The virus spread quick. Although it only spread by touch, its infection rate was over 70%. Once in a body, it replicated quickly, taking up position in the brain and spinal column, but the symptoms didn't start for two to three weeks.
No one knows what the creators of the virus might have called it. We referred to it as "The Jerk." The first symptoms were small spasms in the arms and legs. A quick wild jerk of the muscles. Glasses of water were knocked off tables, walls slammed into, loved ones hit it the face. The spasms would increase over twelve hours, ending in a full body epileptic-like fits. Then something resembling a coma.
When they started, there was of course confusion. Followed by fear. Attempts at containment came way too late.
I suppose my agoraphobia and my hypochondria and, especially, my thixophobia saved me. Lucky me.
I imagine the hospitals were the worst. When "The Jerk" suffers began to wake up from their sleep, dead-eyed and blank, there must have been amazement quickly followed by panic. Once they wake up, hosts quickly find another host and begin to... well, couple. They join, sometimes just embracing each other, but often trying to get inside each other. It does seem to matter what orifice they use... or what they use to enter it with. Thinking about it makes me shake and want to vomit.
They "join," and are then joined by others, until they become a mass of bodies. Eventually the mass will being to move, to seek out other hosts and other masses. I haven't seen it myself, but I hear there is a mass in New York now that stretches from 33th street to 92nd street, from river to river. Just a swarm of slightly shifting flesh and limbs and heads. I imagine there are larger ones in the Midwest and in Europe.
Eventually they will become one. I don't know if right now they are just waiting or if it's just that travel becomes difficult once they reach a certain size.
The Jerk talks to itself. It uses the neural pathways of its hosts to become something greater than the sum of its parts. Giant thinking things. I can't imagine what something made up of a million brains, thinking as one, must think. It is like trying to know the mind of God.
It has been three years, holed up in this cabin in upstate New York. I have not heard from another non-infected in over six months. That was Jonathan. The last thing he said over the CB radio was that he wanted to know, that he just had to know what it was like. That he was lonely.
I'm lonely too. I wish it would end. I would take my own life but I am a coward. I would join them, touch one and then wait until The Jerk rewired me to be one of them, to be part of it.
But I hate being touched.
So now I wait as the human race evolves into something else. Before my eyes, I am becoming the paramecium and every one else is growing feet and lungs.