So now for something completely different – a sci-fi adventure/comedy! Why not, right? One of the many stories I’ve been in, Charon, is based in a sci-fi universe on Charon, Pluto’s moon. A secret lab is there fulfilling government contracts and performing an array of other illegal operations. I jumped at this story and created a doctor there inspired by Walter White of Breaking Bad. In my spinoff, Dr. Bearnard Black creates Somnium – a dream inducing drug much like that of “Tek” from William Shatner’s TekWar.
So now, the first installment where we meet Dr. Black:
Dr. Bearnard Black hated his job but loved what it afforded him. Somus was one of Charon’s post popular sellers. Seemed that the toil of life had led to rampant sleep depravity all over the verse. He had perfected a drug that seemed impossible. One pill = one hour of perfect REM sleep. His original recipe had allowed more but the fine people in marketing advised against it. They made it clear they could sell more if it provided less results. Against weakening his formula at first, the influence from on high overrode his objections. The bonus he received from a higher sales volume didn’t hurt either.
He could do this in his sleep, no pun intended. He had managed over the years to get drones and machines to do all the tasks necessary to create Somus. This meant he need only supervise. This meant he could work in isolation. A tinker here and there of the machines allowed for a small portion of the ingredients to appear as waste. An extra chemical or two as well produced the preferred result and walla! Somnium was born. Watching it simmer in its final stages was his favorite part. It was here that it turned a smoky green and grey color. He switched off the heat, a fan brought its temperature down immediately and another started piping it into vials for transport.
He opened the wooden crate next to him and started placing the vials in the Charonic soil for transport. He affixed the shipping label, a shell mining/processing company that only had a PO Box back on Earth. A grin crossed his lips as he hammered on the lid and a drone carried it away for shipping.
End of installment.
The moderator soon hereafter, posed the idea that there was a severe power outage at the facility causing experiments to go awry and the “test subjects” i.e. inmates, to get loose and wreak havoc. See my next installment here for what happened to Dr. Black:
The power went out just as the batch of Somnium was finishing. Damn it all! Ruined…
Had he been found out? Were they on to him? Was this the way it would begin, his downfall? He had prepared for this…
He reached under his desk, locked it’s only drawer and grabbed his bug-out bag. Slinging it across his back, he went to the door. Locked. He was trapped. But wait…
It wasn’t locked, it would give a little. Odd. Something had fallen against it and was blocking his escape. That meant something else was going on. Probably something worse. He ran to his desk, cleared all the incriminating evidence and when he went to flush the ingredients using the robotic arm and saw it wouldn’t function at all. He had planned for this as well.
He unscrewed the panel at the bottom and changed some wires around connecting it to an auxiliary power system he’d set up for it. But as it came to life, it wasn’t obeying his commands. Instead it stabbed right at him with its massive, robotic hands. He narrowly dodged it. “ABORT” Black yelled, using the default kill command he’d been told to use in this case. It kept moving toward him. He started tipping over anything and everything between him and it. Pointless and illogical as it was, he had to do something.
He kept back pedalling. He didn’t notice he was back at his lab table where the last batch of Somnium still was. He backed into the table, fell against it, and to then to the floor. To his horror, he could see the blue serum cascade from the table down upon him.
He closed his eyes and hoped for the best – death…
End of installment… really this time.
Stay tuned for more…
Stay tuned for more from Dr. Black and company of the Charon Universe where we meet “Andy” – a test subject with a death wish (a spinoff of the lead character from Shawshank Redemption) and “A.D.A.M.” – a GELF or Genetically Altered Life Form, with severe, religious convictions.