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Weird Bottles, Mystery Meat, and Love in a Time of Zombies

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Crazy Dave had lost his damn mind.

Well, that was like saying water was wet and the sky was blue. But this time, _this time it was even worse. He had given the owner a drink bottle he had found on the side of the road. The ownere wasn't too keen to drink it himself, so he threw it away and thought nothing of it. But as it turns out, this isn't just any drink, oh no. We realized it that night, when the zombies came in droves even though they hadn't wanted to attack the owner's house in quite some time. Not since the whole time travel debacle.

The shrooms didn't know what hit them, and were almost ambushed because they weren't prepared. But they figured it out quickly and safely defended the house.

I had been staying up late to watch them a bit. I didn't even notice I had done it until I heard a gentle voice call out, "Peashooter?"

I turned. "Oh, hey Sunflower. Why aren't you asleep?"

"I could ask you the same thing. If Crazy Dave is going to keep bringing the owner random zombie attractors, we definitely need to be getting our rest. C'mon, the shrooms have it under control," she nudged her head in the direction of our sleeping quarters.

"Right, right. I'm coming," I did yawn a bit. I guess I was more tired than I thought.

When we woke up the next morning, I realized just how right Sunflower was, because our alarm clock was the owner waving his arms in front of him at Crazy Dave and saying, "Oh no. No no no. Don't you even think about bringing that mystery meat in my house. You don't know where it's been, and the last thing you brought to my house attracted zombies like no other!"

"But it's so good!" Crazy Dave took a huge bite of it. The owner gagged. "I think we could make some great tacos from it!"

"No, no tacos. No nothing. Get that away from my house and don't..." he was cut off by Crazy Dave throwing the mystery substance into the dumpster. And this time it didn't even take until night because almost instantaneously the Zombie Alarm went off and everyone took their spots.

Peashooter was right in front of Sunflower. "You're good, you know. You called this last night, remember?"

Sunflower just shook her head with a smile. "Nah, I've been around since the early days. I've seen what trouble Crazy Dave can get himself, and thus us, into. It's how it's always been, and how it'll always be." A ray of sun came out of her while I shot at a zombie that was coming our way. "I mean, he did get himself tied up, lost in time, and a bunch of other things. Sometimes I wonder why the owner even continues to be his friend."

Our row wasn't being attacked so I had a moment to respond. "Probably because if not, then Crazy Dave wouldn't have any friends?"

"Yeah, yeah, true. And the owner is too nice of a person to let that happen." The last of the Zombies was defeated and it was getting dark so we switched posts with the shrooms. I turned my neck to loosen it a bit, then yawned and headed right for the sleeping quarters. I was getting comfortable when Sunflower placed herself on the foot of the bed. "I hope this isn't like before, days and days of this. I hope the mystery meat or goo or whatever it was was the last of it."

I nodded in agreement. "Yeah. I hope so too. We're losing men out there left and right. I don't think even the Tall-Nuts can handle it." I closed my eyes slightly, "I swear to God, Crazy Dave better not show up tomorrow or I will attack him myself."

Sunflower giggled a bit. Peashooter was cute when he was angry. "Now, now, don't be too harsh. You don't want to make a mess for the owner when people ask how his body ended up on the lawn."

"Ah, you do have a point. I don't want that to happen. Okay, I'll just be really, really angry."

"Much better. Sleep tight, and hopefully we don't have a big day tomorrow." Sunflower said before heading off to sleep herself.

"Yeah, hopefully," I smiled.

We had a big day. We definitely had a big day.

Now, Crazy Dave, thankfully, didn't show up this time to wreck more havoc on the house. However, unbeknownst to us, the drink bottle and the mystery meat were still in the trash. We should have realized that last night. And, apparently, word spreads fast in the zombie community, because they came even quicker and in more quantities than they did yesterday.

I let go of a breath I was holding as our row was safe for a moment. I felt Sunflower's roots gently tap mine as she asked, "Are you going to be okay? I can ask the owner to dig you up if you need to."

I was going to try not to have to use that. "Yeah, I'm fine. We've been successful in keeping the zombies at bay, it's just a lot of work, you know?" I could hear her petal rustle, indicating she was nodding in agreement with me, "But if I start feeling worse, I'll definitely take you up on that offer, don't you worry. I know my limits."

"Okay Peashooter," she said as she produced some sun, "I just don't want anything to happen to you. I don't know what I'd do without you."

I turned to get a glance of her, but she had moved on to talk to the other plants around us. Could she really...? Nah, that was silly of him to think. She just saw him as a friend. Right?

He didn't have much more time to think about it, as the zombies started to come down his row again. He put on his game face and did his job. He wasn't costing his team the row.

The garbage truck came the next morning.

That meant the bottle, the mystery meat. It was gone. The zombies were soon to follow, shambling along behind the garbage truck. I shook my head, they were something else. But since things were going to be calm again, there was something I had to do. I tapped Sunflower's roots with my own.

"Oh, Peashooter!" she smiled as she saw my face. "What's up?"

"T-that thing you said yesterday, about not being able to live without me. That's just because we're friends, right?"

She bit her lip. "Well, not exactly. I mean, we are friends, don't get me wrong. But I would be lying if I said I didn't have feelings for you. You're a great guy and any plant would be lucky to have you, so I guess I would want to be that plant, if you'll let me."

My eyes lit up. "Are you kidding?! Of course!"

She nuzzled her petals up to my stem. "Awesome."

It was most certainly awesome.