|Standing in Europe
Author: C. Llewellyn PM
What happened in Europe during the events of the Stand?Rated: Fiction T - English - Adventure/Drama - Chapters: 2 - Words: 949 - Updated: 08-27-11 - Published: 08-26-11 - id: 7324268
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
No one had foreseen the mystery flu that spread first from the USA to the UK, France, Japan, Australia, Canada, Mexico and China, before spreading to the rest of the world. In a matter of weeks of reaching Europe, the disease, named the superflu (or the black flu, due to the similarity between the superflu and the bubonic plague in the terminal stage of the illness), had wiped out 99.8% of the population and the collapse of civilisation led to further deaths. From contemporary accounts and archeological evidence, there remained no more than 1 to 2 million people in Europe three months after the outbreak (i.e. October 2011). In Antwerp the number had dropped by slightly more: no more than 236 people survived the pandemic and ensuing rioting and anarchy. By the end of 2011, the number had dropped to 150 as more people died and others fled the city that reminded them of loved ones. Those that remained in the city raided for food, water and other supplies and locked themselves in houses or warehouses.
As order dissolved and the old woman and the dark man began to gather together their followers in the former USA, Marijn Melisma woke up to a city cleansed by the disease. Up until the beginning of the pandemic, he had lived, rather happily, with his parents, younger brother and older sister in Antwerp, Belgium. At the age of 18, he was one of the younger students in the university's 2nd year medical class. He had few friends, but they were close to him and lived nearby (with the exception of Kristine, who lived in Hilversum, NL) so he had no lack of social contact. His 21 year old sister worked as a secretary and his 15 year old brother went to the nearby secondary school. He was not very close to his brother, mainly due to the latter's social group and their rowdy and crude behaviour. Though less so in recent years, Marijn was close to his older sister. Thanks to many trips abroad, seven years living in seven different cities, a French mother, and very outspoken parents, he was quite open-minded and had opinions of his own making. He was also fluent in Dutch, French, English and German and had basic knowledge of Italian and Spanish.
Marijn's mother was one of the first to succumb to the disease. By the time civil order had seriously started to break down, his father, sister and brother, as well as nearly all of his friends were ill too. When his mother had died, they held a small funeral and buried her in the nearby cemetary, snivelling and coughing. Joseph had loved his mother and he had loved his family, but the only tears had shed came when he, as last member of his family, and as far as he knew, last survivor in the city (or indeed the world), lost his sister, Kaat, whom he had cared for on his own after his father and brother had died. On what would become Kaat's last day, her condition had improved for a few hours and both had been hopeful she would recover, but their optimism was short-lived.