Friday, November 23, 2007

I blame boredom.

Either that, or I have been spending WAY too much time reading and listening to everyone else's stories. Nonetheless. I have actually, for the first time in a long time, actually written a (I think) coherent and amusing story.

I haven't proofread it much; this is basically the second draft, taken from the version I scribbled in my notebook between shopping trips today. It's been renamed twice so far, and I have yet to find a permanent last name for the lead character (The current one is from a spell-check suggestion from her previous name), but.... well, I like it. And I probably won't be too embarrassed to reread it in a month's time. I hope.

Also, there's zombies. You're welcome. And I hope you enjoy.

Thelma Lagerfeld's First Night at Bingo

Thelma Lagerfeld’s 1986 Cadillac pulled into the VFW parking lot fifteen minutes after Bingo night was scheduled to start, as usual. She took her wrap-around driving shades off and tucked them into the sun visor, then checked her helmet of apricot-colored curls in the rearview mirror. She sighed, reached into her oversized tote bag, and pulled out a value-sized can of Aqua Net hair spray. After a few liberal spritzes of the sticky stuff, she stuffed the can back into her bag with her Bingo markers, two packs of Marlboro Reds, her deceased husband’s Zippo, a roll of peppermints, and the other detritus that accumulates in the purses of the geriatric set.

She stepped out of the car and made her way to the side door of the VFW building. She actually hated Bingo. However, her girlfriends Muriel and Sally kept crowing about the men they had met there, and Thelma was not about to miss out on any opportunities. They kept telling her to make an appearance, an unforgettable entrance, and that the gents would be sure to notice. So, gritting her teeth, she went. Muriel and Sally told her to make sure to “dress for the men”, so Thelma was in an ill-advised halter top that strained across her drooping breasts, pale floral Capri pants that accentuated every dimple and ripple in her thighs and rear end, and high-heeled mules that made her teeter when she walked. She felt too exposed and a bit shameless, but the girls did say she needed to lose her shame to get a man, especially at their age. She straightened up as she put her hand on the door.

Judging by the sounds she heard, this was an awfully rousing Bingo night.

Muffled shouts came from behind the door, with a rising note of hysteria. Thelma decided that they must have caught someone cheating, and shame on anyone who would try to cross the Shady Pines ladies on their evening out! They’d get a lecturing they’d not soon forget. However, a particularly bloodcurdling shriek made Thelma’s already-teased hair stand on end. She stood frozen with her hand on the knob for a minute, then smiled. Shameless, right? Time to live up to that. She swung the door open and stepped inside.

Not what she expected.

She was half-anticipating a robbery, or a hostage situation, or even gang violence. Barring that, a catfight over one of the few remaining available men wouldn’t have been shocking. What Thelma saw, though, was her friends and some of the neighbors from the senior village cowering behind the caller’s table, flinging Bingo cards and golf pencils at a group of slow-moving, groaning, slavering zombies. Thelma saw Muriel and Sally holding onto each other and crying, a mass of orthopedic shoes, leopard-print stretch pants, and running mascara. Thelma’s mouth hardened. Muriel and Sally may have talked her into wearing hussy clothes, and they may have unwittingly lead her into an attack by the undead, but that didn’t matter. These zombies were going to get it. No. One. Messes. With. My. Girls.

Thelma flew into action. She whipped out her extra-large can of Aqua Net. She took her lighter in her hand, kissed it for good luck, and sparked it into flame under a spritz of hair spray. A fireball whooshed into life and ignited the nearest zombie. The undead slowly turned and began to lurch her way. She dispatched another four of the stumbling animated corpses with her makeshift flamethrower before she ran out of hair spray. Frustrated, she pocketed her lighter and threw the can to the ground. She glanced over to the table, where the other seniors were standing in awe, their mouths open. However, her girlfriends seemed to be getting it together. Good.

She grunted a signal to them as she grabbed the flag that stood near the door. She stripped the material from the stout metal pole and began to swing it at the zombies, making sure to aim for their heads. A burst of light and heat from one side made her flinch, then grin. Muriel, another Aqua Net devotee, had taken her cue, and was incinerating the unlucky bodies that Thelma knocked down. Thelma risked a glance to her left, and saw Sally swinging at some other zombies with her own artificial leg. The trio worked their magic until the final creature was down.

Thelma breathed a sigh of relief, and patted her hair back into place. She smiled at the frightened but amazed group, still immobilized behind the caller’s table. She had no idea whether this was an isolated incident, or if there was going to be more carnage to follow. But she did know one thing.

If THAT didn’t impress the menfolk, she was absolutely going to have to join the senior choir instead.

1 comment:

Craig said...

Absolutely fan-freakin'-TASTIC! I love it!