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The Meal

A short story that takes place in a post-apocalyptic world, where zombies roams the face of the earth, forcing the survivors to barricade themselves into their homes, living out their lives with no or little contact with each other. In one house an old man heads down the basement, carrying a food-tray in his old hands. You can also get this story in other formats, free @ Smashwords.

The quivering hands caused the pistol to drum against the tray. In silence, he stood in front the doorway, looking down at the dim light pouring up from the basement. With a sigh, he began to stagger down the stairs. A smell of decay and flaking walls greeted him as he stepped out onto the old plastic carpet in the worn-down basement.

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Exploration

Bloober’s large eyes were set on the dark silhouette, beside a glooming structure, elevating a couple hundred yards ahead. The dust-filled wind played with his dark leather cloak as his green bulbous body slid over the rough surface, leaving a trail of thick sludge behind.

Seen, heard, felt anything, scout?

Sahaen’s telepathic question popped up in his head like a vague thought.

Sound detected, approaching objects’, report follow.

Even though most would never set their sole on an unknown planet, Bloober relished it. The mere thought of exploring a new world for edible life, sent his mind spinning and his acid glands in overdrive. He had been so optimistic about this planet before he descended upon it. That was many sun lapses ago, though, and the only sign of life he had slip over, was dry fossil bones and withered debris of ancient structures.

The dark silhouette had details now and Bloober could recognize an oval body, with a head and four limbs attached to it, two supporting ones and two hanging at the sides. A classic design, just as he suspected.

It was unexpected that this one didn’t move. The norm was that these spices often used their long, limbs to move their meaty bodies out of his way. That was not a problem, though, since their thoughts always revealed them. The other unexpected thing was that it didn’t emit any thoughts, fears or shock. A black devouring void greeted Bloober every time he scanned it.

He was close now and his acid glands moistened as he approached this peculiar specimen, whom still stood erect, gazing into the horizon, paying no notice of him.

It lacked the usual distinguished features. Bloober thought that maybe its body could be incased in a hard shell. The eyes and mouth consisted of three small holes, which lit up in a flickering yellow light, as it repeated a couple of strange, jagged sounds. On the middle of its rusty torso, there were three small slits.

Bloober’s excitement rinsed off and his acid glands begun to dry up, as he realized that the thing before him wasn’t edible, it was not even biological. It was more like a machine of sorts.

Report, Scout.

Nothing. Just machines. The planet dead.

Come back, scout.

The disappointment rippled through Bloober as he swung around and begun to slide back to his shuttle, all while the machine repeated itself in the background.

“Please…Insert Coin…Please…Insert Coin…”

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· Copyright © 2015 by Ken Bergman All Rights Reserved ·

The Last Card

The bet was crazy, like the look in the Major’s grey, bloodshot eyes. Jack couldn’t help it, not if he wanted to leave in one piece. The droid whirled as it prepared to throw that last, life-changing, card on the table. With a pop, the card flew through the air, thick of smoke and anticipation.

Nine of Spades.

The room roared. The Major sprung up on unstable legs, sending his chair crashing to the floor. Jack swallowed, chuckled and felt his jaw relaxing. It was over – the pot was his.

He looked at the girl. She greeted him with pinched lips and faint furrows on her forehead. A silent tear escaped her alerted eyes.

“Am I free to go now, daddy?” She asked.

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· Copyright © 2015 by Ken Bergman All Rights Reserved ·

Her Vow

The dinner knife slid into Eric’s throat like butter. He sniveled and froze in his seat. A couple of guests gasped, gazing confounded at them. They had known about it, long before she stumbled upon them, going at it like rabbits. Now it was her turn to be demoralizing.

With a smile, she pulled out the knife, blew a kiss to her sister’s ash gray face and rose from the seat. The blood created jagged pink stripes, on the white dress. A thin film of blood covered the diamond on her finger. Is it a blood diamond now, she pondered. Then she buried the knife deep into Eric’s neck, sending his face into the broiled salmon.

She leaned down and whispered, “’Til death do us part, darling.”

Eric’s rattled puffs and the rustling from her dress, accompanied her out, into a brand new world.

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· Copyright © 2015 by Ken Bergman All Rights Reserved ·

A Quarter Short

“There is a quarter missing…”

Her head begun to spin like a slow carousel, her throat dried up and when she tried to swallow, she started coughing. The tall man in front of her uttered a hollow sigh, while his bluish-gray eyes, moved over the endless line of people behind her.

“Excuse me?” she asked with a hoarse voice and shook her head.

The man stared deep into her eyes.

“A quarter, there’s a quarter missing, for the charge.” His voice was sharp and it planted a seed of doubt in her head.

“But, but I gave you the money,” she looked back at the man with big innocent eyes, “I know I did!”

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