Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Space Zombies again?

Many of you might notice that an ex-Paladin zombie graces the cover of my science fiction/science fantasy eBook -  The Freelancer Chronicles Vol 1: Apex Predators

In this blog post I will explore why and how I implemented them into the story.

First off: Why?
I placed space zombies into my book to show the dichotomy of sentience and perceptions. First off we have a monster which is normally viewed as just a monster (the classic zombie) and generally nothing more. When I placed a religious and pious and good man as their unexpected leader (see here for more on that man) I've created a situation where the monster strives to still be a creature of faith. The man in question, Joshua Hughes, takes on a responsibility for all of the zombies as he strives to control them and to evolve them. He realizes that he can create a people without sin after viewing the Zom-Becks normal behavior as an extension of the host organism which tries to survive.

The ramifications and true story of how a mold became sentient and started to possess the living and to animate the dead is one of the central sub plots.

Second off: How?
There is precedence in nature: Currently science has identified parasites such as toxoplasmosa gondii which modify behaviors of their host bodies. Scarier still there is the Ophiocordyceps camponoti-balzani fungus which is in the Brazilian rain forest. From the link: "The fungus species can infect an ant, take over its brain, and then kill the insect once it moves to a location ideal for the fungi to grow and spread their spores."

And considering it is a vast galaxy that we live in with all types of strangeness... this is perfectly conceivable and can be downright scary.

The Zom-Becks evolve and develop different abilities. Joshua Hughes actually gets called a Zombie Lord.

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