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Toads are a stage of infection of the fictional parasitic fungus of cordyceps on insects in the Mario and The Last of Us franchises that infected most of the Mushroom Kingdom's original citizens, mainly insects at that time. When Peach's citizens began rebelling against her, Luigi was hired to bring her a strand of cordyceps, to which Peach used to infect huge insects. Any man-sized insects such as Bugabooms, Wigglers, Bees, and Scuttlebugs around the kingdom were infected, insanitizing them within minutes and morphing them into mushroom-like creatures called Toads. Not knowing the Toads were actually harmless, the Goombahs evacuated to ask the nefarious Bowser for help. Despite his short temper, the Koopa King took pity on them and cast a curse on the Toads, turning them into brick blocks and horsetail plants that stopped the parasites from growing. Unfortunately, the curse was broken by the psychopathic serial killer Maverick Seraglio, better known as Mario. The cordyceps has been around for centuries, all starting in the Elizabethan Era.


On December 9, 1580, explorer Montreal Carso was hired by Queen Elizabeth to store over $500,000,000 worth of relics and artifacts around Australia, Indonesia, and the Philippines. Carso, however, was in financial debt at the time and was far from capable of purchasing a ship to execute the expedition. On January 13, 1581, Montreal was charged with sexual offense after watching a female chef undress through a peeking hole, receiving a six-month sentence.
Montreal Carso

Montreal Carso

Carso, having grown up in poverty, drew pictures of luxurious homes, objects, and lifestyles that he desired while in prison. About three months into his sentence, Montreal was caught leaving his work shift at the labor camp he was sent to every afternoon to work on one of his drawings. One of the guards strictly demanded Carso to resume his shift, to which he replied to be given a few more minutes. Impatient, the guard grabbed Montreal by the throat and began pulling him back. When Carso began resisting, the guard pulled out a knife and sliced him through the arm, leaving behind a deep permanent cut. Still angry, the picture was taken from Carso and the guard decided to have it thrown out, but put it into the mail by mistake. The picture was shipped into the architectural department. Five days later, the drawing reached the architectural department, where examiner Joseph Kalekai pulled the drawing from the mail cabinet, and fell in love with it.

Montreal Carso's illustration of what he wanted his dream ship to look like.

He put out many stocks around England, promising to give them shares of any treasures he may find on the journey with the ship he was building using the money the peasants granted him. On October 25, 1581, three months after Drake had been released, the ship was built, and Carso couldn't believe his eyes. Kalekai, appearing kind and genuine, stated that he though the ark was such a masterpiece that he would give the ship to whoever drew the illustration of it. Carso, having heard of this, went up to Kalekai while he was announcing his plans for the ship and told him that he was the one who drew the illustration. With a happy smile, Kalekai leaped and yelled to the crowd that Drake was the winner and handed him the declaration for the ship. After doing so, Kalekai turned around and happily hugged Drake,
Joseph Kalekai

Joseph Kalekai

only to frighten him with a whisper. While hugging him, Kalekai whispered to Carso in a brutal voice stating that he did not believe that he actually drew the picture, and that he was only giving him the ship in hopes of making an enormous profit without risking his life. He then tells him that before he stores the treasures from Queen Elizabeth, he is to first travel to Southern America and collect the valuables rumored to be there for centuries. Next, Carso is told that he must bring the treasures to Kalekai himself, and that if he fails, he will be executed as the declaration of the ship states that the death penalty will be given to those who are granted the ship and fail to keep the promise the original owner asked them for in return. Knowing his life was at stake, Carso persuaded 413 people(242 men and 171 women) to give with him on this expedition to increase his chances of survival and obtaining the additional valuables. On April 19, 1582, when the ship was finally loaded with the necessary equipment, food, medicine, and valuables, and all the sailors kissed their loved ones goodbye, Carso named his ship the Chimera, a reference to the mythical monster from Greek Mythology of the same name, and set out on his expedition. Unknowingly to him, he would create a nightmare for the world.


The cordyceps has different effects depending on what kingdom, species, or phylum the host is in. Toads are the result on insect organisms to which they are the only stage. There are three ways to be infected. The first is to be bitten by an infected organism, the second is by inhaling the spores the plant produces, and the third is by eating something that is contaminated by the fungus. If the host is infected through a bite, fungal skin will grow in its place, releasing infectious bacteria to the brain. After findind a nesting spot in the skull, the bacteria begin to reproduce and dig through until reaching the brain. Once it is reached, the plant will begin to grow through the frontal lobe and completely wipe out the host's memories and growing a fungal thread throughout the person's brain.

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