My Grandma would say that Beatrice Frasier is a pistol, and if you haven’t met her, do it while you can. One of the survivors from Snyder’s was over last week, telling us a story of coming upon Beatrice upside down in her car, laughing. All around her, legs, arms, torsos and heads were spread out like discarded bowling pins. Her first words when she saw him were, “I think I pulled too hard to the right.”
They got her car upright and someone over at Fred’s fixed her up so she was running again. Beatrice is apparently a demon on wheels and is not only the oldest resident of Trumbull Valley, but also has the highest kill count.
I was fortunate to be able to do a short interview with her. Bob transcribed the tape, and the text follows.
Voice 1 identified as Jamie McCraren, County Librarian: Okay, you’ll just talk into this.
Voice 2 identified as Beatrice Frasier: Do I clip it onto my shirt?
Librarian: No ma’am, it will pick up your voice sitting on the table. Are you comfortable? Can I get you something to drink?
Beatrice: Please just call me Beatrice, and I’m fine, thank you. What should I talk about?
Librarian: Well, let’s talk about how you’re getting along these days. Where are you staying? Actually, no. Tell me, Beatrice, how old are you?
Beatrice: Goodness. What month is it?
Librarian: If my record keeping is correct it’s the end of February.
Beatrice: Hah! I missed my birthday. I turned seventy-eight the first week of February.
Librarian: That makes you the oldest survivor in the County. I suppose congratulations are in order. [laughter]
Beatrice: I don’t know if you should congratulate me. I guess I’m just too darned stubborn to die. Too much to do, yet.
Librarian: Did you know that according to the survivors at Snyder’s, you’ve got the highest kill count in the Valley?
Beatrice: [cackle] Well, I’ll be damned.
Librarian: Can you tell me how that happened? I mean – I can’t imagine my grandmother head-shotting zombies.
Beatrice: Well, I’ll tell you. Shortly after the Mister and I got married, he decided that I needed a ‘getting around town’ vehicle and he bought me my Annabelle.
Librarian: I’m sorry, who?
Beatrice: Annabelle is my 1964 Chevy Impala. Oh she was such a beauty when I brought her home. Do you know that car has been running all of these years and has never once broke down? I credit good old American engineering and my mechanic Fred for keeping her in such good shape.
Librarian: I imagine she’s a little banged up now after running all of those zombies down.
Beatrice: She’s made of US Steel, girl. I probably have to touch up the paint a little, but she’s solid as the day I got her. Anyhow, I like to take her out still for Sunday drives. Harold and I drive down the country roads and if there happen to be any of those pests nearby, we just swerve a little to put them down.
Beatrice: My husband. The Mister. Harold Frasier,
Librarian: I didn’t realize that your husband was still with you.
Beatrice: Oh he is! I’ve got him stashed in the trunk right now.
Librarian: [quiet gasp]
Beatrice: [chuckle] In his urn dear. Don’t want anyone stealing my Harold.
Librarian. Oh. [nervous laugh] I’m sorry for your loss.
Beatrice: Don’t be sorry, girl. Harold was luckier than any of us, he went to his reward before any of this outbreak happened. Seeing our nephew Henry shambling down the road with half his head missing would have given the poor man a heart attack!
Damn! I can’t remember what we were talking about now.
Librarian: You were telling me how you ended up with the highest zombie kill count.
Beatrice: Oh! Yes, that’s right. Well, I take Harold out for drives. Annabelle is a bit noisy. She doesn’t purr like the new cars do. It’s more like she announces that she’s there so everyone can take a gander at her. As such, those dead buggers all come running. Annabelle’s got a touchy wheel. I can’t help if she likes to run them over.
Librarian: [snorting and laughing] I see.
Beatrice: It’s amusing at least. It’s like bowling for zombies, but with my car. Mitchell doesn’t like me going out every day. Says it’s too dangerous. So I am shocked – SHOCKED that I have the highest count when I can’t even take my drive more than once or twice a week. Well, I do make it a point to clear up the hordes in the road. Those things are a menace. Do you know that they infested Edith Mortenson’s house just last week? Why, I told Mitchell if he’d let me go out and take care of them while they were still wandering around, we wouldn’t have to listen to all of that moaning and groaning at night.
I think I’m going to drive by with Annabelle on my way home. We might be able to draw some of them out and I’ll take care of them then. I’m sure Harold won’t mind the detour.
Librarian: Well, just make sure you’re careful out there, Ma’am.
Beatrice: Oh goodness why? I’ve lived a good life. Gotta go sometime. May as well have fun while I’m doing it.