by Neil John Buchanan
Mayor shuffles in circles; his reins hang from his butchered mouth. His clothes have disintegrated, and his swollen legs have been reduced to black stumps. Doc sways in his saddle, gives a gentle sigh, and slips from his mount.
Doc is already half-turned. We can’t have him go wild. Captain orders Mayor for dispatch, and Sarge steps up for the job.
Mayor looks to the middle distance with cataract eyes, oblivious to his impending ‘second’ death. Sarge unclips Mayor’s head and without preamble removes his brain. Mayor looks confused as if he’s just been told a joke he half-understands and pitches forward to lie dead in the dirt. Captain sets about the body with his ‘taming’ knife, stripping free skin with a practiced hand. When finished, he and Sarge roll Doc in fat so only his face can be seen. He looks like a giant maggot. The wild won’t smell him that way.
About the Author
Neil John Buchanan lives in the south west of England with two manic cats, two small children and a long-suffering, sympathetic wife. He is a horror fiction writer with work published in various online and print venues, including Pseudopod, Drabblecast, Necrotic Tissue, and the Terminal Earth anthology.
In 2010 he was nominated for the pushcart prize for his short story, ‘Waiting on the Road to Palladium’, and when not thinking up inventive ways to describe dead folk can be found interviewing famous people at Starburst magazine. They give him free stuff which is rather cool, and he hangs around pretending to look busy. He’s rather fond of this Julian Glover interview.
Neil was first drawn to the paranormal and all things that go bump in the night when his father let him watch Zombie Flesh Eaters at the tender age of eight. He has a Zombie Contingency Plan for each home he has ever lived in and advises you to do the same.
About the Narrator
Alasdair Stuart was briefly employed as a circus geek until an unfortunate mix-up involving a prize-winning fighting cock. Its owner had ties not only to the carnival, but also to the Russian mob, so now he writes supplements for role playing games, where he exercises his superpower to make you appreciate the Sixth Doctor. He has played for the national rugby team after defeating the monstrous four-horned sheep across his home island. He is the Supreme Mugwump, Keeper of the Big Red Button, a regular contributor to Tor.com, and he owns a bunch of awesome podcasts.