The Living Corpse by Michelle Lloyd

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the-living-corpseLee Gibson is his real name. Osiris is his professional name. Whatever you want to call him, he is the necromancer who took it upon himself to rip me from my eternal rest. My brother Henry paid him. Henry’s gesture was from a place of selfish pain, from a place of not understanding the consequences. I forgive Henry his reasons.

But not Osiris.

The only place he comes from is a place of greed and disrespect. He preys on the emotionally vulnerable, and profits from the grief of others. He promises the world. Even from the other side, I heard him promise my brother that I would be exactly as I was.

Those sorts of lies I cannot forgive.

Coming back was painful. That part wasn’t mentioned either. It was as though I was being slowly roasted from the inside, and it felt like it was lasting an eternity. When it happened, my initial thought was that I’d been cast down into Hell. The thought that this was the beginning of an eternity of torture and damnation was almost more than I could bear.

Here is what Osiris knew, and my brother was never told.

Firstly, I would return in my own body, which had already started to decay. I have a fully functional mind, trapped inside rotting flesh. I have no functioning internal organs, I have very limited movement, and wrapped inside this decomposing carcass I am fully aware of each and every helpless moment. Zombies are supposed to want brains. I almost wish I didn’t have mine.

Secondly, I would hunger for flesh against my will. Raw meat is all Henry feeds me on, and that does satisfy my appetite, but I know there’s something more. Some instinct inside me knows that there is a richer, sweeter, juicier meat, even if my conscience stops me from tasting it.

Thirdly, I would be completely emotionally functional, but unable to speak. I know in my mind what I want to say. I know that I want to beg Henry for release, and in my head I make my plea so emotively and eloquently. Yet the reality is that all I can do is try to communicate with my eyes and with gestures.

I planned to leave Henry’s basement and find Osiris. I planned to finally taste flesh, and I planned for it to be his. But my legs are too decayed to be very functional any more. All I can do now is fantasize about how sweet it would have been. Apparently if you kill the necromancer who brought you back, you’ll be released. I can only imagine and hope that it’s probably true.

Henry feels good about his decision. He thinks he’s done the right thing. But he doesn’t seem to understand that I want to let go. I want to float away again, ever so gently, and have no more reason to cry and no more reason to wish it would all end. I would be free.

I want to tell him that I understand how hard it was for him when I died. That after losing mum and dad, it nearly killed him to lose me too. I want to tell him that I wish it wasn’t so. But mostly I want to tell him that as much as I love him, I shouldn’t be here.

He comes down to the basement to see me every day. He talks a lot, bathes me, dresses me. I try to communicate, but he never makes eye contact. Perhaps subconsciously he knows anyway, and doesn’t want confirmation. But I try every day.

Let me go, Henry.


Let me go.


AUTHOR BIO: Michelle is a writing-addicted, coffee-fuelled powerhouse of short fiction and historical novels. She lives in Sydney, Australia with her psychotic cat. Track down the results of her other brain-spasms at