And it came to pass that upon the world there befell a virus that caused a great cataclysm, with much gnashing of teeth, rending of garments and hoarding of toilet paper. And there were those who became sickened by the virus, though they knew it not, and on pleasure cruises they went, which is a bad idea at the best of times.
Thus did the virus spread by those who went about their business and social affairs, wantonly infecting their kinsmen and outlanders both, even unto those who donned the Face Masks of Protection, for they still could not help putting their fingers in their mouth, it was just their way.
In every city and in every hamlet the virus did spread, lo, as the cream cheese is spread upon the bagel, and anon the sickening was a blight over all the Earth, with great suffering and death abounding and the stock market going down the crapper.
But within each village and town, even within the condos of the mighty metropoli, there were those who were loath to venture out of doors for fear of interacting with others and their aggressively social ways. They who would avoid the co-worker birthday party by hiding in the supply closet until, verily, the coast was clear. They who would maintain a roster of imaginary cousins who were “in town” every time a dinner invitation was visited upon them.
And they did call themselves Introverts, and they were not marked by the sickness but did continue to be unto themselves alone or, at most, with their ilk in small gatherings with their Dungeons and, forsooth, their Dragons.
While the people did continue their business trips in lands afar and also to the convention centres and trade shows therein, the Introverts did telecommute in the ways of their ancestors (circa 2004) and touched not the gruesome airplane headrest nor the Escalator Handrail of Doom.
To ComiCon they did go, of course, because ComiCon! But interact they did not with others, nay, not even with beloved television actor Kevin Sorbo (“Hercules: The Legendary Journeys,” 1995-1999; “Andromeda,” 2000-2005).
Not even to the library did they go but downloaded they the ebooks unto their Kindle, and they saw that it was full, and it was good.
Yea, the Introverts did look out upon the world as the virus spread across valley and plain, o’er mountain and dessert, and their hearts were filled with gladness, not for the suffering of their fellow man, but because a decree had gone out to avoid social kissing, both of the one- and two-cheek variety, for this was a great relief to them. And the Introverts did dance like nobody was watching, which was verily the case.
Time did pass, and the virus was a plague upon the world, claiming every first-born son and every second-born aunt as well four out of five left-handed bassists—it was truly a complicated virus, difficult to comprehend.
And, lo, there came a time when the Introverts looked out and saw that they were alone. Saddened they were by the loss of so much humanity and the breaking down of the machines and especially the unresolved plot lines of “Better Call Saul.” Yet in their hearts there was a mighty peace.
“Let us go out then,” they said to their cats, “and let us survey this land that is now free of restaurants with their over-friendly servers and absent of corporate team-building retreats.”
Thus did the Introverts wander the earth, foraging among the ruins of civilization, now free of disease for there was no one to rub up against on public transit. And as they wandered, they could not truly know how many of them there were that had survived the plague because of course they did made not eye contact.
There followed then a period of great peace and serenity as the Introverts, uninterested in forming a government amongst them, went from day to day, and in their sketchbooks they did draw and that semi-autobiographical novel they did finally get around to finishing. Yea, even to the gym did some of them start going.
The Time of the Introverts was glorious, filled with music and poetry that they shared not but kept unto themselves.
Alas, their time of glory was short, for as Introverts they did fail to hook up, and breed they did not. And so it came to pass that the last living Introvert did pass from this world, alone, yet satisfied that she had succeeded in finishing the Harry Potter series for the 132nd time.
And that is how it came to pass that the cats now rule the Earth.