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Bubonic ! (standard:horror, 1004 words)
Author: Michael Lance KerstingAdded: Sep 21 2005Views/Reads: 2231/1301Story vote: 0.00 (0 votes)
Strange things happen at night

He was an  overweight man, in his late fifties going bald, and was
sitting in the living room reading the local newspapers. 

“Listen to this, honey” he said to his wife Joy who was in the kitchen
preparing dinner“ 

”Three mice infected with the bacteria responsible for bubonic plague
apparently disappeared from a laboratory two weeks ago. Authorities 
have launched a search, though health experts said there was scant 
public risk.” “It is assumed that if the mice had escaped from the lab, 
they would have already died from the disease” he paused to catch a 
breath,” the possibility of theft prompted the Institute to interrogate 
two dozen of it's employees and conduct lie detector tests. The FBI 
said they were investigating . 

“Two weeks,!" and the bastards didn't tell us anything “ said Strutters
incensed, “they tried to cover it up! “but is that legal? “His wife 
asked curiously I don't think , but they will give us the usual crap 
that they didn't want to cause panic!' But the lab they mentioned  
”Jeez ,Marv that's not far from here!, “ “That's what I was thinking” 
“And did they say Bubonic? Isn't that the plague that almost destroyed 
Europe during in the fourteenth century?” asked his wife. “Something 
like that,” He replied evenly,” But I think they have found a cure for 
it by now ,at least, I hope they have”” “Let's hope so !” said the wife 
nervously “for according to the history books as I recall reading in 
High school, people infected died like flies at the time, about 50 
million in three years all over Europe, I think it was caused by fleas 
from infected rats, wasn't it?” Yeah, It's a scary stuff, allright “he 
said scratching his huge stomach and letting out a loud burp from the 
beer he was also drinking. “What are the symptoms? she said ,I can't 
remember” “Here, lemme go check it out” 

With much effort, sighs and grunts from his over weight, he got up and
went over to the computer room nearby. He log on to a popular search 
engine and pressed “bubonic plague symptoms” in the search box .After a 
short while he exclaimed, ' Hell bells, honey “ he cried, “,this IS 
scary stuff, all right , here's a quote from that period” and he began 
reading aloud, 

." The Black Death was so named as sufferers displayed a range of
symptoms including the lymph nodes swelling with pus and breaking the 
blood vessels under the skin. a small swelling under the armpit ,sudden 
fever; spitting blood and saliva (and no one who spit blood survived 
it). this caused internal bleeding and turned the skin black. “Neither 
physicians nor medicines were effective. Whether because these 
illnesses were previously unknown or because physicians had not 
previously studied them, there seemed to be no cure. There was such a 
fear that no one seemed to know what to do. When it took hold in a 
house it often happened that no one remained who had not died. And it 
was not just that men and women died, but even sentient animals died. 
Dogs, cats, chickens, oxen, donkeys, sheep showed the same symptoms and 
died of the same disease. And almost none, or very few, who showed 
these symptoms, were cured.” 

“He switched off the computer and sighed, “Wow ! “ He cried, ”Could you
imagine if something like that hitting the States today, honey?” he 
said gravely. “I don't want to imagine “ she replied the wife setting 
the table, “It's gruesome, just thinking about it gives me the creeps!” 
she added, “here, come eat your dinner” It was then they heard the 
scratching at the door, “What  the hell was that , Honey?” He asked 
suddenly “Sounds like scratching” “Scratching? Hold on, Lemme go and 
check.” “Be careful” she warned. 

Strutters got up and walked to the door. 

The scratching stopped. 

He slowly unlatched the door and looked round but saw nothing. 

“Must be the wind.”he exclaimed with a shrug closing the door ,he walked
over to the dining table and sat down. “Marv, I am scared,” said the 
wife,” What if one of the rats had gotten away?” 

“It's hardly possible,” he replied, “ they sent in the exterminators and
those guys are pretty efficient with all the high tech stuff  these 

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