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The True Cure

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Here is one of the six tales. Each Tale is a clue for a golden ticket. There are six golden tickets in total, each representing each tale. Read the tale and find the clues to the location of the golden ticket. 

Starting Clue: Each Tale's clue ties to a book in which the golden ticket is hidden within. The location is in the Gail Borden public library's branches. 

six sinister stories that will fix
your darkest nightmares in this mix. 
Six Tales on postcards, each a part,
Of a puzzle to bind a journey to start,
Collect all the pieces, piece by piece,
Form the 2024 poster with eerie ease.
But there's more to these tales than what meets the eye,
Each one holds a clue for you to spy. 
Six golden tickets, one for each tale,
Follow the hints and you shall not fail.
Tickets hidden in books, you see,
At Gail Borden Library where they must be.
Read each story and find the hint, 
To where each golden ticket glints.
Start your hunt with this clue in mind,
A book in the library, the prize you'll find. 
Save the Date, Save the City, 10/19/2024,
Tickets on Sale June 1st, be sure to explore,
Your nightmares once more. 

The Story

The True Cure

Dr. H.H.Holmes, Z-Files LOG 5/03/2020, 17:00

 

Society is in ruins.

 

One week. Just one week was all it took for the whole of the modern world to collapse in on itself after the first sightings of the outbreak. When the news started covering it, there were but a few of the creatures running around in New York. Many thought too little of them at the time however, it just didn’t seem real to them I suppose.

 

I believed though… I could see what they couldn’t.

 

The second day was when the intensity of the outbreak began to skyrocket. In just under twenty-four hours, half the city had been turned into one of those things roaming the streets, their flesh a molten green and their eyes full of hunger and rage. Those that the infection couldn’t get hold of were killed off by none other than each other. Fortunately for me, on the third day, a group of scientists and I were evacuated to the City of Elgin, to a special safe zone on Chicago street where Zombie defences initiative, aka Z.D.I. were already being constructed in preparation for the oncoming hordes.

 

Once arrived, we were tasked with researching how to cure whatever was spreading along the East Coast.

 

Four days passed.

 

Every city along the East Coast had been wiped from the face of the planet. The American army used a special military protocol known as ‘Doom’s Day’ to try and obliterate the virus with force, using thermo-nuclear bombs on New York, Miami, and Boston… all of them, flattened and reduced to dust.  

 

There were no survivors nether Zombies or Humans.

 

But by the seventh day, tragedy struck again. An individual fleeing from the East was found to have bite marks all along his back whilst in transit to the West. But before the military personnel on board had shot him… it was already too late.

 

As the evacuation plane arrived in Las Vegas, every single passenger on board aside from the captain had been bitten.

 

From there, the outbreak swept through western America until the hordes were tearing and biting away at the thick concrete walls that were now surrounding Elgin.

 

Dr. H.H.Holmes, Z-Files LOG 11/07/2020, 11:31

 

Several months on, the city had lost a lot of ground to parts of the horde that had broken through some of the defensive lines, with a few mutations in their abilities to climb and leap causing them to rise over the walls in the hundreds. All the stockpiles of supplies in the city have almost run dry in the attempt to defend against them… anarchy awaited.

 

However… something that all the other scientists have failed to see is the utterly brilliant potential of these beings. When the hordes first arrived in Elgin, the ZDI had managed to trap a few, bringing them straight to the lab to try and hurry along the research.

 

But as the creatures were brought in, strapped down to metal platforms with thick lead pinions keeping them held down, I didn’t see monsters or zombies… I saw… the future.

 

Sadly, all the other scientists didn’t appear to share my view…

 

What was even more unfortunate, was that just three days later, all twenty of them had contracted the virus during the night, and I was forced to dispose of them by filling the lab with N, N-diethyl-meta-toluamide, the main ingredient in ‘zombie off’ with a mix of carbon monoxide. A potent gas to anything… even those that have turned.

 

Being the sole survivor, the ZDI agency were more than happy to allow me to continue the work alone. They had no other choice.

 

Dr. H.H.Holmes, Z-Files LOG 5/01/2021, 3:01

 

Now six months on, I have become one with my work.

 

These creatures – they’re… perfect.

 

During the several months I’ve spent studying them I’ve noticed that a key part of their genetics has the potential to not just cure humanity… but to improve it.

 

Our evolution is far too slow.

 

Even whilst climate change begins to scorch the planet, with temperatures well above the limit, amplified by the thermo-nuclear detonations from the beginning of the apocalypse, it will take humans millennia to be biologically fit to survive its conditions. Therefore, for the sake of humanity, I have developed not a cure but rather the virus itself.

 

A cure would only restrict the human race to our fragile former selves… I cannot allow for this… improvement matters most in this world. Humanity is expendable.

 

I… am the improver.

 

I am the new Divine Being.

 

After the first of my test subjects died from overexposure to the virus, causing them to implode, I had no other choice but to inject myself with a strain of the virus that had an extremely limited lifespan, only being able to spread up my arm.

 

The results were… marvellous, my bones began emerging from beneath my flesh and as my blood turned a swamp-coloured green, I realised now that I was the source.

 

Dr. H.H.Holmes, Z-Files LOG 1/02/2021, 1:07

 

In the following weeks, I’ve spent my time attaching syringes and tubes to the veins in my arm where the virus is most numerous. Using these syringes I gained the power to spread my enhanced version of the virus to a group of test subjects sacrificed to me by the few remaining survivors of the city.

 

To avoid more fleshy implosions, I put many of the subjects into test tubes, telling them they were going to be decontaminated. Seeing the total look of hopelessness that swept across their faces as the tubes began filling with the green acidic ooze it… it- made me feel I was above them.

 

But as I stare at them now, deformed, mutated… evolved… I know that I am above them.

 

Above everyone.

 

There have been a few… incidences, here and there. These creatures, whilst under my command, seeing me as one of them, still find ways of breaking out of containment and escaping into the city, killing what few people remain.

 

Fortunately, just as I have the power to give these poor souls a better version of themselves, I also have the power to take it away entirely.

 

Many of my subjects have experienced what some may have used to call, ‘the cure’.

 

I finished developing it several weeks ago, accidentally.

 

During my modifications to the virus, I found that a particular enzyme had the potential to completely reverse it all, ‘saving the human race’ as some of my test subjects screamed as they pleaded to me, begging for their lives.

 

But this ‘cure’… can’t be released.

 

Reversing evolution is completely illogical. I cannot allow for anyone to discover it… and so… with my knowledge of the virus and what can destroy it, I have finally completed the improved version, adding some genetic material to it that rejects the ‘cure’.

 

The new virus is airborne too…

 

And I have an army of mutants at my disposal to dispense it.

 

Elgin will fall with but the flick of my thumb…

 

But that isn’t the target.

 

I have a globe to evolve.

The new humanity begins now.

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