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Maybe a Valley

Even a sentient virus sometimes needs to take up the quill. Except as a virus, Peter Schaefer must make do with the fingers of those hosts he takes, uploading short stories to catachresis.shoelesspetegames.com before the host shakes him off like water off a dog. This makes Peter's eighth story in Daily Science Fiction, to which he cries huzzah, at least until his latest host recovers its full health.

"Podboss Ffdlbpp!" flagellaed Podsboss Pbbdlbsb. "Present!"
Flagella gesturing respect and obedience, Podboss Ffdlbpp stood ready. "Boss!"
"It is time to take possession. Get all the humans in one place."
"Um, in one place, Podsboss?" Ffdlbpp flagellaed.
"Yes. A big field, or maybe a valley or something." It turned extra flagella to Ffdlbpp. "Is this a problem Podboss Ffdlbpp?"
Ffdlbpp's flagella froze for a moment. "Well, yes, Boss. There are too many of them."
"Too many? How many can there be?"
"Reports say upward of seven billion, Boss."
"Billion?" With a thbpp? Not million, with a fbptf?"
"Right, with a thbpp."
"How in the multi-dimensional pseudo-tentacles of the brood goddess did that happen? What about their murder programming?"
"The murder programming is still strong, Boss. They've become..." Ffdlbpp shivered in discomfort, "...distressingly good at it. But--"
"So why are there more than a few hundred thousand?"
"Boss, they got so good at it they had to promise not to do it or else they'd all be dead."
"So they stopped?"
"Not stopped, but... they made rules."
"Okay, so they don't murder as much as we wanted. But how could they reproduce so fast? We made them grow so slowly! And the process was so painful! Two of them had to... well, ugh."
"Yes, boss. But they do it. Like, a lot. And since they don't murder as much as we expected--"
"Yes, of course, Podboss Ffdlbpp. Too many to spray for. Ugh. Well, be damned if I'm going to live in a world infested by those things. We'll report to the pseudoqueen that the planet became unfit for habitation."
"Yes, Boss."
"C'mon," flagellaed Podsboss Pbbdlbsb. "I'll secrete you a drink."
"Thank you, Boss."
The End
This story was first published on Thursday, July 6th, 2017
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