A small town is in crisis following the reanimation of two of its dead townspeople.
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A sneak peek from the author, Daniel Russell
They stood, shoulder to shoulder, at the reinforced window not believing the scene before them in the room beyond. They could see a toppled instrument tray lying on the floor. The sheet that had once covered Janet's body was now lying on the floor next to the autopsy table. It was as if Nurse Barnes had disappeared.
As they were creeping forward for a better look, Janet came from somewhere to their right. She hit the window and slid across its smooth, cool surface producing a squeaking noise similar to that of a squeegee on a dry windowpane.
The five people standing at the window jumped backwards as Stu and Nurse Bartlett screamed in unison. Blood from the wound on Janet's neck left a wide, red smear across the glass as she slid sideways and fell to her knees. She looked up at the spectators beyond the glass. Black disks in a sea of red stared through them sending a chill up Dr. Brooks' spine. Officer Powers, Dr. Brooks and Alex slowly crept forward while Stu and Nurse Bartlett stood near the opposite wall. They both wished that the black tiled hallway were wider.
"What do you make of this, doctor?" Powers asked out of the side of his mouth not wanting to lose sight of the dead and bloodied woman beyond the glass. He hoped that the answer from the doctor was going to be a good one. He had his own opinion of the scene. He hoped he was wrong.
"Wasn't in any of the books I studied at medical school," Dr. Brooks replied.
"That wasn't the answer I was hoping for. What do you want to do?" Powers asked the doctor. As far as Alex, Stu and Nurse Bartlett were concerned, any answer that meant opening that door wasn't going to make any one of them a winner on 'Let's Make A Deal'. It seemed that in this situation, there was only a 'Door Number One', and it led straight to hell.
"I'm going to open the door," the doctor answered without much thought. Alex turned and looked at Stu and Nurse Bartlett. They looked back with dread on their faces, trying to become one with the wall. Officer Powers absentmindedly played with the handle of his revolver.
"Officer Chambers told me before he left that whatever I was to do I was not to enter that room," he said as he turned to face Dr. Brooks. Janet stared up at them through the bottom of the window with dead eyes. Her black tongue was testing the cool surface of the glass.
"When Officer Chambers left, she was dead," the doctor said. "Now she isn't."
"And why is that Doctor Brooks?" Powers asked. "You haven't had any good answers so far."
"I don't know... medicine isn't perfect," the doctor replied. It was a lame answer, and Powers knew it. He was sure that the doctor also knew it.
Janet struggled to her feet. She backed up and made a run for the window. Slamming into the reinforced glass with a sickening splat, she fell to the floor out of view.
"Well, maybe that did it," Officer Powers said as he put his face to the glass and tried to peer over the edge of the lower sill. Fingers clawed at the bottom edge of the window frame as Janet pulled herself up onto her knees. She pressed her once pretty, now bloodied face against the windowpane. One black eye stared at the people in the hallway. It was as if she was beckoning them to come in and play.
"Okay, we need to do something to help her," Officer Powers said, not sure of his decision.
"I'll unlock the door and let you in," Dr. Brooks said as he pulled the keys on the chain away from his belt. "Stu, you go with Officer Powers to help him hold her down."
"Wha...," Stu uttered. The rest of the word was stuck in his dry throat. Alex walked down the hallway and took a fire extinguisher from the wall. He returned and stood next to a nervous Stu Frazier as Dr. Brooks put the key in the lock. He unlocked the door and turned the handle.
"Ready?" he asked Officer Powers and the orderly.
"Not really," Stu said with trepidation in his voice. Dr. Brooks opened the door.
Janet Barnes stepped away from the window and watched as the two men entered the morgue.
Sarah Bartlett was still trying to become a part of the back wall when Dr. Brooks closed the door and locked it. Stu suddenly thought that closing and locking the door was not part of the deal. The doctor left the key in the lock as Alex stood behind him, the extinguisher at the ready.
Stu Frazier suddenly wished that he had taken the night off. He walked slowly over and picked up the sheet from the floor thinking that they might be able to tie it around Janet to subdue her. He made sure not to lose contact with her shark like staring eyes and readied the sheet as Officer Powers approached the bloodied woman near the window. Janet stood, wavering as the two men tried to figure out her next move.
"Okay," Officer Powers said, his arms extended, the palms facing Janet, as if he was approaching a crazy person. He thought that he was in control of the situation. Little did he know Janet had been in control, since he, and Stu had joined her in the room. What was going to happen next would be something akin to feeding time at the local zoo. Janet leapt.
"Open the door," Officer Powers yelled just before Janet Barnes hit him squarely in the chest. Stu dropped the sheet and retreated to the farthest corner of the morgue he could find. He slid down the wall until he was sitting with his knees nearly touching his chest. He had his arms wrapped around his shins and he was screaming like a child.
Daniel Russell retired from the United States Navy as a Chief Petty Officer following 23 years of service. He has two adult children, and currently lives in his hometown of Taft, Ca. He is enjoying the slower pace of life that a small town affords. Writing is a hobby that he has always been interested in, and THE LAZARUS JAR is his first novel.
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Book Description Infinity Publishing, 2012. Paperback. Book Condition: New. book. Bookseller Inventory # M074146831X
Book Description Infinity Publishing, 2012. Paperback. Book Condition: Brand New. 362 pages. 8.40x0.90x5.40 inches. In Stock. Bookseller Inventory # zk074146831X