Romania: Mild Conjunctivitis
Mild conjunctivitis or Pink Eye is usually nothing to worry about. Most people who come down with the illness are given an antibiotic and told to not socialize for a few days until their infection is no longer contagious. Despite the seemingly harmless nature of this affliction, there are some circumstances in which coming down with such a common ailment might just prove deadly.
Take the following hypothetical example:
You are visiting the Transylvania region of Romania and have decided that your premiere tourist objective is to tour the places of interest related to the reign of Vlad The Impaler, the inspiration behind Count Dracula, Count Chocula and Sesame Street‘s The Count. The first point of interest you go to is Bran Castle, a temporary residence of Prince Vlad nestled deep in the Carpathian Mountains.
As you wander through the vast expanse fit for vacationing royalty, you encounter several workers in charge of policing the inside activity. Making sure no one has any contagious affliction has not crossed your mind due to the fact most people in America, (where you’re from potentially) when they get even the slightest ailment, refrain from entering the workplace. However, within the ranks of Castle employees there has been a recent outbreak of the infection commonly known as Pink Eye and none of them have even thought to avoid work that day. Instead they have spent the entire day within the confines of the castle spreading their germs into the air via a few odd sneezes.
You have no way of detecting said germs and continue your trip through the Castle unfettered by potential sickness. It takes a few hours after the visit for your symptoms to become visible and though you’ve yet to notice them, the teenagers in the guest house which you are staying have certainly made note of the zombie like quality in your right eye.
There have long been tall tales told of horrific transformations that visitors to the historic site undergo once passing through the gates. It doesn’t help matters that there have been a few gruesome maulings in the nearby woods that authorities suspect have been carried out by hungry wolves, but which more imaginative folks have attributed to vampires, werewolves, or even worse, zombies.
Seeing as you fit the description of the latter, the teenagers with an overactive imagination decide that it’s time to take action to protect themselves and the brains of their family. While you sleep soundly on your cot they sneak in in the middle of the night and quietly place a stake over your heart before driving it in with resounding force and a loud metallic ping sound. Sure they’ve confused the way you’re supposed to kill a zombie with the way you kill a vampire, but since they’re from the land of Dracula, that’s what they’re used to doing. Either way, you’ve been killed simply for having a case of mild conjunctivitis.
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