Okay... remember, this was supposed to be tongue in cheek... Kinda a Philip Marlowe homage/parody... AND it was written a long time ago...
Case File; 2740-13b,
Gideon County Zombie Squad
Stone, Jacob E.
Death tends to throw you a curve ball every now and again, sometimes a knuckle, sometimes a spit, but always a pain in the ass.
Welcome to Gideon County, Virginia.
Not much of a town actually, little more than a forgettable flyspeck on a few older roadmaps, easily overlooked.
This is the place that you find when you want to get away from it all, Failed Job, relationship, life in general.... Reality?
A little township, nestled in a valley just east of the appalachians.
Normally such a small town, population roughly 2200, would draw hardly any attention at all. Fact is, most folks around here kinda prefer that it stay that way, which isn't always such an easy task, seeing as how Gideon isn't your typical sleep little town.
I guess the really weird shit began happening back in the late seventies, early eighties just as all the flaky cults and hippy communes were dying out. A couple of really strange folks approached old man Sutter about using his farm for a pretty big shindig, sold him on the idea of another Woodstock or similar such nonsense.
In reality, it turned out to be one of the largest group suicides since Jim Jones Kool-Aid party a few years earlier.
Almost three hundred certifiable space cadets packed into Sutter's barn after a quick shower in premium high test and stroked a match.
Instant looney roast.
That in itself wasn't all that big a deal, after all, the barn was pretty old and Sutter could use the insurance money, but after the smoke had settled and Sutter decided the money could be better spent on buying part ownership of Gideon's sole nightclub and bar, the Whiskey Jitters, that the really strange shit began to happen.
Not much at first, but enough to qualify as an X-files episode.
Some of the local livestock were found, apparently turned inside out, just like an old sock.
All of the plumbing at the local K thru 12 school began to run blood instead of water. Honest... Type O in fact, and did it for about three weeks before the water came back. And don't let anyone tell you it was rust, because it damn well wasn't.
Time seemed to speed up and slow down from time to time, midnight coming on as late as early morning, that day back in eighty nine, when the sun went down and decided not to come back up for nigh on a week.
Plants grown in the soil inside county lines would occasionally grow in odd surges, sometimes simply to gargantuan sizes, other times mutating. Bleach white peaches the size of soccer balls, a new form of Willow tree with leaves coated in a sticky residue that would trap the local wildlife and a few unlucky locals with the strength of krazy glue.
Seems the tree's sap was actually considered by one glue company before a certain lethal side effect became known.
We had one year where all the children born with a sizable birthmark on each one of their left buttocks in the shape of a certain trademarked cartoon character.
The blizzard of Independance day weekend and the crippling heatwave the following Christmas.
Hell, the whole damned town simply began to act with a total regard for the laws of physics.
Oh, I know what your thinking, chalk it up to bored groups of kids, pranks, pollution, El Nino, a surplus of fireworks combined with a severe hatred of cats.
Whatever rationalizations fell by the wayside and gave way to reluctant acceptance years ago.
Seriously, at least three hundred cats in the last ten years.
Never a dog or bird, or any other type of critter, just cats for some stupid reason.
It would actually be kinda funny if the blasted things didn't make such a God awful mess.
One went pop by my truck a few months back, chunks of Princess Frisky Whiskers all over it.
Do you have any idea how hard it is to clean off former feline chunks after baking into a dark paintjob after a half day of cooking in the sun?
Pretty fucking hard...
Don't happen too often nowadays, as the cat population has kinda dwindled down quite a bit. The ones still around know it too, you can tell by the way they walk around, all twitchy and nervous.
Sucks to be them, I guess.
Now if for any reason you don't believe me, check out a few of your local supermarket tabloids and read the locations off of the stories.
That's right, most of them are from here.
Hell, the Globe and the Weekly actually have field offices in town.
At first the whole town bought into all that "End of the World/armageddon/judgement day" horseshit, and for a while Gideon was a bastion of every crackpot and guru at the peak of it's weirdest days, as it seemed to be headed for self destruction in ways that most of the folks don't care to remember.
Eventually the constant panicky worries began to die down and as year after year the world kept turning, the folks started returning to as normal a life as they could manage, albeit with the occasional oddball interruption.
I guess after a while, even the most unusual things, if seen often enough, can become commonplace and to a certain degree, normal.
Well, Normal for this town anyway....
To be continued in a bit.