No matter what FWR says, the Editor is not responsible for this outbreak of supernatural fiction. We blame the Night Shift (and 2legs). Anyway, we're enjoying it.
The following outré tale was inspired by a weird sleep pattern and a cooking accident. Also a tendency to dreadful puns.
Some said life on Earth may have been born out of a series of improbable events; a freak chemical reaction occurring at the exact same millisecond as a freak temperature change, coinciding with a freak electrical pulse. All of life!
A perfect accident.
We all know that life on Earth almost ceased in exactly the same way.
A perfectly stupid accident.
One small dropped and accidentally forgotten piece of pasta, left to moulder under a warm cooker, coincidentally during a very severe bout of man-flu, freakily merging with the other forgotten rolled-under-the-bloody-oven things, feeding on chemicals, thriving and growing, evolving.
Twelve years. 95% of the marvellously diverse results of that beautifully perfect accident wiped out. Just twelve years.
Fishing a strand from the boiling pot, testing, (even though I knew from experience it was perfectly cooked), between my index and seventh finger.
Draining the pot, the steam from the colander causing my gills to swell, savoury vapours being harmlessly filtered.
So quick, so sad.
The CDC and WHO had apparently acted quickly, quarantining city after city, useless protocols, more dead cities, as the Rigate virus mutated and spread. Again and again.
The few survivors, each and every one of them Italian chefs or their offspring, found that years of breathing in pasta flour and industrial kitchen cleaning fluids had shielded them from the worst that Rigate could throw at them.
Time passed, the Tricolour resistance mutating, keeping pace with Rigate, bistros becoming the last great hope for humankind.
Each new generation adapting to the environment, a contaminated food chain and the constant mutations of Rigate.
My offspring glowed in excitement, tentacles reaching out, as I served the evening meal.
Grating a little Parmigiano from my carapace, scratching black pepper dandruff from my mane, enjoying the ultrasonic squeals of delight. Glasses filled as my Chianti glands were stimulated by my family's eager mandibles.
One perfectly stupid accident may have changed the world, but it would take a lot more than Armageddon to keep us Italians from enjoying a family meal!