Fools of Dooms Day
A Written Tale of Rot Town
FIXING THE UNDEAD
THE GHOUL RACES DON’T DIE EASILY. ONLY MASSIVE TRAUMA TO THE BRAIN WILL KILL THEM. THEY CAN SURVIVE ANY DAMAGE FROM THE NECK DOWN NO MATTER HOW MASSIVE OR TRAUMATIC. HOWEVER, THEY CAN BE DAMAGED AND THEY DO NEED TO BE REPAIRED. UNDEAD CAN'T HEAL BUT THEY CAN BE FIXED. IF AN UNDEAD LOSES A PIECE OF ANATOMY SUCH AS A HAND, FOOT, ARM, LEG, HEAD, OR WHATEVER, IT CAN BE REATTACHED AND BECOME MORE OR LESS AS FUNCTIONAL AS IT WAS BEFORE. CRUSHED BONES CAN BE NAILED BACK TOGETHER. BURNT, FROZEN OR ROTTED OUT FLESH CAN BE WRAPPED UP AND HELD IN PLACE. WITH A SKILLED KNITTER, OR UNDEAD FIXER, ANY DAMAGE DONE TO AN UNDEAD’S BODY CAN BE REPAIRED.
Lady Glue’s shop was way in the Splicer Market, a part of Rot Town known for its stitchers, fixers, and grafters. During the early days of the Vile Genesis this part of the city had been plastered by the quarantine bombing attempts. About a half mile or so was leveled. In the years to come the undead used this cratered mess as a thriving market district. There meat shops, clinics, and graft stations were housed in a bizarre variety of structures made from materials dragged in from other parts of the city. Piled up cars, shipping crates, stacks of toxic waste barrels and plywood; all kinds of random things slapped together to made the shanty town of undead healers. If you needed a severed hand knitted back on, you went to the Splicer Market. You need a mutant tentacle tumor properly removed? You went to the Splicer Market. You want your leg replaced with a flamethrower or want your ass hole to shoot acid? You went to the Splicer Market.
Lady Glue’s shop had been a bank vault once upon a time, a giant concrete square pitted with acid burns, fitted with a rusted circular vault door in the front. In white paint above the vault door it reads, “Lady Glue’s Fixin Station. Gash knitting, limb and cranial reattachment and repair. ZOMBIE MULA ONLY!” Hanging from a string against the door was a grenade. A sticky note on it said, “Pull Pin for Service”.
Tash walked up to the door and looked at the dangling grenade. “Hell of a doorbell.”
It shrugged and yanked the pin then dived for cover behind a pile of rubble. The grenade blew with a deafening bang that echoed hollowly inside the vault.
The vault wheel began to spin and the huge door slowly opened on squealing hinges. A tiny mummified zom was hunched on the inside. It looked like it was made of burned out fluorescent light bulbs, skinny, stiff and fragile. However, there was nothing fragile about its agitated scowl or the sharp look of manic intelligence in its large yellow eyes, magnified by the complex array of lenses and specs strapped to its head. Covering its sunken torso was an apron that had once, decades earlier, been white. Now, after years and gallons of putrid fluids, it was a crusted sheet of browns, grays and blacks.
Lady Glue put its long spiked hands on its hips as Tash pulled itself from the rubble. Saws, pliers and other tools clanged and clacked around the thick leather belt cinched around its tiny waist. Tash brushed off the filth and yanked out a rusted shard of metal from its shoulder. Lady Glue’s eyebrows rose as it saw Ling’s head tucked under Tash’s arm and the trashed body thrown over Tash’s shoulder. Its long gray tongue slid across its teeth, already tasting the large amount of zombie mula it would cost to fix up that mess.
“You got mula?” Lady Glue’s voice was a low hiss.
Tash flung Ling’s body from its back and plopped Ling’s head down at its feet. “You owe me fat for this,” it hissed as it stuck a hand into a pocket. It pulled out a human foot. It was far from fresh, starting to stink, but still good if you didn't mind some tang in your human meat. Tash put the foot on Lings head and smiled at Lady Glue.
“More,” it hissed.
Tash glared down at Ling’s head as it dug around in its back pocket, pulling out a spool of human intestine. Tash dropped the gut on top of Ling’s head.
“How much more?” complained Tash.
“A good chunk more. Quality cost meat, and that mess goin’ ta need quality.”
Tash sighed and yanked off a length of tape stuck on its side. Under the tape was a long gash, which Tash pried open. Long ago Tash had yanked out some obsolete intestinal crap to make a space to stash it's best loot. It stuck its hand into the gash and fished around. It delicately pulled out a human brain, covered in salted tin foil to keep it fresh. A human brain, the finest kind of zombie mula. Tash placed the brain on top the other mula on Lings head.
“Is that enough for ya or do I need to eat out your rotten clam to?!”
“It would take a better undead than you”, Lady Glue hissed back. The old ghoul smiled at the pile of human flesh. “Come on in.”
ROT TOWN’S A ROUGH PLACE AND THEFT, ROBBERY AND GENERAL VILLAINY ARE THE LAY OF THE LAND. THE GHOUL RACES COMBAT THIS BY MAKING SLIT VAULTS IN THEIR BODIES. THE INTESTINAL TRACTS THAT THE UNDEAD INHERITED FROM THEIR HUMAN DAYS HAVE NO FUNCTION AND CAN BE REMOVED TO NO NEGATIVE EFFECT. UNDEAD WILL CUT OPEN THEIR STOMACHS AND YANK OUT CHUNKS OF THEIR POINTLESS GUTS IN ORDER TO MAKE ROOM TO HIDE THEIR MOST VALUABLE LOOT.
Tash leaned impatiently against a giant glass tube inside Lady Glue’s shop. Stenciled on the tub in red paint was: “Arma Corp Mutagenic Weapons Division. Failed specimen. Dispose of immediately.”
After an hour and a half under Lady Glue’s knife, Ling’s busted up body was much less busted up. Ling’s head was being reattached to its body. It was laying on its back on a rickety wooden table in the middle of the shop. Lady Glue hunched over it, hands and forearms covered in thick black zombie blood. Lady Glue hummed a song softly as it worked. Apparently it had a fondness for Pearl Jam.
“Can ya sing something else?” Tash blurted out. “Do ya know how fucked up it is for an
undead creature to be singing Alive? It’s way too fucking ironic!”
“Sing a White Zombie song.” suggested Ling, its head hanging awkwardly from its neck.
“That’s ironic in an even more dumb way!” yelled Tash. “I’d be down for a Rob Zombie song though.”
“If ya don’t like my tunes go wait outside. Now be quiet. The melon is always the hardest part.”
Tash sighed loudly and looked at the undead arms that hung from the ceiling. Most still clinched and grabbed blindly which meant the host body was still unalive out there. They probably belonged to ghouls who still owed Lady Glue debt. Behind Tash, in the thick milky liquid inside the glass tube, a mutant creature swam around. It was a tumorous mass of spongy flesh sprouted with tentacles and barbed bone. Metal sheeting blinked with lights and electrical discharge where it was riveted around its bulbous mass. It had its round puckered mouth suctioned against the glass, right behind Tash’s head.
“How much fucking longer?” whined Tash, completely unaware of the hungry mutant mouth inches from its head.
“Long as it takes,” hissed Lady Glue as it stitched around Ling’s neck with slow careful strokes. “Now shut your mouth! You’re bugging Isabel.”
“Who’s Isabel?” Tash looked behind it at the giant suction cupped mouth pressed against the glass, centimeters from its face. “AHHHH!” It lunged back into the hanging arms. Several grabbed onto him. Tash looked at the puckered mouth- then gave a lewd smile.
“Ahhhhh,” Tash said in a sultry voice, brushing off the clingy arms. It sauntered over to the glass tube. “Howsit, Isabel? Hey, Lady Glue. You mind if I go for a swim with the pretty lady?”
“A swim with Isabel cost mula.” Lady Glue hissed, not looking up from its work.
“I gave you every last gob of mula I have to fix that asshole,” Tash yelled pointing at Ling. “I’m a good customer. You can’t give me a break?”
“Breaks are for bones,” replied Lady Glue, “Ya want a swim with Isabel, you give my mula.” Tash crossed its arms and leaned against the glass tub next to the hungry mouth in sulky defeat.
“Next time baby, next time.” It winked at the mouth.
About 30 minutes later Lady Glue tied off the last stitch. “You're done,” it hissed, putting back gore covered tools in its belt. “Please continue to play rough, and please remember to come by Lady Glue when ya need knittin’ up. Now get your janky asses out my shop.”
Ling hopped off the table and looked at its one remaining arm. Long metal spikes were pierced through its lower and upper arm to secure the busted bones. The tips of its spiked fingers to the very edge of the reattachment sutures below its shoulder were tightly wrapped bandages. From right below its ribs to right above its groin was a long ugly gash sewn shut by dozens of stitches. The join where the head had torn away from the neck was sown together with thick copper wire. Ling’s head looked stiff when it moved but was a great deal better than before they came in.
“What I tell ya Tash. As good as new. Worth every gob of mula.”
“Ya, my mula,” stated Tash as it began to push open the heavy safe door. It gave one last longing look at Isabel who swam around menacingly in the opaque fluids of the tub.
“Yo, Lady Glue. I’ll be back for that swim.”
“I’m sure ya will,” it hissed back as it rummaged around in a box. “Here.” It tossed a small round object at the two zoms. The grenade bounced across the floor and came to rest between them.
“Holy shit!” shrieked the two zoms at the same time as they scurried around for cover.
“String that up at the door when ya leave,” lady Glue hissed as it began sorting out a box of rotting eyeballs. “Ya blow my last one.”
Ling and Tash looked cautiously at the grenade and saw it still had the pin in it.
HUMANS ABOVE AND BELOW
THERE ARE HUMANS WHO LIVE IN ROT TOWN. THE MAJORITY OF THESE HUMAN EITHER LIVE BELOW IN THE SEWERS OR IN RUINED BUILDINGS HIGH OVER THE STREETS OF ROT TOWN. THE ONES WHO WENT UNDERGROUND ARE KNOWN AS SEWER BOYS. THEIR SUBTERRANEAN TURF IS HEAVILY DEFENDED AGAINST THE UNDEAD AND IS ONE OF THE FEW PLACES CONTROLLED BY HUMANS. HOWEVER, IT'S A STINKING HIVE OF SHIT AND VILLANY. THE SEWER BOYS ARE CANNIBALISTIC INBRED FREAKS, CORRUPTED FROM YEARS OF RADIATION AND DRIVEN INSANE BY THE WORSHIP OF DEMONIC ENTITIES. THE HUMANS WHO TOOK TO THE BUILDINGS ARE CALLED RUIN LEACHES. THEY LIVE A NOMADIC LIFE, RUNNING AND HIDING FROM THEIR UNDEAD HUNTERS AS THEY EEK OUT A LIVING FROM THE RUINS OF THE OLD WORLD.
Tash strung up the grenade outside Lady Glue’s, giving it a contemptuous slap before heading off. Ling followed, twisting its newly fixed arm. “Ok, said Tash, “Time to gear up for a hunt.”
Ling slumped. “Come on, I just got fixed. Can I get a minute to recombobulate and shit?”
“I’m broke thanks to you. So fuck you and your combobulation! You owe me fat and your helping me run down a human is you starting to pay off your debt.” Ling shrugged it's one good shoulder and walked on after Tash.
Several hours later the two zoms hunched in the third floor of a half gutted apartment building. Somewhere on the 5th floor a pack of undead were howling and shrieking as they thrashed to booming music. The smell of Z Cigs and Tox Hooch wafted down with the noise. Tash and Ling longed to sneak up and crash the party but they were here for a very different purpose.
Ling put a black trash bag over its head and taped it around its neck. The rest of its body was covered with taped-on trash bags. After it tied the bag over its neck it tore a slit for its eyes and gnashed its teeth, ripping an opening for its mouth. As Ling finished up it looked over to Tash who sat on a barrel of toxic waste staring longingly upward at the sounds of the party.
“What the hell dude? Yea going to camo up or what?”
Tash looked at its buddy, then hopped off the barrel. It grabbed a rusted metal container lying next to it. Tash clamped its teeth into the top of the container and ripped it open. Inside was old sludgy motor oil. It lifted the container and poured the stinking crude over its head. It tossed the empty container away then rubbed the oil over its body. Soon all its bleached undead flesh was covered in black oil. It glistened wetly in the shadows, just a vague silhouette, with only its teeth and eyes showing in sharp contrast.
The two undead, camouflaged for the dark places they would soon hunt, climbed out of the ruined building. Behind them, the dull thumping of the music echoed. Somewhere, the haunting howl of a wendigo cut the dead air of the city. The red sun sunk under the broken skyline and the sky turned the deep crimson of night. Ling looked at the jagged ruined city, then looked down at the broken asphalt of the street. “We going high or low? Ruin Leach or Sewer Boy?”
“You think I’m going to wallow around in trap filled dooky tubs trying to sniff out some degenerate sub human inbred, cannibalistic, demon worshiping sewer boy fuck who's meat’s mostly tumors and not worth its weight in rot guts?” asked Tash with contempt.
“Whatever dude, you're just a claustrophobic bitch.”
“Fuck you and the sewers,” Tash side with a shudder. “Sewer boys give me the heebee jeebees. We’re Ruin Leach hunting.”
“Climbing around on buildings may be all fun and games to you but last time it didn't turn out so good for me,” said Ling pointing at its stitched up neck.
“Well, maybe if you weren't in such massive fucking debt to me your opinion would matter. But, oh look, it doesn’t. We take to the buildings for our zombie mula.”
Tash stomped away down the street. Ling glared after it before trudging along. The two zoms walked for miles into the deep ruins of Rot Town. Here, once upon a time, was the heart of the city. The dead bodies of once great skyscrapers swayed in the smoky wind or leaned against one another like old drunk hobos. Here and there a toppled building lay shattered on its side, another rotting thing in the rotting city. The deep ruins were the wild lands of Rot Town, unclaimed and uncontrolled. It was a place unfriendly to the Ghoul Races, one of the few places in Rot Town where the undead didn't hold sway. Humans live here. They live within the ruined buildings. They snare rats and pigeons and wild dogs. They scavenge for canned food, ammunition and medicine. They tap into old water mains, and filter out rain water. They lay traps and alarms in their holes and hideouts. The life of a ruin leach is hard and unforgiving, a nomadic, hunted and short life, yet one of the few ways a human can live. The deep ruins were their turf and it took a mean, crazy and stupid ghoul to go there looking for prey. Mean, crazy and stupid- just like Tash and Ling.
A change come over the two zoms. Their degenerate minds faded back behind the primal will of the Vecna Germ and let the will of the germ govern them. There was no hanky panky when it came to human hunting. If there was an unaffected clean human being still alive in Rot Town after all these years that meant they were among the toughest of their race. The two zoms disappeared into the darkness of this unfriendly land, hunting for the most valuable thing in their undead existence. Human Meat.