If you've been following my blog for sometime now, you would know that I'd won Michelle Simkins' contest with my short story entry "Beware the Bunny". The lovely prize was Ryan the Zombunny, who arrived on my doorstep one stormy night.
This is a story of how our first three days went....
Warning: There may or may not be truth in this story, but all I know is that it's NOT for the faint of heart.
Lightning whipped across the darkening sky, a silver lasso cackling with electricity. Black clouds had gathered unexpectedly this summer evening, and somewhere across the state, some unfortunate weatherman was getting fired for missing the signs of the impending storm. Thunder bellowed its presence and announced the onslaught of rain, which came hard and fast. Like tiny furious daggers going for the kill.
The doorbell rang. I wiped my hands on a dishtowel before pressing the start button on the dishwasher. Before I could get to the door, I heard the sound of tires screeching on the slick pavement, as if someone couldn't get out of here fast enough.
"Yes?" I said, opening the door a crack. There was no one. A chill shot up my spine, but I ignored the feeling and flung the door wide. This was what I saw:
It was Ryan the Zombunny! Yes, I saw the suspiciously lone shoe on the welcome mat, but Ryan was here, and I'd been waiting for his arrival.
"Hey there, little guy. You're an absolute cutie! I can't believe the Postal worker opened your box. I'll have to remember to report this to the Post Office tomorrow." I picked him up. "After all, it IS a crime to open other people's mail."
Ryan looked at me with eyes full of understanding. Well, with ONE eye since the other one was hanging off its socket and was gazing at the floor.
"Are you hungry?" I carried him to the kitchen. On the counter were the vegetables we had scored at the Farmer's Market the day before. "Oh crap!" I slapped my forehead. "I forgot to get you some cauliflower. Oh well, we have plenty of other things. What do you think? Would you like to try a tomato?"
But I wasn't playing detective. I was glad to welcome him into our family. Still, it was obvious we weren't off to a good start, and I wanted desperately to amend this.
So I showed him his bedroom.
|Strangely enough, no one has seen Mr. Octopus since then.|
"Okay," I said. "You can watch that but only when the kids are not home." He didn't answer.
The storm was finally dying down. Rain softly pitter-pattered on the rooftop. The children came home from visiting their Grampa and Nana, and there were ecstatic cries of joys at the sight of our newest "family member". Ryan had to endure cuddly hugs and tea parties with Tinkerbell, Buzz Lightyear, and the Elephant family. But he didn't complain. Not a word.
Later, I found out why.
|May the Force be with you, Obi Wan...NOT!|
That night, I tossed and turned in my bed and dreamt of being chased by zombies.
Six a.m. came fast enough, and I staggered down the stairs with bleary eyes and hair to rival my friend Bethany's afro. A little bird chirped happily just outside the window, singing Gisele's Happy Working Song (from the movie Enchanted), when suddenly there was a whoosh followed by complete silence.
His eye widened. Goosebumps prickled my arms. I had the strangest feeling that somehow he didn't break the rule at all.
Shaking off the chill, I ran back upstairs to get showered. Ryan followed behind me. "No, buddy, I have to get ready. Why don't you go and play?"
He stared at me from the bottom of the stairs.
Unnerved, I took Ryan outside to enjoy the summer's lovely (and rather scorching) sun.
Evening came and we had survived with hardly any injuries or more beheadings. (Mr. Gorilla underwent extensive sewing surgeries and though he'd have to live the rest of his life as a vegetable--he chose a rutabaga--he is thankful to have his head still attached to his body. Headless toys don't get second chances. *coughtrashbincough*)
The tension in the house had considerably lightened, and Ryan even conceded to try a tomato. After I read him and the children a bedtime story, Ryan asked to borrow my sparkly tiara.
|Yikes! My lips are NOT that red in real life. Silly iPhone camera app.|