From the Story Arc: WCO Report: Operation Black Lotus

Previous Story in the Arc: Intercepted transmission... by Chug (Wednesday, March 02, 2005)

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(posted Wednesday, March 09, 2005)

"Explain to me again how this neural impulse field works," uttered General Alexander Rokossovsky in guttural voice. "And you are certain it cannot force open the door?"

"Quite so," quipped a young man wearing a lab coat. "The low frequency sound waves is pulsed in such a manner that they over stimulate the basal ganglia. This can cause the subject to fall into severe convulsions. And if we change the modulations of the sound waves a bit more, we can interfere with the subject's memory."

Rokossovsky peered into the black and white monitor before him. "But the memory effect is only useful as a focussed blast, correct? And only for a short time will the target be immobilized. In this case..."

"Yes, general," nodded the technician. "We are a using broader pulse, so the subject will typically express degenerative motor control without suffering complete over stimulation. But still experience no effects of memory loss like what the capture teams employed."

"Good," sneered Rokossovsky. "I take it aside from the door and wall sensors, you have a manual activation switch also?"

"Yes, general," the technician quickly motioned to a large yellow button near the monitor. "This will activate the neural impulse field."

"And since containment how many time has it tried to challenge the holding cell?"

The young man glanced at a clipboard holding pages of numbers. "Only twice since containment 9 days ago."

"And still no record of it speaking?" Rokossovsky rubbed his chin, "or any attempts to interact?"

"None, sir. Just a healthy appetite and it seems to eat the trays and utensils we put inside the cell."

"Utensils. Trays." The general snorted in disgust, "give it food in a bowl like an animal." He paced a bit. "How is the subject's response to the impulse field in a sensory manner?"

"Ah, well aside from the neurological impediment to motor control," the technician grimaced, "it also is rather painful."

"Good..." Rokossovsky's scowl slowly morphed into a smile, "You are dismissed."

The general stood over a small set of monitors and video displays. A constant stream of numbers and data scrolled on one screen. Rokossovsky reached over and touched a button. One column of numbers disappeared on the monitor. He peered at the grainy image of a hunched figure sitting in the corner of a dark concrete cell. Rokossovsky reached and flipped a switch. From small speakers faint whimpering could be heard. The general leaned forward and spoke into a microphone. "I have much patience but these games are trying me." The monitor showed the figure ball up even tighter and begin to rock back and forth.

"There is no escape," Rokossovsky swept his arm grandly, although the figure could not witness his gesture. "There will be no rescue." Beyond the control desk, seated in a dark hallway of wet concrete held a huge, circular, metal door. Pitted with rust, the door's center held a large rotary handle with thick, black cables snaking towards its edges. Rokossovsky looked in admiration at its solid design.

"And like an animal," Rokossovsky punched down on the large yellow button, "it can be trained by its master." A low hum emitted from the cables leading into the door and the chamber beyond. The figure on the monitor began to uncontrollably shake.

Rokossovsky released the button and the hum from the cables fell silent. The general hit another switch restoring a stream of data to a monitor and strode out. His heavy footsteps echoed in the cavernous long hall. After a few minutes, only the sound from drops of water falling onto stone and concrete distubed the stillness of the dank chamber. And faintly, emitting from the small speakers on the control panel, soft sobbing could be heard.