In 2165 Earth is a changed place where the seeds of corporate greed and government control have grown into a society where power, money, and control are kept with the few. Pollution has caused destabilization of the planet causing deadly quakes. Hopes for the future rest with a select group teens. -
~Prologue — Part 2~
Antarctic Research Center (ARC)
Year 2149, Two Months Later
Two Months Later
“Aaaaaaaaaggggghhhhhh!” An ear piercing scream escaped Zura’s parched chapped lips. Sweat glistened on her forehead and tiny beads slowly followed the path to her neck. Her hair curled under the moisture. Her tears had all but run out and now she was just trying to hold on through the next painful contraction. She stared up at the white ceiling, looking for her focus spot. The tiny greyish colored blemish in the otherwise perfectly smooth white ceiling. The bright bulbs meant to aid the staff in seeing also gave the feeling of an uncomfortable interrogation room.
As she searched for the elusive spot, she faded between being with everyone else in the room and zoning out. The only other thought running through her head on repeat was possibly killing Johan for his part in this. He stood in the corner silently, rocking as if in shock, unsure of what to do and away from her reach. She could smack him right now for shutting down while she endured the last of humanity’s unjustifiable burdens. Zura felt like she might have been hallucinating as she looked and he was still standing there. She hadn’t just knocked him down along with that stupid look on his like she’d imagined. The trick on her mind pissed her off even more.
As she screamed in the sanitized room attended by the staff doctor, a small aircraft slowly entered the hangar and stopped.
The door to the small craft opened and out jumped Dr. Claudia Lima. She and the two doctors following her were all running behind Mave who’d been waiting in the hangar for the plane to arrive. Mave had barely let them off the craft before yelling at them to hurry. She wasn’t her usual patient self right now. But patience wasn’t a luxury any of them could afford at that moment.
It was happening and if they didn’t get there fast, there would be death on their hands. What they were about to do couldn’t be proven to work successfully, not in humans at least. But it was the only chance they had to give the ground breaking medicine to the two unborn children struggling to be born.
Mave sprinted ahead of the group her boots hitting the smooth concrete floor of the hangar light and quick. Dr. Lima and the others struggled to keep up, their bags jostling beside them. They were soon at the entrance to the building where everything seemed to stand still, waiting for a miracle. Mave looked back to make sure she had everyone.
“Hurry! Only take what you need for the surgery!” she yelled behind her as she pressed her wrist against the scanner to open the door. The four were through, dropping their bags on the inside. The door closed behind them trapping the freezing cold air in the hangar.
Mave rushed through a confusing labyrinth of intricate honeycomb style tunnels. Dr. Lima and her team, lighter without their luggage, followed close as Mave barked at them to keep up. Mave hoped it wasn’t too late. Another sharp scream pierced the tunnel they were in. They were close.
Mave slammed through the door to the birthing room. Soft meditative music meant to inspire a Zen like state played uselessly through the speaker system. Zura lay on the water supported bed, her head thrown back into the plush down pillow. Her screams and cries sprayed like knives slicing through the intended peacefulness of the room and muting the music.
Zura could taste the beads of sweat that formed above her lip and seeped into the corners of her mouth. She’d only read of births like this happening before modern medicine. Because of her stubbornness, she was living through what must have been the last original torture of womanhood.
“God damnit! What the hell took you so long? I am dying here. I am literally… dying… here!” Zura’s eyes narrowed and then went wide again as she went through another contraction. After it passed she had just enough time to spew venom at Mave and the other three as they slinked into the room, behind Mave.
“Well we are here now. So shut up and let us help,” Mave said as she checked Zura’s vitals on the screen and then felt Zura’s full lumpy abdomen. The babies were restless. She listened for the heartbeats of the twins inside of her. They were struggling just as hard as Zura to be freed from the one world they’d known. They couldn’t come out just yet.
“Claudia, your team needs to prep the serum and get it ready to inject. I’ll pull up the view of the twins inside. Zura, you just lay there as best as you can. Dr. Lima brought a local anesthetic with her. It’ll help with some of the pain, but you’ll still have to fight through it. I’m sorry.”
The team was working as fast as they could. What had felt like a spacious birthing room now felt cramped as the half dozen people moved around the equipment and bed. Mave gave Zura a small red pill and sprayed Zura’s stomach with the anesthetic. Tiny pinpricks stung all over Zura’s skin as it soaked in. Fifteen seconds later it turned to a dull sensation covering an eight inch diameter area on her abdomen.
“It takes three minutes for the combination to work. Then we’ll be able to administer the serum.” Dr. Lima grabbed Zura’s hand briefly before continuing to prep the double shot of serum. She’d done the procedure several times before, but never with twins.
Mave looked around for Johan. Johan stood in the corner motionless as if he’d been turned into petrified wood. His eyes were blank and his mouth partly open as he just took in what felt like chaos. Zura couldn’t see straight enough to notice him now.
“Get over here Johan. Hold your wife’s hand and stop standing in the corner like you are a used up box of tissues. You aren’t the one about to push out two frickin babies, are you?” Johan snapped out of his trance and rushed over to Zura’s bedside. He took one of her hands and held it. At that moment her grip tightened around his, squeezing hard as she let out another blood curdling scream.
They were hoping for a miracle with this serum. It was designed for premature infants to serve as an intrauterine immune system booster and metabolizer. The addition to the basic serum was controversial and some had disagreed that it was necessary or should be used given the potential risks. However, Zura and Johan, being stuck in Antarctica asked for it accepting the risks. The other benefits and Zura’s faith that what Mave told her was going to be true had convinced them. The additional modification was added to the serum after the serum had passed inspection.
The only people who knew about it were Zura, Johan, Mave and Dr. Claudia Lima. It was a special chemical that attached to the bodies’ natural antibodies and was processed through the blood. Over time it would restrict the host’s DNA like a mutation whenever it learned how to fight an attacker. It was an internal weapon against illness, disease, and degeneration.
The testing in mice yielded very promising results after several modifications to levels of testosterone and how it bonded to the DNA. This was the last of the doses to be given. After the twins were born the eight Selected children would have received the serum.
No one knew the long term effects yet. And with only six other humans injected there wasn’t much empirical evidence. What they had seen from the six who’d received it had been mostly positive, so far.. It had only been a couple of years, but that was all the data they had to go on. It would have to be enough.
Zura looked at Mave, her face wrenched in pain and fear. She was second guessing their decision. Wondering if they were doing the right thing, if it would even work, or if she was killing her babies with it. She began to cry but she couldn’t speak, the pain of contractions had stolen her voice. She’d put them in this situation and she had to ensure their survival, the only way she knew how.
“We don’t have much time. The serum only works when the babies are in the womb and have at least a few minutes for the serum to work through their system,” Claudia said. “We are cutting this really close. These babies are in position to come out.” Mave looked at her watch. A few more seconds went by. The ideal was to wait until the babies were full developed at 39 weeks, but for Zura and the twins, that ideal wasn’t an option. The twins were six weeks early. They could only hope that there would at least be those few minutes after the serum was injected for it to process in their bodies before they left the dark cramped safety of Zura’s womb.
“Okay. Go now!” Mave yelled. They could begin administering the serum.
Dr. Lima and her team watched the infants on the monitor. They would inject the one closest to coming out with the serum first. Just as they were about to place the needle, they paused as Zura let out another scream. A few more of those and they would be out of time.
I would love to hear your feedback on the start of the first book of the trilogy I am currently writing. And if you love it and comment with your thoughts on this piece, I'd be happy to do the same for you (just ask).
I am on the second half of the 3rd book. I'll likely share at least the first 3 chapters here for input.
Your comments and loves are greatly appreciated.- See Part 1at: https://scriggler.com/DetailPost/Story/33881#sthash.MC64MFz7.dpuf