• J. P. Walters

Night of the Living Vedge

Eight months had passed since the outbreak. Nobody saw it coming, how could they have? Apparitions still tore at Rene's cerebellum like the rotting memories they were. She’d witnessed the sickest of violence, and for what? Now she was alone, caught in a world somewhere between impossible and comical.

Limbs crashed against the bathroom door, with Rene weeping from within. The lightbulb above her head flickered, further powering this nightmare. It was only a matter of time. Why did humankind have to play God? We didn’t figure out his shit, no, we rehabilitated his creations into fetishized monstrosities. They were snacks and deserts, genetically engineered to the point of no return.

The world had bitched to the heavens that GMO’s were the devil, but never once did they ask how the food felt. The folly of man was not embracing the power of our sentience; it was the assumption that we understood what sentience was. A celery stick does not scream out in agony as one gnashes through its body, nor does chocolate beg for mercy as it snaps apart. The truth, however, was not hard to fathom. Food feels the world in a deeper manner than humans, and our blindness had catered to our doom.

Rene jumped backward into the sink as the door screeched open. Horror, disgust, and amusement ruptured out from her mouth. Bananas crept toward her with flashes from the light above, revealing their decaying forms. Rene leaped forth on the tiled floor. This was not her time to die, not after surviving this long. She bolted for the open doorway and fled around to the apartment’s kitchen.

The lights in the kitchen were dim, but at least the electricity was still working. Maybe the corporations that make this world tick hadn’t been overrun by foodstuffs.

A scraping pierced through Rene’s ears as she tugged a knife from atop the kitchen sideboard. Her vision fled back around the corner to the bathroom, but there was no sign of the bananas. Perhaps they weren’t intelligent enough to follow her, or maybe they were plotting further.

The refrigerator to her left burst open, with a white light burning into her retinas. Rene jumped back in fright at the sight before her. An army of enraged tomatoes was tumbling out of the open refrigerator.

Rene screamed out.

Really? What next?

She didn’t expect a reply, but a flurry of vocals cut through the air.

There she is.

Kill the human!

Eat her heart and nest in her brain!

The voices carried a cuteness, but this was not the time for fun. More shrieks echoed from the bathroom; it had to be the bananas. If this was Rene’s end, she wanted to fight until the death. Without warning, she jumped forth and grasped one of the tomatoes in her left hand with the knife held in her right.

Rene started to back up into the corner of the kitchen, but one of the bananas thundered over as their army entered the room.

Put down the Tomato King. You will die either way, human!

Rene’s jaw dropped, but she shrugged away the shock and raised the knife to the Tomato King.

Rene replied to the concerned banana.

I’ll do it, don’t think I won’t.

The fruit didn’t retort, yet the mob continued their approach. Time was running short, and Rene’s options limited with every passing second. She elevated the blade and accidentally sliced into the Tomato King’s face. It screamed out in agony, and Rene bawled aloud.

I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to cut it!

With red juice dripping from the Tomato King in her hand, it yelped up at its’ aggressor. The voice was more profound than Rene had expected for such a cute thing, and the Scottish twang only added to the surprise.

You don’t have the fucking balls! Strike me down, and a thousand more will take my place!

Rene screamed as an army of bananas tore at her ankles. She’d not expected a surprise attack, and they must have snuck around her. The fruit laughed with each tearing motion they made. Rene fell silent.

The bananas strolled away, their wake revealing four strips of peeled flesh, unwrapped from the top of Rene’s skull down to her abdomen. Her lungs still pulled in oxygen, yet her form now resembled that of a blooming rose. The peeler had become the peeled.

© 2019 by J. P. Walters. 

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