It started in yonder past when, one day, over hot tea and flowering words my partner in crime and I came together in an explosion of feathers and lightning and awesomecakes to create a series where Thor meets zombies and it is a whirlwind of all things fun. That’s how this serial began, I think! Probably! I have a very bad memory. There are small provinces in China where my memory is a source of HIGH AMUSEMENT. Anyway, so there’s the gist. We catch up with our heroes in a tense moment wherein Amalia is fury!
“So, uh,” I say gently nudging the axe to one side and peer at her, “before we slice and dice Bragi…” The axe creeps back between us as Amalia raises a brow. I add, “Just to clarify, breaking the Asgard treaty thing and handing out gold, would mean what?”
Amalia makes a noise somewhere between a sigh and a moan, her eye twitching. “Basically, Asgardian immigration suspension,” she whispers finally. “Thor… leaving…”
“Ah.” I let go of the axe, taking a step back, which turns out to be bad for the door as Amalia throws it and cries out. Thing is, I know if this were a treaty involving the suspension of zombie rights I’d be exactly the same.
“BRAGI!” she says marching to the axe and prying it from the wood. “BRAGI I NEED YOU!”
I get the sense Amalia means need as in I need you to be near me so I can slice you open, rather than the sweet way she calls it out into the corridor, but props to her for some amazing voice control as her eyes swarm with rage. Fearful for the lives of anyone who might cross her, and also her own since Thor seems frozen behind us as if trapped in a thought that turns his skin pale and makes his eyes bulge, I grab some what I hope are knives and skip after Amalia. She’s halfway along the dimly lit hallway when I catch up and puff some of my hair away from my face. Amalia’s right, Adler is very much not important now.
“Cool, okay,” I say we fall into step. “So what’s the a-game? Going in for a pincer movement or your more classic barge and charge approach? I am totally down with both although, I have to say, ever since that Siren the other week my stabbing technique has been a little rusty. I pulled something, ha. You would never think, I mean to look at, that a Siren could do so much damage just with her fin.”
“Mia,” Amalia says.
“Sure, you’re right,” I nod as we round a corner and are introduced to an impressive staircase. “Stabbing is too obvious. This dude will see it a mile off. I have to tell you it’s been a while since I did target practice with my throwing knives and, ah,” I fiddle around with the weapons I pocketed, “I appear to only have spoons right now but that is okay! Spoons are dangerous too! Ever been hit with one of these bad boys? Not fun, let me tell you.”
“Mia,” Amalia says, her axe clunking against the banister as we reach the upper floor.
“Now, we’re probably going to run into a little trouble RE le zombies,” I continue as we march along a low ceilinged hallway. I think I hear gurgling and zombie yelping coming from the doorway at the end. “Just FYI. I mean, it should be fine, just zombies aren’t so good at rapidly changes allegiances so! I can call them away but I think we’re on our own for the initial charge. I know what you’re thinking, but trust me zombie blood is mrph prmph-”
“You can have your mouth back again,” Amalia whispers in my ear, “when the babbling stops.”
I give her the OKAY sign, frankly for the past few doorways I’ve been wishing I didn’t have a voice to babble with, but it is still several moments before her cool palm moves away. All that talking, I shake my head as Amalia turns and we begin to walk again, and I still have no idea how I am going to stop this from becoming an interdimensional interspecies event. It is not until Amalia’s hand poises on the golden door knob that I have an idea.
“Wait,” I whisper between the gentle gurgling of the room’s inhabitants, “maybe I should go first? I can be, like, a decoy and you can rush Bragi?”
“You’d do that?” Amalia’s tone lightens, and I can tell she’s touched. It wrenches at my heart, but I nod and hope she’ll forgive me. I can’t let her axe a God to death.
When I kick the door open the zombies glance up only for a second before returning to their feather finding task on the bed. Bragi unfolds himself from the chair in the corner, walking towards us, but looks neither surprised or concerned. For a moment I consider letting Amalia actually have at him, he’s clearly not been watching the zombies very closely and Adam is scowling at him something fierce. But that moment is short lived as I swivel around to face Amalia and shout, “I AM ACTUALLY REALLY SORRY ABOUT THIS!” before knocking her out with one of my spoons. The axe clatters to the floor as I catch her.
“What have you done?!” It is Bragi who steps forward as I move prop Amalia against the wall and surround her with cushions. I squint up at him, tilting my head, as he continues. “Thor will not tolerate violence against Thorskona.”
For a moment I roll my tongue in my mouth, considering all the insults I could throw at him for harming Amalia in an entirely different but far worse way if what she said about the gold is true. In the end I just settle for scoffing before I say, “ZOMBIES ATTACK!” and point at him. It takes seconds for them to get him on the ground but what catches my eye is not the teeth, or the flailing hands, or even how Amalia twitches from beside me already recovering from my strategic pressure point whack.
I am caught, transfixed even, by the golden coins that roll away from Bragi and dance across the floor.
So! Ahhh! Again, the suspense will not end until next week! Meantime, how are you? What is happening? I bought a library book on sale today. I love buying library books. I mean, they are a little pre-owned but I always feel like they are in need of a good home, you know? They are just pre-loved! And awesome!