One Foot in the Grave

by Wm. Mark Simmons
Release date: 1996
Type: speculative fiction
Genres: fantasy, horror

UNFORTUNATELY,
THEY BELIEVE IN HIM...

Christopher Csejthe doesn't believe in vampires. Not until he becomes one. He doesn't believe in witches or werewolves, either. Not until they make him an offer he can't refuse...

Flight of the Living Dead

A scream sliced the night air – an animal sound as far removed from a human voice as the previous scream of tortured metal. It was a sound that went on and on as we hurried toward the RV. Mooncloud yanked the passenger door open and then ran around to the driver's side as I climbed up onto the bench seat. As she slid behind the wheel the other woman leapt from the building's rear doorway, sailing over the stairs and landing on the ground below. As she crouched on the asphalt, there was a shattering roar that canceled out the screaming. A ball of flame rolled out from the doorway like an orange party favor, licking the air just a few feet above her head.

Mooncloud threw the van in gear and brought it skidding around as the blaze snapped back through the opening.

Before I could reach for the door handle the woman was springing through the open window to land across my lap.

"Go!" she shouted, but Mooncloud was already whipping the vehicle in a tight turn and accelerating toward the parking lot's north exit. The speed bump smacked my head against the roof of the cab and, by the time my vision cleared, we were driving more sedately down a side street, the woman with the crossbow sitting between me and the passenger door. In the rear-view mirror a pillar of flame was climbing from the roof of the old dormitory that housed the radio station.

I shook my head to clear away the last of the planetarium show and gripped the dashboard. "Will somebody please tell me what's going on?"

"It's very simple, Mr. Csejthe," Dr. Mooncloud said, pressing a button that locked the cab doors. "You are a dead man."

updated 2010-09-07

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