Tuesday, May 16, 2017

False Flag Zombie

She ran into the alley. The goddamn thing followed her. A 227th generation drone, spherical, elegant, its humming turboprops tucked away, onboard AI constantly correcting for its ridiculously shitty aerodynamics. It looked like a fucking photomicrograph of a virus magnified 500,000 times. Which was ironic.
Because the thing was designed to inoculate.
Well, more specifically, The Virus. We’ll get back to that.
Anyway, like I was saying, the goddamn thing followed her, cornered her, grabbed her left arm like an abusive high school gym teacher, and stuck the needle in. After a mist of disinfectant, of course.
Then withdrew the needle.
And misted her arm with a numbing Something. Procaine. Bactine, for all she knew.
Then it hovered back, about a meter. Studied her.
She held up her left hand and gave it the finger.
The middle finger on her left hand above her left wrist, a wrist encircled with a blue rubberoid bracelet resembling the wristbands of ancient music festivals.
She abused the orb in her usual trash-talking fashion. A limited, if expressive, vocabulary.
“Goddamn you, you stupid fucking thing, I’ve already been vaccinated! See? You goddamn stupid fucking …”
She bent down, picked up a random hunk of metal, then threw it at the damn thing. It easily ducked. Just a zip to the left. Studied her for a second. Then hovered away with the faint humming sound of 500 bees trapped in a coffee can.
“I’m a citizen!” she screamed. “I have rights!”

Sure you do. On an old yellow piece of paper in a glass case somewhere. Parchment. Whatever.
But The Virus was serious business.
A constantly mutating pathogen that—wait for it—was the scientifically proven etiology for full-on zombie behavior! (Based on double-blind, peer-review studies under the aegis of the National Center for Disease Control. Seriously.) Flesh-eating, brain chomping, gibbering rage, etc., etc.
Rage? Ah ...
You’re probably thinking that sounds like that old “movie.”
Thing is, the zombification induced by the actual real-world Virus did not resemble the dreams of Romero, Raimi, Boyle, et al.
Their fictional, filmic zombies had a digital, on-off, all-or-nothing quality. Brother, you either is a zombie or you ain’t. Dead, living, undead. The peas never touched the mashed potatoes.
But the real-life zombies had irritating complications, interpenetrations, grey areas, and contradictions.
The Virus didn’t always present. In asymptomatic mode, you could carry The Virus and go about your merry like any other Joe Shmoe until the inevitable breakout. In the manner of herpes, the zombie symptoms could randomly present—and then go dormant again. When a breakout broke out, there were a full range of manifestations from “Aggggh, he’s ripping out my intestines,” to “Bob, I don’t think you’re not really contributing to this meeting.”
And there was a cure.

27 gawkers witnessed the woman’s humiliation and recorded it with cams in their eyeglasses, wrists, and nostalgic “fones” the size of Pop-Tarts. 157 security cams also captured the outrage from a host of angles.
The “woman” turned out to be Alice Vivian Wallace of Huntington Beach, California. Artist type, one of those neo-punk "authenticists" who scorned NT. Not that good, but her face let her get away with murder. She’d been doing some artsy-fartsy shit involving Gorilla Glue and acetone and had killed her pretty blue bracelet in the process. The sentinel didn’t read it when she came out of the bar. So it chased her into the alley and poked her. Just a goddamn accident.
Or so they’d like you to believe.

Mr. Jones did something to his face. An expression like a constipated iron monkey. Or deep sadness and concern. It’s open to interpretation.
“I’m angry. I’m so angry. You want to watch this one more time? No. You don’t. I don’t. It’s an ugly scene, people. But we’re going to watch it.”
He replayed the footage of Alice’s humiliation for his 575 million followers.
He rolled his eyes and spread his hands with idiotic incomprehension. Theater folks call that “indicating.” But Mr. Jones followers would use the term “sincerity.”
“That’s the question nobody’s asking!” he screamed. “Why are They doing this? Why?”
Following in the footsteps of his ancestors, Mr. Jones went on to speculate.
A zombie plague appears out of nowhere at the dawn of the 22nd century? How is that even possible?
Before 2117, these so-called “zombies” only existed in “movies,” “TV” and various other primitive media platforms. There were no zombies in real life.
Are we supposed to believe a bunch of corrupt Hollywood filmmakers predicted the future? Were they prophets, ladies and gentlemen?
Mr. Jones found that highly unlikely.
But what if this was a false flag operation?
Mr. Jones found that far more probable.
And went on to advance his thesis.
The zombie plague was engineered! A manifestation of our deepest fears—fears no doubt planted in a systematic disinformation campaign stretching back to the last century, perhaps before!
Who benefits?
Mr. Jones answered his own question.
“The government, that’s who! These so-called “zombies” give ‘em total control! They get to track us! They get to put their poison in our bloodstreams! They get to destroy our very identity as free Americans!”
He replayed the clip of Alice’s vain protest.

I’m a citizen! I have rights!

Mr. Jones did that thing with his face again.
“No Alice, you’re not. We’re not “citizens” anymore. We’re lab rats!”
Then he qualified that statement.
If Americans continued to run Their little maze, these decent folks would continue to be lab rats. If Americans fought back, they’d be, you know, Americans again.
Mr. Jones went on to point out that increased rates of autism and impotence were directly, uh, correlated to the forced vaccinations for the zombie plague. Some scientist somewhere proved it. They ruined his life, of course.

“And you know what happened next. The idiots who streamed his shit ripped off their bracelets, burned down the clinics, and blasted the sentinels to pieces when they went after their children. Pretty soon, the zombie plague was unstoppable and civilization went to hell. So, to answer your question, that’s why we’re in this goddamn cave.”
“It’s all my goddamn fault,” sobbed Alice.
             He put his arm around her shoulder. Felt her warmth, the shuddering waves of pain shaking through her.
“That’s ridiculous,” he said. “Just stop.”
Of course, it sorta was.
But he didn’t want to say it.

Marty Fugate. Copyright 2017. All rights reserved.

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