Written because normal people aren't perfect.
The power had gone out half an hour ago.
Eric had been watching TV at the time, the usual bottle of a nameless brand of beer clenched in his chubby fist. It was some generic show featuring an equally generic supermodel, and through his lusting, piggy eyes he watched as she pranced around on the catwalk.
Why it was a program about clothing puzzled him for a moment; the women were hardly wearing anything. But that was fine with him. He wasn't watching for fashion tips anyway.
Just as the stick-like figure had started talking about her range of 'clothes', the room was dipped into darkness, her heavily made-up face and painfully blonde hair vanishing from the screen.
He'd heaved his heavy bulk out of the old, squashed armchair to see if there was a problem with the fuses, all the while complaining about the 'damn lazy electric bastards'. He didn't own a torch or candles, (believing that the city was like some sort of God who provided everyone with everything all of the time) so he had to stumble his way over to the power box inside the cupboard, all the while tripping over the remnants of past meals and pizza boxes.
Glaring through the dark, he flipped a switch inside the box. Nothing.
The whole city must be out... he thought, mentally snarling. If there was a problem with the generator, who knew how long it would be before they fixed it? Probably not before his beer went warm in the fridge...
To his surprise, as he re-entered the aptly-named sitting room, he saw a dull orange glow cast over the area by the window. The light bounced off various boxes and bottles on the floor and seemed to flicker as though made by a fire.
Wheezing his way over to the window, he peered out into the street, running a hand under his stained red shirt and grimacing at the amount of sweat he was accumulating on his chest.
It was a fire, he saw. A car of indeterminable make and color had been turned into an inferno, flames erupting from the shattered windows and throwing dark figures crowded round into relief. They edged around it slowly, like they didn't register it was there until they were inches away from the blaze. Eric glowered down at them, cheeks wobbling as he shook his head at the audacity of today's youth. Undoubtedly, these were local hooligans; perhaps the very same ones that had sprayed graffiti all over his last car. The memory of waddling out of his apartment one day to be greeted by the word 'fatass' in large black letters turned his vision red.
By the light of the unconventional bonfire, something sprang past the shambolic forms with the grace of a cat; something large and red, but Eric didn't see. He was already stumbling towards the door, swearing under his breath and swaying like the vandals outside. Taking a swig from the bottle he still held, he located the door to the stairwell.
It was frigid outside, a sure sign that summer had officially ended. Eric edged his way out of the front door, keeping suspicious eyes on the group around the fire. He shivered, suddenly wishing to join them, whatever they had done.
But no, kids would never learn unless someone gave them a sense of direction. And he'd be damned if he was paying for another coat of paint for a car.
They were oddly quiet for a bunch of teenagers, he mused. Indeed, the figures did little more than shuffle slowly around, seeming to communicate with each other in low moans.
Great, he was going to give a lecture to a group of drugged up, violent thugs.
He approached them with hidden anxiety, burying his fears beneath a mask of authority and contempt.
"You boys do this?" He indicated to the burning wreckage with the now-empty bottle, waiting for possible taunts. The people were half-hidden in the flickering shadow, huddled together, but he could see now that they weren't just kids. There was a tall man in a suit at the front of the group, who seemed to have spilled something down his white shirt. Something red-
A woman in a torn blue dress turned to face him, walking into the direct light of the fire. There was something... wrong with her face, her eyes. She gave a hungry moan, reaching out towards him. Eric backed away hastily. The others were now facing him, giving the same haunting groans.
He just couldn't comprehend what was wrong with them. They were covered in blood, some with wounds that looked horrific, fatal. And yet- they stood, they walked. Eric carefully reached for the cell in his back pocket, still inconspicuously edging backwards.
"I'm...I'm calling- God- I'm calling an ambulance, ok?" He said, glancing down to dial the numbers. The woman next to him gave another vacant groan, clutching desperately with bony hands. She pulled him towards her as he struggled, trying to hold the cell up to his ear. It gave a futile beep, signaling that the line was busy. He swore, turning to help the struggling lady, trying to think of another way to help these people. She lunged towards him, hissing, head straining forward as he tried to carefully bat her off. At first, he thought she was going to kiss him. It only occurred to him once his lips were ripped off by her teeth, that these people may not be quite so helpless.
He screamed with pain and fear, successfully breaking away from the insane woman and turning to run-
Straight into another one.
His mouth may have hurt like shit, but he had a feeling that it would be nothing compared to what was coming now. He and his new, grasping, biting attacker had something in common. They could both taste his blood on their tongues. His cheek was ripped into, a disturbing emptiness accompanied with the wound, like a missing tooth. He cried out, mind going blank. Adrenaline couldn't help him here; even at his fastest he could barely run faster than these things could walk. His limbs were gripped by the others, each biting down with sadistic urgency. Something snatched his hair, pulling his head to the side and savagely tearing into the side of his neck. Blood spurted out, showering his attackers and turning them a fresher shade of red.
He screamed one final time, voice echoing in the freezing air as a thousand other people screamed with him.
Raccoon city was waking up.