Ibis Tree QUT/Botanic Park 

You have followed Mary into the Gardens via the George Street entrance. On the way, you have passed the QUT sign, and stand now at a tree. When you look down, the pavement is littered with Ibis droppings. Thousands of birds crawl through the tree, squawking.

Mary clutches your hand. “My parents are here,” she says. “In these gardens. You promised to help me find them.”

Did you promise her? Or have you been dragged into a crazy chase, trying to survive the living dead? Was it possible students did leak this virus?

You hadn’t noticed before, but Mary smells sweet. Blood-thirsty sweet.

She drags you down the path, but within a few metres, you slow to a limp. A ravenous hunger takes over. Suddenly, you see Mary for what she is – a huge hunk of flesh. Or maybe more of an entrée…

Mary screams at you to move. Her eyes flare red with anger. They could be kind of juicy, really…

The Ibises swoop, the tips of their beaks nipping at your head. And you think, what would an Ibis taste like? Chicken, maybe?

You fight your blurring vision. The scratch, you think. What has Mary done to you? Has she infected you? Looking down at your ankle, you see your whole leg has turned green. Your body is shutting down. You can’t control your arms and your thighs feel as if they are made of lead. You move forward, and your feet drag…

Mary turns to you. She’s lost her fight. She’s not screaming anymore. In fact, she’s turning the same sickly green colour as you. She sways where she stands and moans softly.

You stagger towards each other, your brains shutting down, instincts to eat flesh taking over. You have one last coherent thought.

Will Mary’s parents be zombies by now, or will they be alive, hiding from your kind?

You limp towards a bandicoot on the path ahead. Have Mary’s parents been snacking on them, you wonder, as Mary follows your lead.