This story is about a worldwide incontinence disaster, and how one family adjusts to the situation.
Now I have received some rather harsh criticism for this story, and I myself hardly believe it to be my up to my own standards. It was requested of me and I thought it was an interesting idea, but I went about it in a half-ass manner. Maybe one day I’ll rewrite it; until that day, do your best to enjoy the currently-available, shitty version.
CHAPTER 1: MEET THE FAMILY
I still think about that day. The day everything changed. A loud, ringing noise. Then, poof. Nobody could hold their piss. Or their shit. They just went all over the place. Including me.
But I’m getting ahead of myself.
My name is Alison Davis. Before this whole thing happened, I was just a regular college student at a local university, like a lot of people my age. I still lived at home with my parents, but I had a job and friends and went out a lot. For a quick visual, I have sandy blonde hair, green eyes, black-rimmed glasses, and I think a pretty decent body. I mean, I’m 5’7 and about 140 pounds, so that’s not too bad.
My dad was an employee at NASA. He helped work with the satellites and sent signals back and forth. I don’t know the mechanics of it exactly, but I guess his job was pretty important. He loved to talk about his work and constantly told us about new stars and galaxies being discovered.
My mom worked as a grade school teacher. She always came home exhausted from teaching kids all day, but had to immediately start grading papers. I kinda felt bad for her, but hey, she was the one who wanted to be a teacher.
Then there’s my older brother Jacob. After sustaining a career-ending injury during his college baseball days, he got his bachelor’s and became a car mechanic. He was always kind of a jerk to me, but I tried to ignore it as much as I could.
Finally, there’s the twins. Zach and Zoey were the youngest in the family. They were 12 at the time. They got along better than any of us, and it seemed like one always knew what the other was thinking. They were really close, but I think their relationship may have gotten in the way of them making friends. At least, that’s my opinion.
The day before this happened I was just sitting in class like any other day, trying to stay awake while my biology teacher scribbled on the board. It was a boring class, as I already knew most of the material. I had always wanted to be a doctor so that I could take care of people. Plus, the human body fascinated me. When I wasn’t out with friends, I was usually studying. Not for school, but just in general. I always found joy in studying the biological processes that helped us survive every moment of our lives. It was simply mind boggling.
Anyways, the teacher was talking about mutations in DNA, which of course I learned from my high school years and found quite basic. I started daydreaming about what the future would hold for humanity, as I often did during class. I envisioned machines that could pump out organs in less than a second using raw organic compounds. I imagined DNA restructuring to create new and better traits for humans. I always looked forward to the future, and craved it more with each passing day.
I went home that day to the sight of my mom grading papers, as usual. Her hair was on end and her shoulders were tight with the day’s stress. The twins were playing the Wii U on the couch in the living room, not speaking much as they worked together to finish the levels. Jacob and my dad were in the kitchen, scarfing down Wendy’s burgers and talking about the day’s work. Jacob was trying to follow what my dad was saying, but it was obvious that the vocabulary was too advanced for him. He was 25 now and lived in his own apartment, but often came to visit (and to borrow money from Dad).
I secluded myself in my room and continued my studies on human DNA. By this point, I had already memorized a lot of the base-pair sequences and the proteins they make, and what those proteins do. A lot of my friends thought I was kind of weird for liking biology so much, and I often caught myself explaining concepts to them that they didn’t really care about. For the rest of the night I studied more on the DNA sequences, then went to bed with the rest of the family.
The next day started out as normal. The house woke up, the children were shoved off to school along with my mom, and I continued studying until my next biology class.
It was during that class that it happened. The teacher was still teaching and writing on the board, when out of nowhere, a huge screech came across the room. Everybody covered their ears and looked around for the source of the sound, which seemed to be coming from everywhere. After a few seconds, the sound went away. We were all silent and my professor stared at us accusingly.
Suddenly, I got a huge cramp in my stomach. I raised my hand quickly, suddenly desperate for a bathroom, and found myself one of thirty other people that also raised their hands. Then, the professor grabbed his gut and sank to his knees. In full view of the class, he soiled his brown khaki pants. The students just stared as they felt the pressure about to take them over as well. Suddenly, there was a mad rush out the doors toward the restrooms, of which I found myself a part. As we crowded out the door, so did students from several other classrooms, and soon the hallway was filled with desperate bodies trying to get to a toilet. The restrooms were filled almost immediately, and the rest of us were left in the hallways and classrooms to suffer our inevitable fate. Some stood, some knelt and some squatted, but all of us - every last one of us - started shitting and pissing ourselves. I felt the terrible mess squirm its way out of my anus and coil up in my cotton panties. I was wearing tight-fitting jeans, and the mess stayed pressed up firmly against my butt cheeks. Afterwards, I felt a stream of hot liquid make its way out of my urethra against my will. It spread across my jeans, making a dark stain as it dripped down my legs. All around me I heard the groans and farts of others who were sharing my pain.
After the ordeal was over, we all stood up, wondering what had just happened. Urine and feces were spread everywhere across the floor, and the smell was horrid. There was some embarrassment and disgust, but more curiosity than anything, as groups started discussing possible causes of the incident. I myself was incredibly curious. Suddenly, a voice came on over the intercom: “Students, all classes have been cancelled. Repeat, all classes have been cancelled. Please evacuate the building as quickly and orderly as possible.”
And so, everyone either went home or to their dorms, their pants filled with their own wastes, leaving us to wonder what had just happened, and who all it had happened to.
I walked to my car and was forced to sit down in my mess, squishing it up against my skin, which of course was quite unnerving. The car ride home took a full hour longer than usual, as there were wrecks everywhere. None seemed too serious, but it was obvious that it wasn’t just the school that had been affected by the noise. I saw people walking along the streets, and some of them had obviously sustained more than just a car accident, as the rear end of their pants were lumpy and stained brown, while the front had wet streaks all the way down.
When I finally did get home, I walked to the front door tenderly so as not to disrupt my mess further. My entire family had returned home early also, it seemed. The two showers in the house were both occupied, one by my dad and the other by Zoey. Their pants lay in the middle of the bathroom floor, stained with their own wastes. My mom stood by the restroom, waiting for her turn to clean herself, the mess in her drawers made obvious by her smell.
“I don’t know what happened,” she said, her face looking worried. “One minute I was standing there teaching the class, and the next I’m on the floor losing control. The kids couldn’t hold it in either; they all pooped and peed themselves, each and every single one. What the hell is going on here?”
“That’s what I’m trying to figure out,” I responded. “What could possibly make everyone soil themselves at the same time?”
As I later found out from my dad, this strange phenomenon had apparently occurred shortly after receiving some kind of signal from an old satellite. It was extremely out of the ordinary for an offline satellite to do such a thing, and seemed to correlate with the mass soiling that had just occurred. “This event wasn’t isolated to any one area,” he said excitedly. “There are reports coming in from all around the world about the noise and the subsequent loss of control. It will require a lot of analysis and tests to discover the true reason that all this has happened, but I’ll bet you damn near anything that it had to do with that satellite signal.”
CHAPTER 2: DAWN OF THE DIAPERS
We were all hoping that this was just a one-time, freak occurrence. We just prayed that nothing else would happen; that everything would go back to normal. Our prayers went unanswered.
Our whole family sat in the living room watching the news. It was all that was on every channel: the noise heard all around the world and the subsequent loss of bladder and bowel control. There was wreckage all along the streets from drivers recklessly trying to get to a restroom before soiling themselves. Ironically, these people ended up soiling themselves anyways, while the smart people just pulled off to the side and went in the grass.
The reporters were interviewing various people about their experiences and thoughts during all the craziness, even though everyone was there to witness it. They all said the same thing: “Well I was just standing there when I heard the noise and totally lost control of myself.” “Well I was just on my way to work when that noise went off and I just grabbed my stomach and couldn’t hold it anymore.” “Well I was sitting in a restaurant when I heard a great big screeching noise, and suddenly I just had to go.”
As we watched, I felt a warmth growing inside my pants. I looked down to see a dark spot forming on my jeans for the second time that day. I couldn’t believe what I was doing. Startled, I cried, “What the-”
My family all looked at me. “What? What is it?”
“I just went again! I didn’t even feel it coming out!”
Then Jacob, who was laughing at me from the other side of the room, started wetting himself as well. I watched the dark spot grow on his sweatpants, then responded to his laughter with an amused tone. “Keep laughing, pissy pants,” I said.
He looked down at his pants in disbelief. “Aww, what! How the hell?!”
My dad suddenly got a grave look on his face. “This isn’t over,” he said. “Not by a long shot. Whatever that noise was, I think it may have done long-term damage to everyone. We’re going to have to compensate.”
After I finished changing myself, I drove with Dad to the store, leaving Jacob, the twins and Mom at home. There were still confused people on the roads, many with wet and soiled pants. The drive was long, as the wreckage on the streets was just starting to be cleared. In front of the pharmacy, there was a police officer directing traffic. Apparently we weren’t the only ones who had thought of this, as there were hoards of cars pulling in to buy diapers.
Luckily, we were among the first to arrive. People squeezed through the doors, most still with messy pants. In the wake of the incident, the incontinence aisle was flooded with customers. Packs of diapers of all kinds were being tossed around as people grabbed at them hungrily. My dad, his pants now wet, managed to grab a pack of Depends from off the floor. They were for small- and medium-sized waists, so they would likely fit the entire family, the exception being the twins. We looked around to see if we could scrape off at least another pack, but it was useless, as the pharmacy was now overcrowded with customers desperate for some kind of protection. Even the menstrual pads were being picked off one by one as people failed to find diapers or pull-ups.
Suddenly, someone tried to grab the package from my dad’s hand. He retracted and yelled angrily, “Get off of me! What the hell is wrong with you?”
“I need those!” the man said. “The rest are all gone! What am I gonna do?”
“I don’t know, but that’s not my problem. Go find a different pharmacy or something.”
Similar engagements began occurring throughout the store. People originally with two or three packs in their hands ended up leaving with nothing as they were stolen from others. Fights broke out, and the sounds of swearing and banging echoed off the walls while urine began flooding the floors. We quickly made our way to the front and, after waiting in line to check out, finally went back to the car. I held the Depends in my hands, examining them as if looking at some alien object. I hadn’t worn a diaper since I was just a baby, and didn’t remember what it was like. It piqued my curiosity, and I was kind of anxious to try one on.
We entered the house with the diapers and instructed everyone to put one on. “No, I already told you I’m not doing that!” Jacob said defiantly.
“Yes you are,” Dad said. “I’m not having you piss all over the floor again.”
This shut him up, and he grudgingly snatched a diaper from the package. We all went to our rooms as we changed into our new underwear. I pulled one on and examined myself in the mirror. It was funny in a way; I looked like some kind of adult-baby thing. I put my hand on the padding; it wasn’t extremely thick, but more so than I was used to. It felt weird, but oddly comfortable. It also gave me a strange sense of security. I pulled my jeans on over it and walked back out to the living room. My mom was using tape to make the diapers tighter on Zack and Zoey so they wouldn’t fall down.
Soon, everyone was gathered back in the living room. They all walked a little funny with the padding now snugly between their legs. We all sat down on the couches, and Dad began talking. “Now, I know this is new and strange, but it’s just something we’ll have to get used to. I was only able to get one pack of those things, so we’ll have to make them last until we can get more. I’ve already put in an order for a case of 100 good-quality diapers, which will be here in about 5 days. The package we have came with 30 diapers. That means that we’ll each have to wear one per day. So every night before bed, change out of the one you’re wearing and put on a new one. If it starts leaking before then, just dry it up with some towels.”
“What is even going on?” Jacob said. “Why is this happening? When will everything go back to normal?”
“I don’t know,” Dad responded. “I already told you about the signal we picked up from the satellite. There will definitely be more research directed towards this crisis, especially if it continues like this. NASA is going to get their top teams together to investigate the cause, and you can bet that doctors and biologists from all around the world will be looking into how we can fix this. Until then, it’s diapers from here on out.”
After his speech was over, the family dispersed once more. Jacob went back to his apartment, the twins went back to their video games, and I immediately went to my room to start looking at causes of sudden incontinence. The event was fascinating to me, scary as it was. What could possibly make all of humanity incontinent with one fell swoop? All night I looked for possible reasons, but to no avail. Incontinence was not something that normally happened in an instant as it did that day. I saw that it can be caused by certain medications like diuretics, but the event didn’t coincide with drugs. It could also be caused by infections, but symptoms like pain and inflammation almost always accompanied those. Nothing seemed to fully explain what could have possibly happened.
As I studied, I felt the same wet warmth that I had felt earlier sitting on the couch. But when I reached down to touch it, it was dry. I had totally forgotten that I was wearing the diaper. I took off my pants and looked at it in the mirror; it was sagging a bit now from the weight. I couldn’t help but reach a hand down, and it was squishy and soft to the touch. It felt kind of nice against my skin.
Suddenly, the door opened, and my mother caught me off-guard. “Enjoying yourself?” she asked.
I was a bit embarrassed, but shrugged it off. “No, it’s just weird is all.”
“Tell me about it. I didn’t think I’d be back in diapers until I was MUCH older.” We both giggled at the joke, the Mom continued, “So what are you working on over there?”
I turned my attention to the books and the computer. “I’m just trying to see if there’s any possible explanation for what is going on. Like, what makes every single person in the world suddenly pee and poop all over themselves?”
“Well, for some kids it happens when they get nervous. I’ve had that happen more than once in my classroom.”
I thought for a minute. “Well, that’s an interesting thought. But there’s no way the sound made every single person nervous. Plus, we’re all still incontinent even when there is no sound.”
My mom shrugged. “I don’t know what to tell you honey. We’ll just have to wait for the scientists to figure this one out.”
Over the next few days, the demand for adult diapers suddenly went skyrocketing, along with the prices. It got so bad that the government actually had to mandate a price cap. There were several people who couldn’t afford them, and just made their own makeshift diapers out of old towels and blankets.
Everyone was advised to stay indoors and not put ourselves in dangerous situations, just in the case that incontinence wasn’t the only side effect of the noise, but nothing new seemed to manifest.
Our Depends diapers were barely holding out for a full 24 hours, as they weren’t meant for severe incontinence. They leaked pretty consistently, and didn’t hold feces very well. We had to be very careful not to let poop find its way out of the diapers. We all got a bit of a rash from walking around in our own fluids nearly the entire length of each day. The twins almost constantly complained about the squish and stink of the diapers, but the rest of us just dealt through it. I actually didn’t mind it much; it was nice not having to interrupt my studies for bathroom breaks.
I kept up with the latest news on this new crisis, trying to search for new details or information regarding what had occurred and how. My dad was working with his team to track this satellite that had sent off the signal, and perhaps discover the source. But this wasn’t my area of interest. I paid attention mainly to the biological aspect of it all. Doctors had begun performing surgeries to investigate the colon, bladder, and urinary tract. But it all seemed normal, except that the muscles simply weren’t functioning.
After 5 days, there was a knock on the door. My dad opened it to a man with a large box. After signing off on a clipboard, he brought it in and tore it open. Inside, there were 5 packs of 20 Abena diapers. “Great absorbancy,” my dad said. “Should be way better than those Depends.”
It was definitely a different experience. First of all, I had to tape them on instead of pull them on. It took me a few tries, but I eventually got it snug on my waist. These were much thicker than the Depends, and I found it more difficult to close my legs and walk without waddling slightly. Dad told us that the rule of one change per day would remain the same, as the diapers were getting expensive and there were fewer on the market. But as I later discovered, this would not prove to be a problem in the least. These diapers were incredibly effective at holding waste, as they immediately sucked up urine thirstily and had plenty of room for poop.
So for an entire week we remained indoors except for Dad, who was busy with his team at the NASA headquarters. Jacob returned once on the fifth day to pick up his share of the diapers. I continued prying the internet for some kind of answer, but all I found were numerous blogs and statuses about the current state of things. Of course, there were plenty of jokes being tossed around:
“These aliens got some creepy fetishes.”
“Remind anyone of the brown sound from South Park? LOL”
“Everything was normal. Then one day, everyone was shitting and pissing uncontrollably. The Incontalypse is upon us.”
This last post received universal attention on Facebook, Twitter, Reddit, and nearly every other social media website because of its clever name. Though it started as a joke, this is the name that people now gave to the entire situation.
After the government finally determined that no other consequences could be attributed to the noise, people tried to return to their daily lives. It was a difficult adjustment, as everyone now knew that everyone else was in a diaper. It made conversation awkward and difficult at times, and sometimes the diapers would spring a leak, causing some blushes and "Excuse me"s. There was a noticeable waddle in everyone’s steps as they continued to break in their new undergarments.
CHAPTER 3: A PERMANENT PREDICAMENT
As the Incontalypse went on, my family continued to adjust to the diapers. I tried treating it as if it were normal (since now it was) and didn’t let it affect the way I went about my business. My brother, on the other hand, was all-too self-conscious. It was a humbling situation for him, as the once-proud athlete was now in a low-paying job, living in a dumpy apartment, mooching off his parents for money, and now to top it off, was wearing and using diapers. He started treating me with more respect and tried to restore what he could of his dignity by becoming more independent.
My mom, it seemed, was quite a bit less stressed when she came home from teaching. The diapers seemed to somehow ease her tension as she walked about with a calmer and happier attitude. Whether it was just one more thing off her plate to not have to run to the restroom, or if the diapers somehow gave her some feeling of security or protection, I can’t say for certain.
The twins started to become more socially active, as they now found common grounds with children their age. Their newly-found friends came over to play pretty often, and brought spare diapers if they planned on staying awhile.
My dad seemed to be the only person besides me that remained totally unaffected by the diapers. His entire attention was focused on finding out what the noise was that caused the Incontalypse. It excited and interested him to no end, and he constantly talked about new possible leads on what could’ve done it. Unfortunately, they never did totally find out what had caused it, but my dad continued to spend years searching for the answer.
Over these years, I continued my own research on the biological aspects of this crisis. I eventually became employed as one of the scientific researchers in this field. I assisted the performance of a number of autopsies, surgeries, scans, and other tests, searching desperately for an answer. Then finally, we found one.
Even though the cause of the noise remained unclear, it became obvious that it was not the noise itself that caused the Incontalypse, as deaf people also succumbed to the consequences. Rather, the noise was only a biproduct of some kind of genetic signal, which caused every strand of DNA to reorganize in such a fashion that continence vanished out of the human genome. Many thought that this supported the theory of an alien transmission. It took decades of searching through the genetic sequences to find the discrepancy, but one day, my team pinpointed the gene organization that was thrown out of whack. We were able to restructure the genes successfully, but it was a pointless endeavor. If every molecule of DNA in the body had been dismantled in such a way, there was no immediate way to fix the problem. We suggested the long-term solution of creating test-tube babies that would be born totally continent, and by this means repopulate the Earth with continent human beings. But the world governments restricted such a measure on moral grounds. We could only hope that one day we would not be held back like this.
As my dad’s team continued to search for a cause and the doctors an alternate solution, the effects of the Incontalypse were playing out. Diaper sales continued to go up while toilet sales plummeted. Pretty soon, houses weren’t even being built with toilets in the bathrooms anymore. It just became a waste of money and space.
It was only a matter of time before people began getting used to the new way of life. What was once an awkward reality now became the norm, and sometimes even a conversation topic. Nobody seemed to mind the bulges in their peers’ pants or their own, and sometimes discussed the positives and negatives of different brands, sizes, and types.
Now that everyone in the world was using diapers, landfills became overrun with them. The environmentalists were crying out, telling people to use cloth diapers instead. But nobody wanted to clean their own shit off of their diapers; throwing them in the trash was much more convenient. The government began passing bills to increase funds for the research of effective, affordable, and environmentally friendly diapers.
Another issue that arose was the rashes. Many people had too sensitive of skin to be able to handle their own urine and feces being pressed against them for extended periods of time. A lot of money was being spent on medical bills for rashes and skin infections.
Despite the pollution problem and the skin problem, the Incontalypse actually brought about some positive changes in the economy. Because the diaper industry took off like never before, jobs were being created all over the world for increased diaper production and research. The unemployment rate in the US dropped from 8% to 3% practically overnight. And as diaper production increased, so did competition, which kept prices reasonable. Discretion was no longer an issue, so companies competed mainly for absorbency and comfort, ignoring the bulk. Eventually it also became a fashion sense. Models who once found themselves strutting in swimsuits were now displaying diapers, which came in a variety of colors and designs. Jacob began studying the production of diapers, and in a few years fell into the industry, making decent wages and living in a nice home. The twins also found themselves in this line of work, as those in the diaper industry were the ones making the big bucks.
Because the biological cause of the Incontalypse was genetic, children were born with no ability to control their bodily functions. So as time went on and new generations appeared, they grew up looking at toilets as relics. I remember my own children staring in awe as my husband and I told of a world in which we could control our bowel and bladder movements, and they thought of it like some kind of super power. They grew up without even learning the concept of potty training; instead, they were taught how to change their own diapers.
As I told these stories to my children, I also reminisced about my dreams and desires before that noise rang out all over the world. I had always dreamed of working in an organ factory or a gene reconstruction clinic of some kind. There were times when I tried changing my course in this direction; unfortunately, I had been too deeply buried in the work of finding a solution for the Incontalypse. It paid very good money and helped me support my family; and anyways, the research I yearned for was left to the professionals who had several more years of education than I had. Even though the Incontalypse had its positive sides, I often wondered what I could have accomplished in the time that this crises had distracted me and blocked my progress. In any case, the damage was done and the course of human history had been permanently changed, for better or for worse.