As more people passed, he heard several other theories. It was now the de rigueur subject.
“I heard it was a medical experiment gone wrong.”
“No, a friend of a friend said she knew someone in the police department. This was a terrorist attack.” And then, speaking so quiet Liam almost didn't catch it, the person said, “It was the same guys who did nine-eleven.”
“It was our own government.” A half-dozen people had different iterations of government conspiracies.
“It was the maple-syrup lovin' Canadians.” Liam heard several people talk about Canadians as if the threat was real, but he couldn't quite take them seriously. Normally he wouldn't dare insert himself, but he had to know. “Excuse me, why would the Canadians cause this plague?” The woman who spoke of it responded calmly and easily, “They want our stuff of course.”
Liam determined it was best to avoid laughing. Soon the woman and her entourage had moved far ahead.
He heard a host of other theories, just in the few minutes since he'd passed that sign. “It was the Republicans. They always wanted us city people to die.” “It was the Liberals. They was foolin' around with science and unleashed this Ebola-thing on us by accident.” “It was the Snowballers.” “It was the Communists.” “It was the anarchists. They want government to go away.” And so on and so on. The crowd consumed each theory, readily adding more and more. The truth was, no one really knew.
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