Biological Conflict: Installment 4 by @batkaren

Bacteria_(PSF)

Read part one here

Read part two here

Read part three here

Over the past thousand years, my relatives developed a kind of biological instinct – imperative even – for hunting. A deeply ingrained genetic need to destroy the feeding Affecteds. As such, I’ve always wondered what would happen if I could achieve an Affected’s dental erection. Would I somehow feel compelled to take my own life?

It’s an interesting theoretical quandary, but moot nonetheless. I have no sense of smell, and therefore my teeth can not be aroused by the scents from other living creatures. You may wonder how I’ve survived so long with no apparatus by which to feed… The truth is that my mission is non-negotiable, and I’ve simply had to make do. Admittedly, though, this existence has been horrific and has felt interminable, and the thirst has been excruciating beyond language.

Throughout the ages, Hunters have often sought companionship with canine sidekicks, and I too found benefit from a pet dog. And although it broke my dessicated heart, that animal also unwittingly served as my primary source of sustenance. I of course developed humane methods to gently anesthetize the creature and safely extract blood with minimal invasiveness. But my best friend’s enervation the days after her drainings always made me despise myself.

So strong is the urge to destroy the Affected that in the early days after my change, I continued going out hunting. But I quickly acknowledged that my mission had to take priority, and that I couldn’t risk my own death. So to satiate this hunting need, I would instead buy rodents from pet stores to deliberately turn, then kill. During a flare-up, I once put some of the fluid from my mouth (saliva is not an apt term) on the end of a pin and stuck a fly. The insect swiftly escaped my grasp, and I feared it would find outlet from my apartment, potentially creating a mass epidemic. My windows were sealed and I managed to destroy the bug, but not before terrifying myself with the thought it might discover freedom by slipping through a vent.

I know what you’re asking yourself at this point. You’re wondering how I could have even been turned into an Affected given my natural defense. It’s a reasonable question.

The truth is that while I have never felt myself to be anything other than masculine, my body was born with female biology. It was the 1980s though, and my dad certainly wasn’t about to kill a baby girl, for Christ’s sake. He raised me and trained me as he would any child destined to grow up to be Hunter. I actually suspect he might even have been grateful that I identified as male. He left my mother not long after I was born – I think he never quite felt comfortable with women. Whatever the case, it never came up between us.

Just as my ancestors before me, I was born with both of the Hunter’s traits: a lack of smelling sense and an absence of the aroma that coaxes forth an Affected’s teeth for feeding. What was new for me in the long chain of Hunters, though. were extenuating circumstances surrounding my feminine biology which temporarily opened me up to the bacterial infection.

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