, and the more that accumulated, the louder the voices became, until the pool of blood had gotten too big and stretched towards the ground and broke free in a thundering crackle. And as the tiny ball of crimson red started to fall for what seemed like hours I felt something on my shoulders and I started to sway back and forth. And as the blood plummeted towards the ground, my wife’s voice started to get louder and louder—muffled so bad that I couldn’t make out what she was saying. And the closer the drop of blood got to the ground the louder the voice became until the drop of blood smashed into the tile floor and everything came back to normal.

“Honey? David?” Nora said.

I looked at her and said that I was fine. Just fine.

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