Petticoat Armor (Zombie West)

jodi ralston's overland zombie westMrs. Jane Richmont reveals a unique form of protection from zombie bites.

My sister and I went with our husbands and children across the plains. We might have been woefully unprepared in some ways, and wise in others, but no one could have known our bright idea was wrong.

There had been rumors of bandits, brazen as the undead, wandering into camps in the dead of night, while everyone slept on, and robbed them blind of their money. So sister and I got the idea to hide it on our person, in a place even the bandits wouldn’t dare search. So before we started, we quilted up our petticoats into squares, and into each square we sewed our gold. Made for heavy wearing, but it was worth it.

One night, sure enough, bandits slunk into our camp, but do you think they found anything but the small change? Not a thing.

They tried again, and this time, my brother-in-law, Mr. Vare, got one. But his folk left him, and he crept off. The bandit hid himself so well, we couldn’t find him to pass him on.

Not that it would’ve mattered any. One like that, with no honor in light of his life wouldn’t have honor on the night of his death.

Zombified, he followed us, across the prairie, but it was not till three nights later he stumbled into camp. We women were up early, making breakfast, and he came in and scrambled at the dresses on our bodies.

The dead know things. There is no other way he knew where the gold was. My husband, Mr. Richmont, said that was nonsense. “He was scrambling after our flesh, that’s all,” he said. But we did agree on one thing: our petticoats saved us. The deadling bandit couldn’t get a good bite through the armor of our gold.

Though one square did tear, and out the gold popped out, through petticoats and dresses and all, and I swear the no-good deadling put it in his tattered pocket before lunging at me all over again. That’s how I knew they knew. That’s how I knew he wanted more than just my flesh.

Ask my sister. She’ll say the same thing.

Anyways, he might have gotten a gold piece that night, but he didn’t get one bit of flesh. I made sure to send that gold piece on with his soul Eastward, and no others scrambled so strangely after us. So I knew he was satisfied and told no tales to the other undead. Probably didn’t want to share; thieves have no honor, you know. None at all.

But you ask my sister. That no-good zombie wanted that gold because he died for it. It wasn’t just flesh he wanted. Not just flesh, anyhows.

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Author Note: This is part of Jodi Ralston’s Zombie West world.  This series is not set in our world but is inspired by 1800s-early 1900s America, because she loves that time period.  It has zombies because everything is better with zombies.

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