I would like to thank everyone for the awesome reviews. I would have never gotten off my ass to write this without them. Nothing motivates me more than guilt.
And I think I may have confused some readers by saying last time that the next chapter was the last. I meant to say that the chapter after that one would be the last one, meaning that this chapter is the final chapter. If you catch my drift…I've just confused myself.
I'd also like to write another story, but I'm currently in the process of moving to University so I'm unsure how much time I'll have to write. But we'll see. You all might get lucky since I have another idea for a Gorillaz fanfic brewing in my brain.
Finally I would like to dedicate this chapter to my good friend John, who I will never listen to his radio show even though he keeps dedicating songs to me. But he'll never read this story so I figure we're about even.
Anyways I give you the last chapter of Zombie Blues! Enjoy!
Zombie blues chapter 8
A key for all occasions
2D stood on his chair with his chin rested on his chest, he held a net with a loose grip as his eyes threatened to snap shut. He had been waiting for almost fifteen minutes now, which in the singer's opinion seemed like an eternity considering how short his attention span was. His legs were beginning to ache and he desperately wanted to take a break, but he knew that the moment he stepped down from that chair he would miss his opportunity.
He was now wishing that he had brought his iPod to give him a bit of entertainment while he waited in ambush, but so brilliant had he though his idea that he failed to plan ahead without any further consideration.
Then there was movement.
At first there was only sound, a faint tinkering that grew louder as they approached. The clangs of talons against metal echoed through the vent. 2D slowly lifted his net waiting for the creature to make its appearance. He strained his ear to hear how close it was. It shouldn't be too much further; he knew what the little bastard was up to now.
A beak appeared between the vent bars, 2D pressed his body against the wall lest the bird notice him and scramble away. The beak opened and closed, almost as though it were tasting the air for danger. Satisfied, it pulled its beak back and then proceeded to wriggle its way through the vent a feather at a time.
'Not until it's all the way through' Thought 2D. He didn't want to mess up now, not when he was so close.
The raven was making its way out backwards, and in a bizarre way somehow reminded 2D of birth (although this was hardly comparable to the miracle of life).
And then it was out with a flap of wings, for a split second its beady eyes connected with 2D's. A few moments of bewilderment passed between them until the electric bond was broken when 2D brought the net that was raised over his head down. It was at the instant when to had to lean forward on his tip toes to catch the feathered rat that he regretted his choice of support. .
The chair slipped out from beneath his feet and he was sent tumbling to the ground. He tried to cushion the fall with his knees but the hard cement floor of his bedroom was not forgiving, even with the layer of brown carpet.
"Ahh!" He screamed, certain that he had broken both his kneecaps and that he'd never walk again. His eyes were squeezed shut in pain as a single tear trickled down his cheek.
He rolled to his side panting, he remembered the he was still holding the net and had enough sense to crack an eye open to inspect his prize. It was a miracle upon a miracle when 2D realized the he had actually achieved what he set out to do. There in a state of semi-shock was Cortez with wings hunched and legs pointed up to the ceiling. A few feathers stuck out of the net holes. 2D made a sound that was halfway between a groan and laughter.
"Gotcha y'little bugger… m'knees really hurt."
He used his hand the close the top of the net so the intruder wouldn't escape while he recovered from his hard fall. He allowed himself a few minutes for the agony in his legs to fade away. He gave them a stretch when he decided that they probably weren't broken. He would, however, be expecting some impressive bruises to appear there soon.
He lifted himself to his feet and hobbled to his bed, so far his plan was running smoothly. Now he'd find out if the chicken was willing to cooperate with his demands. He raised the net so he was looking straight into the birds eyes. It blinked at him and gave him a look as if to say "What do you want dullard?" Murdoc had it well trained.
"Awright, I know wot you're up to yeah, and I dun like it one bit. Y'see m'not as stupid as everyone finks I am." He tapped the side of his head to emphasize his point.
Cortez blinked at him again.
He gave the net a minor shake to remind the fowl that he had the upper hand here. It gave a sharp squawk and ruffled its oily black wings. 2D narrowed his eyes and puffed himself out. He wouldn't let a bird get the better of him.
"I haven't bin able t'sleep for a week coz of you!"
It cocked its head and looked at 2D pitilessly.
"An' I dun know if Murdoc put you up to this or not, but I fink its downright rotten."
At the mention of Murdoc's name the glossy raven dipped its head and gave the singer a gaze that seemed all too familiar to 2D. It was a mournful stare that softened the vocalist.
"Y'miss him too dun you…"
The beady black eyes answered him, they misted over with a certain sadness that 2D could identify with himself. So, against his better judgment 2D placed the net on his bed and allowed the creature to hop out and stretch its wings. The singer reached out a tentative hand and to his surprise the bird allowed him to stroke its night black feathers.
"I know how y'feel. He hasn't been payin' that much attention t'either of us. M'sure Vivian is real happy bou' it though."
2D had to cover is ears when the Raven let out a shrill squawk, it seemed as though the singer wasn't the only one who had an issue with the undead woman.
"Awright…" 2D said scratching his chin in thought. "Awright I'll cut you a deal yeah?"
Cortez lifted its head curiously.
"I reckon I know how t'get rid of her. But I fink I'll prolly need y'help."
The bird hopped closer and tilted its head to peer at the tall man.
"Murdoc has bin lockin' the bago ever since it was nicked. But I know y'can get in and out. If y'can get me th'key I promise I'll sort everyfing out, awright?"
The bird gave a soft 'caw' and appeared to be at an understanding. If 2D wasn't aware of how intelligent the fowl was he might have felt a bit silly negotiating with a raven.
But now things were going to change, 2D was a pacifist at heart and usually avoided any confrontation. But there were times for everything and the singer was on his last straw.
It was action time.
2D crouched behind a rusty motorcycle; he was waiting rather impatiently for Murdoc to leave his rundown domain. The Winnebago was still eerily quite, apart from the occasional clank and stream of curse words it was a silent as death.
He wouldn't have to be doing this, thought 2D as he felt his legs start to numb, if Vivian had been frequenting the studio as often as she had. But for some peculiar reason he had seen neither hide nor hair of her. It was almost like she knew what he was up to and remained hidden away in the Winnebago. He vowed that he'd wring Cortez's neck if he'd blabbed.
He held the key in a tight grip with his fist like it was his lifeline, and in a way it was. He opened his hand gave it a closer inspection. It was a dull gold with a horned skull at the top. It was probably the most demonic key 2D had ever seen in his life. He nervously twirled it between his fingers; he decided that if the bassist didn't emerge in ten minutes he'd knock on the door and discuss their issues like civil men.
Fortunately the singer was spared from diplomacy because the rusted Winnebago door had burst open. Murdoc emerged from the bowels of his vehicle looking as disheveled as he usually did.
2D he ducked his head down and used his palm to flatten the pointed blue spikes of hair on the top of his head to avoid them showing above the motorcycle. He peered through the wheels of the bike as he watched Murdoc look around the car park. He held his breath when the bassist's gaze drew over his hiding spot, but when the older man turned his heel and walked away it was apparent that he hadn't been discovered.
He looked at his watch; he estimated that he would have 15 minutes before the Satanist returned. It was almost as though Murdoc was a delicate exotic animal who couldn't be away from its natural habitat for too long, although, he mused, the bass player was anything but delicate.
2D allowed himself two minutes just to assure himself that the bass player wouldn't unexpectedly return and foil his plan. He opened the backpack that was beside him and removed a coil of rope which he slung over his shoulder. He also removed a wieldy crowbar and a football helmet not unlike the one that Noodle wore for the DARE video. He wanted to be prepared for anything that he might face inside that machine. Now that he thought about it, he also wished he had brought a gas mask, or at least a hanky to hold over his nose.
Nevertheless time was running out. He moved out from behind the motorcycle keeping his body low to the ground. He considered crawling on his belly before one look at the oily car park floor made him quickly switch tactics. Instead he kept his knees bent and waddled awkwardly towards the Winnebago door. He made sure that his head was kept below the windows to the vehicle.
Eventually he reached the rusted door. 2D wasn't sure when the last time the machine had been cleaned; it was covered in a layer of dirt so thick it obscured the actual colour of the paint beneath it. He couldn't help but stick his finger in the dust and write his name as well as a smiley face. He paused to consider what he was doing for a moment, and then threw in a love heart for good measure.
"Right…" 2D breathed out. His hand began to shake as he lifted the key up towards the keyhole. It took a bit of exertion but he managed to jam it into the rusty hole. With a flick of the wrist he turned the key. He heard a resounding 'snap' but discovered that it wasn't the lock; the door had just fallen off its hinges.
"Oh…Um, I'll fix it later." He decided while he moved it to leave it leaning against the side of the vehicle. He took a deep breath and held the crowbar tight to his chest as he took his first step into the dank domain.
The first thing he noticed was the intense scent of pine. He tried to breathe through his mouth to avoid it but the pungent aroma still managed to waft its way through his throat and up to his sinuses. He coughed and covered his nose with his hand.
He did a double take when he saw the ceiling. Thousands upon thousands of pine scented air fresheners where hanging from the roof in a lazy attempt to mask the natural rotting manure stench of the Winnebago. It wasn't working; in fact both of the sickening smells had combined to form a type of supersmell, one far more repulsive and nauseating than either odor alone could ever be.
He peered cautiously around for any sign of life (or in his case undead women) but didn't see any movement. He rarely ventured farther than the threshold into this cesspool of sin that Murdoc called a Winnebago. It eluded him as to why women practically threw themselves into this machine to be with Murdoc. He was able to appreciate the irony that he was here to throw one out.
Despite the smell and the frightening décor he shuffled further within. His shoulders were hunched and he kept the crowbar close in defense as he peered at the kitchen area. There were no signs of Vivian, which made 2D feel uneasy. He knew she was here, lying in wait for him, ready to eat his skull while his back was turned.
"I wanna go back to bed!" Whined 2D as the last of his bravado left him.
He mentally slapped himself and tried to pull together. This needed to be done, or he'd never rest easy again. Somewhere in here was a festering monster that needed to be dealt with. He swallowed hard and moved towards the darkest deepest foulest most horrible unimaginable place on earth.
2D wasn't particularly gifted at the art of warfare. So his brain could only think of a single way to approach his enemy.
He raised the crowbar over his head and ran with full force screaming loudly.
He brought the crowbar down in a flash of movement effectively smashing the back window of the Winnebago so that shards of glass scattered across Murdoc's filthy stained bed. The confederate flag that had hung there was now ripped down the middle and fluttered limply as a breeze wandered in.
There wasn't a zombie in sight.
"Shit…" Murmured 2D as he look at the damage he had caused. He brushed a few stray glass shards off the mattress. "He'll never notice." He convinced himself.
"I guess Vivian isn't here after all." He shrugged and turned around to leave.
He nearly shat himself.
There standing behind him with eyes bulging and mouth tuned upwards in a twisted smile was Vivian. The bathroom door hung open from where she had emerged. She was shuddering more than usual, as though she was excited about something. Time stopped as they looked at each other, liquid terror filled 2D's heart.
And then she opened her mouth revealing two rows of fanged teeth, she raised her hands and lunged towards the petrified man letting out an ear piercing scream.
2D's reflexes kicked in before his mind could keep up. He held out the crowbar in front of him blocking Vivian's first attack. The force of her assault pushed him back onto Murdoc's mattress. Glass pieces pocked into his back but they were the least of his worries. He was caught in a life or death struggle with this creature of hell as she pushed against the crowbar with inhuman strength. She left bloody scratches across his arms and continued to shriek like a banshee.
2D's priority was protecting his throat, which seemed to be the prime target as Vivian loomed over him gnashing her fangs. He wasn't sure how much longer he could hold her off, he kicked her in the crotch but she seemed impervious to pain. His arms shook uncontrollably as they relented to Vivian's might. He could feel her hot reeking breath closing in on his neck.
He reached out an arm groping behind him searching for a weapon. His hand found something heavy so he grabbed it and brought it down upon Vivian's head. Murdoc's table lamp shattered against her skull momentarily stunning her. He was able to slip out from beneath her weight and he ran out into the kitchen area panting heavily.
In a flash she was after him, she managed to swipe his side causing 2D to stumble and send plates and glasses that were stacked on the kitchen bench to go crashing to the ground. He dodged to the side as she came after him again and swung the crowbar into the back of her head. It sent her hurting into the wall with a tremendous 'thump'.
"Take that wench!"
She turned her head to look at him with such ferocity burning in her eyes that 2D regretted belittling her. She pounced at him again effectively impaling herself on 2D's crowbar as he held it out before him. A bluish substance oozed from the wound and covered 2D's hands.
They looked into each other's eyes. She blinked several times before opening her mouth again and shrieked at 2D making his ears buzz.
"Could'ya stop doin' that please?"
He swung around causing Vivian to fly off the crowbar and tumble to the ground. 2D used this opportunity to sit on top of her while she was incapacitated. He hastily used the rope that had remarkably remained on his shoulder through the whole ordeal, to tie her hands behind her back. She snarled in protest but 2D ignored it.
Victory! 2D shakily stood up and pressed his foot down on her back as she struggled against her bindings. He loomed over her like a hunter and their freshly caught prey. The smile on his face quickly evaporated however as he looked up and saw the state that the Winnebago was in.
Glass and broken crockery was strewn across the floor. Everything was upturned and for some reason a small fire had broken out in the corner. 2D tugged at his collar in panic, Murdoc would be back at any moment. There was only one thing he could do.
"Awright Viv, s'time you went on a little trip."
He hoisted the growling creature over his shoulder and made a hasty exit out of the Vehicle.
"Checkmate." He chuckled to himself as he made his way to carry out the second half of his plan.
Noodle was typing on her computer when she heard a tapping at her door. Here senses were telling her that trouble was brewing. Nonetheless she stood up and walked over to open the door. She was greeted with a shocking sight. There, with blood dripping down his arms and shirt torn to shreds was 2D.
He looked tired but satisfied. He ran his fingers through his hair as though he was stalling so he could think carefully about what he wanted to say.
"Hey er, Noodle. Y'wouldn't happen to still have that Fed-Ex crate that you were delivered in when we were forming the band?"
She could only manage to stare at him.
"Coz, I er, Have sumfin I need t'post."
"2D, is that really a priority?" She took one of his arms and inspected the wounds closely. "What is this?" She looked at the sticky blue substance that covered both his hands.
"Oh, that's nuffin'." He pulled his arm away and looked abashed. Noodle raised an eyebrow at him. She wasn't easily fooled.
"2D san, what did I tell you about meddling?" Her stern expression softened when she saw how ashamed the singer was looking. She sighed and opened her door wider.
"It is in my cupboard. I will give it to you but I shall take no responsibility for what might arise from your plans."
2D nodded his head in understanding. He accepted the crate that she dragged out gratefully.
She watched him close the door as he carried the large box out and shook her head.
"Why do men never listen?"
2D was sitting on his bed freshly changed and washed when his door was kicked open. He'd be lying if said he hadn't been expecting it. He braced himself for the onslaught that was certain to come.
Murdoc held the door open with his arm looking angrier than he ever had in his life. The red flush in his face was blooming. His eyes bulged and the throbbing vein in his forehead looked ready to burst. His eyes latched onto 2D, he was almost foaming at the mouth.
"You little fucker!"
"Hi Murdoc.' Replied 2D sheepishly.
"Where is she!" He growled through clenched teeth
"Urm, Noodle is up in her room." Replied 2D shrugging his shoulders
"Don't you fuckin' be cheeky with me." Murdoc strode across the room and balled 2D's shirt in his fist. "You know who I'm talkin' about!"
2D could feel the fury radiate off Murdoc, but for an uncanny reason he felt strangely at ease. He looked at Murdoc without a trace of fear in his eyes.
"Maybe she went on holiday?" He suggested. He saw Murdoc's eye twitch.
"Holiday hmm? You're telling me she went on holiday after she smashed my windows, destroyed my kitchen and pulled the door of its hinges. You fuckin' little wanker!"
"Hey hey!" 2D put his hands up in defense. "Coulda bin anyone who did that! Dun look at me!"
Murdoc narrowed his eyes and pulled 2D up so they were face to face. "Y'see faceache, you were stupid enough t'write your name on the side of my Bago." He bared his fangs.
"I was framed!" 2D contested
"D'you know why I know it was you?" Snarled Murdoc.
2D shook his head.
"B'cause only you would be dumb enough t'spell it wrong!" He lifted 2D up and threw him backwards so that he bounced on the bed. Murdoc advanced on him cracking his knuckles. 2D tried to get up but a rough hand pushed his head back down. He looked up at the bassist and knew he was at the mercy of the livid man.
"Now." He began as he clenched his hands into fists. "Y'better tell me what you did with her b'fore I kill you. I might make it quick if you're lucky."
He knew it would only make Murdoc angrier but 2D couldn't help but let a grin spread across his face.
"You'll never be able t'get her back."
Fire was now burning in Murdoc'c eyes.
"Because" he began to laugh "I sold her on eBay!"
"What!" Murdoc's shocked expression quickly reverted back to anger. He raised a fist and brought it down. It hit the pillow with a "thwump". He looked around and saw that 2D was trying to scramble away so he grabbed the singer by the ankles before he had time to escape and pulled him back onto the bed.
He twisted 2D's arm painfully behind his back making sure that he wasn't about to go anywhere soon. 2D hissed as Murdoc gave his arm and extra twist for luck.
"You little shit. Who did you sell her to? How much did you get for her?"
"I dunno. Aieek!" He cried as Murdoc twisted his arm again. "F'about fifty quid t'some bloke in Japan. He seemed real interested in havin' her. I fink his name woz Mr. Watanabe or sumfin."
"Right." Murdoc closed his eyes deep in thought. "Right, I think I'll rip your hands off first and then I'll strangle you with them."
"No wait!" 2D cried before Murdoc could land the first blow to his face.
To his surprise Murdoc did pause with his fist only inches from 2D's face. He exhaled and looked straight up at the bass player's mismatched eyes.
"N-now listen Mud's. Y'know how you woz sayin' how girls are always complainin' and that's why you got wif that Zombie…"
"Dullard, these have to be the worst last words I've ever heard."
"Nah nah, let me explain." 2D took a deep breath before continuing. "Well, I just fought that you didn't really need t'be be wif that zombie b'cause….b'cause…"
"Yes?" Murdoc growled leaning down closer to 2D.
"B'cause I'm not a girl." And with that 2D leaned up and pressed his lips against Murdoc's.
At first Murdoc's eyes widened with surprise, but 2D clutched on to his shoulders preventing him from pulling away. As they continued their embrace 2D felt Murdoc's tension melt away from his muscles. Their tongues brushed against each other and their hands became bolder in their explorations.
When they pulled away 2D could see a different kind of burning in Murdoc's eyes. He certainly didn't look angry anymore. Something much deeper had replaced that sentiment. They were both breathing faster and the atmosphere had changed into a lusty haze.
Murdoc bend down and was about to kiss 2D again when movement at the far corner of 2D's room caught their attention. They both looked up to see Poly sitting in a yellow chair watching them with a devilish grin.
"Oh don't stop because of me boys. Just pretend like I'm not even here." He finished with a wink.
A minute later Murdoc had stormed out of 2D's room with the singer slung over his shoulder. 2D felt uncomfortable bobbing up and down in time with Murdoc's footsteps. He raised an eyebrow when they passed the Winnebago and headed towards the elevator.
"Hey er, Muds? Where're we goin'?"
"To Russel's room." Came a curt reply.
"Why not the Winnebago?"
"B'cause you fuckin' trashed it."
"Oh yeah." 2D scratched his head slightly abashed. "But um, won't Russ be mad if he finds out?"
Murdoc sniffed loudly. "Who cares?"
"Yeah." Nodded 2D in agreement. "That's a good point."
Russel had been spending the afternoon trying tolocate the two men who had emerged from a mysterious room in the wall yesterday. He wished he didn't have to. But the band had duties to fulfill, namely attending interviews and performing music. It was their job after all. He ground his large molars together in frustration. He didn't even want to think about what monkey business they were getting themselves into.
He had finally had enough and headed towards Noodle's room as a last resort. He didn't expect to find Murdoc or 2D there, but Noodle always had some helpful advice to give. It was a refuge for his sanity.
He didn't need to knock more than once for Noodle to know who was at her door. He had enough power in his fists to turn any door to splinters.
"Come in." came a delicate voice.
He pushed the door open and rubbed his tired face. "Hey Noodle, y'wouldn't happen to have seen Murdoc or 2D around would ya? We have an interview with Franz Ferdinand tonight."
She sat on her bed and cocked her head to the side. "I have seen 2D san today and I am quite sure that he and Murdoc are resolving issues right now. Perhaps it would be best if you just waited for them to surface in their own time." She watched Russel glance at his watch nervously. "Do not worry, there is plenty of time."
Russel let out a sigh as though he was bearing the weight of the world. Perhaps Noodle was right. He better just sit this one out and hope that the fools would turn up eventually. He thanked Noodle before leaving her room and headed towards his own.
He couldn't help but wonder what Noodle meant by 'resolving issues'. The first thing that came to his mind was Murdoc beating the snot out of the singer. He growled and hoped he didn't have to personally resolve any issues with the slimy bassist.
He reached the door of his bedroom but paused before he opened it. He distinctly heard scuffling noises from within. There was a voice at the back of his mind that was urging him to run as far away as possible and hide under a rock. He shook his head ignoring his instincts and pushed the door open.
It was dark so he flicked on the light switch.
He immediately regretted it.
"Hey Russ, you're gonna have to wait your turn. And what's up with the mirrors on your ceiling? You kinky bastard."
"Yeah, uh. I don't fink we're quite done yet. So could you nick off?" piped 2D.
Russel shut his door and walked back to Noodles room in a trance.
When Noodle opened her door she was surprised to find that the drummer had come back so soon. And she had never seen a black man look so white. He almost looked ready to pass out.
"Russel San! Are you alright? You look like you have seen a ghost."
"What? Oh, oh, yeah. It's nothin'. Um, I was just wonderin' if I could use your computer?"
"Of course you can, but whatever for?" She peered over his shoulder as he sat down in front of the monitor and opened the site for eBay. "What are you looking for?" She asked perplexed.
He buried his face in his large hands and heaved an almighty sigh.
"I need to buy a new bed."
I've just realised that 2D gets hurt quite a lot. But I do it all with love. :-)