Government Agencies

Center for Disease Control

Now, it seems like the US government has an agency or department for everything under the sun. Department of Defense, Federal Bureau of Investigation, Federal Communications Commission, even the Securities and Exchange Commission, for what that's worth. So it comes as no shock to the Infected that one of the first things they learn is to never trust anyone working for the Centers for Disease Control.

The foundations of the CDC go back to World War II, with the Office of National Defense Malaria Control Activities, and over time expanded to cover various other maladies and illnesses, even workplace accidents and environmental issues that could lead to afflictions. This was part of the reason for it's placement in Atlanta, as the South in the 20th century until then was a hotbed of malaria infections and deaths. Soon, the agency turned the tide, and moved onwards, eventually becoming a part of the US Department of Health and Human Services. It has samples of hundreds of known diseases, and is even in possession of one of only two remaining samples of smallpox on the planet.

With so much research technology and scientific focus, it's easy to understand why some Infected are worried about being found out. The government already has enough secrets to keep from the people, and the Infected are something special indeed to keep under wraps. So the Infected try to steer clear of CDC facilities throughout the country. Think you could hide in Anchorage, Alaska? Better watch out for those doctors walking the streets. Want to try and live out a life on the humid streets of San Juan? Steer clear of government officials walking the streets with bio-chem degrees. Whether it's Pittsburgh or Spokane, the CDC has a center in the area, and it's mission to to keep the health and welfare of the public safe.

So does the CDC actually know about the Infected, and the wider darker world? Well, no. They study disease, and there may be new diseases every few years popping up, but they aren't hunters. They're people, just doing a job, and the Infected would mean that job is more important than they thought. Because studying a person infected with a new and unknown disease isn't a joke, it's a mind rending stay in a locked room hooked up to medical equipment 24/7, as doctors and specialists poke and prod and take samples. You have no contact with anyone except if they let you, and were the Infected to be revealed to even the CDC, that would mean an entirely justified course of quarantine and experimentation.

Then again, it's naive to think that the CDC isn't totally unaware of the Infected. Every so often they're called in to study a suspicious body, and the examination yields strange new microbes that have never been seen before. Tests show limbs still showing a Galvanic response even days after death. It's all a giant mystery, and the fact that these diseases haven't gone airborne only worries the personnel studying them. They haven't shown these results to their superiors, either. Some for fear they're putting their careers on the line, others worried that they are right, and this is only the beginning of something ugly. So, until the Infected show themselves en masses, these CDC "sleepers" will continue to watch, waiting to reveal their findings.

United States Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases

AMRIID is the US military's leading researcher of biological infectious agents. Born out of the Biological Warfare Laboratories, AMRIID was created when President Richard Nixon ordered offensive biological operations shut down, instead ordering US military personnel to focus on finding preventative means to protect US servicemen and women from biological threats. The other precursor to AMRIID, the Army Medical Unit, was ordered to test on and observe volunteers taking part in studies on the process of studying the effects of Coxiella burnetii on the human body. This work laid the base for future studies on diseases ranging from hemorrhagic fever and Legionaries disease to the 2003 strain of anthrax used to attack the United States Postal Service.

AMRIID is also one of the facilities in the United States that is Biosafety Level 4, meaning that strict controls have been put in place to prevent diseases from escaping into the world from their storage shelves.

So being military, that must mean AMRIID has a better idea of what's going on, right? Again, no. Maybe they have seen some very exotic diseases, but no member of AMRIID will report that they are studying a disease that causes people to have prophetic visions or wild mutations. Their job is to brief the Department of Defense on threats to the US military, and so far, there's little to no evidence of the Infected, let alone of them being a threat to the military. So what happens when AMRIID personnel find an Infected? A course of quarantine and investigation. Which may never end.

So the Infected of the world, or at least the US, can probably sleep safely if they can, knowing the government isn't actively hunting them.

Except when the Anti Bio-terrorism Initiative comes out to play.

The Anti Bio-terrorism Initiative

Formed in the shadows of one of many Executive Orders during the War on Terror, the Anti Bio-terrorism Initiative is a joint operation between the CDC and the US Army Medical Research Institute for Infectious Diseases. Originally created as a fast response unit to bio-terror on US soil or in US territories, their first operation was to investigate claims of a strange illness running rampant through Rammstein Air Base. What they found was a man whose body was covered in moving tumors, talking about some mission from his sickness to spread more. Without pause, the subject was tranquilized and brought back to Ft. Detrick, under extreme secrecy. Samples were taken, and the doctors and soldiers found their worst fear; testing with rats proved the disease was able to induce the same mental qualities, and that it could make the cross-species jump.

These doctors and soldiers quickly decided that this man wasn't their usual disease ridden victim, and that he wasn't a terrorist stooge, as far as they could tell. They interviewed him in his brief moments of lucidity, and he mentioned of others, victims of the same disease, just with different symptoms and methods of infection. He wasn't killed, but he was placed in a quarantine facility for the rest of his days, forever watched over by soldiers in MOPP 4 gear and doctors in government quality HAZMAT suits.

The members of the Anti Bio-terrorism Initiative aren't strictly Hunters. They come in when there are reports of a deadly unknown disease sweeping a community, and quickly kill the media attention with pre-fabricated news reports on how it's just another strain of the flu or some carcinogen in the water. While most of their personnel handle the cameras and reporters, some actively seek out the Infected, as well as chimera they can locate as well. Each sample, each chimera, each Infected, are all taken away for quarantine and study.

Why isn't the Initiative a Hunter organization? It's because they see nothing that strange about the Infected. It's a disease, there's nothing mystical about it. Strange new strains pop up all the time, it's the natural progression. Someone didn't finish their antibiotics, and a new strain of bacteria came back with a vengeance. Viruses change with each generation, and who knows what pollution does to the human genome. Maybe they'll see an Infected using some strange ability or power, but it's never mentioned in the reports. After all, it's not like anyone forces them to doctor those reports before they're published….

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