A long time agao, in a galaxy far far away, my housemate decided to torment and traumatise me, and so he asked, very patiently but very persistantly, for a fic. It's taken a while, but here it is :
The actually dead are far the easiest to deal with. Once you take out the Caller at the centre of it all, the magic flails around for a minute or two, trying to find it's roots, and then they
just stop moving and stay dead. It messy sometimes, but basically painless.
It's the ones that are halfway there, who still have that spark of personality, and sometimes the physical capacity to scream and run and bleed out or die slowly from clinical shock that are really nasty. Sometimes I think it would be a kindness to put a bullet in them, but that's the law. We pick them up and tranc them and send them off to the asylums, and I don’t think in fifteen years I've heard of a single one who came back out, but it's not my job to worry about that.
Like this one. Carter had no choice but to shoot the Caller, or he'd have been taken too, so we didn’t get any warning, and some of those zombies were months old – no amount of Vicks can cover that up. But that's not the worst of it. No. That's got to be the Jane Doe. Her little boy's name was Lee. Never did learn her name. Coming round like that is always a trauma, but still being aware enough to realise that the red and gore on your hands, hot in your throat and staining your teeth, that that's your own child's intestines, and that he's still screaming…
We should have let her tear herself open, maybe. Cuffs and tranc guns never seemed like less of a mercy. Thank fuck the dad was too far gone to save, and they didn’t see what was left of their daughter. I don’t think he knew, at least.
I keep thinking about my own little one, and it makes me want to put a drill through my brain to stop it. Fifteen years and it's taken me this long to really understand why they tranc us for de-brief and make us log our kit back in.