Silas Moore has been dead for about 10 years, but it hadn’t interfered with his running of a funeral parlor with his equally dead brother Elijah. Whenever someone came to buy a coffin in advance, Silas would always tent his gaunt, colorless fingers in delight. “Wonderful! Perhaps they’d be interested in joining the ranks of Smokewood’s living dead? It is a community badly n need of new blood.”

Silas wasn’t lying; in addition to himself and Elijah, only a handful of undead graced the area with their presence. There was Smathers the zombie, passed out drunk on cerebrospinal fluid on any given day. A couple of secretive ghouls lived in the hills, and a vampire rancher who would come into town only every fortnight.

When the client declined, as they inevitably did, Silas would smile wanly. “It is, as they say, up to you. But should you wish to join me in the divine hereafter of living death, the table is set.”

Elijah, for his part, refused to acknowledge that he was dead and would only allow that he was “getting on in years.”

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