I thought we’d left it behind. I really believed it would all be over.
I was so very wrong.
My name is Dr. Leslie Gerome. I am recording this because someone out there should know what really happened, how the world really came to an end. And it wasn’t with a bang or a whimper. It happened with the splicing of a single cell. Man tried to become God, and Nature bucked under his command, striking out with unimaginable fury.
They never buried Chernobyl den as I’d hoped. I think I died ten times over on the climb up to the surface, expecting the walls to start caving in on me at any second. But they never did. No one ever came looking for it, or for me and Sinna. They probably thought the converts were too stupid to make it out, that they’d starve to death down there. Maybe they were right. Maybe the monsters we created thirteen stories below a nuclear wasteland did eventually die there.
Those they extracted did not.
Whoever finds this, please believe what I’m about to tell you. There’s no such thing as an inert—no middle ground for the creatures we engineered. The DNA grafts might be dormant, but sooner or later, one way or another, they always activate. That’s why Fukushima den imploded; they never realized how many potential converts they housed together.
The inerts who converted outside the dens are fully viable and capable of reproduction. It has now been three years since the dens shut down, and in that time, world governments have tried in vain to bury the story with mindless entertainment for the masses. But there’s no hiding it anymore.
Last night, I found an online video of a female convert giving birth and promptly devouring her own young. Conspiracy theories estimate that converts, or “Grays” as they’re called, are reproducing at an increasing rate. Outside of stable laboratory conditions, they can develop three times faster than a human and, although they show each other the same ravenous savagery they display toward prey, they do mate, and they do breed.
September fifteenth, twenty-twenty, four NE.
I watch Sinna growing beautifully every day. She’s my hope that we must have done something right. The dens may have unleashed a terrible plague on the world, but we’ve also created beings so much more than human. The Wolfen are still out there somewhere, walking among us, hiding in plain sight.
I think of Alpha Seven and Beta Twelve often. Are they still alive? Who’s taking care of them? They’re not that much older than Sinna, but they’re strong, and they’re smart, and they have each other.
Martial Law has failed against the Grays. Cities are becoming overrun with them and people are fleeing for the hills, but I doubt they’ll find safety there. Sinna and I have stayed in San Francisco too long, and now that they’ve destroyed every bridge to the mainland, there’s no chance of leaving. So we hide.
Sinna has tested negative for regenerative capabilities three times under real life conditions. That’s enough for me. I think… I think as long as I keep her inside, away from them…I can keep her safe.
Hellooooooo. Is this thing on? Gerry, how does this work? Testing. One, two. And a-one, two, three, four.
Tomorrow is Sinna’s eighteenth birthday. She’s so excited, it breaks my heart. I asked her what she wanted for her present. She answered, “To go outside.” Cabin fever has been our faithful companion for a long time now, and with each day, I see yearning in Sinna’s eyes. She wants to go out there, to see the world, such as it might be, and I don’t think the silver cuff I found for her will impress her much by comparison.
Four years ago, San Francisco was one of the last few strongholds left in the United States. The city has since lost contact with the outside world. With the bridges gone, the peninsula is effectively cut off from the mainland on three sides. They’ve erected barricades fifteen stories high wherever the southern perimeter was compromised, and against outside Grays, the protections are quite effective. But there are still those inside the city itself. They’re growing smarter, bolder. They’ve learned when and how humans hunt them; they hide so well, even the keenest eyes can’t spot them. And when they come out again, their wrath is terrifying.
The war’s at a stalemate. Humans are holding their own for the moment, but it’s only a matter of time before Grays overwhelm us. I fear that day’s not long in coming…
This is Sinna. Uh, the date is… Hell, I don’t know. Thirteen New Era? Not that anyone gives a crap anymore.
Gerry’s dead—sob—I di—I didn’t know! We were out looking for food, and she told me to stay close, but I saw this…stupid, useless lava lamp in a window, and I thought I was so smart. I’d just go out for a second, check it out, and be right back. But then a pack of Grays came out of the old reservoir. I hid inside, but I couldn’t warn her. She ran back to our house, but…
God, she screamed so much.
Soft crying… Sniffle.
Anyway, she’s gone now. I can’t stay here anymore, it’s not safe. The Grays marked this area; they’ll definitely come back. I only came in for a minute to get my stuff. There’s a group of survivors holing up in the church. I heard them when they passed by the other day. If I give them all the food I have, they might let me stay there for a while.
So pathetic. Everything I ever had in this life: a few cans of tuna, a stupid bracelet, and an ancient voice recorder that’s about to run out of—