FLASH FICTION
How to Date a Zombie
by Greg Letellier

As in your pre-apocalyptic relationships, be a little cheesy. Take your undead lover on a walk by the ocean, among the dimming dusk, hours after the zombie-tourists have retreated to their second-homes and seaside wine bars. Share a bottle of Cab on the jetty. Read her Byron and Keats.

    Maybe a little Poe.

    When you both feel tired, go home and build a fire. She will groan with desire, especially as mosquitos suck at your forearms and calves. This is pornography for her. She will wish she was a mosquito on your face.

    Say: “I really feel we’ve defied people’s expectations.” Touch her knee (the one with flesh).

    “BRAINS,” she will say. “Brains, brains. Brains.”

    Ignore the mucus and blood that clings to her lips. Tell her she’s beautiful. She will feel self-conscious about the parts of her that are exposed—literally and figuratively—the bone and torn muscle, as well as the whole “murder impulse” thing. Make her feel complimented, inside and out. Make her feel there is an elegant grace to the way in which she masticates a frontal lobe.

    Say things like: “Get in there and crush that cranium!” Or: “Eat that corpus callosum, babe!”

    Remember to be physically intimate, too. Let her know you find her sexually attractive, even if, in the heat of the moment, lust carries her into a near-I’m-gonna-munch-into-your-skull state. I mean, can you blame her? It’s the apocalypse! Try to laugh off those flub-ups. Remind her that you don’t think there’s anything wrong with zombies, you’re just nervous of the cognitive and physiological transformation that occurs in the becoming of one.

    You like your brain. You do! Maybe you were a doctor or a college professor.

    “Brains,” she will grumble. “Brains. Brains.”

    Or maybe you flip burgers and clean toilets.

    The voracity remains: “BRAINS! BRAINS! BRAINS!”

    Give her a kiss where her lips should be.

    And remember: don’t ever hold back. When dating a zombie, love like it’s the end of the world. Because honestly? It’s the end of world. The destruction of humanity is nigh. The streets are littered with human meat.

    So give her everything you couldn’t before. Peer into her piss-yellow eyes and realize: You have nothing left to lose. She’s the same woman. Even as she says, “Brains,” and slides her fingers through your hair, remember: You have nothing left to lose. Even as her teeth graze the top of your—

    You have nothing left— 


Greg Letellier has written two e-books and a chapbook called Karaoke, available from Be About It Press. He lives in Boston and tweets @gregletellier.