Rip Slaughter: Zombie for Hire

This story has been inspired by the actual Google search for the phrase "zombie for hire." Any similarities between characters in this work of fiction and anyone living, dead, undead, or just moderately gnawed upon are completely coincidental. Thank you.

It's a dark and stormy night. But in our line of woik, ya don't expect no sunshine and rainbows. Fact is, even midday it's pitch black here, with only the flashin' neon beer signs to filter in through the venetian blinds, lighting our lunch hour and my Look magazine. We learned to woik in the dark long ago.

In our world, we live on gut instincts and guts.... Brains and... well, y'know, brains.

The back alleys are our schoolyard....

The cemeteries our playground...

The hair salons are our... hair salons. Hey, a girl has to look presentable. After all, somebody's got to do the meet-n-greet. And Mr. Slaughter? Well, he don't always make such a hot first impression.

Oh me? My name's Audrey Allhart. I'm Mr. Slaughter's Gal Monday-to-Saturday-Sundays-Half-Day. The hours are rough, yes. But then, so is this business. Ya just never know when some mug with a big checkbook says he's gonna need ya.

Now ya might think a Zombie for Hire does only one thing-- hit-man woik.

But it's not so much as you'd think. Sure, we get the occasional domestic resolution case. Y'know, the old lady's cheatin' so the injured party needs somebody to make short woik of the happy couple.

But we also get a lot of clients lookin' for a courier who won't question (Mr. Slaughter's not the fastest in the field, granted-- but he soitenly ain't gonna bog you down with the chit-chat)...

Sometimes we get called in by the meat packin' plants to meet waste disposal regulations... Not glamorous, but it's a livin'.

Sometimes it's crime labs who need bones cleaned real good for moider analysis... Sort of a public soivice gig for us, them ones are.

And we do get our share of film extra woik. In this economy, it really saves on the make-up and costumes, getting real zombies for the roles. So much so, Mr. Slaughter's been makin' a name for himself in the b-movie biz-- gettin' more screen time, bein' paid now for groans and the like.

In fact, you can see him pretty clear in WickedDeath 2. He's the one who headbutts leading man Wayne Wallace, then goes for his jugular.

We're real proud.

And Mr. Slaughter, he deals with it all like the professional he always was. Him, he don't remember nothin' about Before. Don't remember when he was a dimestore gumshoe with a fedora and a dream.

I think it's moicy.

But not for me. No, I get no moicy. I remember. I remember before Rip got bit by that bum who owed him fifty clams and gave him the permanent case of corpse, instead.

But me and Rip, we manage. It's not the same as it used to be, o' course. Like we don't go dancin' the way we used to. After Rip dropped an ear doing the Jump 'n' Jive, dancin' lost a lot of its spark.

And he's gone from a lover to a biter. Now I'm fighting him off for all new reasons. But we're workin' it out. Anyways, a girl's got to be careful these days no matter what guy she gets herself mixed up with.

So a hot date out for us these days pretty much involves a trip to the cult pictures... a stroll around the town on Halloween... or him playin "Scarecrow," drawin' in boids and then having a light evening snack.

It ain't pretty, but then it's an ugly world. You woik with what ya got.

Friends tell me, they say, "Audrey, you're still young and know how to wear a seamed stockin' on them gams of yours... Why ya stickin' with that undead louse, Slaughter, when ya could be married to an up-n-coming soda joik, some smart middle manager or be one of them chanteuses, singin' torch songs down at the Blue Butterfly?"

But the fact is, sometimes when I see my Mr. Slaughter there, veins in his teeth not a care in the world, I know my ol' Rip Slaughter's still in there. And they don't know what it's like when ya love a man like that.

Maybe in a way, we're all zombies in this world. Just goin' through the motions until ol' Fate gives us the bat to the brainpan.

I dunno. But if ya need our soivices, do give us a call. We're in the book under Z.


Is there anything our Zombie for Hire can help you with? Comment here today!



Anonymous said...

Audrey, I think you need to record your story in your voice. It's beautyful !

I see that Rip fellow at the pool hall sometimes with his buddy there.
Quiet fellow, that Rip. Didn't know he was in the pictures. Think I'll invite him to a drink next time.

Hang in there Aud. I'll give you a call come time - may be not for business.

Z right ?

Anonymous said...

Aw, that Ronald, you're such a smooth tawker!

Matt said...

i could barely get past the fact that someone actually searched for zombie for hire....awesome.

Great post...stumbled.

Unknown said...

Matt- When I saw that search, I KNEW it had to be a blog post...

I wonder what they planned to do with their zombie.

Jessie said...

Love this,should be a book series

Zombie Days,Romance night-or How I became a zombified secreatary
best line-"Mr.Slaughters Gal-monday-through-Saturday-Sunday-Halfdays


Anonymous said...

Too many great lines in this one. Hard to pick just one. Again, you outdo yourself, Jenn Thorson (bowing to your blogging genius, again).

Unknown said...

Jessie- Heh, I like your suggested titles. :) We'd just have to keep Audrey un-zombiefied or we wouldn't have much of a narrator. :) Grunts and groans only go so far with publishers these days.

Unfinished Rambler- Oh, I'm glad you enjoyed it. I had entirely too much fun with the characters!

Da Old Man said...

So, does Audrey keep a cricket bat handy just in case Rip gets a little too "frisky?"

Unknown said...

Da Old Man- I'd imagine, based on her accent, it might be a baseball bat. Brooklyn Dodgers, I think.

Anonymous said...

Well, there's this ex-wife that stalks me. . . . she's a practicing witch so you might have a wee bit of trouble finding her heart. How about a clean head shot?

I can't believe I sat back, popped my thumb in my mouth, grabbed my blankie, and enjoyed your story. All that was missing was a mention of fog rolling down the street or your office filled with smoke from "yer Camel resting at the edge of the tar covered ash tray". Fix that, ok?

Unknown said...

Dana- We'll consider your case. :)

And heh, you saved me the trouble of the smoking cigarette imagery... it's a nice job of your own! :)

Anonymous said...

A story with zombies as the main protagonists... finally! Something to which I can relate! :p

Unknown said...

Tony- We try to be open-minded about the Living Impaired here at "Of Cabbages and Kings."

Chat Blanc said...

oh I think I need Zombie services. It's not much but there's this dog up the street that won't shut up at night. Think Slaughter will take the job? :)

Unknown said...

Chat Blanc- I do think it's along the lines of his cases, yes. Particularly if he hasn't had lunch yet. I'll let Audrey know to call you back.

Anonymous said...

I wonder how Zombies For Hire will fare in the economic downturn? They'll probably do very well, especially clearing up all the 'dead wood' on Wall Street...

Great story, as ever!

Unknown said...

Tiggy- I do think it's an industry that won't be so affected by the economy. I mean, as times get rough, there are usually more post-apocalyptic motion pictures, as well. So Mr. Slaughter should continue to get film roles, albeit small not-quite-speaking parts.

Anonymous said...

I got a dog next door too that would make a nice snack for mr Slaughter, when he's done with the other job send him my way. :)

Unknown said...

Chyna- Wow, Mr. Slaughter is really pulling in the business here... See, niche marketing like he's done really CAN work, even in a bad economy.

Melanie said...

I've probably got a job or two for Mr. Slaughter too. Though I don't want to say much about on the internet. You know, I don't want anyone pointing any fingers at me when certain people disappear.

Great post Jenn!

Unknown said...

Melanie- You can call completely confidentially-- I'm sure Miss Allhart will treat your case with 100% discretion.

Unknown said...

Jen, awesome post. I really like the way Audrey talks. Brings back memories of a Zombie I used to know.

Unknown said...

EttaRose- Thanks! It was a lot of fun to write.