How horrifying would it be if your brother became your worst nightmare? You’d fall asleep with images of his biting face in front of your eyes, his lifeless stare giving you chills, and his painful gurgles echoing in your ears. Yet, you know you did everything you could to save him from his empty life of despair. How would you rest knowing he’d be out there taking the lives of others in the same way he had tried to take yours?
It’s not every day your brother becomes a zombie. Maybe today is one of those good Monday Mayhem mornings where everything goes right in spite of knowing that whatever you did to help your brother, you couldn’t have stopped what would have happened anyway.
After all, your brother was there for you through some of the happiest times in your life. He was there those summer nights spent chatting on the porch about everything from the cost of gas to how beautiful the rain is when it trickles down a windowpane. He was there when you celebrated one of the most memorable birthdays and he gave you that baseball cap—that same baseball cap you no long possess because it reminds you too much of how it used to be and what you had lost.
And who can forget that fateful day at the game when he told you about wanting to marry his girlfriend of three years making you feel privileged, since he also asked you to become his best man.
But you noticed the changes before he even knew what was happening. The disease began drawing his life away months before his happiness disappeared. It started in the heart and grew slowly over the course of time. You couldn’t put your finger on it. He was different. His eyes began to grow icy, his skin limpid and pasty. His hair had lost its shine. Whatever it was he suffered, he didn’t look good. Most of all, his personality had changed.
What once was a strong, healthy, outgoing man became a shell of a human. Empty. Without form and void.
That’s when you noticed the snapping. You heard of this occurring to others, but you wouldn’t have believed it occurring to your own brother. Never. How could it? You’ve been through so much together. There’s no way he’d turn on you. What about the times you were there for each other? What about those moments of brilliance you thought he could repel anything, should an external force wreak havoc on his brain?
When the snapping took over it was too late. Just like the others you saw turn on their loved ones, your brother did so as well. You tried to save him. You tried to get him help. You tried to show him through example that what he was becoming was something unrecognizable. Something that if not fixed, would destroy his life forever.
Every so often, he’d snap his jowls. You didn’t know what it meant. Yet it came about because his life was deteriorating before your eyes and the disease that once took hold of his heart slowly seeped into the rest of his body making his skin cold to the touch and his soul filled with unbridled rage. All he wanted was to hurt you. All you wanted was for things to go back to a time when joy coursed through his veins.
The disease had no mercy on your brother’s soul. It ravaged it, sucking all the goodness and replacing it with a bitter spirit that shook the ground where he walked and numbed his bones.
You couldn’t bare watching anymore. One day you drove him away and released him in the wilderness. You said sorry for anything you may have ever done to have caused him pain, and left him lost to his own hate—dead.
But you hold on to hope that one day he will find his way through the wild and come home to you cured of his malady. You hold on to that very little chance his mind hadn’t completely turned to stone. And you hold on to the hope his heart sparks with life again to restore who he once was.
Not what he is now—zombie.
What would you do if one of your friends turned into a zombie? Would you try to save or kill them?