Wednesday 10 November 2021

Mid-Week Flash Challenge - Week 225

This week's picture prompt was created by Australian artist Cameron Gray, known as Parablev on DeviantArt He calls it Cage. He has some incredible creations. I really love his art. Worth a look. 

This week it went a bit dark. Not what I had initally intended, but still like it. 

The General Guidelines can be found here.

How to create a clickable link in Blogger comments can be found on lasts week's post here

There is also a Facebook group for Mid-Week Flash, if you fancy getting the prompt there.

Test Subject

Dr Hayden chiselled round the face. It was messy work, but she managed to pry it off. She knew the top of the head came off easily, but she was surprised the face did too. There was blood everywhere and the flesh underneath was deeper than expected.

She stuck her fingers in and rooted around. Yep, there it was. She could feel the hard nub at the back of the third eye. She got her fingers under it and pulled it out, holding the blinking purple light up to inspect it, some sinews still dripping off.

It seemed intact and was still working so what had gone wrong?

She dug around further, going in around the brain which had gone mushy. All the wires were where they should be, and there was no evidence of a short circuit. So what had happened?

There’d never been a case of such a psychosis; all were stable and never questioned themselves like this one had. Self-esteem had never been questioned before and certainly none had displayed paranoid delusions that they turned on themselves.

The entire point of the third eye neural transmitter had been to help individuals remain open and to have a healthy perspective. It kept them looking forward and not back, out instead of in. It had been one of the most successful resolutions to the mental health problems over the last century. It had even become standard practice to have one implanted once adulthood was reached. Those that chose not to were considered feral.

So why now, after all these decades had this one malfunctioned?

Dr Hayden took the transmitter over to the counter. She washed it off and inspected the outside of it. There was no evidence of any kind of tampering, and with its position behind the skull it was well protected. She opened it up and found nothing out of the ordinary inside either. It was a complete puzzle.

She took out the patient’s paper file and leafed through. There had been no accidents in their thirty-two years – they’d actually had an exemplary medical record. But something struck her; when the patient reached her thirties there had been repeating visits to their doctor.

She went over to the computer and put in the patient’s details. The name of the doctor appeared. Hayden covered her mouth as she read the name of one of her former colleagues. He’d been relieved of his position at their lab because of his unethical ideas about patient care. He believed the transmitters were a manipulation tool to keep people passive, and wanted to see if they could be removed.

She quickly brought up the specifics of the visits. He’d been giving her medication, a wide variety of them including hormonal replacement therapies and heavy duty stimulants. They were virtually unheard of now. Only those without the transmitters were given them and then at a high cost. Why had he been giving them to this patient? She had no requirement for them. Her initial visit to him had been for a simple bacterial infection.

But then she noticed the note under the initial visit: ‘test subject for hormonal activation of transmitter’. He’d wanted to see if it could be triggered.

And it had; an early death by turning the brain to pulp. But had it been the transmitter or the drugs? That would be the next investigation, after she had made a call to the authorities to report the murder.



    Hark, ye foul sinner, hark! I bellow and bid our father of dualities, Janus, to emerge from the portal, full foul in his fury, his twin faces of black lead and argent steel screeching banshee-like in the furnace, to smother ye with quicksilver swift, to choke ye, bespoiling your innards till ye turn blue and bloated with molten iron and rusted blood and can scream no more and only watch as he, crowned in gallium and zinc and mighty bronze beard a-steaming, lifts up his fell, bejewelled arm and thrusts his gold-tined trident through ye, bursting ye apart, a bulging bladder of hydrargyrum no more, but now a dissolute bloody film smeared on his iron boots, an insignificancy for the flamen and the souls of dead smiths to peck and claw and feed upon, to be absorbed by the water-silver of the dread god himself, forgotten to all men, forgotten to time, forgotten to any god or devil, since any skerrick or scantling of your soul is ye no more, but is now itself but base ore to be smelted. So do I curse ye!

  2. Told you on Twitter, I had to figure out how to write the words. This is one of about 5 million ideas that I had to sort through.

    My Daddy Said

    1. Brutal. Liked it though. Thanks for joining.