The latest in horror fiction by Scarlett R. Algee! ‘Patient Zero’
The first thing you do when you wake up is peel your eyelids open with your fingers.
Your lashes are gummy, and almost stick together again when you squint against the too-bright light. Your tongue feels parched and furry, clinging to the roof of your mouth. When you work your jaws there’s the distinct sting of flesh parting. You taste something metallic, like blood, but thick and rancid. Sweat slicks your forehead, oily and cold.
Cold. You fumble the back of your hand across your forehead and yes, your skin is cool. Your fever must have broken.
Annalise had been sick at the office party last night, or at least she’d complained of feeling unwell. So had Brian and Tamsin, separately; Brian had said his kids had come home from school aching. Some sort of crud, you’d all agreed, something going around. They’d decided to go home early. You’d felt…
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