When I walked out onto the porch this morning, I discovered a scattered pile of pumpkin guts and the following diary, carved into the back of a gourd with a sharpened pumpkin seed. What follows is a tale of history, mystery, and murder most foul...
Apocalypse Diary: Day 1.
We believe the infection started with Jack.
At first, no one noticed, because Jack was always a little bit weird.
|Beware of Jack - he's not looking well.|
According to an ancient legend, Stingy Jack played a trick on the Devil, and forced Old Nick to promise never to claim Jack's soul. When old Jack died, his dealings with the Devil barred him from heaven, but his deal with the Devil barred him from hell as well, so Jack was cursed to roam the earth forever, lighting his way with a lantern carved from a turnip.
The Irish called him "Jack-o-the-Lantern," and it's from Jack that our modern Jack-o-lanterns take their name.
But Jack was a pumpkin--not a turnip - and Jack was the first to go.
Apocalypse Diary: Day 7.
Jack bit Will, and shortly thereafter, Will wasn't looking so good either.
|Don't mess with Will.|
Granted, the original Jack-o-Lanterns were made from turnips, and the humans have been turning us into lanterns for almost a thousand years. The Maori word 'Ue means both "gourd" and "lampshade." Still, things weren't looking good for Will.
Apocalypse Diary, Day 15.
We now have confirmation that it started with the little ones.
|Poor Maude. I wish I could say she didn't see it coming.|
Apocalypse Diary, Day 19.
The original Jack-o-Lanterns were used to ward off evil spirits during Samhain--and also to represent the souls of the dead who waited for judgment in purgatory. The confluence of Samhain and All-Hallows' Eve (the night before All-Saints' Day, November 1) created plenty of historical opportunities to think about the dead.
At the moment, I'm too busy worrying about what's happened to Ed. He says he's fine, but something in his eyes says he's no longer to be trusted...
|This is Ed. He's not well.|
Apocalypse Diary, Day 31.
I am now the sole survivor.
As the sun set, Ed and Malcolm took out Trudy.
|Halloween Gone Bad.|
Speaking of which...I hear them coming. The children don't suspect the terrible truth about what's happening here. They laugh and point when they come to the door, completely unaware of either the history of our species or the terrible plague that has turned my friends to monsters.
|Nerf darts - sadly ineffective against zombie pumpkins.|
I've fired off all my ammunition, but the zombies haven't stopped. I can only hope they'll leave when the candles burn out and there's nothing left to eat.
As for me, I'm safe--for the moment. I found the last of the tea lights, and I have enough to last the night at least...unless they find me.
|The lone survivor.|
May the Great Pumpkin protect us all.