Michonne was her hero. Problem was Michonne was a character from The Walking Dead. She carried a sword and cut the heads off of zombies —or people if they deserved it.
12 year old Elsie Slawson was obsessed with the show in general, and Micchone in particular. Thing is, a girl like that; lonely, and a bit of a daydreamer who spent most of her time in a world of her own creation, watching a show like The Walking Dead, dangerously blurred the lines between fantasy and reality.
Rita Slawson, like a lot of single, working mothers, had to leave her child for long stretches of time. She and Elsie used to be very close, but over the years, they had become virtual strangers; and because of it, Rita didn’t see the signs —not until it was too late.
Elsie was convinced the zombie plague was near; so certain in fact that she began training in the storage room in the basement of her apartment building, using a cut off broomstick in place of the razor sharp sword of her hero. But after a while, she sharpened the broomstick’s end into a spear, and began carrying it on a strap over her shoulder the way Micchone carried her sword.
The school frowned upon her bringing a weapon to school —go figure, and called her mother when Elsie told them she needed the spear to defend herself in case of a zombie attack.
Rita was angry, but both she and the principal thought it was just the imagination of a very lonely girl, caught up in a show she was too young to watch and understand. As the saying goes, hindsight is 20/20, but you’d have to be blind not to see that this girl needed help.
Instead Rita and the principal thought taking Elsie’s phone away, and giving her time without the influence of the show, would be just what the girl needed.
On the way home, Elsie could see that the zombie plague was already affecting people in her neighborhood. She had to try and convince her mother one last time that the zombie plague was real.
But Rita would not listen, and sent Elsie to her room until dinner was ready.
Elsie sat wondering what to do next, and fell asleep in the process. When she woke up her room was dark, the house, eerily quiet. Elsie crept into the living room, her mother was in the kitchen, and the TV was turned to the news. On the screen, Elsie saw them; zombies running rampant in the city, and Micchone vanquishing as many of them as she could.
“Mom?” She said tentatively.
But when she saw her mother’s face, Elsie backed up and screamed in horror. The plague had taken her mother too.
Rita Slawson screamed because Elsie did, then stopped when she saw the crazed look on her daughter’s face. “Honey, are you alright?”
But Elsie didn’t hear her mother’s question, nor did she see that the woman had nothing but concern on her face. For Elsie her mother was gone, and she was all alone now. The only thing running through her mind was, ‘What would Micchone do?’
Elsie realized she had her weapon in hand, the sharpened point would be perfect for plunging into a zombie’s skull. And she did just that —the way Micchone would’ve.
Mrs. Adkins, their neighbor knocked on the door after hearing screams coming from the apartment. When Elsie opened the door, the woman asked, “Elsie dear, are you alright?” but she could see that the girl wasn’t.
“Where’s your mother?” She asked as she pushed her way into the apartment, and there Mrs. Adkins saw the lifeless body of Rita Slawson.
Behind her, Elsie closed the door. Mrs. Adkins turned and saw that the girl was locking it behind her.
The last thing Cecilia Adkins heard was Elsie Slawson’s distant voice saying, “It has begun,” as she lifted her spear and ran towards the terrified woman.
Yikes! Sadly, disengagement from reality, and mental illness in the young, are problems that seem to be getting worse, and this story illustrates that perfectly. I could just tell it was not going to end well!
Alice Nelson says
Good point! I think you’re right, it’s sad to see it in anyone, but particularly someone so young. Thanks for reading my story.
good one, Alice. Chilling! maybe I should stop my kids watching that show. Or maybe it’s too late. Aargh!!!
Alice Nelson says
Ha, ha, thanks Frances. No worries, I’m sure your kid will be just fine -I hope Mwhahahaha 🙂
June Griffin says
As good as they get! June
Alice Nelson says
Thank you June!