Say you're a single celled being with the following characteristics.

  • Able to control disease based cells around it

  • Human-level intelligence

  • Virtually immortal

You've been around for millennia. You've "possessed" humans many times over, using their bodies to interact with the populace and whatnot. In essence, you kill them and use their body for yourself, essentially replacing either from birth or from some point in their life. You've generally laid low even in your human actions. You've always known of humanity. In fact, in your birth you obtained the memories of a human linked to you. Naturally, you're rich, heavily invested in politics, and tend to operate in the shadows. Lots of people know of you, but don't tend to realize that you run everything in your country aside from being an elected official.

You decide getting elected, being rich, etc. just won't cut it anymore to satiate your desire for control. So you decide you want to make your grand reveal. You want to make yourself the body of a literal giant. Something massive. You'd use the bodies of humans but you don't think that's flashy enough. So you decide you want to use disease as the cellular structure of this monstrosity. After all, it's what you were born with control over! So you decide to make a monster with the following attributes:

  • Humanoid

  • Roughly a mile tall with either the appropriate strength for that size or greater strength. Bigger and stronger is always better (as you can discard anything you don't need), but you definitely don't want to be treating the ocean like a kiddie pool.

  • (Possibly confusing bit) Since bacteria and diseases are single cellular you also want your creation to be able to disperse itself into the air and be able to control local air currents. Essentially you want it to be able to take the form of an artificial funnel cloud without being utterly destroyed. This is definitely something you want.

  • Durability - you don't want it falling apart 24 hours later and the angry locals killing you.

Now you aren't afraid of nuclear missiles or anything like that. You have the access codes. You can easily dispose of them. Of course, that doesn't mean you don't want to have safeguards in case some were lying around. You've seen nukes be used in wars before. You know your new body would have to much much bigger to survive the immediate blast and make your escape.

You plan to primarily grow your disease cells by infecting the population with them. You want some kind of plague or pandemic to produce enough cells to let you grow. Preferably they would be natural cells or appearing natural. See, people once knew of you. There are (incredibly minor) deities and other beings that if even suspected you might be alive, would strike you dead on the spot. They think you're dead and cannot even remotely suspect you're trying this. Of course, if you succeed, they won't know what hit them. However, you have to do this in secret. Otherwise, your plan will fail.

Based on your other political actions and everything starting to converge towards you being removed from power, you only have roughly a few months to a year to execute this plan. The faster this can be done the better. Chances are, any transfer of body will just result in a loss of power due to things becoming more distributed. Nothing dictator like. Just the normal things such as companies choosing to split apart, reelections, etc. It has to be you that pulls it off (otherwise you risk losing control of the nukes and other things that might be able to kill you at full strength).

So the question really is:

What diseases do you use to create this beast, and how do you pull it off? How do avoid detection? How do you disperse the disease?

^note, these aren't multiple questions. They're all one and the same. Just different aspects, that's all.


closed as unclear what you're asking by L.Dutch, Vylix, sphennings, Frostfyre, Azuaron Aug 17 '17 at 13:12

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    $\begingroup$ though I might agree that some politicians are amoeboid, how can a single celled being be "rich, heavily invested in politics"? $\endgroup$ – L.Dutch Aug 17 '17 at 5:09
  • $\begingroup$ Good idea to hide the detection of growing a mile high humanoid. Perhaps a long way away from other people is the only idea I have. Good luck with the rest of your question. $\endgroup$ – a4android Aug 17 '17 at 5:21
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    $\begingroup$ So, in short, you are suicidal? Because as soon as you do that, your clock starts ticking. Sooner or later humans will build something to kill you. Your best tool was the fact that nobody knew about you. And now you are giving that up for... what? 15 minutes of fame? With a huge body like that, you do not get more control, but much less, because now suddenly most of your time is spend defending yourself against enemies that didn't even know you existed before you showed them. It's a stupid move, even if the goal was feasible (which it isn't, biology doesn't work that way). $\endgroup$ – Florian Schaetz Aug 17 '17 at 6:35
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    $\begingroup$ 1) Square-cube law. 2) What do you mean by controlling disease cells? We have billions of SCOs in our bodies, some produce waste that helps our body function, some produce waste that harms us: there isn't any malice involved; no SCO ever decides, "Today I'm going to make my host sick". 3) While bacteria do coordinate to build colonies, it is doubtful they have the social structure to effectively form a multicellular organism, especially if they get to quit at any time--even humans don't; see Brexit $\endgroup$ – nzaman Aug 17 '17 at 13:57
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    $\begingroup$ Look at SARS. Highly contagious & infectious. Too reduce suspicion make it unlethal. Like SARS but just like a mild cold. Annoying, lots of cough for pneumatic spreading & spraying. As long as no-one is dying & not too many people are off work, it could turn the masses into walking, infectious incubators. $\endgroup$ – a4android Aug 18 '17 at 4:45


Your only real solution here is magic - which you seem to be fine with, so there you go! Create a magical disease that's capable of converting 90% of a host's body mass into itself before the host actually keels over. There's your material source. Give it the properties you want, and you're set.

Longer-Winded Explanation

Part the First - Things You Can't In Any Way Make a Giant Out Of

Viruses, prions, and toxins. These are all things that have been classified as "diseases", but they're ridiculously small, lack any sort of mechanical structure that could be used to support anything else, and cannot "live" in any meaningful sense on their own. Just a non-starter.

So, what does that leave us with?

Part the Second - Things You Can't Realistically Make a Giant Out Of

Fungi, amoebae, and bacteria. Capable of living (broadly) without a host for at least short periods of time. Possessed of actual structures, such that one could reasonably pile one atop another.

What is not in their resumé, however, is supporting enormous weight. In fact, barring magic, building anything a mile high in normal earth gravity is incredibly tricky. Bacterial cell walls - even latticeworks constructed of tougher fungi - don't come close to the tensile and compressive strength of high-carbon steel, carbon fiber, and reinforced concrete. No real-life organic creature a mile high could support its own weight, regardless of its component parts.

Also barring magic, you are labouring under a popular misconception - bigger does not equal stronger. Past a certain point, non-magical organic means of movement are insufficient to handle the requirements of the body, and life cannot be maintained. Part of the reason that birds have hollow bones is that dinosaurs had them first - when you're getting big, organically, you need all the cheating means of reducing your weight you can get. There's a reason that the largest animal which has ever lived, and all of the runners-up to the title, have been ocean-going. Salt water makes a great external support!

On top of that, bacteria, even controlled by an immortal sentience, don't have the kind of specialization that allows multi-celled creatures to get as large as we do. The reason that we can have neurons, for example, tucked in safely behind bone and layers of protective tissue, is because we have a circulatory system whose sole purpose is delivering oxygen and nutrients to those neurons. Building an ersatz circulatory system out of staphylococcus wouldn't work either, because our blood cells (and plasma, and whatnot) are specialized to do that task, and bacteria is not. So even on a human scale, a figure made out of bacteria would die from the inside out.

Part The Third - Therefore, Magic

You've got deities, you've got a sentient super-possessing-amoeba-thing. So you can throw realism aside, and just create an incredibly infectious super-bacteria that can propel itself through air unaided, can use its resilient structure to duplicate internal organs in a host, thus keeping them running for long enough to convert most of their biomass into itself, and which can link up with others of its kind to form a structure harder than diamond.

Et voila.

Edited addendum:

I should note that you'd need to kill a lot of people to get the requisite biomass. Assuming a roughly human-shaped figure, and assuming approximate human density (this may be a false assumption, particularly if you want to try and weave around the structural support problems listed above), there's the following back-of-the envelope calculation:

  1. Your average human is circa 1.6m tall. Therefore, to make a mile-high human figure, it would need to be a thousand times taller.
  2. The square-cube law dictates that we would need to increase the total volume of stuff required to make this figure by the cube of the factor of increase of one dimension - therefore, we'd need the equivalent biological mass of a billion humans. (1000^3 = 1000000000)
  3. That's a whole lotta stiffs..

Even assuming you hollowed the figure out and only needed 10% of that mass, that's still a hundred million human bodies worth of biomass. If you start aiming for something like 1% of that number, you run into other problems.


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