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Zombie Me: Patchwork and Pieces

Chapter 1: Part 1, Litany of Rot

Chapter 1: Part 2, Shattered

Chapter 1: Part 3, Growling with Hunger

Chapter 1: Part 4, Vion Rising

Chapter 1: Part 5, Stand Off

Chapter 1: Part 6, The Call

Chapter 1: Part 7, Free Association

Chapter 1: Part 8, First Taste

Chapter 1: Part 9, Bert and Ernie

Chapter 1: Part 10, Starting to Rain

Chapter 2: Part 1, "Me!"

Chapter 2: Part 2, C.A.B.L.E.T.V.

Chapter 2: Part 3, Raining

Chapter 2: Part 4, Sheltered Hunger

Chapter 2: Part 5, Clouded Eye Open

New short story "The Awakening"

Chapter 2: Part 6, Everything Yet Nothing

Chapter 2: Part 7, The Cheshire Smile

Chapter 2: Part 8, Cacophony of Fists

Chapter 2: Part 9, Still Born

Chapter 2: Part 10, Empty Nest

Chapter 3: Part 1, False Rescue, Hidden Hope

Chapter 3: Part 2, The Process

Review of Brainchild... A collection of Artifacts

Chapter 3: Part 3, Psuedo Life

Chapter 3: Part 4, Wayward Derelicts

Chapter 3: Part 5, The Cleaners

Chapter 3: Part 6 The Corridor

Chapter 3: Part 7, Echoes of Death

Chapter 3: Part 8, The Road Kill Machine

Chapter 3: Part 9, Fixed Lividity

New short story "Alone in the Woods"

Chapter 3: Part 10, Fire Within

Chapter 4: Part 1, Eye of the Beholder

Chapter 4: Part 2, Home

New - Character Sketches

Chapter 4: Part 3, Dead Inside

Chapter 4: Part 4, Dead Soldiers

Chapter 4: Part 5, Kill Switch

Chapter 4: Part 6, The Call Part 2

Chapter 4: Part 7, The Key

Chapter 4: Part 8, Reunion

Chapter 4: Part 9, Unleashed


2006/04/25

Chapter 3: Part 2, The Process

Note from the author:

Many of you have read my earlier comments on how I've struggled with the initial parts to chapter 3. Out of all of them this following part was the hardest and has undergone the most revision, both plotwise and grammatically. I have been doing a lot of research on how to write dialogue and I hope that it flows better then it did initially. I appreciate your understanding that this a learning process for me. What has started as idea has snowballed for me, and please know that this will continue to the end. Enjoy!


William Zedalis




Click... static... "Can you hear me?"...sssshhh...click. The question floated on the crest of a narcotic high so powerful that Eric felt utterly disembodied. Unsure of the ability to even answer he tried to close himself off hoping that the voice would leave him alone to enjoy the black velvet which enveloped his senses.

Click... static..."Answer me Eric! I have some questions that I need you to answer." ...sssshhh...click. The warbling voice had a mechanical aspect which made it impossible to determine from whom it came. Each time it spoke to him it was accompanied by those annoying clicks as if it came through an intercom, and the static white noise thrumming in his head was starting to give him a headache.

A compulsion which seemed to come from deep inside forced him to answer. "Yes, I hear you, but there's a lot of interference." Eric laughed in the darkness at the sound of his own voice. I must've had quite a bit to drink, he thought to himself as his words echoed back in that same, if somewhat slurred mechanical tone.

Click...static...click...sssshhh...sssssss... Click... The continual Velcro tearing sound was gone and Eric was able to relax slightly. "Is this better?" ...ssss...click.

"Yes..." Eric replied, thankful that all he heard now was a low hiss.

"Very good Eric!" The voice sounded pleased. "Answers... answers are what I seek."

"Did you know that the search for answers was how this all started?" The voice asked and then halted as if it expected some sort of reply.

When none came it continued. "You see I am actually a philosopher at heart, and one of the most unanswered questions asked by philosophers is... Where does the soul reside?" The electrical snake hissed in Eric's mind as another calculated pause commenced. "Do you know where your soul is Eric?"

"Hmmm... I didn't think so. I wonder if you even have a soul." If Eric could have felt pain that remark would've bitten him deeply.

"I only say that because I believe you were born into this world without the moral restraints of having one, as was I. You see, you and I are of the same breed and I sensed this deficit when I first met you."

There was a long period where the only sounds Eric heard were faint ones buried within the low hiss. Then the voice came back. "Ancient Greek philosophers postulated that the soul lived within the entire body. There was one problem with this though, what happened when there was an amputation? Did that part of the soul get amputated as well?" Eric tried to think about this, but he found it hard to concentrate as his thoughts seemed mired in the blackness around him.

"This led to the dichotomy of head versus heart. Western philosophers believed that the soul resided in the brain while Eastern philosophers believed just the opposite. At the end of this century modern science had developed the first artificial heart and by the process of elimination ruled it out as the residence of the soul."

Ambient noises of clinking metal drifted towards Eric as he listened to the history lesson. The voice continued, "This led me to rationalize that the soul is in the brain. It's wrapped up inside all that twisting, turning grey and white matter."

Just then a shrill ringing shot through the darkness startling Eric. This was followed by a cruel chuckle. It was then that Eric came to the frightening conclusion that the mechanized voiced belonged to Raimi. He's got me drugged and he's interrogating me. Eric's mind raced through the library of compounds which could induce this effect. With each passing chemical structure he grew more frustrated when none seemed to fit his condition.

"Sorry about that. I just needed to make a few adjustments. It's all a part of the process... Are you still with me Eric?"

"Yes... What's going on? What... What have you done to me? I can't feel my body and it's hard to think." Eric scolded himself for sounding so pathetic, but the lack of control he felt was testing his emotional restraint.

Ignoring the questions the voice continued, this time its cadence was slightly faster as if Raimi was working while he talked. "Yes... Somewhere inside the brain is the soul, that elusive thing which makes us who we are. This is where my journey began. Modern medicine has recorded neurological injuries where, in some cases the personality was altered, in other more traumatic injuries the person was the fine. In this day and age there is also a variety of drugs which can alter mood, and even correct some personality disorders. My main point Eric is that even though the brain is complex, there was data which provided a starting point for my research."

"My early exploration consisted mostly of data retrieval and case study. I had found that personality traits linked to survival, such as competitiveness and aggression were regulated by the limbic system. While what we consider memory, both short and long term, is handled in the cerebellum. It is the interaction of these two parts of the brain that forms who we are. Some call it personality, while others call it a soul. I call it chance chemical encounters. You see I believe we are who we are because of these continual chemical and biological interactions."

It was then that the full realization of the situation came crashing down on him. He's not interrogating me... He's torturing me. Eric couldn't help feeling like an insect trapped under a microscope as he realized that he was Raimi's next experiment. Knowing that Raimi was out there somewhere, beyond the blackness, with scalpel in hand and ready to cut frightened Eric.

Raimi's emotionally void tone continued. "I had also observed that when this connection was completely severed people were left in a vegetative state, and when it was partially severed the patients exhibited everything from aggression to severe paranoia. What I needed to know is what would happen if this interaction ceased and was then reestablished. What happens to this soul?"

"It wasn't until I had met some like minded colleagues that I was able to realize the full extent of my theories. I now had the proper tools and technology at my disposal to take my experiments to the next stage. I also had the right people who appreciated the implications of my work. They also wanted to know what would happen when this link was severed and then reset, and my new friends at Vion had just developed a method of achieving this. They called it... The Process, and what it accomplished was basically a reboot on a cellular level. And just like a computer... In order for it to reboot, it first needs to be shut down." Eric could hear low laughter. ...Static... Click.

2 Comments:

Blogger ddavies said...

I just found your blog and story, and I find it addictive! I couldn't stop reading. Keep up the excellent work.

12:57 AM  
Anonymous William A. said...

GOOG STUFF THERE WILLIAM, WHEN ARE WE GONNA GET SOME MORE?

2:57 AM  

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