EUROPE, 1350 – Good news, fellow Christians! The infection and death rates of the Great Mortality have finally begun to fall after many long years, much like the livestock that were left untended in fallow fields! You know what this means: resume your labours for your lord and lady on their estate, provided they have survived or an heir has been located!
Said His Holiness, Pope Clement VI: “Business back to normal, all! Time to eat, drink, and be merry… All while making sure you don’t do anything silly, like challenge the social order in light of the economic situation resulting from the catastrophic population freefall. And if you do sin, well, you don’t get a ‘Get Out Of Hell Free’ card from dying of plague anymore, but for a reasonable fee…” He winked.
“Maybe you can also stop killing Jews for a bit,” added the Pope on a more somber note. “I remember specifically asking for that a while ago.”
You heard it here, folks – business as usual! Just build that protective layer of dirt up again, have a gaggle of babies (inside the holy bounds of matrimony, of course), throw your waste where you’d like, cram yourselves in your cities and dwellings like corpses in a plague pit, and something about the Jews, this reporter forgets what! For God’s great punishment for our sins is over and it will never, ever happen again!
King Edward III of England, when reached for comment, was too busy sobbing over his numerous dead relatives to give a coherent response.
Suggestions from foreign infidels that the surviving Europeans try ‘bathing’ have met with widespread chortling, murmurs of potential crusades.