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    All The Dead Are Here - Pete Bevan's zombie tales collection


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    WARNING: Stories on this site may contain mature language and situations, and may be inappropriate for readers under the age of 18.

    THE MINISTER by Pete Bevan
    March 24, 2008  Short stories   Tags: , , ,   

    /tape starts

    MB: “I’m in conversation with Joseph Wyndham, leader of the Eastnor tribe and one of the longest running siege survivors in the UK, I’m also here with his daughter, Isla,..”

    Isla Wyndham: “hi”

    MB:”We are in his farmhouse on the Isle of Mull off the West coast of Scotland. Joe holed up in a little known stately home..”

    Joseph Wyndham: “It was a castle”

    MB: “Erm ok in a castle in Worcestershire for nearly fifteen years, in fact Joe is it true to say that the clearances were fully in effect and London was almost Zack free by the time you were discovered. In fact the US, was, completely cleared at that point was it?”

    JW: “yup. We just got forgotten about. All you reporters put up stories on the net about some rednecks in Texas holed up with an arsenal of guns and the military helping but we had none of that, just British nerve and each other, we didn’t even have a working radio for the last few years”

    MB: “Er ok (nervous laugh) well that’s why I’m here Joe! To let you tell your story”

    JW: “Yeah. But you lot started it I reckon.”

    MB: “Well its generally accepted that it started in China, in a rural location…”

    JW: “Bollocks…….It was all over the place. You couldn’t turn over the TV without a new zombie film advertised, or some new book, or some game or such, for fucks sake Donald told me there were people writing stories and putting them on sites and that. If you asked me we all wanted it, nature just provided it based on our collective belief. It had all gone wrong way before it started.”

    MB: “So we asked for it? Because of the media?”

    JW: “Look. Everyone was pissed off at being a consumer, we all wanted to feel alive or ‘real’ or whatever the fuck that means. Well we got it in spades, mate, in fucking spades!”

    ( A scuffling sound we assume is Joe rising from his chair.)

    IW: ” Dad, please, sit down. Look can you just move on please”

    MB: “Well how did it start? For you I mean”

    JW: “I don’t want to talk about that night”

    MB: “Oh”

    IW: ” Dad that’s why he’s here, that’s why you invited him”

    JW: ” I didn’t fucking invite the wee fucker”

    /crack

    (Analysis tells us the noise on the tape is Joe’s walking stick, falling to the floor)

    IW: “Ok that’s why I invited him then Dad……….Because you wanted to tell him what happened…….you said someone needed to know……needed to know…well… because we were the only ones left”

    JW: “I don’t want to talk about the first night, or the beginning, or…your mother. I want to talk about what we built, about what happened to the others, about him.”

    IW: “Is it ok if he just talks about that?”

    MB: “Sure”

    JW: “I’ll tell you what we built. We built Heaven in the… the midst of fucking hell. That’s what we built. Of course we were lucky in the first few weeks, with resources that is, not the whole apocalyptic ‘Everyone you have ever known is dead’ kinda thing”

    MB: “In what way?”

    JW: ” Well Eastnor had a good defensible layout, a fully functioning portcullis, so the few of us who were there in the first days could at least be secure. We then had a week of hard frosts at the end of the month which didn’t fully freeze the Dead but made it impossible for them to move quickly or even walk.

    During that time we picked up about a hundred survivors, most in shock, and we managed to get working vehicles, a generator, and supplies to hold out for as long as we could. Hell we even got furniture, beds sofas, tables towards the week because we had just about everything else we needed and were running out of ideas. More than that though most people, myself included were just in massive amounts of shock and didn’t wanna think about what they had seen, or what they had had to do to survive, and we had some weapons too, old medieval swords and maces, all sorts of things, just no guns. So we just kept busy building stuff, getting the power running, and of course we fucked up, not thinking about things we would need, and getting things we didn’t, like fucking TV’s! Jesus we had four TV’s at the end of that week all with nothing but static on them.

    It took us about five years to be in a position where we were doing ok with hard winters, it was the ones where the temperature didn’t drop below freezing and we couldn’t go raiding that were tough. We had some good people too, a good mix of everything, I mean some of the teenagers were a pain in the arse, like they just expected the net and TV and phones to work and  shit like that, and when it didn’t they couldn’t adjust and started causing trouble.”

    MB: “When I spoke to Isla on the phone she said you had an unusual punishment for those that broke the rules?”

    JW: “Hehe. Well the castle had a kinda round dungeon that lead in from the courtyard through a locked door down into a stinking pit underneath the main building, and there was a gate to the outside with solid steel bars going floor to ceiling in the stone. So if someone broke the rules we put them in there for the night, sure enough a night of the undead howling and scratching to get in at a live one that was just enough to make you think about what you’d done, and with no light down there you were shitting it that one would get in, you could just about see them moving in the moonlight getting more agitated the longer you were there, clawing and ripping at each other, biting at the bars. Shit, I even put Isla in there once when she was about twelve.”

    IW: ” I broke the rules, stole some food, and I knew it was wrong. As leader, Dad didn’t have any choice but to put me in there. I didn’t steal again though.”

    JW: “I didn’t tell you this, but I just sat with my back against the door all night listening to you cry down there. Broke my fucking heart……..”

    (Unidentified bang, we believe it was the arm of a chair being hit)

    JW: “Time for a Whiskey! Can you go get a bottle hun? You want one son?”

    MB: “No i’m fine thanks”

    (Isla leaves and goes through to the kitchen, the background sounds on the tape for the next 2.45m is her fetching the drinks)

    JW: ” We stopped using it after a while though.”

    MB: “Why?”

    JW: “About 6 years in, this young guy called Danny, been with us since that first month, well he’d been starting to go a bit stir crazy, you know. Just started going over the top about things. Reacting to anything said to him, you know what I mean. Well he’s sat in the main hall, a huge room with an old medieval fireplace and brackets on the walls where we had removed all the weapons, and huge maroon tapestries with hunting scenes and things like that on it, playing draughts…er…..chequers you guys call it?”

    MB: “Yeah same thing”

    JW: ” Ah ok. Well he’s playing chequers with John Edwards, an old guy who was in his seventies when it all went tits up, so he couldn’t do much work, but he had a great sense of humour, knew some great jokes, and was just a real nice old fella. Well there’s no one else in the hall and Danny just up and grabs John by the collar and starts to beat the crap out of him, I mean, just really pummels the old guy until his nose is all over his face, one eye’s blown up like a balloon, Johns teeth are all over the floor and Danny’s screaming at him, and poor old john’s just sobbing and going ‘what have I done?’ over and over and over, so I hear this and come flying into the room, and Danny just won’t stop, just punching and screaming stuff at him until me and Bill Mynott pull him off and he’s just wild man. Just fucking insane. It took about three of us to hold him down, so Emma took old John out and we dragged Danny to the dungeon and just fucking threw him in. I mean It was like a switch

    (click of fingers)

    he went from human to wild animal, so he’s at the bottom of the stairs of the dungeon, still screaming and punching the wall and I’m watching him from grate through the door, and I’m going ‘Danny calm down man you gotta calm down, what’s wrong?’………….Well he’s not watching what he’s doing and he’s just pacing about really agitated shouting and waving his arms around and one of the zombies just catches his sleeve and pulls him in to the bars. So I haven’t locked the doors yet and I’m down the stairs quick as I can, but there must have been ten Z’s pulling at him and they just grab his arms and legs and you can hear the bones cracking and Danny screaming, and they just pulled him through the bars in bits and the last thing I see of his face is stretching, and his jaw bone sticking out through his mouth and the bones popping in his skull and deforming to get through the narrow opening, and the scream just turns to air rushing out his lungs as his body is pulled through, and then he’s just bits of flesh being fought over………….just bits of meat…………………..”

    MB: “Jesus”

    JW: “And the worst of it was when we asked John why he’d done it, John didn’t know. Danny just stopped mid-sentence he said and his eyes glazed over and that’s all John could remember. Well John was never the same after that and he died a couple of winters later. Poor old sod. We just put it down to mental pressure, you know just something you have to deal with. I’m sure you know mate, you lived though it too.”

    (The sound of Isla re-entering the room, the click of ice on glass can be clearly heard)

    JW: “Where you been darling you’re soaked!”

    IW: “That storms’ come in and the rain is peeing it down, so I nipped out the back and locked the gate, so I don’t have to do it later in me jammies”

    JW: “See wisdom beyond her years this one”

    IW: “Oh Dad shush…….Here’s your whiskey”

    (Sounds of glass being placed on table)

    IW: “Can I have one?”

    JW: “Isla Wyndham. You know you’re too young”

    IW: ” Please?”

    JW: “She’s got me wrapped round her little finger (laugh) just like her mum did.”

    (Sounds of Isla fetching a glass from Kitchen)

    MB: ” Look Joe………..Its getting late and I don’t want to beat about the bush anymore”

    JW: “Oh aye”

    MB: ” There was something you said in your TV interview when you were picked up. Something about a Minister?”

    JW:”………The Minister……yes”

    MB: “Well when did he join the community?”

    JW: “HE didn’t join the community. But I can tell you what happened when he left.”

    MB: “Please”

    (Sound of whiskey being poured twice)

    JW: ” Last winter we had been in Eastnor for over fifteen years, we had gone from about a hundred people down to about thirty, through zombies, disease, injuries you know what I mean. It would be fair to say though that we had it down to a fine art, this survivalism I mean. We knew what we were doing and some of the kids, like this one here, grew up not knowing anywhere else………so it was a good winter for us, with some frozen weeks, and some good raiding, and one afternoon just as the sun is going down, this guy just wanders up to the castle, at first Jim, who was on watch, thought it was a Zack that had somehow survived the freeze, but this guys just picked his way through the thousands of frozen Z’s outside and collapsed by the gate.”

    MB: “Thousands?”

    JW: “Yup, we found a way of counting them by shining a torch at them and counting the ones in the beam, then we just moved the torch round the castle a quadrant of torch beam at a time and multiplied that by the ones we had counted in the first beam, I think in the 12th year we had over fifty thousand surrounding the castle, some were from as far away as Bristol, Birmingham, Hereford, we found out when we could get out and search their wallets when they froze. Anyway, Jim ran and told me and I went out and this guy was alive, I could see his breath as I walked up to where he lay. He was skinny as Z and dressed head to foot in black, well when I bent down his arm flopped to the side and I could see he was a minister, you know, like a priest, with a dog collar.”

    MB: “Yeah I know what a minister is”

    JW “oh ok. He was dirty, covered in gore and shit and mud and God knows what, well we got him in and managed to nurse him back to health but he wasn’t well. You know. up here. We couldn’t get him to say where he had been surviving, or, how he came to find us or anything, he just rambled on and started quoting the Bible whenever anyone spoke to him, or, he would just sit in a corner and just say ‘ wait…………wait……..wait’ over and over and over in that thick Scottish drawl he had, nodding and pulling his knees up to his face. Some of the others complained that he was just a waste of food as he never helped or pulled his weight or anything, but we had lost enough people through the years and we weren’t murderers or anything. So after a few weeks we just left him be, sitting their muttering to himself and reading the bible. Hell when you looked at some of the things the rest of us did to stay sane he actually looked pretty normal some days.

    Spring came and soon enough the zombies were up to their usual number and we had closed the gates, and moved the modified artic across that had steel plates welded to the sides as an extra protection, so the Z’s couldn’t see into the castle and get all excited about seeing us doing our thing. Life went on as normal and I pretty much forgot about the Minister. Then, one night, Isla here wakes me and we can hear the truck engine revving and someone shouting. I throw on some clothes, and grab my stick here…..oh. Which I should show you.”

    (We hear the walking stick tap the ground and the sound of a sword being withdrawn from a scabbard, we believe this is the one found on site)

    MB: “Wow. That is a nice blade. Japanese?”

    JW: “Think so, was in the castle when we moved in. Gets more use as a walking stick since my leg never set right……………….Anyway, what was I saying……….Right. We come out of our room to see most people have thought the same as us and are running out into the courtyard, well the gates are open, and the artics been reversed back and there are Z’s streaming in. Pouring in, and…..and Jesus I looked over and there were Mary and Phil and their two kids and… ”

    (we hear Joe drinking)

    JW: “and well they were just youngsters at the beginning, and they fell in love in Eastnor and had two kids, one was only a few months old, and Mary has got two Z’s chomping on her arm, she’s straining to get free not even noticing the things chewing her arm cos one has grabbed her baby boy , and it just bites into him, like a fucking melon and he just bursts, right their in front of his Mum, his baby scream just stops as blood sprays out of his mouth, and Phil is running at them all with a fucking axe like a warrior. He just sees this and its like he just deflates, he just collapses on his knees and they’re all over him, but he’s not noticing, all he can see is everything he loves just being fucking eaten in front of him.”

    (There is a pause in the tape. Silence we can hear Joe and we believe, Isla sobbing.)

    JW: “Oh God. Bill…….Fucking Bill….He’s been my best mate for 15 years, saved my life more times than I can remember, and he’s got a pile a fucking headless corpses around him, and he’s swinging this big fucking broadsword around like Conan the fucking barbarian but there’s just too many. Too fucking many, and people have come out half asleep without weapons and are just getting torn to shreds. Mary and Phils other son is just a patch of wet blood on the ground, with this Z gnawing on his little arm still in his favourite pyjamas, the ones that we gave him the Christmas before, you know the Power Rangers ones………Emma Thomas, lovely Emma, I probably would have married her now if she had survived, she was like my pressure valve when it all got on top of me. She couldn’t hold the door shut…she…couldn’t get the bolt across you know? So they pulled at the door and she came with it right into a Z who tore her throat out, but she still knee’d him in the balls God bless her, she still fought them all the way, just like she said she would. You know. I think it was worse than the beginning. When I think about it now.

    So I look up and at the sentry post over the gate, and Paul’s there just hanging over the wall with his fucking throat cut and not a Z around him, and who is stood in the middle of this fucking torrent of zombies that have been let in? The fucking Minister. THE FUCKING MINISTER I TELL YOU. The Z’s ain’t touching him, they’re not even looking at him, they’re just streaming past him and he’s stood there in the middle with his arms in the air screaming about the book of revelation and the end of days and all that shit and not one of those fucking Zombies, NOT ONE, pay him a blind bit of notice. Fifteen years and that cunt arrives. Fucking hell. He’s just stood like he’s welcoming his flock to Church and I realise what he been waiting for all this months, just for the right amount of Z’s, just for the right opportunity to send us all to the slaughter”

    (another long pause)

    JW: ” Well they are close to us now so we go back inside a bolt the door, get upstairs just as the door is smashed in and you can hear them now outside, ripping flesh and getting all excited, and I grab my rucksack from my room.”

    MB: “You’re rucksack?”

    IW: “He always kept one packed for emergencies in case anything went wrong mainly with food and some medical supplies in it. We all did, it was one of Dad’s rules. Meanwhile I’m outside with my sword waiting for them to come up the stairs”

    JW: “I just grab her and run, and climb up and up through the castle, up through the hatch to the roof of the main hall and we just sit on the roof and wait to see if we need to drop the ladder down to anyone…….but there’s no-one left. Just us. Everyone else is dead, its just like the beginning all over again. So we’re stuck on the roof and all I can hear is the fucking preacher ranting on and on as he turns and he walks out the gate. Straight through all the Zombies and up the hill, singing ‘All Things Bright and Beautiful’ can you believe that ‘All things Bright and Fucking Beautiful’, and then he’s gone, like your worst nightmare in the morning when you wake up. Just gone.”

    MB: ” Did you ever find out why they didn’t touch him.”

    JW: “Not a clue. He was as alive as you and I.”

    (Joe drinks, there is another long pause.)

    JW: “Well this has been lovely if not emotionally fraught evening Sir, so I’m going to go to bed. And we’ll talk about the rest of it tomorrow.”

    MB: “Well I better get back to the hotel anyway.”

    JW: “What! No I’ll have Isla make up a bed for you. I’m not sending you out in a storm like that. Not at this time of night.”

    MB: “Oh ok. Cheeers.”

    /KNOCK

    /KNOCK

    /KNOCK

    JW: “Oh Isla get that would you hun. Who the fuck is that in this weather, if its Hamish and he’s pissed tell him to fuck off.”

    (Sound of bolts being undone and old wooden door opening)

    JW: “Oh jesus. Oh god no. No not you”

    (Isla Screams)

    (we can now hear moans, familiar to all those who lived through the War. Sound wave analysis shows that two Zombies are present in the room, a second sound we analysed proves to be dog choke chains being pulled tight and relaxing, although we are only 50% sure about this.)

    Unidentified: “Joe………….. You never did believe all that time I wuz waitin’ to dae the Lords werk, did yae now, and I cannae dae the Lords werk with you blabbermouthing to everyone on TV now can I?”

    (The next sound is a Zombie wail, the sound of a sword being drawn from a scabbard and furniture being knocked over, screams, and crashes)

    /tape ends

    I submit this transcript of the tape found at DunDecapitatin’ farmhouse on the Isle of Mull as proof to the commission of the existence of the one known as The Minister. Up to this point we only had anecdotal evidence of the existence of this man, however it is clear to me (though not actually stated on the tape) that it is the voice of The Minister we are hearing at the end. We have also not been able to locate any of the individuals heard on the tape. We did find the sword-cane mentioned, however the farmhouse had evidence of a struggle and almost certainly a Z attack of some kind.

    It is my recommendation that we assign the maximum amount of resource to apprehend a man who appears not only to be immune to the virus, but may also be a carrier of some kind. Imagine the damage that could be done at any point should this individual choose to target a densely populated safe zone. Therefore I strongly urge you carry out the recommendations outlined in my report CA23/4513. Also note that I have the sound file available of this recording available on disk should you wish you to send me a copy, but be aware that it makes uncomfortable listening.

    In anticipation of your reply.

    17 Comments

    1. Chilling and fascinating. Good work.

      Comment by Don on March 28, 2008 @ 1:38 am

    2. Thank you don. I found this difficult to write due to the lack of descripton available on a taped transcript but I think it worked out ok in the end.

      Comment by Piratepete on March 28, 2008 @ 9:44 am

    3. That was really good, the minister is very creepy!

      Comment by Kinger on March 29, 2008 @ 4:14 pm

    4. I think that you should consider continuing this story. I would really like to see The Minister get his due. Maybe the government in England creates a special task-force to locate/destroy him, only to find that he has amassed a new zombie army…

      Comment by Jami Fadare on April 1, 2008 @ 7:58 am

    5. Thanks for the positive feedback guys. It really is very much appreciated, I haven’t written a huge amount of stuff so its nice that what I have written is well received.

      I may well continue the story of the minister. He’s just too intriguing isn’t he?

      Comment by Piratepete on April 1, 2008 @ 1:31 pm

    6. Brilliant

      Comment by PARIS on April 28, 2008 @ 10:45 am

    7. bloody brilliant

      Comment by Charles osborn on May 9, 2008 @ 3:51 pm

    8. I was having strange dreams about Zombies, found the WWZ site which took me here. I have read ever story on this site and Sir, this was by far the best. Good job and thanks.

      Comment by J. Anderson on September 26, 2008 @ 1:59 am

    9. Fantastic! It really was a chilling and creepy story and so sad. You must write a sequel where we see this religious nutjob get his. (To me religion is the worst thing man ever came up with to deal with his fear of death.)

      I like the fact that yo chose a minister as a carrier of the virus. It makes sense as almost every virus has carriers that are not affected themselves and this is an even more frightening scenario. How many of these walk among the survivors?

      Great work and keep writing!

      Comment by Andre on January 4, 2009 @ 12:24 pm

    10. Nice work sah!

      Comment by Teiresias on April 7, 2009 @ 4:57 pm

    11. Nice work Pete, very good read.

      Look forward to your next works

      Comment by Yorkshire Kev on April 8, 2009 @ 5:20 am

    12. Nice work. Loving the tape transcript styles as well 😀

      Comment by Brazil Banks on April 9, 2009 @ 9:14 am

    13. hunt that fucker down and kill him slow.

      Comment by thomas on April 9, 2009 @ 9:36 pm

    14. “I was having strange dreams about Zombies, found the WWZ site which took me here. I have read ever story on this site and Sir, this was by far the best. Good job and thanks.”(Comment by J. Anderson )”

      Copy/Paste 🙂

      Could be a WWZ tale, I know Mark Brooks doesnt accept any kind of immunity, but this could be a “urban legend” about WWZ

      THANKS for this movie (yeah, I saw everything in my mind while I read)

      Comment by Victor on January 1, 2010 @ 9:55 pm

    15. Very cool story. Well thought out, good handling of the format. Loved the Minister.

      Comment by Shaun R on March 10, 2010 @ 8:11 am

    16. Most excellent Pete, the tape transcript format was a risk well-taken. I love the idea of someone who can control the undead. And all ministers of Revelations stripe are inherently creepy. Can’t wait to read the others!

      Comment by Kellye on July 16, 2010 @ 10:29 am

    17. Thanks Kellye. I hope you enjoy the rest.

      Comment by Pete Bevan on July 17, 2010 @ 2:27 am

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