July 23rd 2006. When the MV Cougar Ace transport ship capsized, an unidentified liquid leaked into the water. It formed a perfect Mandelbrot’s fractal pattern. In the following months, strange fish were reported in the area.

September 2006. Hurricane Julia approaches the US East Coast. Its strange fractal patterns and iridescence can’t be explained by meteorologists. Organisms put in contact with it would begin developing odd symptoms in the following days.

As the fractal spreads through the atmosphere, its effects first start to be seen in nature, from plants to flocks of birds. The patterns would infect anything they touched, changing their growth and behavior. The longer the contact, the stronger the effect.

December 2006. The first signs of fractal infection appear in humans. Strains of Rothia Dentocariosa, bacteria otherwise normal in the mouth microbiome, start growing in strange patterns. Their rapid spread would prove hard to control with antibiotics.

Fractal Syndrome is defined as a new entity by the WHO in 2007. First symptoms appear in growth areas such as the skin, nails and intestinal lining. It slowly spreads to the iris, teeth and eventually limbs. Transmission occurs through unknown mechanisms. No treatment exists.

When the Fractal Syndrome eventually takes hold in the brain, strange behaviours start to occur. Though the changes are unconscious at first, they are visible when crowds spontaneously form into self-repeating patterns. Children start showing fractal conducts earlier than adults.

The Fractal Communion is established as a major religion in 2009, as their numbers explode in the millions. Congregants voluntarily expose themselves to Hausdorff-D2.5, the substance causing Fractal Syndrome. They see it as an elixir capable of miracles, such as curing blindness.

July 23, 2011. Hausdorff-D2.5, the Fractal, is released as a vapour over major world cities in synchronized attacks. As it rains down, it coats every surface.
The attacks are planned by a radical religious collective known as The Branch.
Tens of millions fall to the Fractal.

As major population centres across the world are affected by the Fractal, authorities react by quarantining entire cities to avoid its spread.
The struggle escalates into riots and open conflict against government forces. The Fractal is used as a weapon by the besieged fighters.

To be continued

© Eduardo Valdés-Hevia

Sources (click to open)

Fractus and Buddhabrot, Plugins by Richard Rosenman.
Mandelbulb 3D.
Images: Pixabay, Unsplash, CDC, National Archives Catalog, Wikimedia Commons, Cleveland Museum of Art, Bernard Spragg. NZ on Flickr.