Beside Piper there was a groan, she cracked open her eyes. Head pounding like a jackhammer she took in the lump beside her. Drinking so much had crappy side effects. Why did she let Shanna talk her into going out? She was trying to get her life together, not let it fall completely apart. Another groan came from the blankets then a head poked out.
“Oh God, I feel like crap.”
Piper let out a sigh, at the sight of Topher, her best friend Shanna's brother. He groaned again. Piper smiled, at least she hadn't done anything stupid, Topher would have never taken advantage of her completely drunk. Shanna had been her BFF since grade school and by extension so had Topher. Forced to go along and keep them out of trouble the three had formed a strong bond.
“Remind me never to try and keep up with you two again.”
“Hey if you can't run with the big dogs...” She murmured.
“Whatever, and stop yelling. My heads going to split like a ripe casaba.”
Piper started to chuckle but it hurt her head. “Why am I in your bed?”
“Fuck if I know, everything after the absinth is a blank.”
With a groan of her own she tossed the blankets off and sat up. Big mistake. The throbbing intensified and a wave of dizziness made her stomach roll. If Couch McGregor saw her like this she'd get a foot up her back side. As if to remind her that the Couch was no longer an issue, her knee gave a dull ache. Absently she rubbed it, stupid accident robbing her of her promising Gymnastics career.
Shaking off the self-loathing, she looked over her shoulder. “I'm going to steal your shower.”
“Ok just don't take it to far.” Topher replied with a grimacing smile.
Shaking her head she climbed out of bed and shakily made her way to the bathroom. Kicking the door shut, she grabbed the sink and tried to calm her raging stomach once she was sure she wasn't going to puke, she looked in the mirror. Smudged make-up decorated her eyes, gunked in the corner and man was she pale. Maybe she should take Shanna up on that tanning offer.
Shaking her head, she climbed into the shower. Using Topher's Axe body wash she scrubbed away last nights grossness. After washing her hair with some fragrant less shampoo, she stood under the spray. Finally pulling herself out, she dried off pulled on her underwear and snagged Topher's bathrobe from the door. Luckily she and Shanna were the same size so she could raid her closet.
Picking up her clothes she exited the bathroom. Topher was no where to be seen, but the smell of eggs and bacon wafted down through the open basement door. Climbing the stairs she stepped into the kitchen. Shanna stood at the stove in her Hello Kitty pajamas, making breakfast. Topher sat hunched over a cup of steaming coffee, his dark hair wet. He must have used the upstairs shower. Red rimmed and bloodshot, his green eyes were dulled with pain.
“Hey Shanna, can I borrow some clothes?”
“Sure.” She gestured with the spatula toward the laundry room. “There's a basket of clean stuff on the dryer. Help yourself.” As Piper headed toward the laundry room, Shanna added. “Toss your dirty stuff in the washer.”
“Thanks.” Dropping her clothes in the washer, she dug through the basket. Pulling out a pair of jeans and a tee shirt. Without taking off the robe she shimmied into the jeans, then removed the robe and put on the shirt. She padded back into the kitchen, Shanna set two plates of eggs, toast and bacon on the table. Getting down a cup Piper poured herself some coffee, then sat at the table. “I thought all the meat was inedible, since the recall.”
“This is fresh from the farm. Uncle Ted brought it over, he's made a small fortune selling unprocessed stuff. Everyone wants organic now, they're afraid the terrorist will target something else.”
“Good for him.” Piper picked up a piece a toast and began pulling the crust from the sides. Shanna clicked on the small TV on the counter as Topher's phone belted out Stalker Girl by the Arrogant Worms.
Reaching over Topher hit the button to silence it. “I can't handle her this morning.”
“Who?” Piper asked popping a piece of toast in her mouth.
“His stalker.” Shanna supplied.
Piper grinned, as she chewed and swallowed. “I didn't know you had a stalker.”
“I took her out a couple times, it got weird and dumped her. Only she didn't take it so well, now she keeps calling.”
“So block her.”
“Tried. She stole my friend, Mark's, phone and called me.”
“Well at least she's dedicated.”
“You have no idea.”
The phone rang again.
Piper took another bite of toast, slowing chewing. After swallowing she asked, “You want to get rid of her.”
“Yes. I'd do just about anything to get her off my back.”
Raising an eyebrow Piper glanced at Shanna, who was hiding behind her coffee cup, and asked. “Anything?”
“Well...” He paused studying her. “What are you thinking?”
“Nothing illegal.” She murmured, picking up his phone.
“That's not reassuring.”
She smiled, pushing a few buttons. A few seconds later a frantic voice answered.
“Topher, Oh my God you have to come help me! There are these crazy cannibals everywhere. Can you come get me?” She yelped and a banging noise came from somewhere distant.
Piper glanced at her friends.
“What do you mean cannibals? April what's going on?” Topher said snatching the phone from Piper's hand.
“I don't know. These people started attacking people and they tried to bite me, I just ran.” April sobbed. “Will you come get me, I'm scared?”
“Where are you exactly?” Piper broke in.
“Who's that?” April asked her voice laced with jealousy.
“A friend, answer the question.”
“I'll see what I can do, just hang tight.” Topher hung up.
“Do we believe her?”
“Uh guys, I'd say yes.” Shanna pointed to the TV.
On the screen were pictures of people fighting, many shuffling in nothing but hospital gowns. The pale sickly looking folks, were overpowering and tearing into anything that moved. Their faces were contorted in anger, as if furious with the world.
The news reporter, started talking. “This is coverage of what is currently happening all over the of the city of Watertown. Officials are asking you to remain in your homes, or wherever you are currently located. No travel is advise. If you are trapped in your vehicle, try to stay put as military, police, and emergency personnel will find and help you.”
“Maybe we should just let the professionals help, April.” Shanna suggested.
Piper watched the TV, downtown was chaos. No one was obeying the advisory. The professionals were overwhelmed they weren't prepared for this type of thing. There was no way they'd get to Stalker Girl before the crazies. She looked at Topher, “Your call. She's your stalker.”
Topher watched the TV then looked at her. “What do you think?”
“I don't think the police or whatever will get to her in time. But like I said it's your call.”
He ran his hand over his face. “Damn it, let's go get her.”
Staring at the TV Piper chewed on her lip. A woman jumped a police officer, biting his neck as two other men grabbed his arms. “Fine, but we need to make it fast.”
Author's Note: Unedited Version