The bacteria

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Otto's broad shoulders disappeared beneath his brown shirt. His fingers worked fast, buttoning up the shirt and covering the ripped torso. Attila's hungry eyes devoured smooth flesh disappearing beneath the fabric. What he did to deserve this beautiful blond angel boy? No, not a boy, a grown man. You're old Attila; it doesn't make him a boy. He released a deep sigh, rolling the cigarette and lighting it as fast as he could. The cloud of smoke engulfed him, bringing calm to his shaking hands. He raised his yellowed fingertips to smooth bushy mustaches and pointy goatee beneath them. Then he caught himself trying to pull up the sheet and cover his chest overgrown with coarse silver hair. He forced his hand down. There was no shame in age, with them comes the experience. At the expense of beauty and strength. Otto enjoyed the silver carpet covering his chest and back, but how long before he finds someone who can match his energy and desire?

The black trousers were on and Otto bent over to adjust the leather boots. Attila's eyes lingered on the curve of his ass, hard as a stone. The blood rushed down, leaving his head floating in the mist of dizziness. Next was a leather belt, attached with huge bronze eagle, pointing out the young man's thin waistline. His lover was perfect, all in geometrical shapes, from his square jaw over the triangle that was his torso to the perfect circle of his ass. Then he attached red band marked with black swastika around his toned biceps, bringing a frown to Attila's face. He picked up his round hat off the lacquered coat-hanger, positioning it on top of his head. In front of the mirror, he straightened his shirt and tilted the hat to the left. It was a trend amongst the modern youth; they were watching too many movies. Every one of them wanted to be Bogart as proven by the cigarette Otto hung from the corner of his lips. He nodded to the mirror and marched towards the door. Locked.

He turned around with a goofy smile. "Stop playing Attila and surrender the key. You're insatiable like an old satyr. Your hairiness is not the only resemblance to those creatures."

"You must take it from me." Attila's voice shook.

Otto wagged his finger. "You had me the whole night. With lack of sleep, I don't know how I'll make it through the day. Not to mention I doubt I can sit at all. You need to save energy for sharing the gift with our comrades." He was still smiling.

Attila's eyes dark and cold as a deep cave never touched by the sun met sky blue ones he loved so much. The poor boy winked, which made him want to cry. He had to remain strong. "You don't understand. I can't let you do it."

"What do you mean?" The storm trooper frowned.

"I can't let you kill ninety-five percent of human population." His face went cold. He assumed he had gone pale as a phantasm.

"Nonsense! Do you know why I have fallen in love with you?"

"We, Hungarians are hung like horses? Perhaps that was a reason we, the Huns, conquered your so-called superior Nordic race with such ease?"

Otto screamed, "Stop joking! Your words are hurting me. I fell in love with you because you are strong, same as me."

"You're mistaken - I'm old, not strong."

"Back in the days when I was your student in Munich, there was a charming girl in my class. Like any similar lass, she used her good looks as an advantage to get by easier in life. With those big, sad, fawn eyes everyone felt a need to protect her, to be at her service. Not you. She had to pass your exam the heavy way, like the rest of us."

"Gertrude? I remember her, she was indeed beautiful."

"No, she wasn't, and you understood that. We, the men are the beautiful gender. Only when free from vaginal manipulation we are also the stronger gender. You have proven it."

"I never believed women can't be beautiful just because I don't find them sexually attractive."

"Deep down you did, you acted upon it. They're weak, they're ugly and we don't need them anymore after our discovery. You and I have made the women obsolete. Our next mission is to free the men from the need of procreation by giving them immortality. Then we will need no women. We can create the perfect society – the society of strong, pure blood warriors with no place for the weakness and decay it brings. The society connected by bonds of warrior honor and love. Imagine the new Sparta, ruled by the new Sacred Band of Thebes elite."

"There's nothing honorable in killing those who are weaker."

"It is our duty to the evolution, to the nature to remove the weak ones if we want to achieve the progress and reach our peak as a human race. If you don't believe it, why would you help me in my research?"

"My part is just the theory of strings of information embedded in the living cells. Your ideas about changing them seemed like overactive imagination of the youth when we started. But, you surprised me. I mean I knew you were a genius - I fell in love with your mind. But, I never assumed you are crazy as well. I could have never done what you did, altering the genes of Treponema pallidum with genes of Turritopsis nutricula which gave them the eternal life. I couldn't imagine that even in my wildest dreams, less so to do it. You're smarter than me, you even added human genes into the mix, making the bacteria aware of the fact that its survival depends on the survival of its host. You desired to create the immortal super soldiers, not me. I never wanted that. You made the disease sexually transmissible by using syphilis bacteria. Now they are flowing through our blood, repairing any damage to preserve their own life. The only way they'll be destroyed is if we die."

Otto paced toward the cabinet. Attila pulled his Steyr Hahn m1912 from under his pillow. "Habit from the Great War, I never sleep without a gun. We'll leave your Luger in the drawer where it belongs. Move to the opposite end of the room, please."

Otto obeyed, standing in the corner next to the bed. He said, "Have you forgotten that the bacteria, having human genes can produce hormones of the youth? You could be young again."

"I do not value my life above the lives of the majority of the world." Attila placed his gun on the bed between them. The fair chance and a good excuse to defeat his own reluctance.

"Even if you kill both of us, nothing will change. Comrades know about our research. They'll use our blood to improve themselves."

"I notified Himmler about your preparations to overthrow the government. His men will kill the leaders, in other words, everyone who knows and lock up the rest." 

Otto yelled, pointing at the Hitler's portrait, "You did it to protect him?! He's weak! Ernst Röhm will be a better Führer, he's one of us."

"No. I never believed in his ideology or in socialism in general. I'm the Kaiser's soldier."

Otto screamed, grabbing for the gun. Attila pushed it from his hands and grabbed his neck. He squeezed with all of his force, consumed by rage and blinded by tears. When he stopped at last those beautiful blue eyes were glassy and motionless. He covered the body with a sheet and pulled the gasoline container from under the bed, soaking the body and himself. Grabbing the gun, he lit the match and dropped it on the cushions. The flame consumed him, but he was not dying – the bacteria worked hard to keep him alive, regenerating burned tissue. He pressed the barrel of his gun to the temple and pulled the trigger.

The score of dark Volkswagens spat out men dressed in black on the street in front of Hotel Hanselbauer in Bad Wiessee. The twin silver sig runes attached to their collars announced the Night of the Long Knives.

Written for Fantasci competition

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