Fool’s Hand: Part V

A rebellion forms against the Corrupted

BURKE BISCHOFF

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 Baethan found his mind completely scattered between no less than 195 people. They were all gathered in a large auditorium, arguing amongst themselves and letting their minds wander.

Baethan was processing everything from each person in the massive group. Hundreds of voices were cascading in his mind, most in languages he could not understand. The sheer amount of information that he was registering was far too much to handle.

But Baethan’s mind relaxed in an instant as he felt all of the activity in the room suddenly stop. All of the members gathered in the auditorium had drawn their gazes toward a central mahogany podium, behind which stood a stoic looking man in a navy blue suit.

“Ladies and gentlemen, the sooner we can come to an unanimous decision, the faster we will be able to respond to this crises in our own countries,” the man said as he looked upon the group.

“Now, we have not been able to fully determine the primary cause of this epidemic, but through extensive medical analysis, we can conclude that it is viral infection that is spreading through food and water sources around the world. Based on our study of people who have come into contact with this virus, common symptoms for the early stages include an acute fever, paleness, subconjunctival hemorrhaging and multiple connected bruises that run along the body. Symptoms of the later stages of the virus include a type of schizophrenia, aggressive behavior and … a type of physical immortality.”

Everyone in the room started to yell in his or her own respective language. Different emotions came from each of them – all at once, Baethan felt doubt, confusion and great amounts of fear flowing through his subconscious.

“Ladies and gentlemen, please control yourselves!” the man said as he waited for everyone to quiet down. “We have received many reports of people in the later stages of the virus behaving violently against anyone around them. Even after many types of restraint, some even lethal, the afflicted would still behave with hostility. We received a report of a woman decapitating her husband to keep him from attacking their children. However, police confirmed in the report that the man’s body remained mobile and continued to act aggressively.”

Baethan heard nothing as the entire auditorium fell into a deathly silence. The man continued.

“As a proposed course of action, I would like to suggest to all an act of containment,” the man said. “We can gather every one of our citizens who has not contracted this illness into different strongholds and keep them away from anyone who has been infected. It also gives me great pain to say that after many tests, there is no known cure for the affected and their unusually violent behavior.”

Baethan felt each member of the group beginning to grow restless and impatient with the information they were hearing; some of them began to get up from their seats.

“Please, let us focus,” the man said. “We have been able to determine that only certain areas of the world have food and water that is contaminated. I want to suggest a regulation on these resources to each of the strongholds. Let us all take this up in a vote after we decide what is best for our people.”

Baethan felt all of the senses he experienced from the crowd gradually becoming numb as Charisma pulled his subconscious from all of their minds; soon he felt the calm and quiet that meant he was back in Charisma’s realm.

“It’s horrible that so many people have become The Corrupted, but if all of those leaders are able to keep everyone away from The Corrupted, then no one else has to die,” Baethan said. “Right, Charisma?”

“So you say,” Charisma said. “Their plan may give them a vague sense of comfort, but hear my words: He has been able to demolish many obstacles before Him in other worlds, and your world’s inhabitants are no more special than the others.”

Burke Bischoff can be reached at [email protected]  

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