Wednesday, 16 May 2012
COTTONTAIL: By Larry Green
Ethan, lost in a moment of shock, trembled as he listened to the sounds of the rabbits hurling their bodies against the glass. He looked at all of the little panes of glass in Mrs. Cordson’s greenhouse and found it was too easy to imagine them shattering under the fluffy battering rams.
Around him, teammates from his little league team moaned in fright. They were young and they were frightened. It had just been a few minutes ago that they had watched the bunnies overcome their coach by sheer numbers. Ethan could still hear his screams as the bunnies had begun to eat him, the sound echoing in his head.
As Ethan stared out at the once cute and cuddly animals he knew what was happening from all of the horror movies he watched with his brother Jason. The cute little bunnies were zombies. Zombie bunnies were taking over the world.
The idea was almost funny really, after watching dead people shuffle around on the big and small screens for years. To think fate had chosen the bunnies instead. The thing that was at the front of Ethan’s mind was not how he was going to survive all of this. He wondered what this would do to Easter.
He wondered if the candy companies would make zombie Easter bunnies with their ears hanging half rotted from bodies showing ribs. Frankly, he did not see how that would be appetizing to most people, but to the kids who never knew how cute a bunny could be he supposed it would be normal.
And what would this do to the lucky rabbit foot market? How many rabbits were now dragging themselves along on their front paws because somebody cut off their hind feet under the misguided notion they were lucky? Since they could no longer hop Ethan thought that maybe the idea was not so misguided after all.
As the bunnies pelted the glass with their bodies Ethan heard one hit harder than usual. He looked out the glass wall, now covered in splotches of bright red rabbit blood, and into the world of a nightmare. The question that had been burning in the back of his mind had now been answered for him, and he knew they were all doomed. Shaking his head he wondered who tried to outlast the zombie hordes in a building with glass walls. His body jerked as one of the bunnies hit the glass harder than the others again, but this time he heard the pane of glass crack.
On the other side of the glass wall he saw his coach. Coach Johnson had pitched in college and had tried out for the majors a couple of times, but he had not been good enough. Now Coach Johnson was the leading pitcher for the Zombie All Stars, guaranteed to be coming to a town near you. As Ethan watched, his dead coach picked up another fluffy little zombie, he did his wind up, and then sent the fluffy projectile smashing into the same pane of glass again.
Laughter escaped him, and he did not even realize he was doing it. His teammates heard him and they all looked out the window trying to see what was so funny. The group of boys grew silent as they watched their coach, a giant among the bunnies, hurling another furry projectile into the building. Ethan listened for the sound of that last one to hit the glass wall and bounce off, scared deep down that it would not, because he could see that Coach Johnson was getting his speed back.
Ethan heard the rabbit hit the glass, and then he heard the cracks fill the glass as it shattered into the greenhouse. His eyes found where the rabbit had been sent through the wall. He saw some of the boys from the team they had been playing, their names forgotten, as they held their faces. Tears of blood ran down their cheeks and he knew they had gotten glass in their eyes. The rabbit had landed on a table, and Ethan watched as it’s mangled little body jumped through the air. It’s front teeth, now jagged from repeated blows against the building, caught another boy’s shoulder, burying in as deeply as they could go, and the boy began to scream.
Panic filled the group of boys as they began to push and shove looking for a way out. Ethan picked a bat up off of the ground and gripped it tight, his knuckles turning white. He watched as one boy went head first through the wall of the greenhouse opening the way for the thousands of bunnies that waited outside. Ethan never knew there were that many bunnies in the world as his bat began to swing.