Being an accounting of the recent and continuing pandemic and its various circumstances, from the perspective of an inhabitant of the regions lately called the Lost Quarter. Dates unknown.
Day Five Hundred Five
Five hundred days living with the dread lord, five hundred and the rest of our lives. We are at a strange moment in the pandemic here in these parts. The inoculation campaigns have been largely successful, though there remains much work to do on that front. The grippe reborn was in full retreat as a result, until all quarantine restrictions were relaxed at the beginning of last month. The result has been rising numbers of afflicted, as the dread lord seeks out those who have neglected to get their doses.
The government has responded by declaring the dread lord’s plague at an end. We will have to live with it now, they say, as if that isn’t what we’ve all been doing for the last five hundred days. How we will live with it is the question.
Here people are divided and uncertain. There are those who say the inoculations are enough, they are available to all who want them and it is up to everyone to determine whether they wish that protection or not. Others say we need a return to some restrictions to control the grippe reborn’s spread, particularly because children are unable to be inoculated. The first group reply that children are little affected by the dread lord, so it is a risk worth taking, while others reply that it is monstrous to even consider.
This is the next few years of all our lives it seems to me, or at least until we can manage to get inoculations across the world to all those who need it. The dread lord will always manage to find those he can do harm to. He will find his way around the defences we have erected with the inoculations. It will be nothing like the first five hundred days where we all lived in fear of what might come. But there will continue to be doubts about just how safe we are, questions about whether we are doing enough, and what enough would even be. There will be anger at further rules: anger at their necessity, anger at those who refuse to comply, and anger at those who have refused to do what is necessary for their communities and get inoculated.
All of this anger will result from the undeniable fact that we do not know how the next years will proceed, beyond the fact that the dread lord will shadow our lives. That not knowing sits in all of us. All of our doubt, fear and anger stems from that. It will stay with us the rest of our days, even if we somehow manage to vanquish the dread lord entirely, that destabilizing sense that we do not know what awaits us from day to day will remain.