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Teaser from The Last Stand by Mark Cusco Ailes #SummerZombie

“Mark Cusco Ailes has been honing his own personal style for some time now. The Last Stand surprised me with something different. There is a lot going on here and more layers to this warfare.” — Jay Wilburn #CaptainThreeKidneys

Ailes Mark Cusco cover pic THE LAST STAND STONE

Excerpt from The Last Stand by Mark Cusco Ailes

Reggie Hulse continued down the back road until something caught his eye several feet in front of him. There was a blue pickup truck lying on its side with smoke pluming from the engine. The back wheel was still turning. He figured the accident must have just happened. He pulled his luxury car over closer to the side of the road and put it into park. He stared at the truck unsure what he should do. He had been taught since he was able to drive to try to help any motorist in trouble. He got out of his car and slowly made his way to the truck.

Ailes Mark Cusco author pic

“Hello, is anybody there? Do you need help?” He stopped to listen. Nobody responded to him. It could mean one of two things; either people were hurt inside the truck, or they had left on their own to go find help. He didn’t think they could have gotten out of the truck on their own. He took another step forward, straining to see if anybody needed his help. As he drew closer, he thought he heard something being ripped apart. He recognized the sound from when he visited a wolf park. It was the sound they made when they tore flesh from a deer. He couldn’t imagine any wolves being in the area, not to mention he didn’t see a deer carcass lying in the road. Whatever the sound was, it was coming from behind the truck. He cautiously continued to the rear of the truck fearing what he might find. He suddenly stopped. He saw a pair of legs covered in blood protruding from behind it. He listened. The sound of ripping flesh was louder. He thought about running back to his car and getting out of the area, but curiosity was getting the better of him. He continued slowly toward the back of the truck until he could see what was making the noise. His eyes widened in fear once he realized what he was witnessing. There was an overweight man wearing denim overalls crouched over another man ripping flesh from his arm and stuffing it into his mouth. He wanted to turn and run but his legs were frozen in place. He watched as the farmer continued to rip the flesh off of the dead man’s body until he finally threw up all over the farmer. The farmer turned to look at him. His face was covered in the dead man’s blood. Reggie could see long strips of flesh dangling from his lips. He knew what he was looking at. Before all the radio stations had gone off the air, they were reporting the dead were coming back as zombies. He watched horrified as the farmer stood up and growled at him. Chunks of flesh fell from his mouth and landed directly in front of him. Behind him he heard more growling approaching from the fields aligning the road. Reggie snapped out of it and looked around. Several more zombies were approaching from the fields. He turned away from the farmer as he made his first move toward him. He wanted nothing to do with zombies and quickly made his way to his car and got inside. He gunned it and lunged forward. He headed toward the farmer zombie. He didn’t honk. He just hit him full force and kept on going. The zombie hit the hood of the car and bounced off and rolled across the road. It slowly got back to its feet and looked at the car speeding away. Its next meal had gotten away.

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Jay Wilburn
Jay Wilburn has a Masters Degree in Education that goes mostly unused since he quit teaching to write about zombies. Jay writes horror because he tends to find the light by facing down the darkness. He finds the journey through life easier by having you join him. Jay is the author of 2 series: The Dead Song Legend and The Great Interruption. He cowrote The Enemy Held Near with Armand Rosamilia. You can also find Jay's work in Best Horror of the Year volume 5 and Dark Moon Digest. Each year Jay has the pleasure of featuring many great authors in the genre through the Summer and Winter of Zombie blog tours on his website.

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