The Pack

In 2008 I held a contest on the Permuted forums where members were tasked with finding Empire “trading cards” embedded in old posts. Those who did got to pick names for the sideshow zombies in Empire’s End. The following excerpts are from those rotters’ introductions, with the winners credited in parentheses.

In life the Strongman had been called Jordan. An artist, he had
designed all of the elaborate tattoos that adorned his massive bulk. (Bret Jordan)
Claud and Chevis, the Siamese twins…In death they found that two mouths for one stomach was a luxury. (Bret Jordan)

Walsh had been the name of the horned Dwarf…he was able to squeeze himself past the others in a feeding frenzy and get what little he needed. Sometimes he was able to get into a barricaded building when the others couldn’t, slipping through a duct or crawlspace to ignite chaos among the living huddled inside. (Todd Walsh)

Thom, the four-armed Geek, used to bite the heads off of infected animals. It was a wonder he hadn’t infected himself before Eviscerato turned him. He still liked to pull the heads off things. (Thom Brannan)

The Fakir had never known his name. He was little more than a cheap imitation of the traditional Sufi mystics, but he had graduated from firewalking to feats of suffering, spending his life in a haze of drugs and pain; he awoke once to find “Regret cuts deepest” tattooed into his flesh. Apparently he’d entreated the Strongman to ink the words in his skin. Angry at himself, he’d tried unsuccessfully to carve it out with a razor... only later would he learn the Strongman had used an infected needle. (Brett H. of Oh-the-Horror.com)

Lee had juggled the fiery torches. In life, when he could spare it, he’d fill his mouth with grain alcohol and blow fireballs into the air. Now his belly was always saturated with fuel. (Dale L. Murphy)

The Petrified Man had been a reluctant performer, forced into the life by poverty and loneliness. A genetic defect caused his connective tissue to ossify when damaged, and the fusion of joints had led to his moniker in life. Undeath’s ceaseless dance of decay and regeneration had resulted in ossification beyond anything seen in the living world. Murphy had been the given name of this strange man of bone; he, however, had never known it. (Dale L. Murphy)

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