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12:22:18 PM May 16th 2013
What about the Zombie Infectee situation where somebody doesn't go into denial, and perhaps even doesn't keep it secret? That does happen in some stories, and it's an interesting tactical situation because now the group has a member who—though they may not be particularly badass—knows they're going to die and can do a suicide mission without shortening their life by very much. That opens up a lot of new strategies. If they'll take, say, six hours to turn, then they might grab a bunch of explosives, lure a bunch of zombies into a trap, and set off the explosives—and there's no need to worry about getting out, because they know they won't be getting out anyway.

Alternatively, if a suicide mission isn't going to be useful or their fate isn't known to be 100% sealed, there's the question of what to do with them—tie them up and wait to be sure, or kill them right then? What if they've got loved ones who are in denial, even though they themselves aren't? Maybe they would even be an interesting case for the resident egghead to monitor and try to gather information about how the virus or curse or whatever does its work. Or maybe it's simply the problem that they're slowing down the group—especially problematic if nobody is sure whether it's a zombie bite or not. Maybe the zombie bit them through their leather boots, and it could be no more than an injured ankle, but they're slowing the party down—the resident pragmatist or sociopath gets to fight with the resident idealist or optimist about it.

So my issue here is that this trope doesn't really cover the full range of things that could happen if somebody gets bitten—they don't always go into denial and put others in danger, they don't always keep it secret. There's just lots of possibilities.
08:33:38 AM Jun 7th 2012
edited by Stoogebie
Can a person be infected just by getting scratched by a zombie? It seems that a lot of examples involve bites, but I have a work in progress where a character who does get scratched, and lampshades the normalcy of bites as opposed to scratches, along with the fact that she'd be a likely Final Girl:
I-I mean...you don't usually get it just from scratches, do you? Or is it like herpes or something? Dammit I don't wanna die! And I'd normally be the kind to survive this kind of shit! I'm not a blond, I'm not busty, and I'm a virgin for God's sakes!
09:39:49 AM Jun 7th 2012
It's up to you — zombies in every work are different. Infection through scratching isn't common, but it's plauisble and I expect other have done it. Good luck with your story!
03:54:35 AM Nov 7th 2010
Suggestion: Prune out the non-Zombie content which seems to be almost all related to Vampires. the Vampire content mostly involves the reactions of other people, suggest the page be called "The Ties That Bite".
05:07:01 PM Aug 27th 2010
Would this trope also cover people bitten by werewolves? These people would be harder to detect until they transformed.
06:04:33 PM Aug 27th 2010
Yep. Vampire's too. Mutants too. Basically, any time a guy or gal gets bit by someting that will turn them into a danger to their friends.
05:41:44 AM May 17th 2010
are we being little harsh? Really would you tell strangers who would kill you?
08:41:32 AM May 17th 2010
Well, depending on the circumstances, yes. If you had a strong reason to suspect you were in the pre-contagious stages of Ebola or some other horrible disease, wouldn't you at least tell the people with you to put you in a place you can't hurt them, and to be ready in case you become infectious / a ravening flesh eating monster?

If you aren't infected and won't turn, well, you've taken a risk by splitting up from the group and maybe hurt their chances a bit by reducing their manpower. But if you are? You just saved several lives.
08:48:39 PM May 17th 2010
hmm... maybe. many of examples has the Action Survivor outright murders any one who could be infected, yeah that really builds trust.
09:19:20 AM Apr 2nd 2012
edited by Stoogebie
Why on earth would we just start calling these kinds Jerkasses and Dirty Cowards anyway? Yeah, it is a tad selfish not to tell anyone, but given the options presented, what would you do:
Bill *sniffling*: I-I've been infected by a zombie.

Bill (thinking): I'm either gonna end up getting my brains blown out, or eating my gun, or wind up a mindless fleshbag eating their brains. This Is Gonna Suck no matter what I do, but God I don't wanna die!

Think maybe it's a bit much calling a Zombie Infectee in denial a jerkass coward now?*
06:08:52 PM Aug 12th 2012
edited by Earnest
A tad selfish? No, it's incredibly irresponsible because it's playing with the lives of others. The analog to the situation isn't herpes because it isn't and doesn't make you aggressively contagious and put you and others at a mortality risk. The closer analog is a more infectious and deadlier form of H1N1 where the infectee decides that no, they don't want to tell anyone about being a potential carrier and decide to stay near other people for their own safety. Speaking of trustworthiness, this behaviour isn't likely to earn any even from sympathetic people.

Being with a group likely to headshot you is a problem, but most times? You're with friends or family who will hesitate before putting you down, a hesitation that means you just got someone you love killed. Telling others you're infected in that situation will give them at least a chance to psychologically prepare for it. In the worst cases where the group is likely to want to kill you, odds are you're going to be so nervous they'll ferret you out anyway, better to feign you're paranoid and go off on your own. Less chance of them killing you or vice versa.
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