I jumped out of my chair and yelled “WHAT THE HELL DO YOU MEAN HUMAN!?”
“Don’t worry man,” Emanuel said, “We didn’t kill anyone. We get all our food from the morgue. Only John Doe’s of course those aren’t going to get buried, just cremated.”
I stood there flabbergasted thinking to myself, “How could something that delicious, filling, and making me feel so complete be from meat off a human…and why aren’t I feeling sick by just the thought of eating a person…”
I sat back down resigned, not knowing what to say I simply muttered, “Human…but why? There has to be other meat somewhere!”
Jasmine said, “Oh I’m sure there is, but animal meat still makes you feel empty inside, even though you can’t eat any more because you’re so full. With human meat, it’s like…you’re filling that void, the void that helps you stay healthy, fulfilled, and satisfied. I found out by following my dreams. My friend owns a funeral home, and he got the ‘meat virus’ and awoke to find himself gnawing on one of his clients. He said he never felt so good, even when he didn’t have the virus. Luckily the stiff he was gnawing on what a crematory body, otherwise he may have had to explain why half of the guy’s stomach was missing. Anyway, the point is; I believe that this virus made us to where the only food we’re supposed to have is meat, but the only meat that will truly satisfy our hunger is human flesh.”
I start shaking my head trying to process this new information. She was right, the only time he felt TRULY full was tonight. And that was just a few bites, I could only imagine if I had eaten the entire thing. I didn’t think I’d have to eat for a week if I’d eat all of this. Thinking on that, I decided to ask “How often do you eat then? After only a few bites I felt full.”
She frowned, “We eat several times a week, you’ll come to find out that we don’t have to eat as often as people that don’t have the virus, but when we do eat we eat a lot in comparison. If you only eat what you have, and go home now, you’ll be hungry in hours.”
“That’s impossible,” I said. “I feel like I’ve ate a steak dinner!”
Susan spoke up, “Dear…that’s because it was your first taste. I think it’s part of the virus, trying to trick you to thinking you’re full, let you wander only to find yourself crazed with hunger. That’s what happened to me. I ate only a couple bites, freaked out like you did but instead of staying asking questions, I left. A few hours later all I could hear is my neighbor’s slowing heart beat while they dozed off. I found myself banging on their door trying to get in. All I could think of was his heartbeat, all I could smell was his sweat, and all I could see was his skin. I could already taste him without him opening the door. When he opened the door just a crack, I nearly slammed into the door out of anger. It made me crazy not being able to get to him. By sure luck, I had a clear thought come through my head, and it told me to come back here to eat more.”
The room was silent for a little while before she spoke again, “I think I would have killed that man. I would have eaten him alive if that thought didn’t come through when it did. I couldn’t imagine what I would do if I had done that.”
Emanuel put his arm around Susan as she started crying. “It’ll be okay darlin’, you didn’t kill that man, remember that. You may have wanted to, and almost did. But you were able to control yourself enough to come back here with us.”
He looked up at me and said, “My story is like Susan’s…but I didn’t stop. I attacked a thief in an alley. He grabbed some woman’s purse, and she was shouting for someone to stop him. I looked at him running away from everyone down the alley, and all I could think about is biting into him. It was almost like a lion watching his prey run. The chase thrilled me. Jasmine found me while I was eating. I think she saw the crazed look in my eyes when I started running and recognized me as one of you guys. She ended up chasing after me when she saw what I was running after. She couldn’t have stopped me though. From what I remember, I was running faster than I normally could. But when she did catch up to me, she joined me in feeding on that man. It was almost like we bonded that way. I somehow knew she was like me. Anyway, long story short. We got rid of the body after my ‘crazy’ went away. She looked like she was in control for a long time before I was able to control myself.”
My jaw dropped, I stammered “Was….was the man trying to get in a door when you finally caught up with him?”
“Yeah he was…wait…you weren’t there. How’d you know that?” Emanuel questioned.
“Because that’s what happened in my dream. You explained it just like how I dreamed it, but instead of seeing you as the person chasing the purse thief, it was me. Like we switched places or something. I woke up with my lip half chewed off.” I said.
Susan looked up, “Was this last night?” she asked.
“Yeah, somewhere around 9 or 10. Wait…you don’t mean..” Emanuel said.
“Yeah…I had the same dream, except I was in your place instead. I woke up frantic thinking I had killed someone!” She said scared.
“So we were all there..though 2 of us were dreaming we were there.” Jasmine said sitting back putting her fingers to her chin in a thinking manner. “It sounds like we may be connected at some level. I wonder if it’s because the virus changed our DNA to be similar in the aspect of hunting. I once saw a TV show where certain animals can be hundreds of feet apart from each other, and know when one of their pack mates picked up on a scent. I wonder if it’s something like that.”
“Wait, are you saying that we’re animals? That we’re now a pack?” I asked confusedly.
“Something like that. We all know that something has changed in us, that we can only eat meat, that we get ‘crazy’ when we don’t eat enough food…Similar to a lion, if they don’t eat enough, they will attack anything that moves.” She said.
We all looked at Jasmine, and Susan said “Are there more of us, or are there going to be different packs?”
“I’m not sure, but if there are different packs we need to be careful. If I’m right, things will get territorial really quick around the city.” Jasmine said.
“So not only are we carnivores, but we’re animals and in a pack that could be in fights with other virus carriers?” Emanuel said.
“Exactly…and let’s be honest here. Not everyone knows that human flesh is what fulfills us, but when they do…we’re going to be hunted down like animals.” Jasmine said.
We all sat in silence with that in our heads…