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Something Broke


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[b][Location - An underground facility, deep below some part of the CR of Ceylon][/b]

"Do you know anything about that new shipment?"
"The one that arrived tonight?"
Two guards were standing outside a heavy bulkhead, fit for a bunker.

"Not really. Just know it's five new subjects. Three male, two female. No locals, I think. Didn't catch anything else from the delivery note."
"Hrm. Well, should be interesting. Wonder what the eggheads'll do with them."


"So this is the shipment?"
"Yes. Three male subjects, two female. All anesthesized, as usual."
"Do you have any data on them?"
"Not much. Two are from somewhere in America, I think. One from Europe, the other two from Africa. Tourists."
"Alright, then. Just put them into the storage for now. We'll get them into their cells later."
"Will do."

The two scientists - one senior, the other junior - split up, the junior scientist gathering some help to bring the subjects into 'storage', essentially a large medical room in which subjects were kept sedated and in an artificial coma until a cell could be allocated for them.
All five subjects were hooked up, now waiting with a few others who had been here for a while longer, some long enough to necessitate the use of machines to keep them fed.
It just so happened that two of the machines used to sedate the new subjects hadn't been maintained in a while - having been scheduled for tomorrow.

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The scientists hadn't been out of the room for more than three minutes when the first man came to. began to hyperventilate after waking up, taking full notice of the oxygen mask covering his face. He ripped it off violently and rolled off the small contraption he had been strapped into.

He looked over himself. He was in a garment not unlike a hospital gown, but instead of the traditional tunic-like opening, there were separate legs. He took notice of his surroundings. The room was not patterned or decorated and felt very cold. The only thing it seemed to contain were duplicates of the container he had been in, which housed... [i]people.[/i] Half a dozen or so other people, both men and women. They were of different ethnicities, and didn't seem to have much in common besides all being fairly young. He knew none of them.

He went to the closest sleeping person - it housed a women in her late twenties or so. He slapped her cheeks lightly and shook her a bit. It was to no avail, she stayed soundly asleep, seemingly drugged. He decided to try the next one down. As he approached it, it became apparent that something was very, very wrong with the person in it. The man, who was probably near 21, was cut up and scarred grotesquely, but oddly not bloody or unclean. Even so, the sight made the air leave his lungs.

He ran towards the door and found it to be unlocked. He cracked it open and looked out when he heard a large [i]thump[/i] behind him. He turned to see another man awake and convulsing under his mask. He ran towards the man and removed his mask, and tried to calm him down. When the convulsions stopped, the man turned his way. He was startled by the man's sudden and loud outburst. The man spoke with some sort of European accent, but his English was fluent.

"Who are you, and where in the HELL am I?"
"Be quiet! I don't know where we are, but it's probably best to not make a lot of noise right now."
"What do you mean? Don't you know what's going on?"
"No! I woke up just like you only a little bit ago!"

The second man jumped off his container. He also took a look at himself and glanced around the room, and saw the others.

"How about them?"
"I tried to wake one. She wouldn't come to, I think they've been drugged. Another's really badly cut, but I'm not sure why."
"Ah. Well, what do we do?"
"The way I see it, only other people could've done this to us. Judging by the guy with all the wounds, they're not the best-intentioned, either. It's probably best we leave and see what's going on."
"What, and just leave them?"
"Yes! They won't wake up and we can't stay here. Besides, if it's all clear outside, then we can always just come back for them."

The second man considered it for a moment. He glanced around the room again and then went up to see the hurt man. After looking him over, he seemed to give in and nodded.

"Okay, if we're leaving... let's go."

They opened the door lightly and again checked to see if it was clear. They left the room silently, closing it behind them.

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The corridor the two entered was empty, for virtue of relatively few guards being stationed in this part of the complex. Nothing had gone wrong in storage on any previous occasion. It was thus thought that few guards were needed.
Numerous doors lines the corridor, all looking identical save for perhaps the label on each. If one of them cared to read them, they'd find that more than just humans were stored here - there were rooms for anything, from plants and animals to food and scientific instruments, apparently.

Their escape hadn't been noticed yet, but it would be but a matter of time.

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The two men didn't have to be military special forces to see that this particular hall was relatively safe for them. They walked down the corridor and saw all the doors appeared to lead to storage rooms like the one they had left. The only one that interested them was the "Scientific Instruments" room. The first man pushed its door open and peered in.

"Scientific instruments? Why would that interest you?"
"Maybe they'll have something we can use. A weapon or something."
"Huh. You know, it just might."

The two men entered and ripped open a couple of boxes. There were many strange devices, including some robotics equipment. Despite seeing plenty of sharp edges, nothing that even remotely resembled a weapon seemed to be there. The first man tried in vain to rip a sharp-edged tool off of an array of blades and syringes.


The second man shook his head in frustration.

"No, nothing. Not even a bloody scalpel. Should we get out of here?"
"Wait a bit. Let's take a second."

The first man took a seat on one box and the second sat on the floor. The perches weren't exactly comfortable in the cold, hard, and overstuffed room. The first spoke.

"Alright, so let's at least get the names down, and see what we remember. I'm Stephen, and I'm from the Midwest Republic. Who're you?"
"My name is David. I am a subject of the Angevin Monarchy."
"What were you last doing, before you woke up here?"
"Me? Well, I was... I was on a trip. An international vacation."
"As I recall, so was I. Where were you, David?"
"Somewhere near the Kingdom of Cochin, I forget what they called the country. The Corporate something..."

Stephen looked away and sighed, as if realizing something he wished he hadn't.

"Republic of Ceylon. The Corporate Republic of Ceylon. That's where I was, too. On a cruise. How old are you?"
"What does it matter?"
"Just tell me!"
"Fine. I'm 24."
"And I'm 26."
"So what does it have to do with anything?"
"Don't you see, David? They've hand-picked us. We're all fairly young out-of-country vacationers. For what they want us, I'm not sure, but I do know we weren't just randomly taken."

David got up and pulled the door open, not bothering to check if the hallway was free of others or not. Stephen went behind him. They began to walk even further down the hall, when they were startled by a large cry from behind them.

"HEY! What are you doing?"

It was a man in a white laboratory coat. He had evidently just come out of the storage room the two men had come out of a few minutes before, and had noticed them missing. In one of his hands was a clipboard, and in the other, a radio. Without saying anything, Stephen rushed towards the man. He was very fast, and reached him before the scientist had much to do about it. He slammed the man's head into the wall, knocking him out. David walked up and took a look at the bloodied, unconscious scientist.

"Wow, you really walloped him. How'd you learn to do that?"
"I've seen the movies, and I used to do a little recreational fighting. Really I just got lucky. If he had a weapon, was stronger, trained to fight, or even ready, I probably couldn't have done that to him."
"Well, it was pretty impressive."

The men were interrupted by a brief static and then a voice. They realized the radio was the source, and David picked it up, only to drop it after hearing what it said.

"Doctor? We received your transmission regarding the subjects. We've sent guards to the storage wing. Where are you now?"

Edited by Domingo the Honored
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[i]"Doctor? We received your transmission regarding the subjects. We've sent guards to the storage wing. Where are you now?" [/i]

The guards were staring at the intercom, currently dialled into the doctor's radio. Just static, no answer.
"Damn. Something's happened. Someone down there is causing trouble."
"Well, inform the other posts. Send another patrol, too. We need to find out if it's an infiltrator or one of the subjects."
"You think one of them could've escaped storage?"
"Unlikely, what with them being in an artificial coma, but hey, it's possible."
"One of the machines malfunctioned?"
"Maybe. Irrelevant. Get going."
"Alright, alright."

Momenta later, the call went out to all guard posts in the facility, raising the collective alert level. if anyone wanted to leave one of the dedicated levels, they'd have to go through a post. Cameras and three guards were located at each, not counting the central post in the highest level of the complex, in whichi most guards spent their time when off-duty.
The facility was secret, after all, and its inhabitants were allowed outside only on rare occasions. Few had any family.

Meanwhile, unperturbed by the commotion in the higher levels, the scientists working down here, well over a hundred meters below the surface, continued with their projects. Two were currently looking at the results of a recent experiment, which had included attempts to 'tame' various types of cancer.
"How are the results?"
"The subject suffered from 2 types of lung cancer, intestinal cancer and various other tumors. The experiments conducted over a period of roughly three weeks showed an aptitude for feeling pain, as usual, but the treatment we attempted did not work properly."
"So, another failure?"
"Yes. Euthanisation was approved just yesterday, to end the subject's endless screams of pain, if not its suffering."
"Ah, well. At least we have another cell free. I assume we're going to attempt and repeat the experiment, with better results?"
"In a while, yes. We'll give our chemists and doctors some time to whip up ne treatment possibilities, then continue."
"Good to hear."

Edited by Lynneth
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