placed the car in drive and began turning around. She was about to pull out on the road as she spotted Victor in the rear view mirror, waving one hand and shouting. Ashley slammed the car to reverse and began speeding toward him. With the brakes being applied hard the car began skidding on the gravel from the parking lot, coming to a stop just short of Victor. He flung the door open and got in. His head slammed back against the head rest as Ashley tried to drive the accelerator pedal through the floor. With tires squealing and gravel flying she left the parking lot with Victor screaming. “Fuck Ash, you almost run me down and now are driving like a maniac. You are scared shitless, what in the hell is going on.” “We got to move Vic, ain’t got time to diddle ass around.” Ashley said as the BMW speedometer was registering ninety and still climbing. “Slow down there is no way you can take those curves at this high rate of speed.” Victor said as he was placing the coffee in the cup holders. With the java in place he began removing the sandwiches as he said. “Ash that was the coldest diner I have ever been in. The people were awful pale and sickly looking almost like…” “Like they were dead.” Ashley said as she backed off the accelerator. “Yeah, like the zombies we see in the movies. Anyway tell me more about this Spirit Train. The staff fell silent and rushed the order through…” “Let me guess when you mentioned you were trying to beat the spirit train. They gave you the food free and wished you luck and hoped they never saw you again.” “Yep how did you know that?” Victor said as he was staring at Ashley in disbelief. “Leave my sandwich in the bag I’ll eat it after we get out of the dead zone.” Ashley said staring at the road in front of her. “Will do,” Victor said as he placed the bag with her sandwich in the floorboard. “Now tell me why this is called the dead zone, how you knew what went on in the diner and about this Spirit Train” “Explaining the train will answer all those questions. The Spirit Train is just that. The cars are being pulled by engine number 7. It carries the spirits of the dead to judgment day. You can see those spirits swirling around in the passenger cars as they pass.” Ashley paused as she turned the radio back up, nothing was heard but static. Pointing at the radio she said. “That’s the reason this is called the dead zone. This is where the dead are transported to and from. As you hear you can’t get a radio signal and we have satellite radio. Check your phone if you don’t believe me.” After taking a bite of his sandwich Victor picked up his phone from the center console and looked at it. “I will be damned, you are right.” Victor said. “If I don’t get us out of here by three thirty am we both will be damned. Like those in the diner.” She picked up her coffee took a sip and placed it back just before going into the first curve. She began to ex-
plain the special events that happened every year at this time. “The Spirit Train pulls engine number 666, the Grim Reaper Express through here once a year. The Spirit Train doesn’t stop at the crossing except on October thirty-first at three am. Once the train stops the passage to voodoo country is blocked. Engine number 666 then disconnects from the rear of the train and travels to the diner car. The dead people in the diner are those damned to hell. That hook up takes place at three thirty sharp.” “Honey I hate to tell you this but you are a day early. Today is the thirtieth of October not the thirty-first.” “That is where I screwed up also. Once I saw the Dining car I realized we left on the thirtieth, after midnight the calendar flipped to the thirty-first.” “Ok so we forgot that small detail. Do you really believe all this voodoo bullshit?” Vic said after swallowing the last bite of his sandwich. “Vic you need to take me serious, your life depends on it.” Ashley shouted then in a calmer voice said. “That’s the reason the waitress at the diner never waited to see you again. They all are hopping you beat death and not suffer the faith they are. Any man, woman, or child in the dead zone when the Grim Reaper arrives dies. “So that’s why we got to be out of here by three thirty am.” “Yes do you believe now?” “Nope and I’m beginning to think my mom was right. I should have never married you as your family is a bunch of devil worshiping Cajun heathens.” Victor barked. “I can’t believe you said that after the night we have had.” Ashley said as tears were streaming from her eyes. Through her sobs she said. “You would rather die, trying to prove me wrong.” “They only way for you to see that all the bullshit your grandmother has been feeding you since you were a child is a pack of lies from the devil is to face it. You would rather tell me that I am wrong instead of proving it.” “If I prove it, you will die.” Ashley said as the tires were squealing as the curves were becoming sharper. “Ash, you use that excuse as a way out of proving it. You don’t want to admit that your devil worshiping Cajun heathen grandma is off her rocker. The only way to prove who is right is to return to the diner. We shall fight the zombies and wait on the grim reaper together.” Ashley pulled up the emergency break as she spun the wheel. She released the brake and floored the gas pedal. The tires were squealing, the smoke bellowing in the air as Ashley was spinning the car around. “I hope my grandma has a few more favors left, if not you just sealed your fate.” She hollered at Victor as she sped back toward the dinner. Ashley slid the BMW to a stop at the diner door. She sprang from the car, rushing for the diner door. Victor was close behind and entered through the door Ashley was holding open. “Hey my lawyer will be contacting you about the divorce.” Victor said.