Patient Zero – Friday Fictioneers

Greetings, Friday Fictioneers! Thank you to Rochelle Wisoff-Fields for hosting the group and for choosing my photo this week. Thanks so much! The challenge is to write a 100-word story based on the photo. All are welcome to join in. Here are instructions.

One would think that you if offered a photo, that you might have a story in mind. Not so! I look forward to reading what everyone came up with.

A little background on the photo: (If you don’t want to read this, skip to the story!) I took this in La Jolla near San Diego, a rather upscale beach neighborhood in a trendy shopping area. I found this site in an alley as I was walking through a few of them. Many of them were very quaint. This rundown stairway seemed out of the ordinary, so I snapped a photo. I didn’t go up the stairs…


(100 words)

Patient Zero

“It’s not condemned. It’s a ruin,” said Tony, putting on his mask. “A regular tourist trap.”

“Is that supposed to make me feel better? If you’re stupid enough to come here, no one’s gonna miss you,” said Chuck.

“Someone’s being dramatic,” said Tony. He touched his finger to the faulty rail. It wouldn’t help him on the cracked stairway, choking on overgrown ivy and debris.

“If you come back out, I’ll join you,” whispered Chuck.

Inside Tony witnessed cats roaming on mutant paws, flashing green eyes, encircling him. They slashed him with their claws until their mouths filled with blood.


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Closer to Home – Friday Fictioneers

The vastness of the landscape blurred beneath them with the elevation now high enough to move about the cabin. The medevac team stayed at an appropriate distance from the isolation pod, speaking and breathing held in reserves for the duration of the seven-hour flight, their toe-to-head protective gear encumbering their every movement.

They took shifts monitoring the patient, too weak from the virus to respond. The monitors spoke for him, telling them he clung to life.

The virus, too, fought for survival, mutating, adapting, clever, and resilient.


One sudden movement tore the hazmat suit, repaired only by duct tape.


Genre: Realistic Fiction (99 words)

Copyright: Rochelle Wisoff-Fields


This story was ripped from the headlines. I don’t believe the Ebola virus will set off a pandemic, by the way. However, a new, more virulent, airborne virus may someday. I find it interesting in these doomsday scenarios that it’s always something small that brings about the demise of mankind. A spilled vial, an escaped chimpanzee, or a tear in a hazmat suit…

An Update: Recent news cite that Dr. Kent Brantly was treated with a mystery serum manufactured in San Diego. To date, little of the serum is available.

My thoughts and prayers go out the victim of this terrible disease.

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Thanks to Rochelle Wisoff-Fields for hosting the Fictioneers. Why not give it a try? Click here for instructions.