"Venai I produced some alarming results, we were unsure as to what extent this infection spread." Professor Linda Rame
"It was practically...fantastic. I've never seen a reaction this extensive in an able-bodied host." Professor George S. Clint
"This begins the new revolution."
Professor Alex J. Martin
These were just a few quotes from a team of scientists from Oro Valley Research Labs in Oro Valley, Arizona. This was startling to come across, seeing as how it's been nearly a year since this publication in Science Daily. They're all dead now, and I wish I could say due to age. Unfortunately, their deaths lead to the world's vegetative state.
We were called the Diablo's Ira, otherwise known as "Devil's Wrath" in harsh Spanish. Composed of eleven college students who studied this vapid research at U of A, we tried all we could to stop this outbreak. I'm typing this in the faint glimmer of hope that it will be read. Someone needs to know. I need to tell you everything I know, for I fear I will never have a chance to speak with you.
You see, back in August of 2021, research began on a mutant spore infecting bullet ants in Burma. Known as Cordyceps, these parasitic spores infested the colonies and seemingly "controlled" the cerebral cortex of the ants. This drove them to climb foliage and, utlimately, lead to their death. From there, the Cordyceps unilateralis, would push out of the deceased insect and repeat the process.
Soon brought overseas by fellow biologists, the Oro Valley Labs elected to do in-facility testing. Toyed around with by the Oro Valley team, they were soon able to control the spore. Using this gained technology, they began experiments, first on the same genus of ant infected in Burma. After several instances of death and rapid regressions into alarming hostility, the parasitic spore finally settled on a medium.
Progress seemed phenomenal in lieu of the aggressive nature, the scientists were able to prolong the life of the infected to months instead of minutes. Using a counter-serum, composed of the Cordyceps sinensis traditionally used in Chinese Medicine, the serum slows the damage done by the infectious spores, with little or no side effects. It takes up to four full days to completely halt the infection, and a second contact with the infectious spore can and has caused death in test subjects at Oro Valley.
In continual testing, with the aid of this counter serum, the scientists began to find other unique characteristics of the ants.The ants would, not given anything to climb, wander without awareness around their plastic holding tanks. Though, once provoked, they would attack viciously and aim to kill the provoker. The ruthlessness of it all wouldn't cease until the victim was killed, segmented into proportional pieces, and eaten. Specimens elected for death included moths, locusts and large beetles.
Further testing would reveal the resilient nature of the ants. Able to withstand harsh conditions such as severe heat, disabling cold and even water, it was proven that once infected, the ants developed an unearthly indestructibility. Though, if placed together, the ants would begin to hunt and kill one another. Again, dismembering and eating the unfortunate.
This distinct behavior led to segregation of the ants, when normally they would band together and create a colony. The parasitic Cordyceps bonded with the genetic code of the Bullet ant and purposefully heightened it's physical properties. Invariably intelligent, the spore proved to be a phenomena in itself, reassuring it's own safety using measures of protection. This reaction was noted in several other instances, including arachnids and other insects.
Poisoned by such success, this solitary team of scientists violated a contract written by the Department of Homeland Security. They originally signed to contain the testing within insects and arachnids. On November 18th of 2021, the Oro Valley Research Labs performed an infestation on a primate, belonging to the suborder of Haplorrhini. In other words, a normal monkey.
Named Venai I, the primate was injected with the spore concentrate early that Thursday morning.