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The Metcalf Infant Research Laboratory

3rd Floor

White Corridors

Room #334

Contents: 22 babies . . .

. . . but not for long.

THE DAY

He walked towards the large brick building at a leisurely pace. Around him the trees were turning shades of red and the air was cool but not cold. Behind him other buildings stood in stately elegance appropriate for a college with tradition. Not many people were out as it was a Saturday morning and wakening was hours away. The squirrels, however, were out in number busily collecting their meals for darker days. But today the sun was shining and he was glad that he had gotten up to enjoy the little paradise that had unexpectedly appeared before his eyes.

Avoiding a crack in the cement path, he walked up the steps to a beaten up old door with peeling black paint and a small brass handle. He opened the door and walked inside.

THE INTERVIEW

cast

the Professor - creepy German developmental psychologist with a goatee

Jimmy Peterson - undergraduate underachiever trying to make it through college

a conversation in progress

Professor: <smile>. "So vutt made you vant zu dake dees yob, Meester Peterson?"

Jimmy: uh, the money. "I love kids, especially babies. I used to babysit for my uncle all the time. Twins. Their hands were sooo tiny. They'd curl around anything they could get a hold of." pause in reflection. "It's nice taking care of something that offers so much hope, you know? And if it's for a good cause all the better, right?" sincere enough?

Professor: <smile> "Ya, Meester Peterson, eet eest ein goot coz. Vee hope zu lurne a great zeel about zee developmeental karactereestics off eenfents." <smile> "Zu tell you dee truth Meester Peterson, zee qualeefeecations for dees yob are not a lot," oh yeah, "dees eenterview eest merely a formaleetee . . ."

LATER

"Sehr gut, Herr Peterson, einfach gut."

THE ROOM

334. tile floors. white, speckled black. high ceiling with hanging fluorescent lights turned off. diffuse light through four rectangle windows onto rows of evenly spaced cribs and brick walls painted white. on the far wall a high chair, like lifeguard towers at the swimming pool; beside it white cabinets and a sink. It was very quiet.

"Ooo-kay," he said and walked towards the high chair through the rows of cribs. All the babies were asleep, naked and moving occaisonally in dreamy slumber. He glanced down at a crib labled C4. The bars of the crib lay down soft stripes across the sleeping form. She moved her head to the left and opened her mouth in a tiny yawn. "Eet eest crucial to the expereement dat you not eenterfere. You are acting merely as an obsurver."

sure. He made his way to the high chair and climbed up to his seat and stared out over the rows of babies. Sighing he placed his clipboard on the small table attached to the chair and observed.

hour one-They are sleeping.

hour two-They are still sleeping.

hour three-ditto

conclusion: They are heavy sleepers.

He leaned back in the chair and yawned. Not bad for $7.25 an hour. Smirking, he got off the high chair. He needed to take a leak. The babies lay still as he walked to the door. What'd they do to you guys? He reached around a bright red fire extinguisher to switch on the lights as he walked out. It was getting dark.

MEN'S ROOM

The urinal was not clean. Sticky yellow dribble and various shades of crinkly pubic hairs laced the bottom lip. Jimmy unzipped and slowly pulled his dick out of the hole in his boxers. Urine spread out on white ceramic, flowed down in drivulets, and wound its way to the drain amidst the cigarettes, ashes, and gum. He shook his dick and felt it slapping against his fingers. Zipping up he flushed. "Swoosh," he said in time with the event. He found the sound satisfying and grinned at himself in the mirror as he strode across a wet floor. "Squish, squish, squish."

THE HALL

He padded softly back to the door and stepped into a room full of screaming babies.

THE BABIES

In the back of his mind feelings of disconnectedness and thoughts of surrealism itched at his consciousness. They were, however, buried under the sinking feeling that things had gone very wrong. control. Deliberately, he walked toward the nearest crib trying to block out the cacophony invading his temples. The reek hit him as he approached, consuming his senses and narrowing his awareness. Peering inside . . .

THE CRIB

He saw that the cushions were no longer white. He saw coils and coils of smooth tan shit squeezed out of raw muscular orifices. He saw beige chunky mucous streaming out of upturned nostrils. He saw coagulating blood oozing from neat holes framed by teeth marks. He saw tears flowing from a sunken socket mix with vitrious humor as she poked in her left eye with the stump of her hand and the remaining thumb. He saw her lap it up with a mangled tongue as the vein of viscosity coursed down her cheek to the corner of her small mouth. He saw her other eye stare into his and saw the desire before a feeding and then she blinked . . . or winked. He couldn't tell.

THE SHOW

With eyes wide he watched as rows of shit smeared babies rose out of their cribs and plopped to the floor in wet bursts. Backing away as if from a cliff he edged toward the door behind. The safety of calm detachment was rapidly eroding away into panic. He felt for the door handle behind him with trembling arms. Feeling the cold hard knob on his palm he yanked and twisted with facile desperation to find it come off in his hand.

He stared incredulously at the grey metal, "What the fuck movie am I in!?"

Turning his attention to the floor he saw the babies righting themselves and crawling rapidly towards him leaving trails of waste in their wake. His back against the wall, heart pounding against his ribs and his brain against his skull, the first wave, the ones that still had eyes and apendages, were six feet and closing. A dozen strong, armed with teeth, nails, and a high tolerance for abuse. He figured he was at a major disadvantage. Searching the room with dialated pupils for any help, his eyes focused on a fire extinguisher to his immediate left. Grabbing it off the wall, he launched himself into the fray.

They fell on him immediately, clamping on his legs and biting off chunks of flesh. Barely feeling the loss, he brought the canister down in a high arcing golf swing shattering in a burst of splatter the skull of a boy wrapped around his ankle. Raising it again above his head, he directed a blow to the head of an approaching hostile, ramming its face into the cracks in the floor.

Stomping and swinging, kicking and slinging, an orgy of death ensued. And in the end Jimmy Peterson had prevailed, had endured.

Spent but satisfied he walked across a room strewn with the refuse of a slaughterhouse and climbed on his high chair and got out his pencil. Down below, the pooling blood made flowery patterns around their corpses. He felt like Dali.

hour four-All fucking dead!

"Fuck you creepy German professor," Jimmy muttered and fell asleep.

A LITTLE LATER

A short man with a black hat and trenchcoat stepped into room 334 and looked around with hands in his pockets. White bones protruded out of the stinking masses of flesh studding the floor, but all he could see through the harsh fluorescence were large pastries. A tear wound its way down his cheek and was collected by his goatee. His hands started to tremble and he balled them into tight fists. He stared up at the sleeping figure upon its dais and then walked out of the room.

END.