Yawning, I walked out of my room and into the kitchen. I…needed…COFFEE. Trying to win the maze that was suddenly the apartment, I made my way to the counter and stared down the coffee pot in a fierce battle of wills. Hopefully, I really had put in water and coffee grounds into the pot the night before and it wasn't some weird dream. I pressed the button and leaned against the counter, waiting impatiently for the nectar of the gods.
There was the creak of a door and the soft shuffle of slippers against the ground as Jo did a strange, slide-shuffle-step out of her room. She paused at the entrance of the kitchen and then resumed her slide-shuffle-step to a kitchen chair, landing in it without a sound. A few minutes passed without another noise from her.
"Uh…Jo?" I tried, hoping for some sort of human recognition. All I got was a muzzy sounding groan. Well, that wasn't helpful.
Another creak, a slam of a door, and then Sue stepped into the kitchen. She gave me her customary morning scowl but stopped when she saw Jo. Her gaze swung back over to me. One hand went up, bright purple nails scratching at a scabby nose piercing. "Is she okay?"
I shrugged. Hell if I knew. I had work last night, so I hadn't seen either Sue or Jo since Wednesday.
"Jo?" she asked, actually sounding as if she had a heart.
Jo gave another groan and turned her head, so her face was not intimate with the table top anymore.
Sue looked her over for a moment and then succinctly informed her, "You look like shit."
That she did. Her face was extremely pale, her eyes red, and her nose runny. "Uh?" she replied eloquently. Drip, went her nose.
Sue raised an eyebrow. "Yeah," she drawled out, eyes coming back to me. "Hung over?" she stage-whispered.
I looked at Jo again. "No," I answered. "Sick, I think."
She looked vaguely confused now. What, was I supposed to help her or something? Fine.
"Leave her alone," I suggested. "She'll be fine with some sleep." Thank god I wasn't actually going into medicine.
Sue looked back over to Jo. "Right," she said slowly and then walked over to the stove, a vaguely frightening prospect since I had not seen her cook anything in all the months we had been living together.
I could smell the coffee brewing. Drip drip, went the coffee pot.
Then Jo became human and actually spoke. "Hey, guys," she said, her words slow as if she were having trouble with them. "What would we do if zombies attacked campus?"
Not moving, Sue fatalistically answered, "Die."
"What?" I asked Jo, thrown for a loop. Maybe, with my lack of caffeine, I was just hallucinating this.
Jo gave me a look as if I were purposely being obtuse and lazily waved one hand. "You know. Zombies. Campus. Brains."
No, not hallucinating. I was for a loss here, clueless as to what to say to that. Default mode, then: sarcasm, insults, and/or distractions. "Um, you have to remember Jo, there aren't a lot of brains on this campus."
Jo gave me another Look. "People have brains, whether or not they use them." Yeah, that was our little education major there speaking. "Om nom nom," she emphasized.
There was a snort and a faint, laughingly echoed, "Om nom nom," from Sue. Something smelled like it was burning. Completely not helpful, that was Sue.
"We'd…run?" I suggested.
Jo scoffed, snorted a noseful of snot, and rolled her eyes. "We wouldn't be able to. We live on the fourth floor in a ten-floor building. Stairs and elevators would be packed with people." She gave a small nod, as if she were actually having a full conversation with someone other than me. "They'd panic."
I scrambled for another answer. "Lock ourselves in?"
She made a move to sit up, aborted the move halfway, and shifted in her seat instead. "What if we didn't have any food?"
Sue tossed, "Like that would ever happen," over her shoulder.
Glaring, Jo elaborated, "Like, we were going to go get food the next day or something, so we didn't have anything and then the zombies attacked."
Rolling the question over in my mind, I guessed at the amount of coffee in the pot and poured it into a mug anyway. Frustratingly enough, it didn't even reach halfway. Despite this, it was liquid heaven. It was heaven…but it brought me no solutions on the whole zombie issue. "We'd…," and I trailed off cause I still couldn't come up with anything, even though Jo was looking at me like I had all the answers.
Sue, however, finished my sentence, "Die."
Jo looked distressed at this. "I don't want to die," she told the table mournfully.
I glared at Sue's back and said to Jo, "Ignore her. We'd fend them off with those knives Sue has."
Sue turned, looking ready to fling her spatula at me. "Hey, those are butcher knives. For cooking."
"Which you don't use," I added and continued to Jo, "We can chop the zombies up into little pieces. Then we'd be fine."
Jo actually looked like she was turning the idea over. Then she frowned at me and went, "We wouldn't be able to do that. They'd eat us first."
Another sip from the magical coffee. "Um, we'd…go onto the roof." Jo's expression was already turning skeptical, so I added, "With that baseball bat we have in the closet."
"Huh," Jo muttered, but she still didn't look convinced.
In the hopes of stopping this line of questioning, I asked, "Did you come out here for a reason?"
Jo looked blank for a second before she smiled brightly. "Oh, yeah. Some medicine." She stood, did that sliding step to the counter, and brought out a bottle of cough medicine from one of the cabinets. She threw back a shot of it, put it back, and then quietly went back to her room as if the whole conversation had never happened.
From her place at the now smoking stove, Sue said, "Jo's crazy."
I eyed the coffee pot. "Nah," I answered. "Just…" stopped, rethought it, and then nodded. "Yeah, she's crazy."
Sue scraped at something with her spatula and contemplatively said, "You know, if there are zombies, you're going first."
"Excuse me, what?"
"You're the nerd here, so you have the biggest brain."
"Well, you have the fattest ass, so they'd catch you first."