If there was one thing Eric wanted to do that night, it was sleep. But between Craig's crying and Bebe's crying and Butters' God damn crying, it was not going to happen easily. It was actually really annoying that everyone was so broken up about Clyde, it wasn't like he was going to be any help at all when it came down to it.

Clyde was a total pussy, may he rest in peace.

He didn't hate Clyde, per se, but he definitely would have been a liability, and if they were going to survive the zombie apocalypse, it was best to cut out the weak links early.

As far as Eric was concerned, the rest of them were probably weak links too, each in their own way. On a scale, he'd have to put himself first, obviously. He was going to be the leader and kick the most ass, and also get the most ass (if he had anything to say about it). Bebe would have been lower on the list if he'd thought about it earlier, but she stepped up when they were going from house to house. Stan surprised him too; Eric would have pegged him as someone who was too lame to shoot his own father. But there was still plenty of time for Stan to pussy out, and he eventually would because it was in his nature.

Craig was clearly going to be worth keeping around for a little while, at least until he became too annoying. Same with Kevin. At the moment, Kevin knew what was up. He was a valuable asset. But Kevin was irritating as hell and there would come a time, probably soon, when Eric would be forced to shove him into a herd of zombies as means of allowing the rest of them to escape with their lives.

There was always a sacrifice in zombie movies. Kevin wasn't the only one who knew about the standard tropes. Usually it was a black guy or a fat guy (or a fat black guy) and since Token was clearly already dead, Eric was certainly not going to be the sacrifice. Time to start a new trend - the Asian sacrifice.

But he was getting ahead of himself.

Butters was going to have to die, that much was true. Not only was Butters a useless, annoying person in general, he was also a pussy. He stopped taking orders from Eric sometime around eighth grade, and that was only going to get him killed now (and he'd deserve it, too). Kenny was okay, and if anyone knew about living in substandard conditions, it was him. He'd probably fucking outlast them all.

Wendy was probably going to end up being a good asset to the team, but more importantly, she was a girl, and girls were going to be valuable down the line if they wanted to start repopulating the world. Even more importantly, she was a hot girl, and Eric had definite plans of banging her before all this was over, Stan or no Stan. If he was going to die - not that he planned to, but if he did - it certainly wasn't going to be as a virgin.

And then there was Kyle. As infuriating as he was, and even though his people were probably responsible for this epidemic somehow, the Jew was important. He was smart and resourceful and would probably end up being a badass zombie killing machine.That would be hot, and it was all the more reason to get Stan out of the picture at some point.

Eric finally dozed off to sleep that night with dreams of being the head of a post-apocalyptic tribe. They'd live off the land, hunting and gathering, and he'd have killed so many zombies by that point that they wouldn't even be a threat anymore. Wendy and Bebe would have a bunch of kids by him and also do all the mothering and housekeeping and farming and body burning, and Kyle, unable to have children for obvious reasons, would exist solely for Eric's pleasure. He'd live like a fucking king with hard working peasant wives and a concubine chained to his bed.

Eric, Kyle would moan as he was being fucked mercilessly, you're so unbelievably sexy when you protect us from the living dead, how would I ever survive without you? Cartman, Cartman! Cartman!

"Cartman! Wake up!"

Eric jerked awake, ready to kill whoever ruined his dream - but it was Kyle. Kyle was waking him up in the middle of the night while everyone else was asleep. Oh ho ho, what do we have here?

He rubbed his eyes and attempted to get rid of his boner through the sheer force of willpower. "What do you want, Jewface?"

"I need you to help me with something."

Kyle looked so serious and terrified that Eric had no choice but to swallow any sexual comment he might have made. "...Okay, what?"

"Come with me to my house."

"Are you fucking crazy?" Eric hissed as he sat up. He was definitely flaccid now, thanks to the idea of going back out into the infested streets. "In case you forgot, there are zombies, or walkers, or whatever the fuck Kevin wants us to call them, out there waiting to eat us."

"Shhh, keep your voice down. Just come with me! There's something I have to do and I can't do it alone."

Eric frowned, suspicious. "Why didn't you ask your boyfriend?"

"He's not my- whatever, Cartman, we don't have time for this. Please, come with me. And without waking anyone up."

It was so hard to say no to Kyle, especially when he was coming to him for something instead of Stan. It was an opportunity he couldn't pass up, even if it was going to get him killed. And maybe if he was really awesome at protecting Kyle, that asshole would realize whose dick he should be pining for.

So he got up and, as quietly as possible, they put on their coats and grabbed their weapons of choice. Kyle chose an axe that had been, earlier that day, hanging by Eric's workbench. Eric brought his machete, which, ironically, he'd purchased a few years earlier for the purpose of killing Kyle. He also brought his pistol, just in case.

"Want to kill your parents in private too and needed a witness to your suicide?" Eric joked once they got upstairs and out of earshot, though he seriously hoped that wasn't the case.

"No. And that's fucking horrible, don't joke about Clyde."

"Too soon?"

"It will always be too soon to joke about any of this. Our lives are over now. No one seems to fully get that yet. You think this is a joke and you aren't even sad about Clyde. Kevin and Craig seem to think this is some kind of video game and... it's just... this is serious."

"So what are you doing then?"

"I want to see if my family is alive. And if they aren't... I want to put them someplace where they can't kill anyone."

"So why're we doing this alone, at night, instead of with everyone else tomorrow?"

"Because I don't want to kill them. I just want to hide them."

"What the fuck? Why?"

"There could be a cure, Cartman!" Kyle snapped, stopping in the foyer. The look he had on his face was so desperate that Eric almost felt bad for him. It must be hard to be so full of hope. For his part, Eric couldn't really care less about what happened to his mom. He might care if he saw her, but that's why he hoped to get the fuck out of town without seeing her. Out of sight, out of mind.

"You heard Kevin, it's more humane to put them down. And this cure bullshit is getting annoying."

"They aren't sick animals, asshole, they're people. If a cure is found, even if I have to be the one to discover it - and I will, somehow, if it comes down to that - then I don't want to have to live with the fact that my family died when they didn't have to. I want to be able to come back here and fix them. I want that option. I need that option, Cartman."

"Alright, alright. Fine, I already said I'll help. It makes no difference to me," Eric said, holding up his hands in surrender. Partially, he just wanted Kyle to shut up, because he was starting to get shrill and that would either wake the others up or attract walkers. Mostly, though, he just didn't care, because he knew there wouldn't be a cure. For all they knew, they were the only survivors. The only way to fix anything would be to start exterminating.

"Good. And by the way, I didn't ask Stan to come because I knew he wouldn't understand. You saw the way he killed his father today. He doesn't think there's any humanity left inside them," Kyle said, moving toward the front door. "He wouldn't have let me do this."

"And why did you think I would?" Eric asked, watching the back of the shorter boy's head. It didn't need to be asked, really. He'd always had a nasty habit of encouraging Kyle to do stupid things that might get him killed, but in this case, admittedly, maybe he should have done it Stan's way and put his foot down. But then, Kyle probably would have done it anyway.

Kyle swung the door open. "Because you don't care about me," he replied simply, and stepped outside.

Oh how wrong you are.

They moved in relative silence, keeping close to the houses and checking around corners. Kyle made his first kill on the way, though it took two swings of the axe to really get the damn thing to stop moving. The disease, if that's what it was, certainly made bones a lot softer, but crushing skulls was still going to take some effort.

"I'm surprised you can even lift that axe," he whispered, watching Kyle attempt to wipe the blood off his jacket. He'd decided not to point out how, by Kyle's logic, he technically just committed murder. "You probably weigh less than Bebe's titties do."

"They aren't that big. And shut the fuck up, I'm stronger than I look. You of all people should know that."

"I don't need your sass, I can turn back at any time."

"Then don't make fun of me."

When they got to Kyle's house, the first thing they did was attempt to see inside without actually going in. Eric watched for walkers while Kyle checked the windows, and it wasn't long before he heard Kyle inhale sharply.

"They're just sitting there," he whispered.

"Are they...?"

"I can't tell, they aren't moving."

"We'll just have to go in and find out. You didn't see any others?"


Kyle struggled with his house key. His hand was shaking so badly that Eric finally just took the key from him and opened the door himself. He held it open for Kyle, something that might have gotten an offhand comment in a less serious moment, and closed it quietly once they were both inside.

The light from the moon outside barely did any good, but luckily they both knew the house well - Kyle from living there, and Eric from years of sneaking in. "If they're zombies, what's your plan?"

"I was thinking I'd lure them to the basement and lock them in."

"And get yourself killed? Kyle, wait," Eric hissed, grabbing him by the shoulders and staring down into his face. "Do you understand that those things in there are not the normal parents you know and love? Your crazy Jew mom is not sitting in that living room plotting ways to be a nuisance to society. Your dad's not dreaming about his piles of secret riches. They will not pop up and come running over, glad to see you're alive and ready to shower you with hugs and kisses. They will, however, come running to tear your guts out and slurp them up like spaghetti. You're not usually an idiot, so don't start being one now."

Kyle nodded, blinking back tears, and Eric almost felt bad for being so blunt. Almost. He enjoyed making him cry too much to actually feel bad. "Get off," Kyle said simply, and Eric let go. "They'll follow me to the basement. You go open the door and get ready to shove them down the stairs."

"... Alright. Don't die, okay? I don't want to be held responsible and cast out of the group before we even leave town."

Eric thought he saw a flicker of a smile on his lips, but he blinked and it was gone along with Kyle, around the corner. Knowing there was no time to waste, Eric dashed to the basement door and flung it open. He could hear Kyle saying "Mom?" as if she was actually going to be alive, and he couldn't help but roll his eyes. Flattening himself against the wall, he took a deep breath and waited.

Seconds later, Kyle rounded the corner in a sprint, his walker-parents following suit at a slower pace. Well they certainly sprang into action, Eric thought grimly.

"Now, Cartman!" Kyle yelled, leaping past him to hide on the other side of the door. Mr. Broflovski got there first, and Eric easily grabbed onto his shirt and tossed him down the stairs. He landed somewhere in the darkness with a loud crunch and Kyle let out a sob that made Eric's heart wrench.

The last thing he was going to do was let Kyle get bitten, especially not by someone he hated as much as Sheila Broflovski. So as she lumbered toward them, Eric was prepared to wrestle with her if he had to. Not only did she make an extremely horrifying zombie, she was also much heavier than her husband, so when Eric pushed her, she didn't fall so easily.

Instead, she turned her focus to him. He thought she was hideous before, but with blood and rot covering any exposed skin, she was completely disgusting. He grabbed onto her arms to keep her gnashing teeth away from his face and drove her backward as much as he could. By that time, he could see that Kyle's dad was already coming back up the stairs.

"Fuck, fuck, fuck!" he shouted, unsure how he was going to get her off of him without killing her. The smell of her was starting to get to him, and she was fucking strong. "Kyle, the door in three, two...!"

He lifted his leg and shoved his foot into her stomach as hard as he could, letting go of her arms in the same moment. Thankfully, very thankfully, she stumbled back just enough to lose her footing on the stairs. She fell back into the darkness, knocking her husband down in the process. And then the door slammed shut and it was over.

Eric sprang forward and twisted the lock as Kyle sank to the floor, sobbing. He wasn't really sure what to say or do, his first instinct being to laugh or make a joke at Kyle's expense. But that would definitely not go over well, and he didn't really want to be thrown into the basement too.


"Don't. I'm fine," he said, though he clearly wasn't. After a moment, there was a loud bang against the door that caused Kyle to cry out and spring to his feet.

"Maybe we should block the door," Eric suggested, not wanting Kyle to notice that he was shaking with fear.


Together they pushed the couch all the way from the living room to the basement door, attempting to ignore the blood stains and the stink of newly decomposing bodies as they did so. On top of that, they piled on an armchair and the coffee table, and shoved the dining room china cabinet in front for good measure. By the time they were done, they were exhausted and breathing hard, but the banging on the door and the accompanying groans persisted.

"Do you think they'll starve down there?" Kyle asked when they were more composed, and Eric couldn't believe he was still concerned about them after what they just went through. If anything, being up close and personal with zombie-Sheila convinced him even more that human beings were the last thing these creatures were. In fact, he wasn't sure why the hell he didn't just kill them. That would have been easier, and Kyle would have gotten over it someday.

"Nah," he said, and it wasn't just to comfort Kyle. As far as he knew, zombies didn't starve. At least, they didn't in the movies. Those two gross fucks would be down there moaning and groaning for years to come. "They'll be fine."

Kyle sighed. "I guess I should get some of my stuff so we don't have to come back here tomorrow."

Eric followed him upstairs, and the house was eerily quiet once they were away from the basement. He watched as Kyle packed some clothes and necessities, as well as some other things - pictures, primarily, something Eric hadn't thought of at all. Kyle took his copy of The Great Gatsby out of his bookshelf and slipped the pictures inside. Eric didn't see what they were of, but he was willing to bet they were of his family and probably Stan. Asshole.

"I should take a picture of my mom with me when we leave," Eric said, the tenderness in his voice surprising even himself.

Kyle looked up like he'd forgotten he was even there. "Oh, yeah, you should. You'll want something to remember her by if we live through this."

It was comments like that that made Eric wonder if Kyle truly believed in a cure, but he didn't say anything. But once they moved on to the bathroom and Kyle packed a bunch of girly looking hair products, he couldn?t hold back from joking any longer.

"Planning on doing an Herbal Essences commercial sometime soon?"

"I don't use that crap, and no." Kyle sighed and ran his fingers through his curls. "I've worked hard to get my hair to this point and I'm not turning back now just because the world is ending."

"You're such a fa-"

"Wait!" Kyle said, shoving Eric's shoulder to cut him off. "Do you hear that?"

There was a soft creaking in the ceiling, almost as if... "Footsteps."

Carefully, they entered the hallway and followed the sound to the entrance of the attic. The footsteps seemed to stop as soon as their own did, and for a moment Eric thought they imagined it.

"Kyle?" It was soft, hard to hear through the ceiling, but it was there, and certainly not imagined.

"That's my brother," Kyle whispered, looking too stunned to move. "That's Ike's voice! Ike!"

He jumped to grab the drawstring and yanked the ladder down, and sure enough, crouching at the top of the stairs was Ike Broflovski. Eric couldn't believe it. Ike nearly fell off the ladder in his rush to get down, and the moment his feet touched the floor he launched himself into Kyle's arms.

"You're alive!" he cried, unashamed of his tears. "I thought I'd never see you again, I thought I'd die up there, I was so scared, I-"

"It's okay, shh, you're safe now. We all made it back from the camping trip - we're gathering supplies to leave town and find a safe place to stay. Have you been up there this whole time?" Kyle asked, his own eyes shining.

"Ever since mom and dad... I didn't stay long enough to see them, you know... I don't think they ever figured out I was up here. Are they...?"

"We put them in the basement. I couldn't just..."

"It's okay. I don't blame you," Ike said, composing himself quickly enough and detaching from Kyle. "Except it's probably better to kill them. Where are you staying? The whole town's overrun - I could see it from the window."

"Cartman's basement."

Ike looked at Eric like he only just noticed him.

"A Jew hiding in an attic, big surprise there, heh," he said, having felt the need to comment on that since the moment Ike came into the picture. Kyle rolled his eyes.

"Can we go?" Ike asked, turning back to his brother. "I'm starving, I ran out of snacks two days ago."

"Pack some stuff from your room first. We're not coming back here, so take whatever you think you'll need."

While Ike was doing that, Eric kept an eye on Kyle. He certainly seemed happier now that he knew his brother was alive, but all Eric could think about was whether or not a twelve year old kid would be a liability. Ike had proven himself useful in the past, though, and having a genius around couldn't hurt. And Ike was pretty okay, for a Jew (probably because he wasn't born one).

And if Eric could take an ounce of credit for helping Kyle find his brother, he was prepared to milk that for all it was worth. He was there for it, not Stan. He made Kyle happy, maybe even for the first time. It felt good, better than it felt to simply get a rise out of him.

On their way back, they only had to take care of two walkers, both of which were Eric's kills. The machete proved to be very useful, and he got to pretend he was protecting Kyle. Even though the Jew was capable of doing that himself, Eric knew he was too focused on Ike to properly dispose of any threats, at least for the time being.

Sneaking back into the basement without waking anyone up was easy enough. They grabbed some bread and peanut butter from the kitchen before heading down, but Ike barely finished his sandwich before falling asleep next to Kyle.

Eric watched Kyle wrap up the bread to keep it from going stale, which he thought was ridiculous until it occurred to him they needed some food to bring with them. After a minute or so, he realized Eric was staring at him and looked up.

Eric quickly pretended he was looking at the wall instead.

"Hey Cartman?" His voice wasn't angry, or even annoyed, which took Eric by surprise.


"Thanks for coming with me. I couldn't have done that alone."

"Yeah, well, couldn't have you running off to die." He was glad it was too dark for Kyle to properly see the blush on his face. "You owe me one now, though, remember that."

"Right. Well, goodnight, Cartman."

Eric dreamed again before dawn came, but this time Kyle was fighting by his side rather than acting as a sex slave, and he sort of liked it better that way.