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Black Female Zombies Rock!

Zombies, zombies, zombies. Why was everybody talking about that species in movies and books and they became a real problem all of a sudden? The name is Marianne Laban, and I was born in the City of Addis Ababa, in the Capital region of Ethiopia on February 6, 1989. In mortal life, I think I was a fairly attractive chick. Five-foot-nine, slim but curvy where it counted, with light brown skin, long curly black hair and pale green eyes. I am biracial, born to a Lebanese mother and Ethiopian father. Not a pairing you hear about often, I know, but it does happen. My parents would move from Ethiopia to the Ontario region of Canada in 1996. I love being Canadian, but I still cherished my Ethiopian heritage.

In 2013, at the start of the zombie plague, I was in the MBA program at the University of Toronto. I returned to Toronto after graduating from Carleton University in Ottawa with my bachelor's degree in economics. I've always been an ambitious gal, and I got that from my parents. My parents came to Canada when they were both in their late twenties. They had to go back to school because Ethiopian and Lebanese college and university degrees aren't exactly recognized by most institutions in North America. My mom, who worked as a nurse in Addis Ababa had to take nursing courses at Seneca College in Toronto because no Canadian hospital would hire her. As for my dad, back in our hometown he was a cop. In Canada, he worked as a security guard while studying Criminology and Criminal Justice at Ryerson University. These days, he works as a corrections officer for the Ontario Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services. Yeah, my parents are a tough, determined lot and I got my relentless drive from them.

We've endured a lot as a family, and when the first reports about people going nuts and eating other people began appearing all over the news, we decided to get ready. We bought guns, and lots of ammunition. We also bought lots of canned goods, gasoline, and medicine kits. When the Toronto police service and the Canadian Armed Forces began fighting the zombies in the streets of Canada's largest metropolis, my parents and I had just completed the eight-foot-tall wooden fence which surrounded our house in the Toronto suburb of Brampton. We knew that we had to be ready, and as our friends and neighbors became mindless ghouls hell-bent on feasting on our flesh, we hunkered down. Our only hope was that national law enforcement and the military might overcome the zombies and restore order. I guess we should have realized that order was a memory in a world where ordinary men and women got brought back from the dead twenty four hours after they got bitten by the undead. Zombies are slow, dumb, and deadly. One bite is all it takes for you to become one of them. Soon, the dead began to outnumber the living.

The world had gone to hell, that's how it looked to us in our little fortress in Brampton, Ontario. At first, we kept up on the news. Reports of zombies in New York City, Baghdad, Amsterdam, Berlin, Riyadh, Melbourne, Havana and Brasilia filled the airways. Around the world, law enforcement and the military, aided by armed men and women from civilian backgrounds fought a losing battle against the undead. The key to the zombies success lay in their simplicity. Zombies don't get scared, humans do. Zombies don't feel fear, humans do. Zombies don't care if they die, humans do. Zombies don't care if it's snowing, or raining. They don't care if there's an ocean separating them from you, or molten lava, or a fortified wall, they'll destroy themselves trying to get to you. They don't care how long it takes. Oh, and they don't argue with each other stupidly either. It's kind of a human thing.

You see, with the breakdown of law and order, and the zombie apocalypse at hand, people's true colors began to show. Andrew Kensington, a tall, blond-haired white guy whom I knew from Carleton University happily joined a Skinhead gang that looted and killed visible minorities in the early days of the zombie plague. I was shocked, to tell you the truth. Andrew and I didn't date but we did hook up once. He was going out with my friend Sheila, a Nigerian chick I knew from my psych class. Andrew was a Skinhead. Wow. A white guy who dated Black girls was in a white supremacist gang. Surprise, surprise. The early days revealed to us more about ourselves than it did about the zombies. Zombies aren't complicated. They're relentless eating machines with less intelligence than your average dog. They will keep coming unless you destroy their brain, usually with a blunt object or a well-placed head shot if you can pull it off.

The zombies weren't what scared me, to tell you the truth, it's other people. I watched ordinary women who had been college professors, social workers and even police officers sell off their daughters to biker gangs in exchange for food and shelter. I watched perfectly normal people kill their friends and neighbors over a can of soup. I watched people once again divide themselves by race and culture in the face of global extinction of our species. Who the fuck cares if you're black or white, straight or gay, in an age where people are coming back from the dead and eating other people? Seriously! Even as zombies poured into every country, every city and town across the globe, Christians, Muslims and Jews continued to hate each other. In Lebanon and Nigeria, along with my native Ethiopia, Christian militias battled both the zombie hordes and Muslim insurgents. Many Christians and Muslims believed that the Day of Judgement had come, and God would choose who among them was truthfully worthy of His love. In the end, most of these idiots ended up in the belly of zombies who, God bless their cold dead hearts, eat all humans regardless of race, sexual orientation, nationality or even religion. The living discriminate, and the undead don't. They don't care if you follow Jesus Christ the Messiah or the prophet Mohammed, Gautama Buddha or L. Ron Hubbard, or whatever other guy thought himself special, they'll eat you anyway. Aren't they cool?

Eventually, my parents and I ran out of supplies, exactly nine months after the zombie plague began, and we were forced to fight our way out of our house before it became our coffin. Miraculously we made it, escaping in our old minivan. Never disregard the old-school family vehicle. We drove out of the nightmare Toronto had become, and it wasn't easy, with lots of discarded cars filled with the reanimated remains of their former owners filling every road in every direction. We decided to drive up to the more isolated parts of Ontario, since where there's less people, there's bound to be fewer zombies. Along the way, we encountered some other survivors who had the same idea.

Not all the people we met were cool. Some were crazy and we had to deal with them in a shoot-them-up kind of way. I'll tell you about the cool ones because they ended up joining us, strength in numbers and all that. There's this butch lesbian chick named Elaina Batres, a six-foot-tall, tattooed and bronze-skinned Mexican chick with short black hair and a fierce look in her dark brown eyes. Elaina and her partner Fatouma Abdul-Hamid, a short, chubby Arab chick from Yemen, rode around on motorcycles and carried big guns. We were more than happy to have them tagging along. We also met this old Haitian-American guy named Theodore Pierre, a Haitian-born Baptist minister from the City of Atlanta, Georgia, who had been visiting friends in Toronto when the zombie plague began. Reverend Pierre had his son Jeremiah with him. Now Jeremiah was something else, I noticed that about him even though my thoughts were usually more preoccupied with survival matters like ammunition and fuel than sex. The reverend's son was a tall ( easily six-foot-three ), lean brother with light brown skin, curly black hair and pale green eyes. I later learned that his mother Jenna Hoffman, who died giving birth to him, was a white woman from Mississippi. He was cute, and handy with a gun. Oh, and he was really charming too.

Jeremiah Pierre and I got along famously. Hey, the guy was cute, and we liked each other, and it's not like there were a lot of other options for me. I liked how he was protective of me, even though I was a better shot than him. Jeremiah and I frequently acted as scouts for our little group, riding ahead on motorcycles which we commandeered, trying to find food and ammo while avoiding the zombie hordes. I got to know him really well during those days. I liked him a lot, and I told my parents how I felt about him. They approved of the match, and for a while, we were one happy little family. We finally arrived in Nova Scotia, having discovered that even small-town Ontario was crawling with zombies. Our group found itself in the town of Preston, which I was aware of just like most students of black history. It's where the descendants of Canada's first Black settlers still lived. The Preston community had banded together against the zombies just like they banded together against racism in the old days, and they held their own.

We were finally home, in more ways than one. The black community of Preston was largely self-sufficient, and they erected a massive wall around their houses and farms even as zombies consumed the mostly white populations of Halifax and Dartmouth. I wasn't a bit surprised. Black people the world over are used to being persecuted, especially in North America. If it isn't white guys and white gals with Klansman hoods and burning torches, it's mindless flesh-eating ghouls. If it isn't one thing, it's another. We're always under attack. For Arabs, Asians, Hispanics, and especially Caucasians, being under attack from outside forces just because you're alive is a new experience. That's why they didn't do so good once the dead started eating the living. In Preston, Nova Scotia, humanity is making its last stand. Three months after our arrival in Nova Scotia, Jeremiah and I found a helicopter, and since his father, a former U.S. Air Force man could fly it, we began using it to cautiously look for food and ammo while also scouting for survivors. Thus our little community grew a bit.

In a world where the undead outnumber the living, where civilization has collapsed, my family is intact, and growing. What do I mean by that? I recently discovered I was pregnant. That's right, Jeremiah and I are about to become parents. We got married in a small church, and the ceremony attended by every living soul in Preston, the walled town which has become the site of mankind's last stand against the undead. My parents are about to become grandparents, and they couldn't be prouder of Jeremiah and me. I have every reason to hope that our son or daughter will do just fine in this mad world, considering what we've already endured. Every week we refuel the helicopter and fly in search of food and fuel, and what we see of Canada isn't helping. Survivors are increasingly scarce, and the undead are everywhere. We are keeping our fingers crossed, though. There are eleven hundred souls within Preston. We have food and fuel, along with weapons and ammo, for now. Winter is coming. A dangerous time for us, although we're discovering that it can be a time of opportunity because the frozen undead are less mobile. We're doing what we can to survive, and by the Grace of God, we just might make it. Wish us luck, ladies and gentlemen. Peace.
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