Good lord! That's a zombie! But don't lie - there's a part of you that wouldn't mind taping her mouth shut and giving her the Lord's business in the back of a pick-up truck in the middle of nowhere. If you think that's depraved, then you should read this disgusting little tale I penned years ago called Death Rattlers. It's gross, putrid, and designed to make you feel uncomfortable.
Still with me? Good! Then enjoy the free story below.
In fact, Peter would have kept driving if it hadn’t been for that giant neon sign set atop the motel’s main office which read, “Joe’s Plantation.” Both A’s, however, had burned out long ago, lending the place an air of neglect. Of course, the garbage-strewn parking lot, the peeling puke-green paint, and the burned-out exterior lights didn’t help matters, either.
As Peter pulled into an empty space and killed the engine, he began to have second thoughts about coming all the way out here. Something deep inside his soul said it was just plain wrong. However, for someone like him, being picky wasn’t really an option any longer.
That’s because nobody in their right mind wanted to sleep with poor, demented Peter Leeds.
He didn’t hold it against them; even he didn’t quite understand those bizarre carnal urges that made his cock swell to twice the size of a two-dollar ballpark hotdog. How could a successful, clean cut, good-looking guy like himself have such morbid sexual desires?
Women started shying away from him once word of his disgusting bedroom antics began to spread around town. His choices were dwindling at a rapid pace. Soon there would be no one left who hadn’t heard of the infamous Mr. Leeds and his twisted sexual escapades.
Who would sleep with him then?
The answer to that, apparently, lay inside Joe’s Plantation.
He’d been sitting in Tabitha’s Bar & Grill, minding his own business and nursing a warm bottle of Corona, when that disgusting little man with the prominent southern accent slid onto the stool next to him. The weirdo ordered a draft beer, adjusted his weathered baseball cap, and gave Peter one of the most unsettling smiles he’d ever seen.
As he searched the room for someplace else to rest his rump, the smelly redneck extended his right and said, “Aren’t you Peter Leeds?”
“Yeah, I’m Peter Leeds,” he reluctantly replied.
“Nice to meet you, Peter,” the hillbilly stated warmly. “I’m Clarence Langstrom.” He looked down at his unshaken hand, which was still extended. Feeling more than a little embarrassed, Peter shook it quickly and retreated. Satisfied, Clarence continued. “I think you know my lovely little sister Beverly. Beverly Langstrom?”
Oh shit, Peter thought. Beverly-fucking-Langstrom.
When Clarence saw the look of panic flash across Peter’s face, he couldn’t help but laugh. “I ain’t here to kick your ass or nothing, buddy,” he said as he slapped the nervous gentlemen on the back. “However, Beverly did ask me repeatedly to beat you to a bloody pulp. And to be perfectly honest with you, I probably should have.”
Peter thought about his sleazy night with Beverly and smiled to himself. He’d certainly crossed the line, but it had been oh-so sweet.
“Buckets of rotten chicken heads? Grease paint? A water bed filled with ice cubes? Man, you’re one sick puppy,” Clarence laughed. “But you and me, you see, we got things in common. More than you know. Which is why I’ve been trying to track you down. Who knew that a cock-slick playboy such as yourself would waste his time in a rundown shit hole like this.”
“Why would you track me down if you don’t want to kick my ass?” Peter asked, dumbfounded. “I mean, what I did to your sister was --”
“Sick? Perverted? Utterly fucked up? Hell yeah it was,” Clarence interrupted. “But, like I said, we got that in common.“
Clarence fished a wrinkled cigarette from his shirt pocket and flipped it between his lips. “We got lots of shit in common, my friend.”
Peter studied the stranger carefully as the intimidating goon lit his smoke. “So you’re not gonna kick my ass?”
“Buddy, if I was gonna kick your pathetic little ass, you’d already be a puddle of fuck right now,” Clarence said as a thick gray cloud oozed from his nostrils. “I mean, you’re a pretty big fella, but I don’t think I’d have any problem cleaning the toilets with the sticky side of your face.”
“Then what do you want from me?” Peter asked.
“I don’t want nothing from you, buddy,” the redneck replied as he sucked in another hit from his cancer stick. “Not a goddamn thing. Actually, I’ve come here to lend you a helping hand.”
“How can you help me?” Peter wondered.
Clarence snatched a napkin from the counter and produced a pen from his shirt pocket. “These are directions,” he explained as he doodled. “Directions to an old motel about 30 minutes outside of town. Go into the main office and talk to the owner. He’s pricy, crotchety, and extremely weird, but he’s honest. You ain’t gonna pay for nothing you ain’t gonna get.”
“What kind of place is this?” Peter inquired curiously.
Clarence looked up from his crude map and grinned. “A place where men like ourselves can have their fancies tickled,” he explained. “An oasis where you don’t need buckets of foul-smelling shit to make your cock puke.”
Peter shifted uncomfortably. “There’s more to it than that, you know.”
Clarence threw back his head and laughed. “Of course there’s more! That’s what makes Joe’s joint so goddamn special. He’s got what he calls The Juice, a little resurrection Kool Aid for the dead and buried.”
Peter made a face, then cleared his throat. “Do I owe you anything for this? I mean, do you want money?”
“Of course not, buddy!“ Clarence laughed. “We’re allies. Friends. Comrades. We’re on the same goddamn team, you dig? Just thank your lucky stars that you ended up with someone who understands your nasty little situation.” The peculiar hillbilly made a pistol with his right hand and pretended to shoot Peter with it, complete with sound effects. “Otherwise, you’d be in a world of hurt. Get my drift?”
“Yeah,” Peter replied with a nervous chuckle. “I think I do. And thanks again for not kicking my ass.”
“Don’t mention it,” Clarence said with a wave of his hand. “Just enjoy yourself. And if you have any trouble with Joe, just tell him Clarence sent you.”
Peter looked up at the neglected neon sign and sighed.
Steeling his nerves for whatever lay ahead, the reluctant patron emerged from his dented compact car and proceeded cautiously across the dirty parking lot towards the main office. He knocked on the uneven wooden door lightly, listening carefully for signs of life coming from within. Then he took a deep breath, exhaled, and tried his best to relax.
After a few moments of heavy silence, a series of unusual footsteps approached the other side of the door. “We’re closed!” a voice cried out. “No fucking vacancy, you hear? Read the goddamn sign.”
Peter closed his eyes and balled his hands into knuckle-whitening fists. “Clarence sent me!” he called out, remembering the friendly redneck’s parting words. “He told me -- He said you could help me out.”
Silence once again fell between them.
Then he heard locks being unlocked.
Bolts being unbolted.
With an unnerving creak, the front door slowly opened, revealing an impossibly skinny old man clutching two rusty metallic canes. His skin was jaundiced and wrinkled, his gray hair thin and stringy. The two men studied each other for what seemed like ages, until the old geezer stepped aside and waved one wobbly crutch in Peter’s general direction.
“Well, get your pretty ass in here,“ he snapped. “No sense lettin’ the night air corrupt my goddamn products.”
After taking another deep breath, Peter crossed the threshold.
The interior was even worse than the exterior; the walls were nothing more than slats of knobby pine nailed haphazardly to the building’s crooked frame. Several tattered strands of Christmas lights were tacked to the walls and ceiling, giving the place a surreal, carnivalesque atmosphere.
The smell of spoiled meat, fresh fish, and soiled underwear hung in the air like a suffocating fog, causing Peter to cough excessively as he followed that withered old prune down a long hallway to a small room that served as the motel’s lobby. Two doorways -- one marked WOMEN and the other marked MEN -- led to a pair of equally-disgusting hallways.
Peter wondered if he’d made a serious mistake by coming here.
The shaky old geezer rounded the counter and sat down on an uneven wooden stool. A black-and-white TV positioned behind him was showing an old spaghetti western.
“I’m Joe,” the old man blurted, as though his name were a piece of information he’d suddenly remembered after years of absence. He motioned to a dusty chalk board on the wall above the TV. “And that’s our menu. I’m sure you know what goes on here so I’ll spare you the sales pitch.”
Peter glanced at the menu. Scrawled in chicken scratch across the board were three simple words: Breathing, Twitching, and Stillness.
“I think I’ll take Twitching,” he said, sucking in the thick wad of saliva that had pooled around his eager tongue.
Joe nodded his head and smiled knowingly. “I thought you looked like a twitcher,” he said with a slight grin. “I can usually pick ‘em just like that!” He snapped his gnarled fingers for dramatic effect.
The old man hurriedly placed a service bell on the counter and pounded it four times with the palm of his hand.
“Daddy-O!” he shouted in a queer sing-song voice. “Daddy-O! We got ourselves a payin’ customer! Get your ugly ass in here on the double!”
He slapped that tarnished old bell one more time.
After a few moments of unbearable suspense, the thing called Daddy-O lumbered into the doorway.
He was Goliath to Peter’s David, a monstrous individual with enormous feet, a tiny head, beady eyes, and a bizarre affliction in his right arm that had caused it to grow roughly five times the size of his left. What hair he had on top of his misshapen skull was curly, black, and coarse. The ill-fitting T-shirt he wore read, “Big Fucking Deal.”
He said nothing as he stood there, his distractingly enormous body slowly swaying front to back, left to right.
Joe, ecstatic that his oversized assistant had finally arrived, clasped his hands together and giggled like an elderly Chinese serial killer.
“Daddy-O, we got ourselves a twitcher! Mix up a big ol’ batch of The Juice and meet me in Room 102,” the old man commanded.
Peter, meanwhile, tried his best not to stare at the hideous creature looming in the hall.
The beast called Daddy-O continued to sway mindlessly until Joe snapped, “Well, get going, you big ugly bastard! Get that juice mixed! We got a hard-up customer just itchin’ to get some twitchin’!”
After lingering in the doorway for a few seconds longer, the old man’s weird assistant did an awkward 180-degree turn and shambled off, dragging that deformed limb behind him as he went. Joe, satisfied that his orders were being followed, stepped from behind the counter and draped a crusty arm around Peter’s less-than-confident shoulders.
“We do ask for payment up front,” he told his visibly distressed customer. “Nothing personal, mind you. The price is one hundred bones, cash. You got that?” Peter removed his wallet, plucked five twenties from its belly, and tucked them into the old man’s greedy hands. “Thank you much, sonny! Thank you truly. Now, let me show you to your room.”
Without further ado, Joe wobbled his way down the men’s hallway. Peter followed close behind, noting several antiquated photographs of dapper gentlemen tacked randomly to the pine slats. All of them looked happy, satisfied, and thrilled to be in the presence of the shop’s geriatric proprietor.
The two men turned a sharp corner, revealing a narrow, filth-encrusted passageway lined with dozens of rotten wooden doors. At the very end of the hall stood a strange cavern door, complete with a rusty barred window set near the top. A hand-written cardboard sign nailed to it declared, “Employee’s Only. Keep Back At Least Ten Feet.”
Peter had no desire to see what took place on the other side.
Joe stopped abruptly in front of Room 102 and balanced himself carefully on his canes. “This is it,” he said. “It ain’t the prettiest piece of work you’ve ever seen, but I’m sure you won’t mind the surroundings much once you get your tiny little dipstick wet. Am I right?”
That having been said, Joe struck out with one feeble leg and kicked the door wipe open. Much to Peter’s horror, Room 102 was absolutely disgusting. The fecal brown wallpaper was peeling, the hardwood floors were wet and warmed, and the nightstand beside the rotten mattress was covered with soiled condoms and discarded cigarette butts.
However, it wasn’t these mind-numbing atrocities that made Peter’s eyes bulge from their sockets. No, it was the dead hooker – complete with torn fishnet stockings and a ratty red halter top – who lay spread-eagle on the bed that caused the light dinner in his stomach to turn sour.
“I’m supposed to have sex with that?” Peter asked, disgusted. “Because I don’t like corpses. I have no desire to screw a dead woman.”
“She won’t be that way for long,” the old man chuckled. His gaze turned to the doorway. “Ah, there’s Daddy-O now with the special sauce.”
Peter, perplexed, revolted, and curious, whirled around to see that hideous man-thing standing in the doorway, a leaky wooden bucket clutched in his left hand. The contents of that dodgy container appeared to be the remnants of someone’s bout with explosive diarrhea: chunks of icky brown glop, swimming in a watery brown soup, dripped from several holes in the bottom of the bucket. The smell was instantly overwhelming, forcing Peter to cover his mouth as Daddy-O entered the room.
The beast made his way awkwardly to the side of the bed, set the bucket on the floor, and turned obediently to his boss.
The old man nodded his head and smiled.
“You brought the syringe, too, didn’t you?” Joe asked.
“Milky,” Daddy-O struggled to say, as if he had absolutely no control over his grossly misshapen tongue. “Milky donuts!”
“That’s right!” the old man replied, beaming. “Milk donuts!” Daddy-O handed him the syringe and made his way out of the room.
Joe turned to Peter, a downtrodden look plastered across his wrinkled mug. “He ain’t got one workin’ brain cell in that tiny-ass head of his, but he’s a good boy. A really good boy, yes indeed. We developed our own unique language in order to get things done around here. Hope that doesn’t make your noodle limp, because I don’t offer refunds.”
Peter, too horrified to speak, responded with complete silence.
Joe tossed his canes aside and slumped down onto one crooked knee.
He dipped the needle of the syringe into the bucket of muck and pulled back slowly on the plunger. Satisfied with the dosage, he then turned to the deceased call girl, took her by the arm, and inserted the needle deep into her inanimate flesh. The whole scene was horrific and bewildering.
One part of his conscience wanted to flee from this disgusting establishment and return to his cozy downtown apartment with its sparkling hardwood floors and expensive household appliances. However, another part of him -- a much darker, much deeper part -- wanted to stick around for the show, maybe indulge in some otherworldly hanky panky if, in fact, this miracle goo actually brought the dead back to life.
The idea intrigued him from his head to his groin.
Joe removed the needle from the corpse’s arm and tossed the syringe into the bucket. “She’ll start up in about three minutes or so. You might want to think about gettin’ them clothes off.” He pulled open the nightstand and removed an alarm clock, which he set to go off in exactly eight minutes. Then he snatched his canes from the floor and returned to his feet.
“This will give you about three minutes to get ready and five minutes for the ol’ in-and-out. Most new customers don’t last longer than five minutes, so don’t feel ashamed if your performance ends before you want it to.”
Peter studied the prostitute, but said nothing at all.
Joe stopped abruptly on his way to the door and turned back to Peter. “One more thing before I go. See that light switch next to the bed? If anything weird happens, you just give it a flip. We’ll rush right in to help you.”
Then he hobbled out of the room, closing the room gently behind him. This left Peter all alone in that disgusting room.
With that putrefying dead whore.
Trying to keep an open mind about the whole sordid scenario, Peter began to disrobe. First went his shoes and socks, then his blue button-down shirt. Finally, and with more than a little hesitation, he shuffled out of his pants and underwear. He’d never felt so naked in his entire life.
According to the alarm clock, he had about a minute or so before the old man’s serum kicked in. With that in mind, he quickly stroked himself hard and climbed aboard the USS Whore, who was currently docked on a mattress covered in deep black and brown stains.
After some creative positioning, he slipped his eager cock inside the dry, crusty love hole between her ice cold legs. Not surprisingly, the initial sensation was anything put pleasurable.
Squirming and shivering, Peter began to seriously doubt his sanity.
He was about to pull out and call it a day when he felt the first tremor shoot through her body. Then he felt it again.
Soon her whole body was shaking and twitching, tossing the poor bastard about like a small vessel on a violent sea of dead flesh. Peter Leeds, certified sexual deviant, was having the time of his life.
The dead hooker’s twitching and shaking and thrashing was driving him absolutely mad with desire; the more her body flailed, the harder he’d thrust. He leaned in close to her expressionless face, yearning for the one thing that would make him blow his load faster than anything in the world. And when that alarm clock finally went off, he watched in awe as her mouth began to open.
He closed his eyes and braced for impact.
The death rattle had come.
As the whore’s putrid breath exploded from her decaying lungs, Peter took it all in. Through his nose. Through his mouth. Through his pores. There was nothing in the world quite like it. He’d made plenty of girls pretend to exhale their parting breath during intercourse, to feign death while he attempted to finish his business, but none had come close to the real thing.
Peter could feel it, taste it.
Death was all over him.
With a scream of pure unbridled ecstasy, Peter released his tainted seed into the hooker’s rotten uterus.
But instead of falling silent and returning to death’s realm, the hooker suddenly sprang to life, emitting a piercing scream the likes of which Peter had never heard before. Fueled by both fury and Joe’s miraculous medicine, the decomposing prostitute grabbed her perverted lover by the shoulders and tossed him violently to the floor.
Remembering the light switch and Joe’s parting words of wisdom, Peter made a mad dash for the emergency switch. Every attempt to reach it was met with a hefty blow to the face from the shrieking ghoul that was none too thrilled with the whole resurrection business.
So instead of raising the alarm, Peter decided to flee the room.
As soon as he reached the door, the undead hooker was upon him. The first bite removed the back of his neck, causing a waterfall of blood and gore to run down his spine and between his pimpled ass crack.
Before Peter could recover, the bitch spun him around, screamed like a violated banshee, and bit into the upper portion of his horrified face. With an inhuman growl, she quickly pulled away, taking his right eye and most of his bushy brow with her. The remains of his damaged eyeball dangled grotesquely from the hole, a thick white fluid running down his cheek and into his open mouth.
Try as he might, Peter couldn’t find the right scream for the occasion.
For the grand finale, his unwilling partner brutally tore away what remained of his neck and chewed feverishly, savoring the salty goodness which generally accompanies a job well done.
Peter Leeds was nothing more than food for the damned.
By the time Daddy-O and Joe had forced their way into the room, not much was left of the poor bastard.
While the oversized assistant quickly silenced the zombified killer with a sharp blow to the base of her skull, the boss made his way back to the lobby and picked up the phone. He dialed the number a certain faithful customer had given him earlier that evening.
“Hey Clarence!” Joe said as he positioned himself on that uncomfortable wooden stool. “It’s Joe. Everything’s been taken care of.”
“Good to hear,” Clarence said. “I knew you’d help me out.”
“An overdose did the trick,” the old man explained. “You should have seen the mess she made. Daddy-O’s cleanin’ it up right now.”
“He’s a good boy,” Clarence remarked.
“Goddamn right he is,” the old man agreed. “Tell your sister I’m sorry to hear what happened to her. This bastard’s better off dead, let me tell you.”
“At least he’s got Hell to look forward to,” Clarence chuckled.
Joe slapped his knee and laughed. “Yes sir, I reckon you’re right.”
“What are you gonna do with the remains?” Clarence wanted to know. “Well, we’ll probably clean his ass up and toss ‘em in a room,” Joe explained.
“I mean, no sense wastin’ perfectly good parts. After all, I know some women who’d love to rattle his cage.”
“I hear ya,” Clarence chuckled.
“Well, if you don’t mind, I’ve got a bit of business to attend to,” Joe said. “Not at all,” Clarence replied. “Thanks again for all the help.”
They both hung up.
Joe threw his head back, sighed deeply, and removed a spiral-bound notebook from under the counter. Listed inside were all the rooms and their occupants. One particular room on the far end of the women’s wing had an opening. How convenient.
Joe knew precisely what to do.
“Daddy-O!” he called to his sidekick. “Get me the super glue and some cheese cloth and meet me in Room 207 with the stiff.
“We’ve got some work to do.”