improbablywarm: (Use a napkin next time || Unthreatening)

Life in a Rigor Mortis World

"Here we are on the road. We must be going somewhere."

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Created on 2013-02-07 22:03:12 (#1962506), never updated

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Name:R || Warm Bodies
Birthdate:Dec 7
Location:The Airport, United States of America
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"There is a chasm between me and the world outside of me. A gap so wide my feelings can't cross it. By the time my screams reach the other side, they have dwindled into groans."

Meet R. Yeah, just "R". He'd love to tell you the rest of his name but he's forgotten it, lost it like car keys down the back of the couch. It's there somewhere but it's been misplaced.

"It does make me sad that we've forgotten our names. Out of everything, this seems to me the most tragic. I miss my own and I mourn for everyone else's, because I'd like to love them, but I don't know who they are."

R, for want of a different perspective, is dead.

Sure, he can still walk if that shuffling half-step can indeed be termed as walking - he wishes it were smoother, straighter, that it wasn't so lumbering. He can even still talk, able to grunt and groan his way through almost one-sided, entirely monosyllabic conversation. But that caricature of life, his broken marionette existence, still isn't the same as living.

He's still a zombie.

Infected by an unknown plague of undetermined origin that brings the fully dead back into a cold state of existence, R has been stumbling around what remains of civilisation in a semi-catatonic state of impassivity for... He thinks it might be years. He doesn't remember. Like his name, the circumstances of his death have been lost to him; eroded by time into the dust he can feel collected at the bottom of his shrivelled lungs. There but worthless, meaningless.

"In my mind I am eloquent; I can climb intricate scaffolds of words to reach the highest cathedral ceilings and paint my thoughts. But when I open my mouth, everything collapses."

His only reason for being is to exist, exactly as he is. And to keep existing, to cling to his shell of humanity, and to eat. The hunger isn't the same as the one he felt when he was alive, rooted somewhere in his abdomen. This is an all-over feeling, like every one of his cells is running out of fuel that, if it dries up, will leave him as something less than a corpse. He's seen it happen to the others. They slow down, shrivel into bones and flaking, papery skin before grinding to a halt. Their edges curl in on themselves like rotten leaves drying in the wind and, eventually, they become fully dead without realizing it.

"I'd like to sit down with him and pick his brain, just a tiny bite somewhere in the frontal lobe to get a taste of his thoughts."

Unfortunately for R, the only thing that can sustain him and keep his hunger at bay is human brains, bloody and throbbing with life. Feeding on the thoughts and memories of the living is as good a high as a zombie can get, bringing him to the brink of remembering what it was to be alive and warm and hopeful. It lasts for just a moment, for the length of a single, unneeded breath, before it's gone again and R returns to a life of lumbering anonymity. Then he just waits for the hunger to creep up on him again.

Until he meets a Living girl that, rather than eating, he wants to protect. And once one feeling is stirred up in the empty hollow of his chest, he begins experiencing others. R has started to change.

"I'm watching her talk. Watching her jaw move and collecting her words one by one as they spill from her lips. I don't deserve them. Her warm memories. I'd like to paint them over the bare plaster walls of my soul, but everything I paint seems to peel."

["R" and all related characters and content are from the novel, Warm Bodies and therefore belong to Isaac Marion. R is taken from early in the novel, at some point after meeting Julie but before his arrival at the Stadium unless stated otherwise.]
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