via Daily Prompt: Pungent

Not strictly related to pungent, but in that weird way the internet has, a while ago I went online in search of articles about literary patronage in seventeenth century England (for an essay, not just…for fun) and half an hour later stumbled across this picture:

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of 50s housewives posing with their zombie apocalypse weapons, from this page, and the idea of zombies and housewives just wouldn’t leave my head. So, here you go, as I said, not strictly related to pungent, but then is there really that much that’s more pungent than zombies?

1948

Mabel smoothed the skirt of her dress, blotted her lipstick, and picked up her axe.

She didn’t particularly want to kill the zombie, she thought; she had just put the washing out to dry and, stupidly, the only clean clothing she’d left out for herself was her mother’s best silk dress. She sighed as she unlocked the door. It was so hard to get blood out of silk.

Then again, she thought as the zombie lunged clumsily at her and she ducked under its arm, I’ll be cooking a casserole later and that’s bound to be messy… She leaned back and aimed a hefty swing at the zombie’s back, neatly tugging her skirt backwards to avoid the fountain of gore erupting from the axe wound. Her hit had connected solidly, as she knew it would, and had almost completely severed it’s spine in two. The zombie was now completely disarmed; it could not raise itself up, nor could it drag itself forward with the dead weight of its partially-severed lower body anchoring it to the ground. Mabel gazed down at it, musing over her casserole.

Rabbit or pigeon? Rabbit or pigeon?

She placed an immaculate high heel onto the zombie’s legs and pulled her axe out. Its arms scrabbled uselessly, coming to an abrupt stop as she swung her axe into its skull.

Oh, now look at that, she thought irritably, watching the trickle of blood flowing down her garden path, I might have hosed it for nothing.

She had seen the zombie lumbering up the road this morning as she was finishing her cup of tea. She gazed down the road now, tracing its steps back to the jungle of bushes surrounding the imposing wire/wood/brick monstrosity that made up their boundary fence. She tutted under her breath.

That was Hannah’s job. She was meant to trim those yesterday.

The zombie must have come through the hole. They’d only found it this morning; Doris had headed off straight away to hunt down the boards to patch it up. Judith was standing guard til she came back, and Mabel could see her now, placing a finishing swing of her shovel into a second zombie. As the creature fell she twisted her weapon out of its head and stood up, catching sight of Mabel. “Drat, so sorry, dear!” she trilled, “that nifty little devil must have snuck right past me whilst I finished off his friend”.

Mabel smiled and waved her hand to imply it was nothing. She couldn’t help feeling a little disconcerted; Judith was one of their best fighters and Mabel couldn’t remember anything ever managing to slip past her, except perhaps in the beginning, when this all started. It must be the wall. Ever since the thing had gone up and officially transformed their tiny town into a fortress, they had all let their guards down a little. We must work on that, she thought as she went back inside, scraping the offending gore off her heel on her way in, we can’t afford to get sloppy. The wall was practically impenetrable, it had only failed this once since it had been built, and Mabel suspected that it was because someone other than Doris had built that section. Yet if Mabel had learnt anything since this whole ghastly affair had begun, it was not to take anything for granted.

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