A girl has to survive the repercussions of a global vaccine gone very wrong.
I Call Them Monsters
I had to get home ASAP before they closed the garage if not it would be dark and way scarier than what you may think when you visualize a pretty young woman walking alone in the dark, late at night, in the bad part of town. OK, I might not be all supermodel gorgeous but I’m cute enough or so my pervy boss keeps telling me. Now its not like I choose to work in a bad side of town; the reality of the situation, my reality was that my whole town had become the bad part of town. The living feared the night because that was when the dead would come out to play and hunt. They could not take the sunlight which was a blessing to a world that no longer believed in anything but survival.When the epidemic or the plague or whatever you choose to call it infected half of the world’s population many of the believers called it Armageddon but there was one big difference, their God and mine as well didn’t come for his people as we expected, so this was not the Armageddon or we were all too flawed to ascend. I choose to believe the Armageddon is yet to come and secretly I still pray to my God at night and thank him for each breath I take. Some nights when the noise and the pain outdoors is too loud and nerve wracking I pray for deliverance, to be rescued by some angel and be taken to heaven , away from this desert world , who resembles a hell more than my beloved planet earth. Everything started on July 4th 2046 with the big announcement for a cure to cancer; a vaccine that would not only cure those infected by the killer disease but also one that could be administer to a person to made him or her immune to the disease , kind of like the measles vaccine. Because it was such a strong vaccine people had to be 18 years old to get it or be currently suffering from cancer. The world all over rejoiced and America got the medal for saving the world from the undiscriminating and horrible disease. Dr. Jeremiah Basarab, the scientist who discovered the cure received the Nobel prize and made a bucket-load of money. Well the vaccine did cure the cancer, killing the virus and pretty much everything else that made humans human. I was 13 years old at the time and my father had been one of the scientists who worked for Dr. Basarab. Before he disappeared he told me one thing “ Never take the vaccine, things are not as they seem” That was just before my parents left for the Nobel prize celebration. My mother came back alone but that was not surprising because dad used to live at the Basarab Labs more or less, the only thing that was different this time around was that he never returned and nobody knew what had happen to him. Even to this day we never found out what happened to dad. Soon after his disappearance the vaccine went global ; the epidemic began a little over a year after that. It took 17 months for the first symptoms of the epidemic to come to light. The thirst for blood usually came first, the vaccine consumed the blood faster than the body could produce it or something like that, the side effect was not seen as such a bad thing for the people who suffered from the Lamianic anemia as they called it back then. If being cancer free meant you just had to undergo some blood transfusions then most of those with the side effects were not worried. That was what the news told the public at the time but I fear the news were never accurate. As the side effects progressed and those infected lost their humanity the world became chaotic. Talk of wars and retaliation filled the media. As it was by January 2048, all the first people who had been vaccinated were feral predators. Millions of humans became little more than cattle and because my town’s mayor had decided to be revolutionary and given the “good fortune” that Basarab Labs was located in our town, he had all his police force and governmental employees vaccinated as soon as the vaccine had been made available; meaning two years into the epidemic we had no police, no government, and no law to protect us. The news reported that the virus as they called it was similar to AIDS in that you would get infected if you came in contact with any blood or body fluids. Dr Basarab hailed on national television that he would find a cure for the disease and fix the anomaly at any cost. He offered a public apology and soon after all regular media ceased. The world was infected with the virus who had entered their bloodstream to cure them , very ironic. Many people try to run away but fell victims to the monsters.Some people call the monsters vampires because they drink blood and can’t go out in the daylight, others called them zombies because to tell you the truth blood taking is not the worse of all they do to their victims. Yep they eat us so to me they are monsters and that is what I call them. Our home back then had a panic room where my mother, my brother and I lived in for about a year after news of the epidemic began. Our father used to be quite paranoid and had stacked our house with loads of food in case of an end of the world scenario. The thing was his loads of food did not last more than a year. A group of techies and hackers who were not infected had created a website that reported the things that were going on out there. Many of the networks ceased their programming and the satellite transmissions from small groups began to surge.It was through one of these satellite news source that we learned the monsters could not abide in the sunlight. The first time we stepped outside of the panic room and looked around will forever be etched in my memory. Destruction, filth, desolation and death was all over the place. My nerdy brother Peter was 18 and one of his friends ran the top satellite station so he contact them first when we looked around our home and found it destroyed. The monsters had taken over our town no doubt about it. That was when we moved into the City Hall building where Peter’s friends had taken residence. I was 14 by then ,scared and unsure of how long we could survive as humans.
Jump to the present and here I was walking home at a very brisk pace, nineteen years old and probably risking myself by staying out past curfew. The world had evolved into a new reality. We were no longer the majority no longer allowed to walk freely and guess who was king of the Hill? Dr. Jeremiah Basarab. He had created a vaccine to lessen the effects of the virus in the body but of course it was so ludicrously expensive that only the very wealthy who weren't past the point of no return could benefit from it. As I understand it if you are in the beginning stages of the disease when the blood thirst hits then you can get the cure and remain somewhat conscious of your actions. More vampire than zombie I say; still bad, still evil, still dangerous to humans. Carlos and my brother Peter became sort of the leaders of the rebellion against the monsters and they were positive Basarab had orchestrated the whole thing. Peter was sure father had discovered something that got him killed. Our mother was murdered one rainy day as she made her way back from gathering supplies outside. It was very cloudy and rainy and one of those bastards that had taken the cure had slit her throat and gorge on her blood. One of my worst days and the day we realized we were no longer 100 percent safe in daylight. Soon after mother's death we moved into a more secret and secluded location. One of the first guys in the rebellion force, Fergus, knew of a very big bunker/ bomb shelter that his family owned in the woods and we moved there. His family had all been killed so he knew nobody else knew of the underground facility. The rebellion was made of young people because most of the adults in town had received the vaccine. Our group was approximately 35 people when I moved into City Hall with Peter and my mom. Today we are 125 people and are always trying to communicate to find survivors. Those who have received the cure, the vampires as we called them can take blood without spreading the disease and sometimes I think getting caught by the feral monsters is better because at least you will die, get eaten, gone; but the vampires like to enslave humans to drink from them repeatedly just like you would from a cow.
I was part of the rebels, I was supposed to know better but being at my job at the survivalist post was important. If any survivors heard our transmission they would make their way to us and we could take them to safety. My boss Robert was a big burly guy who had always believed in the conspiracy theories of the world so he is one of our oldest members, because as he would say, “ I knew that vaccine was bogus I knew that was some evil shit, you can smell the evil in that bastard Basarab.”
So at 35 years old Robert was one of the old men in the rebellion and even though he was a bit crazy and scary strong, I trusted him, well most of the time. He had his moments of insanity when he just babbled to himself or heard some voices but all in all he was decent, perverted as all hell but decent. Some humans, crazy at it sounds, went to Basarab Labs to offer themselves to the vampires. My best friend Lacey was amongst them. She hated living in poverty and in not the best of conditions so she decided she rather be a well dressed, well fed slave than a survivor. To her she was surviving but we knew better. The vamps treated their slaves very poorly worse than animals. Yes she had food plenty but was passed around and used as a food source and a whore. We knew because two of our current residents had been slaves and escaped barely alive.
The wind was cold and howling at my back offering the rotten smells of the street gutters right into my nostrils. Two more blocks to go and maybe 20 minutes left of light. Damn it I’ll never make it unless I run and with a growl sounding not far behind me I did; I ran.