My Best Friend is a Zombie A Short Story by Scott Crawford & Grade 4 Sajid looked up from his zombie comic book and saw his best friend rummaging through a cabinet. “What are you doing, Benedict?” asked Sajid. “Reading this comic book gave me an idea,’ answered Benedict as he picked up a beaker of glowing green liquid. He started tipping it to his lips. “Are you sure you should do that?” asked Sajid. But Benedict was already drinking from the beaker….Riiiiiiiiiing! The school bell rang – Sajid was going to be late for class! “See you later, Benedict!’ said Sajid as he ran out of the science lab. But Benedict only groaned in response and clutched his stomach. After his Chinese lesson, Sajid walked out of the classroom and heard a scream from down the hallway. Sajid looked to the right and saw Benedict lurching out of Mr Jarman’s room. “Look, something’s wrong with Benedict,’ Sajid said to Na Youn. But Na Youn just ran off to her next class. ‘I’m sure he’ll be fine,’ said Annie. ‘I guess so,’ said Sajid. He watched as Benedict shuffled closer down the hallway. He scrunched his nose as Benedict came closer. ‘What a terrible smell! Like fish and rotten tomatoes!’ said Sarthak, who was now standing beside Sajid. Most of the other students had slipped into their classrooms. As they cleared away, Sajid saw that Benedict was not looking well. His mouth gaped open, and his bloodshot eyes held a glassy, empty stare. Benedict’s skin was a pale shade of green. “Benedict, what’s wrong?’ asked Sajid. Instead of answering, Benedict growled and suddenly lunged at Sajid’s throat. Sajid ducked – but Sarthak wasn’t fast enough! Benedict bit Sarthak as Sajid ran into a classroom and slammed the door shut. “My best friend is a zombie,” muttered Sajid to himself. Benedict began pounding on the door. Benedict’s wailing chilled Sajid’s blood. As he hid under a desk, Sajid remembered his zombie comic book. He flipped through, hoping to find an idea of what to do, but he was so scared he could barely concentrate. “I’d better go get help,” he decided. Sajid shot up from under the desk, but Benedict still stood pounding at the door. Sajid studied the room, looking for other ways out. There were three windows, but there was no way Sajid could jump down to the ground. There was another door, but it was locked and he couldn’t find the key. At last, Sajid took a deep breath and slowly approached the door. He could see Benedict through the glass. ‘Now or never,’ thought Sajid, and he opened the door.
Benedict immediately grasped for Sajid, but Sajid scurried back into the room. Dragging his leg after him, Benedict followed Sajid but could not keep up. Throwing a chair in Benedict’s way, Sajid circled around Benedict and raced out of the classroom, slamming the door behind him. As Sajid dashed down the hallway, he wondered why the police hadn’t arrived yet and why there weren’t any teachers around to help him. Seeing the door to Ms. O’Dwyer’s room open, Sajid ran in and quickly shared his story. Ms. O’Dwyer frowned. “That’s nonsense, Sajid. Zombies are just made-‐up creatures.” No matter how he tried, Sajid could not convince her. So even as Ms O’Dwyer tried to get him to sit down and start his work, Sajid darted out of the room, heading for Mrs. Gailis’ office. “Don’t be silly. We don’t have zombies at BISS,” said Mrs. Gailis. “Wait, where are you going, Sajid?” she called after him, as he ran away, climbing the stairs. Sajid didn’t know what to do. Why wouldn’t anyone believe him? As he passed by the science lab, Sajid thought about the last time he had seen Benedict, when his best friend was not a zombie. Thinking that maybe he could find some answers in the lab, Sajid entered. The lab was quiet. So quiet that Sajid could hear Benedict’s faint wailing from the second floor. Sajid studied the room. The beaker Benedict had drunk from lay on the table, with just a little bit of the green fluid remaining. “What did Benedict say just before he drank that?” thought Sajid, wracking his brain. Suddenly it came back to him – Sajid quickly flipped through his comic book, looking for clues. There were all kinds of scenes of zombies in the book, but nothing that gave Sajid any ideas. He threw down the comic in desperation. As Sajid stood up and prepared to leave the room, something caught his eye. The comic book had fallen open, exposing the last page. Sajid read the page: How to Make and Unmake Zombies – A Recipe in Two Easy Steps. Sajid skimmed the recipe and saw that he could reverse the “zombie making” potion, just by adding alcohol. Sajid rummaged through the cabinet, and at last found a beaker labeled “pure alcohol.” He poured this into the beaker holding the green liquid. Steam rose out of the beaker and Sajid heard a funny sizzling sound. ‘How can I get Benedict to drink this?’ thought Sajid. Sajid was sure that if he even tried getting close to Benedict, he would be bitten. But Sajid was sure that Benedict would break out of the classroom soon and put all the other BISS student and teachers in danger. Sajid looked over the recipe from the comic book again, but it didn’t tell him how to give the ‘unmaking’ solution to a zombie. Sajid thought he might use a water gun to spray it on Benedict, but realized that it was very unlikely there would be a water gun at school, and he didn’t have time to search. Sajid would just have to figure it out as he went along.
Holding the sizzling beaker, Sajid ran out of the lab and descended the stairs. As he neared the classroom, he saw Benedict still trying to break down the door. ‘It’s now or never,’ Sajid thought for the second time that day, and yanked open the door. Benedict threw himself out, clawing and flailing at Sajid. Sajid took six steps back, took aim, and hurled the beaker. Crash! The beaker exploded against Benedict’s face, sending shattered glass and spattering liquid all over the place. Benedict grunted as the liquid dribbled down his face. But Benedict kept coming for Sajid…. Sajid backed away, until he felt the wall against him. Sajid was trapped! Benedict kept shuffling forward, his hands seizing at Sajid. ‘It was all for nothing!’ thought Sajid. He crouched, shut his eyes and waited for Benedict to bite him. “Shouldn’t we be in class?” Sajid heard someone say. Sajid opened his eyes and slowly looked up. ‘BEN–E -‐DICT?!” “Yeah. What are you doing down there?” “You wouldn’t even believe it if I told you….” said Sajid. “What am I doing here? Why are you down there on the ground?” asked Benedict. He looked completely normal now, just like Sajid remembered. “I’m going to answer all your questions. But first, we need to find Sarthak. If you ever wanted to throw something at a classmate, now’s the time.” By Scott Crawford & Grade 4 BISS Students