But Mia had more pressing issues on her mind, for that evening was the first writein for her region. She gathered her materials, including a NaNoWriMo sticker on her laptop for others to spot her, though after several checks in her regional forum her hopes weren’t that high.
She could still hope, though. As her ML MattKinsi said, build it and they would hopefully come, but Mia didn’t think that was going to be true. After all, everyone wanted to see someone else head things up but now that Mia decided to do that, what would happen?
Mia took a table in the corner and noticed that it was not a notebook table. She set her coffee to the side of the table and plugged her laptop in, then opened her novel and made sure that her NaNoWriMo sticker was prominent and visible for any Wrimos who may want to write with her. There. Surely someone else coming by would want to write with her. Maybe a stranger would ask about the sticker on her computer.
Mia got to work on her novel, leaving off from where she had last written. She was now at eleven thousand words and while she was no longer writing at a decent clip, she didn’t have the desire to quit yet that she did last year. That was a good sign, anyway.
The Pit of Procrastination loomed ahead far away in Wrimonia, safe from Mia’s view. She would not be distracted by the pit of procrastination. Nope, not at all, not today, she told herself.
Molly and Luke showed up then, Molly still with the pistol on her side and Luke looking more disheveled than before. “Are you with NaNoWriMo?” Mia asked.
“Uh no,” Molly said. “We’re your characters? The main people in that book you’re writing, which I guess is for NaNo.”
“Oh sorry, I was expecting someone,” Mia said. “Someone else, I mean,” she continued when she saw the look on Luke’s face. “Let’s keep going. We’re going to get some words down tonight, right?”
“Right,” Luke said. “But listen, Mia. Molly can’t kill her parents even if they are patients zero and one in this zombie thing.”
“And why not?” Mia asked. “We’ll ignore the fact that we wouldn’t have much of a plot if she did it now, but tell me, why can’t she do it at all?”
“Don’t you know the law of this country? I’ve been trying to tell her this for weeks.”
“Are you still going on about that stupid law?” Molly asked. “I just want to enjoy what’s probably the last scenic view in this city before I rescue my parents.”
“And why are you thinking about killing them?” Luke asked.
“I just thought about it,” Molly said. “Really, I just thought about it. I know it’s really a shitty thing that they’re zombies and they can’t control what they’re doing, but what if they wind up infecting the whole world? Wouldn’t they be better off dead?”
“But it’s the law,” Luke told Molly. “Life ends at natural death.”
“But that law wasn’t made with any consideration toward zombies,” Molly said. “Zombies are undead, and no one ever thought about what could happen if someone did suddenly rise from the dead–”
“Like Jesus?” Luke interrupted.
“That was two thousand years ago,” Molly pointed out. “No government had the complicated infrastructure that the United States has now, and really, this is an entirely different situation. My parents aren’t gods. I’ll go right out and acknowledge that. They’re, well, zombies. They might be better than dead. And no one has any idea what caused them to become zombies. Maybe they started eating something I didn’t eat and that made them zombiefied, but if they wind up infecting the whole world and I kill them, no one could get me for it, right? I mean, they’re not technically alive and I’d be doing the whole world a favor, it sounds like.”
“But you’d be killing someone,” Luke said. “Two someones. Actually, it doesn’t matter how many someones you kill. It’s just the part where you’re oh, committing murder here.”
“But they’re my parents. I love them and I want the best for them. Even if it involves putting them out of their misery. Look, Luke,” Molly said. “Our government isn’t ready for this. It’s never been ready to consider something like this. But it’s going to have to be soon, and the sooner we start the better.”
“So what, you’re suggesting we kill random zombies? What if we kill Bill Murray?”
Molly stopped short. “Crap, I never thought of that.”
“What, you’ve never seen Zombieland?”
“Of course I have. How do you think I did my research for this.” Mia cut in.
Molly paused for a minute. “Actually, how have you seen it?” she asked Luke. “Did they really let you watch it in that orphanage?”
“No,” Luke said. “But we did have Internet access, and one of the girls there was really into computers. She set up a proxy and showed us how to get whatever we wanted in the computer lab.”
“Were there private computer labs?”
“Of course not. What kind of orphanage do you think this was, a secular one?”
“Oh, right. They wouldn’t want you seeing anything that would dishonor anything they deemed holy.”
“But someone else was really into movies, so when the grownups were in bed, a few of the older kids would rig up a screen and we’d watch movies. Zombieland was one of them.”
“Well, dang,” Molly said. “I’m impressed. And what skill did you contribute to this community?”
“Uh,” Luke said. “Not computers anyway.”
“Doesn’t sound like it. So why don’t we make a rule. If we see someone resembling Bill Murray as a zombie, talk first, shoot later. Deal?”
“Deal.” They shook on this.
“Wait, is Bill Murray seriously still acting?” Mia cut into this scene.
“Of course he is,” Molly said. “You mean you haven’t seen his newest movie?”
“No?” Mia replied. “One, this book is set in the future. Two, it’s fiction. And three, I don’t watch too many movies in the first place, so even if this book did take place today and were real I probably wouldn’t have seen it anyway.”
Molly nodded. “Fair enough,” she said. “But I saw it just before my parents turned into zombies. So I’ve gotta keep this in mind, okay?”
Mia nodded. Note to self: Molly was a big Bill Murray fan. This better not be a plot point later. Because Bill Murray? Seriously? Mia figured he was a good actor even though she just pulled his name out of midair, but maybe she should just start trusting her instincts more.
But then they heard gunshots.
“Crap, what was that?” Luke asked, looking up.
This also got Molly’s attention, and she looked up. “Probably someone celebrating… oh who knows. Let’s go. And keep your pistol by your side.”
“Whoa, where’d you get that pistol?” Mia asked Luke.
“Don’t you read what you wrote? You gave me a pistol a few days ago, remember?” Luke said. “Anyway, Molly found it in a car on the side of the road and grabbed it. Someone must have left it behind for a reason.”
“Must have been that double homicide I heard about in the ghetto. Didn’t want to leave the weapon behind. Doesn’t matter now,” Molly said. “We’ve got some zombies to shoot up.”
“Whoa, you’ve got issues with shooting your zombie parents and zombie Bill Murray but you have zero qualms with shooting up any other zombie ever?”
“Of course,” Molly replied. “The fewer zombies there are the quicker we get through this. Things will never be completely normal again, but we’ve gotta get back to some semblance of normalcy somehow.”
Mia paused. One week into November and the zombies were already gnawing at her plot.
“Besides, this is what I was born for,” Molly said. “So let’s do this.” She grabbed Luke’s arm and they ran away toward the source of the shooting.
“That was not a good idea,” Mia said aloud to herself as she continued to type.
But there was little time to consider this as Mia looked up from her novel. No one else had sat at her table at the write-in, nor had they asked whether or not she was with NaNoWriMo. Was there really nobody else in her region interested in doing NaNo? It seemed impossible.
Mia sighed. Wasn’t there a way to get back to that cool region where lots of people showed up for writeins and back to her ML and sushimustwrite and all those other people?
If Wrimonia could have some magical powers, there had to be a way to do this.
If there’s one thing I’ve learned from zombie movies it’s not to shoot Bill Murray unless he’s really a zombie.
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