Dallas G. Releford
©2000 Dallas G. Releford
Elizabeth hated the fact that she had been called away from her first quiet night at home in weeks. As she drove along the highway toward downtown and the administration building of the most secret government agency on earth, her thoughts raced back to the events that had brought her to this moment.
It was only a few days ago when the first reports started coming in of the strange epidemic that was sweeping most of the world. It seemed that no one was vulnerable from the sickness that was paralyzing millions each day. Just what it was, nobody knew. It made people sick, terribly sick. It was the most horrible disease that had ever been inflicted on humankind since the beginning of time. Perhaps the mild fever that people got at the beginning was nothing compared to the rotting skin and the quickly decaying bone structure that finally ended their lives in agony. There was no defense and no cure.
Elizabeth Markham knew the score. After all, she had graduated from one of the most affluent medical colleges in the country and had started with the agency when she was only 24. She had been with them since then, and, she was still young enough to have a lot to look forward to. She knew by now that things were really serious when the director called you at home and requested that you come to a meeting right now. This was especially true since she had just started her vacation a day after the disease had struck.
"About time you got here," the graying man said as Elizabeth walked into the office, which by now had several other persons sitting around the big desk, apparently waiting for her so they could get started with the meeting.
"Sorry," she apologized knowing it was futile to make excuses, "there was a lot of traffic."
"Always is," he replied, "but you shouldn't let that stop you."
"Right," she laughed, knowing when she was being teased.
Elizabeth was a beautiful woman with dark brown hair, brown eyes, light complexion and the navy blue suit that she wore really presented her figure for the world to see. It wasn't that she wanted to world to look at her but she did like to dress nice.
"What's the problem and what's the solution?" Elizabeth directed the question to anyone that would answer but it seemed like forever before the director spoke up.
"Well, the problem is clear and we don't know if there is a solution," he said. "Right now the disease is all out of control, killing millions all over the world."
"So, where do they think it originated?" Elizabeth asked, not really expecting a specific answer.
"Somewhere in China," the director answered, "but we're not really sure about that."
"Well, I guess that means that we have to invoke the emergency response team, whether it is ready or not?" Elizabeth said, knowing that she was bringing up a sore subject with the director.
"Yes, it is time to bring in the troops," he said shaking his head. He knew the project they had been working on for so long wasn't ready yet but they would have to do the best with it that they could. It was the last chance that they had. He knew as well as anyone in the room that the troops were green and hadn't even been completely trained yet. They would just have to learn as they went along. Well, so be it. "Ok folks, let's do it. I'll let the President know tonight and we'll issue the orders to the troops to get ready to move against this new enemy just as soon as possible."
"Do you think it will be soon enough --- I mean, do you think we can move in time to kill the disease?" Someone else in the room, back in the corner of the room asked the question.
"Nobody knows that for sure," the director said, "we'll just have to wait to find out. What does it matter anyway? It's our only chance for survival."
Matt Reed wasn't happy that his soldiers were being called to action without even finishing basic training. But, what can you do when you are in the service but follow orders. He was the commander of billions of soldiers that could die in battle and he didn't want to order those poor men to their deaths without giving them a chance. When the President says go; you go and that was all there was to it.
They would be flown over millions of miles of territory and dropped from planes by the millions. Their job was to hunt down the deadly virus and destroy it. That was the only order that they were given. They knew how to identify the enemy, track it down and kill it with a quick blast from a laser gun.
It wasn't long until the first group of soldiers had left in the belly of the big aircraft. Within minutes they were being dropped onto the landscape below. Laser weapons flashed everywhere lighting up the countryside, the cities, the forest and the desert. From the aircraft above, the tiny flashes reminded the pilots and technicians in the belly of the huge transports of fireflies on a hot July night. Wherever the virus was encountered, wherever it could hide, it was hunted down and destroyed.
The same virus that was destroying millions of humans also took its toll on the millions of tiny Nanomen that had been sent to save the human race. Matt was only one of millions of genetically engineered microscopic Nanomen that were fighting to the death to save the human race that had created them. They weren't much larger than the virus or any of the other billions of bacteria that was on the planet. It had taken nature millions of years to create the different kinds of bacteria but it had only taken man a couple of hundred years to obtain the technology to build the Nanomen.
The battle raged on for days and the days turned into weeks. As thousands of the Nanomen were destroyed by the bacteria and viruses, millions more of them were created and turned loose to replace those lost in battle.
It was on the sixth week that Elizabeth and the rest of the team managed to develop a weapon they had been working on for years. It was one that could be used extensively against the small horde of germs. It was slightly larger than the Nanomen but they were able to handle it. It was a tiny missile launcher that contained rockets with thermonuclear warheads. These were too small to harm the humans since it didn't amount to much more than a firecracker but it could wipe out an entire colony of the enemy.
Matt survived but millions of his fellow soldiers didn't. They fought all over the planet, in under blades of grass, in sinks, in toilets, in people’s clothes, anywhere that the enemy might find a place to hide. They even fought inside of the human body to ward off the vicious onslaught of the enemy. Sometimes they found their own way in but generally they were injected into the bodies of infected people. Once inside the body of a victim, they never stopped until the battle had been won.
During the eighth week, Elizabeth came down with the fever. She was taken to the local hospital where she was injected with the Nanomen serum. It was crowded with hundreds of sick people who had been infected by the deadly disease. Now they all had a chance, thanks in part to the efforts of Elizabeth and all of the rest of the team. Within hours her body started responding to the treatment and she fully recovered a few days later. She had never been so sick in her life and she never wanted to be sick at all ever again. Elizabeth was happy that the director had agreed to let them work on the project and release it prematurely.
The battle raged on for over nine weeks and then the effort started to show some signs of the Nanomen winning. It was the greatest triumph of human history. It was the first time that pure medical science had fought a battle with tiny creatures no larger than the microscopic enemy that they were fighting and won. These were tiny human type figures that we had manufactured and trained to kill other creatures. It was perhaps, the smallest battle ever fought by the largest army that ever existed.
And Matt was the littlest warrior that ever existed and the first Nanoman to be created by Elizabeth. He was also the first to go into battle inside her body and the first that fought to save her.
Author's Note: Please support free stories and novels. Tell all your friends and enjoy what you find here.