The trees...placid, beautiful, calming. Nature’s sentinels. Ever-present, easily taken for granted. Providers of shade and serenity. At least, that’s how most people think of trees. Just like people, by-and-large they’re good. But some–are not.
One thing that trees do is clean the air by removing CO2 and giving back oxygen. It is that pure and simple fact of nature that (some believe) turned a few acres of trees outside Leesville, LA near Vernon Lake into a “tree farm massacre.”
There’s no record of “Project: Reclamation” on government books or on any database except the most obscure fringe conspiracy website. It may have originated with DARPA, an agro-pharma conglomerate, university genetics research--no one is sure, and no one will say.
There is, however, one consistent thread: It was meant to save the world. Continuous production of greenhouse gases leading to catastrophic climate change threatens every living creature on earth. As we work to reduce those gases, we must also find ways to reverse the “greenhouse” process. The goal of “Project: Reclamation” was to enhance the natural ability of trees to remove atmospheric poisons. One test plot of trees was planted in an “undisclosed rural location.”
The researchers and foresters who lived on-site couldn’t help but be impressed by the accelerated growth of the seedlings. Intact data indicates these trees matured years ahead of traditional growth and accounted for a fourfold reduction in CO2 and other toxins. Speculation was that these trees could be adapted to reforest areas destroyed by logging, strip-mining and industrial pollution–even restore the South American Rainforest.
But while the trees absorbed humanity’s sins against nature, what they gave back was not simply oxygen.
Behavioral changes manifested in the researchers: Aggression, paranoia and hallucinations gradually leading to violent psychosis. From the size and amount of the body parts that were found, their strength and pain thresholds must have given them incredible resistance to the physical trauma a chainsaw can deliver. It was called the “Tree Farm Massacre.”
Further research was abandoned when investigators suffered the same fate. Speculation is that the “enhanced” trees produced an undetectable by-product of oxygen that, with sufficient exposure, turns people into homicidal “zombies.”
But maybe the answer is not that simple. Perhaps the trees are simply doing what they were designed to do, and they decided the best way to save the world–was to destroy us. Instead of protecting, are they turning us against each other? Is their pollen spreading and sealing all our fates?
One thing we know is that those who stay long enough inside the “Tree Farm Massacre” will either kill–or be killed. If you enter, you cannot trust those around you; you will be assailed by others who have stayed too long. Inside the “Tree Farm Massacre,” there is only one rule:
Get out alive.