The crisp northern Maine air nipped at Annie’s bare arms and legs, she was wearing her regular summer attire, a muscle tee and athletic shorts. The pleasantly warm summer nights were drawing to an end. She took a deep breath in, embracing the summer aroma of freshly cut grass and the smokey scent of barbecue because, in less than a week she would have to return to her third year at Plainview High School. She utterly dreaded going back after the break. She would miss nights like these on the spacious farm, lounging on the hammock that was situated on the colossal wrap-around porch.
“Annie, come quick,” Dave, Annie’s father yelled urgently. Annie scrambled into the living area where her brother, Stevie, gestured toward the television. A middle-aged man wearing a stiff suit broadcasted nervously and with much concern, “Breaking news, everyone who lives in the suburbs or rural areas needs to stay safe in their homes! Since there is mass populations in the cites, most of them are being evacuated. There seems to be a breakout of mad cow disease, otherwise, you may know it as the “supposedly” fictional creature, the zombie or a biter. This all started in Tampa, Florida where three ethologists, scientists studying animal behaviors, had an experiment that went wrong. A rabid raccoon was being tested on and the mysterious disease spread to one of the scientists then kept transmitting from person to person. If you live in the north area of the USA then you are safe for now but not for long. There have been numerous accounts of zombies migrating further north as citizens try to evacuate. The military has and still is attempting to diminish these creatures but, the disease seems to be spreading rapidly through an unknown contact. We believe the contact is through scratching or biting. The zombies are very powerful and so it seems, almost invincible. Now this clip may be disturbing to some but, this is what the zombie will look like.” On the screen appeared a mutant inhumane creature with blood stained and shredded clothing, its face and whole carcass looked like it had rotted and decorticated and its limbs flailing as the biter goes at top speed. It was sprinting after a living woman screeching at the top of her lungs helplessly attempting to race away to save her life. The sight of this clip made Annie gag and a wave of nausea swept over her. She was never good with blood and guts on fictional horror shows or movies and was much worse seeing it for real. Dave finally clicked the television off with a petrified stare in his eyes. Still in shock Dave whispers, “So, what should we do?”
“Well, I have seen plenty of zombie based movies and the survivors always board up the windows and doors so the zombies can’t get into the house. Whatever we do, we better do it soon before it gets completely dark out,” Stevie, Annie’s little brother chimes in. Simultaneously, they all had a telepathic light bulb go off in their heads and headed straight for the cellar. Down there was scrap metal and old slabs of wood. They put together everything they could salvage into a huge pile. Annie stood alert on the roof of the old farm house to warn the boys if she saw anything peculiar. Stevie and Dave hammered each and every window and door on the first floor with scrap wood and sturdy metals. They finished boarding up the opening of the house and decided it was about time for a meal. Annie then realized that none of the light switches were turning on and whispered to herself, “Of course the electricity doesn’t work, that’s just perfect.” Her father and brother overhear her and let out a sigh, thinking what else could go wrong? Annie grabs a few random candles from the cupboards and lights them with spare matches she can scavenge from the junk draw. Soon the room has a fragrance of Yankee Candles’ “frosted pumpkin” and “garden sweet pea.” The candles provided a dim source of light but just enough to see. The boys gather a medley