Patient Zero

A photo taken during a set decoration photo shoot for the short film “Grow the Fuck Up!”
The image captures the essence of “Never Diddle the Dead: Patient Zero”.
Photo taken by Colin Mills.

“Never Diddle the Dead: Patient Zero” is a short story involving short vignettes.  It has been written in the twisted comedic style that is typical of “Angry Bear Film Productions”.  Warning: Story involves graphic violence, sexual themes, gore, and a vomit inducing lack of good taste.  Reader discretion is strongly advised.  Don’t say I didn’t warn you.

It Begins

As with all things, there is always a beginning.  History is littered with stories of tragedies and horrors.  Many of those horrors begin with a simple intention, often a good intention.  Although, one might argue, are intentions born of ignorance and vanity ever good?  There are consequences that come from meddling in the unknown, particularly when optimism outweighs precaution.

This was the case with Patient Zero, or Patricia Hemsworth.  Born with a disease, Hutchinson_Gilford Progeria Syndrome, which is associated with premature aging.  At the age of 23, Patricia displayed physical maladies most often seen in women in their 80s or 90s.  Her life expectancy did not look promising.  Since birth, she had yet to experience the vitality or effervescence of youth.  With the grim reaper at her heels, Patricia was desperate for any solution.

Such a solution presented itself in the form of an experimental virus, affectionately nicknamed the “Revival Strain”.  Patricia was admitted to the “Saint Lazarus Institute” medical research facility in Mount Gambier, South Australia. Early tests on Patricia came out negative.  They showed no noticeable effects.  Only during a freak interaction with Patricia’s heart medication, did the virus begin to mutate.  The virus embedded itself permanently into her cells, and began to excrete chemicals that counteracted the debilitating actions caused by her genes.

Patricia began to “de-age”, and within weeks, took on the appearance of a woman her true age.  The transformation didn’t stop there, her entire physical being reached peak performance.  Patricia couldn’t have been more fit.  The virus had stabilized within her cellular structure.  In sight of this miracle cure, doctors overlooked the virus’s innate tendency to mutate.

It took Patricia no time to stretch her wings and fly.  On top of her body’s increase in energy and strength, her libido shot through the roof.  Her virginity was the first thing to go.  There wasn’t a doctor in the lab who didn’t wake up at least one morning with a stupid grin on his or her face.  She worked her way through the facility’s staff faster than a fat man through cheese-cake.  The entire facility transformed into one non-stop high energy rave-like orgy-fest.  Optimism in the virus was at a high.

Patricia didn’t show a single negative symptom, and to everyone’s surprise, the virus annihilated any disease she came into contact with.  There wasn’t a single STD capable of survival in that woman’s body.  As you can probably guess, the facility’s staff were eager to start a wide spectrum of clinical trials, as soon as possible.  Government regulation and bureaucracy be damned!  This cure was too hot to be contained.

Over the course of the virus’s time on our unfortunate earth, it took on countless forms.  That was until a cure was found.  In its early days, its victims often suffered from an uncontrollable lust for flesh, in more than one form.  Sex lead to cannibalism, much like Vegemite sandwiches lead to Kangaroo cage fights.  Don’t ask me why Australia works that way, it just does.

Tests began almost immediately, and history will never forgot the unpredictable side effects of the “Revival Strain”.  What came next, after Patricia’s new-found vitality, brought new meaning to the phrase “fucked to death”.  Those who lived through those horrid times learned quickly, that one should never diddle the dead… and vice versa.

Jason Lipstein, Veterinarian and Conservationist.  Southern-eastern Australia, eucalypt forests.

Australia is unique in the world, for its exclusive population of most of the world’s marsupial population.  Kangaroos, wombats, quolls, thylacine, and the great Koala.  All distant relatives of North America’s majestic possum.

The government, in those days of past, took great care in the conservation of these unique species.  Protection was granted against threats such as poachers, industrialization, pollution, and the takeover of foreign invasive species such as the sinister cane toad.  Cane toads… *shudders*

These government agencies took great pride in the success they had garnered over the decades.  Although, the Australian government had severely underestimated the power of human vanity, that and the immense ambition of the pharmaceutical industry.

Jason Lipstein, to his friends, was a humble man.  He asked for little, and always came through on his promises.  Jason was soft-spoken, honest, and thoughtful.  He loved animals, and animals loved him in return.  The man was involved in the writing of legislature protecting local habitats.  He wrote a book on the habits and migrations of poisonous invertebrates.  Over the course of years, he helped to shut down 80% of Australia’s Kangaroo cage fights.  In connection to this, he disrupted the country’s entire Vegemite industry.  This resulted in widespread incidents of dry bagels.  Nobody ever accused the man of being perfect.

In his own backyard, and abroad, Jason was known as the “Koala Whisperer”.  Only his closest friends knew his secret; he whispered to the koalas, because he didn’t like to startle them.  Believe it or not, koalas appreciate the gesture.  They are simple creatures.

A real world fact: a common disease suffered by koala bears in the wild, is Chlamydia.  As with humans, it is transferred sexually.  Also much like humans, koalas like to fuck, and fuck often.  Carnal urges will bring about the end of man and koala, so it’s been foreseen!

A particularly brutal strain of Chlamydia had begun to ravage Southern Australia’s outback, leading to widespread blindness and infertility within the koala population.  Jason’s heart ached for the plight of his furry friends.  Concern, was elevated to panic, which evolved into desperation.  Jason’s hopes began to fade, up until rumours found his ears.  Friends of his, within the world of pharmaceuticals, gossiped amongst themselves of a miracle drug.  A substance created in the bowels of the “Saint Lazarus Institute”.  Jason was already familiar with their work.  In the past, he was able to procure experimental stimulants through the institute.  Back at a time when koala populations had fallen drastically, Jason was able to give them a boost through the use of these sexual stimulants.  This increase in sexual activity had most likely lead to an increase in the spread of Chlamydia, but Jason didn’t like to think about that.

Like the stimulants of old, this new cure – the Revival Strain – increased libido.  Unlike those past drugs, this substance could cure any and all STDs.  Jason’s friends teased him with tales of consequence-free orgies, and nerds finally coming out on top, or on the bottom, if that was their preference.  Jason was less intrigued by tales of philander, and more with the strain’s curative potential.  Jason had little time or interest in romance; his first love was mother nature, that and Japanese hentai.

The Mission.

Eucalyptus leaves glistened in the morning dew, as a rosy sun peaked above the horizon.  The outback was awake and alive.

Jason sat atop a rocky incline, legs dangling freely over its fissured edge.  Surrounded by a collage of waxy leaves, he munched away on his bagel sandwich.  The conservationist wiped Vegemite off of his chin as he peered down on the forest below.   It had been a long month, but a productive one.

His small team of able-bodied tree huggers had worked miracles.  They managed to inoculate an estimated 4000 individual koalas with the revival strain.  The first week had been slow going.  Their original plan was to inoculate individual koalas manually, via syringe.  Accidents make for hasty teachers, and one such incident proved their initial strategy impractical.  An eager fourteen-year-old high school volunteer, Grace, had succumbed to her own bubbly enthusiasm.  Desperate to aid a newborn Joey, Grace climbed high into a Eucalyptus tree, and well beyond her skill level as a climber.  One slip, and she found herself dangling from a branch by both hands.  Indifferent to Grace’s good intentions, the mother koala nibbled on the teen’s fingers until her grip gave way.  Grace fell from the tree, and straight into the mouth of a crocodile.  Horrified by the carnage, half of Jason’s team, some twenty people, quit that day.

Most people in Jason’s place would have felt discouraged, but the conservationist felt fortunate.  Lessons are learned through tragedy, and the sooner it happens the better.  It’s gets the mind working, and speeds up progress.  The koalas would benefit from Grace’s sacrifice.  From that point on, hand injections were out of the question.  With twenty less volunteers to feed, they suddenly had room in the budget for a crop duster.  A gentle dusting of the forest with revival strain did the trick.

The virus went to work quickly.  Symptoms of Chlamydia vanished.  More than that, the koalas became extra frisky.  In all of his life, Jason had never seen such an elevated level of breeding productivity within a species, let alone the promiscuous koala.

Dropped from Heaven Above.

Jason walked amongst the eucalyptus trees.  Their leaves brushed gently against his wool sweater, as he took in the fruits of his labour.  Up in those same trees, the koalas got to work themselves.  Trees shook with vigorous humping.  It was music to Jason’s ears; like a seventy four piece orchestra, made up of nothing but maracas.

He took a seat on an old tree stump.  Eucalyptus leaves showered down on the conservationist like a leafy green show fall.  In the distance he heard a voice calling.  A moment later, he could see a tiny coloured form flutter in and out of existence, as layers of falling leaves blocked his vision.  All at once, voice and form came into alignment, as Jason recognized his colleague, Roland, running straight in his direction.  Roland was a hefty man; a man who loved and respected the creatures of the earth more than he loved and respected his own body.  Running and shouting were not items in Roland’s skillset.  Jason had hired the man because he could sit in front of a computer screen for hours on end without getting up for a break.  He was the only man Jason knew, who colour co-ordinated his beer-cap with his catheter.

Poor Roland was giving it his all.  Jason was afraid the comms tech would burst a lung.  The man’s peculiar run was cut short, as something fell from a tree, hitting Roland on the head, and causing him to topple to the ground.  Jason couldn’t make out the object at distance; strangely, Roland didn’t bother to address the object, he just got right back up and kept running.  Jason was tempted to get up and meet Roland halfway, but he figured Roland could deliver the message once he reached the stump.  No reason both of them had to exhaust themselves.

As Roland drew closer, he was hit multiple times in the head by falling objects.  Jason couldn’t help but wonder, if his girth-like pounding foot-steps were dislodging something from the trees, but he couldn’t imagine what.  Only, once Roland was within fifty feet of Jason, did he recognize the form of one of those objects.  It was a koala bear.  One smacked the comm tech on the head, and hit the ground unmoving.  By the time time Roland reached the stump, the unthinkable happened.  Koala bears rained down from the leafy sky above.  First hundreds of fluffy marsupials, then thousands.  Like a plague brewed by God himself, koala corpses filled the air, and littered the ground.  They pelted the two men, burying them in grizzly gore.

Through panting breathes, Roland finally got out some words, “They… are… all… dying!.  “No fucking shit!” was all Jason could think to say.

Within a day, the entire population of koalas that Jason and company had crop-dusted and “cured” were all dead.  The outback reeked with death and decay.  Oddly enough, not a single predator or scavenger dared touch the corpses.  Not a single opportunist in sight.

Remaking a Legend

The night that followed was bleak.  Nobody in Jason’s camp could sleep, they all wanted to sleep, to forget the dead koala’s that littered the landscape, but no luck.  The bus sent to pick them up, would take a day or so to reach them.  Until then, all the conservationists could do, was distract each other.

A warm campfire, and hot bubbling Smores, were all the comfort they could assemble.  A freak silence lingered in the air.  The poor disheartened band stared into each other’s eyes through crackling flame.  Jason played a sorrowful melody on his old vintage harmonica.

The first person to break the silence was good old Roland.  He breathed in deep, and began to bellow out a classic Aussie tale of danger and dread.  The legend of the “Drop Bear”.  Weary travellers would tell of close encounters of a strange creature that would haunt the outback.  Massive Koala Bears, larger than a grown man, with sharp fangs and claws, born to tear flesh from bone.  These marsupials would hide up in trees, and drop down on unsuspecting victims, disembowel them and consume their flesh.

Being your typical socially awkward comm tech, Roland had no sense of timing.  Killer koala bears were the last thing his comrades wanted to hear about.   Jason, feeling his colleagues’ discomfort, intervened.  He pushed Roland off of his log, and gave him a few firm kicks to his ribs.  The rest of the party engaged in the pelting of Roland with hot and crispy Smores.  The burnt chocolate and molten marshmallow burned into Roland’s flesh.  From that moment on, Roland kept his stories to himself.

In the distant foliage, not a living thing made a move.  Other than the conservationists, no living animal remained.

Not a single fly or spider dared touch the flesh of the fallen koala… but something within their rotting flesh stirred.  The koala’s fur continued to grow out.  Their bloated corpses absorbed moisture from the soil beneath them.   Muscles hardened, as bones expanded, and jaws reset.  A moan escaped from the mouth of one koala, then another, as the sound grew outwards.  A deep hum resonated through the eucalyptus forest.

Mariano, a young Italian man who grew up dreaming of the wilds of Australia, and it’s strange and mysterious beasts, sat quiet by the fire.  His body shook as he squeezed his legs tight together, his balls in a vice grip.  Jason took notice and offered a suggestion, “my great uncle Sammy died of bladder cancer, from holding it in.  Food for thought.”

Mariano peered out into the woods, to the wall of koala corpses they had piled into a makeshift wall, only hours previous.  The camp ground had been covered in dead koala’s, and they had to put them somewhere.  Mariano could still hear the scraping of shovel agains’t bone, in the back of his mind.  He shuffled away from the fire, and struggled to lift his leg up and over the wall, for privacy.

Beyond the furry wall, was a ghastly landscape of yet more dead koalas.  It hit Mariano all at once, as he emptied his stomach.  Shame assaulted his mind, as he looked down at all the vomit coated corpses that lay by his feet.  He loved Koalas so fucking much, and here… he tried to push the image out of his mind.  The vomit was a momentary distraction for the building pressure within his bladder.  He looked around for a free piece of real estate by which to relieve himself.  There wasn’t a patch of dirt or grass absent a koala corpse.  Through heavy sobs, Mariano let loose his stream.  He let out a guilty sigh as he desecrated that which he loved most.

The Italian man’s piss went on, and it went on.  A lot could have happened in that extended moment, and alas, much did happen.  The Revival Stain had gone to work, and laboured late into the night.  The corpses at Mariano’s feet quivered, and convulsed.  Salty tears stung his eyes, blinding him from the inevitable.  Mariano winced at a sudden break in the hissing sound that his stream generated.  Something sharp and pointy broke upwards through the piss stream, with lightning speed.  A clawed hand grabbed ahold of the man’s penis.  It yanked with inhuman strength, as Mariano was tossed to the ground like a discarded toy.  A massive form climbed atop him.  With the body mass of a gorilla, its weight forced the air out of Mariano’s lungs.  The man struggled to no avail, as the beast had its way with him.

Never Diddle the Dead, and Vice Versa

Harmonica music sang into the air.  The not so marry band sat in isolated company, all indulging in their drink or drug of choice.  Anything to forget a failure that would surely follow them into the grave.  A hum rose up from the forest canopy.  It sang along side the harmonica, the song of death… or of love.  In the end, doesn’t love end us all, if but slowly?

Tree branches above them shook.  Leaves fell.  Jason peered upwards.  Glowing eyes peered back down at him.  The glint in those eyes was unmistakable to a man with his experience.  Jason yelled with exalted joy at the top of his lungs “they’re alive, they are fucking alive!”.

Jason’s sullen band all followed his eye line upwards.  All at once, they cheered in shock and awe.  They hadn’t killed them all, after all…

The koalas peered downwards, as they let out more awkward moans.  Firelight flickered in their lusty eyes.  Those hulking leaf munching brutes had tasted death, and it got them off.  The rival strain had mutated in the presence of trace quantities of the older stimulant, that had originally lead to the chlamydia outbreak.  Koalas hung from branches by bulging biceps.  The “Drop Bear” was myth no more.  They licked their sharp fangs, with sandpaper tongues.

The campers had broken out into song, all kumbaya, and no caution.  It was at that moment, that the “bears” began to drop.  The hulking beasts, penises and clitoris as hard as granite, landed straight onto their pray.  In horror and confusion, the conservationists cried out.  The koalas tore off their clothes and got to work.

A female koala held Jason in a tight full-nelson.  Her male companion eyed Jason up and done.  He then motioned towards his giant furry mutant penis.  The koala nodded at Jason.  The man shook his head in reply and whispered “It’s too big.”  With a discerning shake of a clawed finger, the drop bear disagreed.

The Koalas passed Jason around like a communal salad.  Everyone had a nibble, and then some.  They tossed him, and tossed him some more.

After hours of giant koala gang-rape, Jason found himself in need of a drink of water.  Funny, after hours of relentless horror, all he could think about was hydration.  Jason never dealt well with excessive heat, and all the fur… he was sweating buckets.  He reached out towards a leaf with his tongue, for a slight taste of moisture, while sandwiched between two male koalas.  Their fanged faces were pressed up against his, not giving him an inch, at least not in that way.  They breathed heavily into his mouth, with their minty fresh eucalyptus breath.

From that point on, things just kept getting worse.  The koalas seemed to gain strength and vitality, with each passing moment.  Jason couldn’t be sure, but he had the sinking feeling that many of his colleagues had thus perished.  He himself, prayed for death, that or a drink of fucking water!  He tried to distract himself from the horrible things that were happening to him, and the searing pain in his anus.  The only thing that came to mind was the theme song for an old television show, “Three’s Company”.

The song pulsated through his tormented mind, “Come and knock on our door…
We’ve been waiting for you…. Where the kisses are hers and hers and his, Three’s company too!”

Jason held onto the thought of that song – ironic as it was – while additional koalas took notice of him.  They piled on top of him, like slabs of salami onto sourdough.  Koala parts rubbed hard against his tender flesh.  He closed his mouth and eyes tight, as penises demanded entry.  Jason could feel a searing pain in his ear drums, on the verge of implosion, as two Koalas thrust into the sides of his head, like two lumberjacks running a saw through an old oak.  In an instant, all entry points gave way, leaving Jason’s head as little more than a gory pincushion.

The koalas screamed up towards the heavens, hungry for more.

Australia was a large continent.  Human populations never dreamt of the furry plague that would befall them.  This but one terror brought on by the rival strain, many more were to come.  The Zombie invasion was swift and powerful.  Many lessons were to be learned before the plague could be defeated.  One of those lessons, Jason Lipstein learned the hard way, never diddle the dead… or vice versa.

Jason Lipstein, death by Drop Bear Orgy.


Never Diddle the Dead: Part 1

Never Diddle the Dead: Part 2

Never Diddle the Dead: Part 3


You can learn more about the author, Chris Griffin, at About Me.