last01standing: ([BtVS] Hush)
[personal profile] last01standing
Title: The Dead Man Shuffle
Rating: PG
Summary: For absolutely no reason, zombies attack the Pie Hole.
Disclaimer:I do not own Pushing Daisies.
Author’s note: It’s not a real fandom unless it’s had a zombie apocalypse. (You all know I’m right)

The Dead Man Shuffle

There are three events universal to every human being. The first is that everyone undergoes the joyous occasion of their own birth. The second is slightly more morbid eventuality of death. The final universal human experience is something far less commonly known. It is the absolute certainty that—at some point in everyone’s life—they will be momentarily convinced they have seen a zombie.

Such a moment overcame Olive Snook when she was precisely twenty-nine years, forty-five weeks, eleven hours and fifty minutes old. She was opening the door to the Pie Hole when she heard a moan start up in the distance. She froze, a chill snaking down her spine as she spotted a distant figure lurching on the horizon. She let out a small yelp, turned back inside the Pie Hole and shut the door behind her.

From behind the counter, the pie maker noticed her distress. “Olive? What’s wrong? You look like you just saw something exceedingly spooky,”

Olive let out a small breath of air. “Oh, I’m sure it’s nothing. I just had one of those momentary moments when I was certain I saw a zombie.”

“You get those too?” Chuck asked as she emerged from the kitchen. “Here I thought I was the only person ever overcome with the feeling that I was being watched by zombies.”

“Actually,” Ned said, shifting aside as Chuck moved past him, “I think it’s a far more common syndrome then one would think.” He shook his head. “I’m sorry but is there any way we might not talk about zombies? It feels slightly unsanitary while we’re in an established eatery.”

Chuck steered Olive into a nearby booth. A nearby booth where Emerson Cod sat with a newspaper and a slice of Triple Berry Pie, studiously avoiding all his cohorts.

“So where did you see this might-be zombie?”

“It was the spookiest thing,” Olive said, lowering her voice. “I was just stepping out to see some fresh air and I heard this moan. When I looked up, I saw this man down the road walking funny. You know that stuttering shamble with the arms out and the jaw slack? The brain-dead walk!”

“Sounds like a zombie to me,” Chuck said.

As if on cue, there was a moan from outside, a low unearthly wail that caused both women to shiver. Even Ned, cleaning the counter looked up unconsciously. Only Emerson Cod refused to succumb to the spell.

“Oh!” Chuck said. “I don’t like the sound of that.”

Finally fed up, Emerson lowered his newspaper. “For Christ’s sakes,” he said. “There ain’t no such thing as zombies.”

“Say what you want to say, big man,” Olive replied. “I’m not going out there tonight.”

Emerson Cod shook his head and pushed himself to his feet. “You all are getting spooked over noises. I can prove it to you.”

He stalked over to the door to the Pie Hole, opened it and looked outside. A second later he shut the door, locked it, changed the sign to CLOSED and returned to the booth with scarcely a change of expression.

Ned took off his apron, approaching the booth. “Emerson? What’s happening out there? What did you see?”

“Zombies,” Emerson said, sitting down heavily.

Now, while belief that one has seen a zombie is a universally shared experience, seeing an actual zombie is far rarer event. In fact, under normal circumstance, only a hundredth of one percent of zombie sightings are actually zombies. In times of crisis however, these numbers skyrocket.

“Zombies?” one of the Pie Hole’s patrons said, standing up. It was only a few minutes until closing time and the customer and his compatriot were the only ones left. He tossed a his money on the table and said, “We best be heading home then.”

“You can’t head home,” Ned said, aghast. “There are zombies out there!”

“Your establishment has entirely too many windows,” the customer replied. “I don’t suppose you have a blunt object we can make use of until we get home.”

“I don’t suppose you have any common sense in your body,” Emerson Cod growled.

The customer shook his head. “Very well, thank you for the pie.”

He took his friend and they left together. Chuck locked the door behind them on their way out. Olive slapped Emerson in the chest. “Why’d you have to go be mean to them?! He was customer and now he could be eaten!”

“You know,” said Ned, “I think he’s right. There are entirely too many windows.”

“We should barricade, right?” Olive said, wringing her hand together. “Put all the tables in front of the window and hide behind the counter.”

“What we should do,” Emerson said, “is find some weapons other then pie tins if you catch my drift.”

“Blunt objects!” Olive cried. “I have a good collection of softball bats from my time as a semi-pro on the Lankatau Lizards.”

“Did you play shortstop?” Emerson drawled.

Olive shot him a death glare.

“Now’s not the time!” Chuck said shrilly. “We can fight later when we’re not in the midst of a zombie attack.”

“Right,” Olive said. “I’m going to run on upstairs to my apartment to get my bats and come back here.”

Ned winced as the thump of a single zombie’s hand echoed against the Pie Hole’s window. “Please hurry.”

Olive tore off her apron and ran towards the back door. “Be careful!” Chuck called after her.

“We got more pressing matters then itty bitty and her baseball bats,” Emerson growled. “What the question really is would be what happens if Pie Boy over here whips out his magic finger?”

Ned sat down heavily on in a booth, hands clutching at the edges of his apron. Chuck looked the two of them over thoughtfully. “Undeading the undead? I mean it sounds like it could at least buy us some time.”

“I’m sorry,” Ned said, “ but I can’t even think about undeading the undead right now.” He glanced out the window at the lurching masses of the living dead and made a funny squeaking sound in the back of his throat. “Can we go back to the part where there are hordes of zombies outside the Pie Hole?”

“You know he’s right,” Chuck said. “Your magic finger could be the key to fixing this.”

“I never said that. See I’m worried it’s going to be one of us who pay the price for the piemaker’s magic finger. And how do we know dead girl isn’t going to join her zombie brethren thirsting for brains.”

“Hey!” exclaimed Chuck.

“Hey!” echoed Ned.

“This is something we’re going to have to discuss when we’re up against the undead.”

“Okay,” Ned said forcefully. “Okay, here’s what we’re going to do. We’re not going to use my magic finger and we’re not going to send Chuck out to her zombie brethren.”

“I’m not a zombie!” Chuck protested.

“I’m sorry, Chuck,” Ned said. “But technically speaking, you’re kind of sort of a zombie.”

“Told you,” Emerson muttered.

“Anyway,” Ned continued, “Olive doesn’t know about this and it’s still too risky. I say we sit here and wait for her to get back and then hopefully wait for someone with guns.”

There was a loud crash at the front of the Pie Hole and the solitary zombie Olive had spotted not twenty minutes prior, stumbled in with arms outstretched searching for brains.

Emerson screamed. Ned’s jaw dropped. Chuck grabbed one of the stools from the counter and threw it at the zombie.

“Chuck!” Ned screamed, scrambling forward to help her.

Then, in his moment of carelessness, Ned’s skin brushed against the cold, rotting flesh of the zombie who paused for a minute and stood up a little straighter. “Where am I?”

“You dead,” Emerson said, sparing no sympathy. “Want to tell us how?

“I’m dead?” the man echoed.

“I’m very sorry,” Ned said, “but you appear to be a zombie bend on mindless destruction and consumption of living flesh. Any clues as to how you came to be this way would greatly assist us in avoiding the same fate.”

“I don’t know. There were these guys. They jumped me.”

“Did they bite you?” Chuck asked.

The man faltered.

“He don’t know,” Emerson said. “Redead him already. We’re making too much noise. Sooner or later every dead thing is going to be gunning for us.”

“He’s right,” Chuck confirmed, peering out the window. “There has got to be seventy. Maybe a hundred.”

“Oh God,” the former zombie moaned. “Oh God.”

“I’m sorry,” Ned said and poked him on the cheek.

He collapsed down dead on the Pie Hole floor. Ned sank back against the counter. “I am so not looking forward to tonight.”

“Ned, what the hell are you---“

“Watch out!” Chuck shrieked.

The zombie lunged for Ned’s neck, arms outstretched, mouth moving soundlessly. Ned caught the zombie’s face right before he got bitten. “Little help here?”

“Emerson! Do something!”

“How am I supposed to kill a freaking zombie?”

At that moment, the Piemaker’s death seemed imminent. He looked at the zombie’s rotted face, at the snarling bloodthirsty smile. He could smell the thing’s fetid breath. He thought for a moment that this might be the last thing he ever saw. He closed his eyes and thought of the girl named Chuck.

And then there was a solid sounding thwap and Ned was overcome with the sensation of not being dead. He opened his eyes slowly to find Olive Snook standing over him with a baseball bat that was smeared with blood.

“Olive?” he stammered. “What? How did you—”

“Everyone knows you’ve got to sever the head or destroy the brain if you want to kill a zombie. Haven’t you seen 28 Days Later?”

Ned gaped at her.

Chuck laughed despite everything.

“I hate to break up your little gab fest,” Emerson growled, “But zombies? Attacking? Is this ringing any bells?”

The moans outside were picking up, the hands slowly pounding at the outside of the building.

“Oh, the customer was right,” Chuck said, wringing her hands “This building has entirely too many windows. Ned? What do we do?”

“How am I supposed to know?” Ned sputtered. “I’m hardly an expert in zombies.”

Emerson snorted.

“So not helping.”

“Everyone just shut up for a minute,” Olive said.

They all turned to look down at her. Her hair was a mess. The baseball bat on her shoulder was smudged with blood. There was an odd sort of determination on her features. “Here’s what we’re going to do,” Olive said. “We’re going to move the tables to block the windows. We’re going to set up shop behind the counter. If it’s only a few who get in, we’re gong to take those bastards out. If it’s to many, we’ll retreat to the apartments. They’ll need to thin out while they go out the stairs. We can do this, right guys?”

For a moment the three of them were silent, simply gaping at the tiny woman in front of them.

“Right guys?” Olive repeated, voice hard.

“Yes?” Ned said.

“I think so,” Chuck mumbled.

“Hell yeah!” Emerson boomed.

“Right!” Olive turned back around to face the door where the moans of zombies had reached a crescendo. She smiled. “Showtime.”


(no subject)

19/3/09 20:27 (UTC)
ext_1310: (pie = love)
Posted by [identity profile]
Hee! I love Olive with her zombie-killing baseball bat.

(no subject)

21/3/09 03:31 (UTC)
Posted by [identity profile]
Olive is probably the most badass person on that show. She's just way more stealthy about it. =)

(no subject)

19/3/09 21:57 (UTC)
Posted by [identity profile]
Oh yeah. That *had* to be done. :D

The whole tone of it was perfect: the narrative, Olive Snook and her baseball bats of doom, the poor piemaker who really just wants the quiet life, and Emerson Cod pissed off that the undead have ruined his enjoyment of a good cup of coffee. I loved it.

Damn, that show died too soon.

(no subject)

21/3/09 03:32 (UTC)
Posted by [identity profile]
It is my opinion that everything is better with zombies. I'm just doing my part to spread the joy.

(no subject)

20/3/09 07:24 (UTC)
Posted by [identity profile]
I like take charge Olive.

(no subject)

21/3/09 03:33 (UTC)
Posted by [identity profile]
Oh, she's my favorite flavor of Olive hands down. =)

Thanks for reading.

(no subject)

20/3/09 11:06 (UTC)
Posted by [identity profile]
awww poor ned.
though if he just manned up and touched them all twice, they'd all die, no baseball bats needed. :)
(i say "manned up" in the most endearing possible way.)

(no subject)

21/3/09 03:33 (UTC)
Posted by [identity profile]
Thanks for reading!

(no subject)

20/3/09 21:10 (UTC)
Posted by [identity profile]
Oh, I love this! Nicely done! I was totally thinking of the Zombie Survival Guide the whole time.

And I agree, everyone (and every fandom) needs the obligatory zombie!fic.

(no subject)

21/3/09 03:34 (UTC)
Posted by [identity profile]
Exactly! Zombie!fic is practically UNIVERSAL. The world needs more zombie fic. =)

(no subject)

21/3/09 02:13 (UTC)
Posted by [identity profile]
You have a wonderful feel for the PD voices. I love the idea that Ned is a Zombie expert and technically Chuck is one - inspired really enjoyed it

(no subject)

21/3/09 03:34 (UTC)
Posted by [identity profile]

Next: Thanks so much for reading. I have a great time writing the PD characters and I'm glad you enjoyed them.

(no subject)

23/3/09 01:40 (UTC)
Posted by [identity profile]
*snickers madly*
This was very fun.

(no subject)

11/4/09 05:13 (UTC)
Posted by [identity profile]
Oh, this was perfect!

The dialogue, the narration, the imagery given off by the entire thing -- it felt like I was reading a book version of the show! I loved it.

(no subject)

21/4/09 17:57 (UTC)
Posted by [identity profile]
Thank you so uch for reading.

(no subject)

15/4/09 18:54 (UTC)
Posted by [identity profile]
This was a most amusing story. The voices were great, and I liked how even though Olive isn't involved with the gang's waking-the-dead business, she knows the most about how to combat zombies thanks to a pop culture reference.

It’s not a real fandom unless it’s had a zombie apocalypse.

(no subject)

21/4/09 17:58 (UTC)
Posted by [identity profile]
Olive is a BAMF. =)

Seriously though, it really is a right of passage for a fandom to have a zombie fic. In fact, I may go and create a com specifically for zombie fics. It will be AWESOME.

(no subject)

21/4/09 18:16 (UTC)
Posted by [identity profile]
Not to come off as overbearing, but yes, you must create that comm! I will plug the shit out of it if you do.

(no subject)

24/4/09 22:37 (UTC)
Posted by [identity profile]
Oh, I enjoyed this. It's just marvelous. But then it made me sad, because it reminded me of what we're missing.

The funny thing is that I heard somewhere that the pushing daisies comics will apparently involved Ned (et al.) facing a thousand zombies. Dang it, now I've made myself sad again.

(no subject)

25/4/09 01:01 (UTC)
Posted by [identity profile]
Thank you so much for reading.

That comic sounds AWESOME.

(no subject)

28/8/09 02:39 (UTC)
ext_61669: (Emerson's got this)
Posted by [identity profile]

Excellent zombie fic, and this fandom is so very made for it. :D

Olive, FTW!

(no subject)

28/8/09 03:28 (UTC)
Posted by [identity profile]
It is true. The world needs more pushing daisies vampire fic.

=) Glad you enjoyed it.

(no subject)

14/8/12 20:42 (UTC)
Posted by [identity profile]
Genius. I want Olive Snook on my team when the endtimes come.

(no subject)

31/8/12 20:55 (UTC)
Posted by [identity profile]
Hands off I called her first. =p.

Thanks for reading!

(no subject)

16/8/12 00:09 (UTC)
Posted by [identity profile]

1. AGREED that every fandom needs a zombie fic of some description.
2. You had me utterly hooked and excited just from this: I just had one of those momentary moments when I was certain I saw a zombie. I knew immediately your PD speak would be spot-on, and was not disappointed.
3. Adorable, flawless.

(no subject)

31/8/12 20:56 (UTC)
Posted by [identity profile]
I'm hideously late replying everything, but thank you. This is the sort of comment that makes my day.


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