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Bumps: Part I This work is considered exceptional by our editorial staff.

It began with one bleacher at the Horton Softball Stadium. There under the bleacher in row 10A I lay “resting” in the rusty crevices of the place where soon an organism would sit. I waited alert like a tiger hunting his prey, slowly and carefully. I precisely drew my plan out. Soon I would be passing through my victim’s orifice with the cruel intentions to take it over in the harshest way possible. I would soon enslave the host with the weight of a fatal disease, one that could scar them for the rest of their miserable lives. I was a dormant death, and while being dormant made me prepared it also made me greedy. Yes indeed I am greedy, greedy for a new host, greedy to feel the rush of an infection, and I had an urging need to kill.

If I had only knew that my urge was soon to be satisfied for just a second later I was swept up into the dirt particles of a fingernail. Now I lay among the grime of the enormous nail and I was ready to be transmitted to a victim. Ready to infest a human with the most horrible symptoms ever known to doctors and patients, I the Variola virus was read to invade.

* * *

Jill McCormick had won the softball tournament; she felt a rush of excitement as her family cheered from Row 10. A smiled gleamed across her face when her coach cheered in excitement. Glancing back at her family she saw her Uncle Tim bellowing something like “Jill We’re number one!” Once Jill slapped hands with the opposing team, she bolted like lighting toward her dad.
“That game was one for the ages”, he exclaimed hugging his daughter. Jill looked up at him with shining eyes. He jokingly pinched her cheek. She noticed that his fingernails were a bit repulsive but just shrugged. I guess not a lot of men care about their nails she thought.
“My baby won gold!” Jill’s mother cooed. Jill swiftly ran to embrace her mother, smelling her intoxicating scent, which she calls “perfume”. Jill turned back to her team to thank them for a great season of softball and shaked hands with the coach and her teammates.
For the first time in a while Jill was filled with excitement and felt accomplished. She inhaled the spring air around her, which tickled her nose. Jill felt innocent, but poor Jill who was naïve, had no idea what had just transpired in the last few minutes, was anything but innocent.

* * *


It only took a few minutes for me to find a new organism to plague with my many horrid symptoms. I was under the nail of human and then passed along to a cheek of a young girl and then quickly and easily inhaled by that young girl. There through her naval cavity I navigated. Through mounds of mucus and all the way down into her respiratory system. My plan was just unraveling as I spotted the first of many host cells. I infected the cell with haste. Carefully making my own personal viruses that were like me in all ways. I was ready to take on this host as my own; I was ready to multiply using my host’s cells. It was like taking candy from a baby, it was quick and done with ease. Once my other viruses were fully-grown they too would infect another cell, and then another, and another. Destruction was never this easy.

* * *


Jill still felt that rush of excitement from last weekends win. Even though she felt a little dizzy since this morning she kept her head up high. Knowing everyone knew about her softball win. It was a school day of high fives and Way to Go’s from her fellow peers.
By sixth period she didn’t want to talk to anyone. Her dizziness had led her almost being unable to walk or talk. She almost felt like she was about to puke. She also had strange aches in her legs even though she was certain she hadn’t hurt them recently.
As the bell rang all Jill wanted to do was to trudge home and flop into bed. When Jill said she felt sick Jill’s friend, Fred, placed his hand gingerly on Jill’s forehead.
“ Jill,” Fred exclaimed, “your head is basically on fire!” Jill felt her head, and it was abnormally warm. “We better get you home,” said Fred.
Fred’s dad offered Jill a ride home. Jill accepted for she feared she couldn’t walk home even if she wanted. Once Fred’s dad dropped Jill off her mother came out to meet her.
“Honey, What is wrong?” Jill’s mom asked. “I don’t know Mom, I just don’t know.”

* * *


Two cells. Four cells. Eight cells. I multiplied and infested the cells of my host.
Death was slowly and surely engulfing my host and her pitiful defenses. There was no chance that my host’s lymph nodes could filter me out. There was barely any chance that the organism’s white blood cells could over come the power that I had already built up. Already my victim was feeling the affects of me. It already has a fever because of me and soon it will feel the other affects of me.

* * *

Jill was taking a searing hot bath. Her muscles relaxed in the bubbly concoction of bath water. She had stayed home for 6 days now with her severe temperature of 101 degrees. Just 2 days ago a rash had appeared on her that consist of tiny scarlet spots. She had been puking out her insides all day and right now all she wanted to do was sleep.
Her prayers were answered when her mom asked her to dry off and get to bed. Jill did as commanded and tucked her tired self in. She tossed and turned trying to escape her relentless fever. It was basically torture trying to rest because whatever was inside her would not let her have one moment of stillness. Eventually she stopped turning and slowly drifted off to sleep.

* * *


While my host rest it is very unaware that a relentless and merciless virus like me never sleeps.



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