Dust to Dust

Photo by Greg Westfall via Flickr
Photo by Greg Westfall via Flickr

“I’m usually smarter than this,” said Janice, scratching her arm and smearing blood up to her elbow.

The thing on the table didn’t answer. She was starting to doubt it ever would. Janice had had great success with rats, moving along to reanimating dogs and cats, and when the orangutan swung off the table and up into the warehouse rafters, she’d felt ready to try her technique on a Homo Sapien specimen.

Walking around the gurney, stained hand on her chin, she examined what had once been 45 year-old Darren McKenzie from Trenton. Heart attack. She’d solved that already, procuring a fresh and flawless heart in record time. After all, a heart transplant was child’s play compared with what she was attempting.

Janice flicked the IV tube, destroying what little bubbles flowed there as she scowled. She’d adjusted the dose for the size of his brain, his height, his weight. She had unquestioning faith in her calculations, but if they were correct then the subject should’ve been showing signs of revival.

The orangutan hooted at her from the beams above her head, clumps of dull orange fur missing from his colorless skin. Janice checked her watch.

Too long; it’d been too long. Something should have happened by now.


Turning away with a sigh, she walked to the makeshift table she’d set up nearby and began scribbling her notes. The answer would be in there, somewhere. And then she could try again.

The orangutan’s hooting turned into screeching cries. Below there was a clatter as notebooks and test tubes were swept to the floor, a gurgling cry as the life was squeezed from Janice, and a low, inhuman grunting from the thing that had been on the gurney.


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Published by rsjeffrey

Robin Jeffrey was born in Cheyenne, Wyoming to a psychologist and a librarian, giving her a love of literature and a consuming interest in the inner workings of people’s minds.

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