I am trying to add some dramatic ‘zombie-virus’ suspense to a short-story about boy-meets-girl young love, which already has an unlikely (but not the first sort of) antagonist
The boy named Ethan is acting out in anger in front of Debbie, the girl, because his father is away fighting in the Middle East (the story is set in the year when The Iraq War started in 2003). Early in the story, Ethan lashes out at a child named Gordie who deems revenge on Ethan for interfering, implied to be a personal and hateful feeling against Ethan
Debbie isn’t patient with Ethan after that,but she doesn’t give up on him, they still walk around when he feels better. One day she takes Ethan’s dog out with her, the dog has fleas and Debbie has lots of bug bites the next day. At school Debbie’s bites worsen, later Gordie finds her in a strange state where she is starting to EAT Ethan.
Ethan’s internal struggle
Gordie’s Grudge (The child who comes between a couple, like in Irwin’s Atonement)
Debbie’s Zombie Form (which is a reminiscent transformation for the dog in Stephen King’s Cujo)
So far it doesn’t seem to be realistic, a sudden zombie-outbreak in a love story. In any other general story. Could I make the story great with these three elements?