“So you hiding a body in here or sumthin’?”
The speaker gave a rasping chuckle as I pulled open the door of my storage unit, but behind his show of amusement was an avid curiosity that he was clearly desperate to satisfy. His question held a certain irony, considering that he fit the image of a serial killer a lot more than I did. Greasy black hair hung in lank tendrils from beneath a soiled Saints ball cap, his “Stor-This!” t-shirt with cut-off sleeves revealed slender arms with a surprising amount of muscle definition, and he apparently had the nervous habit of biting his nails—so severely that the tips of several fingers bore scabs.
On the other hand, I was the one who had a large chest freezer in a storage unit. Okay, yeah, so maybe that was a teensy bit suspicious. I could practically see the possibilities whirling behind his yellow-tinged eyes. Perhaps I was hiding the body of a past boyfriend? Maybe a parent? How about a too-nosy storage unit manager?
“Nah,” I replied with a friendly smile. “I won one of those grocery store shopping sprees and didn’t have any room back at my house to put a freezer. Didn’t want all the stuff I got to go to waste, y’know?” I flipped the lid of the freezer open so that he could see the contents. He peered in, hungry curiosity shifting to disappointment as he took in the sight of several dozen frozen dinners, various plastic containers, and a couple of slabs of ribs wrapped in plastic. Definitely no corpses. Even the ribs were obviously non-human in origin.
“Oh. Yeah, okay. Makes sense.” He straightened and stepped back as I placed two more plastic containers in the freezer.
“Made a big batch of soup yesterday,” I explained as the hunger nudged at me. It wanted what was in those containers, but I was trying hard to be super careful about not splurging. I knew I needed to ration my supply carefully. I had a nice surplus right now, however, I’d learned from hard experience not to depend on that. “I ran out of room in the fridge at home,” I continued, “so I figured I might as well put it out here for later on.” I closed the lid, made sure it was fully clasped. “Sorry, no bodies!” I said with a laugh.
His mouth twisted into an answering smile, but it was clear I’d ceased to be interesting now that he knew there was nothing mysterious to be found in storage unit number five-three-four. Good thing he had no idea that the contents of the freezer were far worse than a corpse.
He wandered back up to the office while I closed and locked the unit. There was nothing at all that said I had to show him what was in my unit, but I knew damn well that if I hadn’t let him look he’d have probably broken in to satisfy his curiosity, and then I’d have run the risk that the contents of the freezer would be ruined.
The slabs of ribs were exactly what they appeared to be—and from pigs, not humans—but the soup and the frozen dinners contained my very prized stash of about three months’ worth of brains.
Yes, human brains.
Hello, my name is Angel, and I’ll be your zombie today.