The psilyg infection
The trail of mucous led from the body to the drain in the basement's floor. The grill was half clogged with organic matter and congealed fluids that the gloom failed to keep fully hidden. The smell that arose from the drain was a cloying rot that burned my nostrils. That was where the creature had taken Annika and the others. And the whispering, while barely audible, was everywhere around me. It was speaking to me in a language that felt familiar, but i couldn't quite make out the words. It was a voice, or perhaps many voices, all chittering and rasping and thick and wet at the same time. The trail had led this far and the first of the victims sat sprawled here, one of the guards judging by what was left. Too late for them, but perhaps the others could still be saved. I knew my own time was running short too. Where the creature had sliced into my forearm was tacky and puckered. When I touched it, the skin stuck to my fingers and came away in long translucent tendrils. Just like the creature's own flesh. There was no pain, but the nausea threstened to undo me. The patch was spreading fast, already up to my shoulder. And with it the whispers were growing louder. There was not much time left. If anyone could help, it was Annika, but she was already below. I'd seen her get dragged down along with the others. I could only hope I could get to her before this infection took hold. I'd seen what the infected became. It was my own father who had attacked me after all, after the infection had taken him and he'd turned into that creature. Spiderlike, sluglike, unnatural and alien. But not the eyes. They had remained the same. My father's eyes looking out at me from that tangle of mucous, tentacle and bone. They didn't blink. And it was my father's voice that whispered to me now: louder, more insistent, inviting me down.