In Mansfield Grey, Today's Feed

Written by: Stephen Brown; Mansfield Grey

There was a blinding light; I couldn’t see. Then I heard a bell, like you would hear when the door opens in a convenience store. Suddenly I was in old man Drucker’s corner store back home. Look at all the candy! I had 52 cents, and I better make it good. I have to choose correctly. I have to get the most candy for 52 cents, I thought to myself.

I moved through the candy aisles with precision. I looked at a bag of Bottle Caps. They were two for one today and they are great for eating in class when the teacher isn’t looking. Oh, there’s some Swedish Raspberries, the chewy kind. They’re great, but transportation to class is a problem. You end up all sticky by the end of the day. Oh, no way?! Sweet Tarts! I am getting them!

As I picked up the Sweet Tarts it instantly turned into a grenade. My heart jumped! I picked up the bottle caps and it turned into an M16. Then everything in the store, in every aisle, there were weapons of death! I didn’t want to do this anymore; I screamed.

I then felt myself coming to the surface, out of a deep hole. I got to the top and found myself grasping for air. I opened my eyes.

I couldn’t move at first. I slowly checked my limbs, moved everything slowly. My head hurt like a son of a bitch. What happened?

I looked around. We were all in a jail cell. All the guys were with me recovering as I had. Then I saw her. It all came back to me. The last thing I remember was squaring off with her and Q starting to sneak out of the jungle to subdue her, and that’s when it all goes blank.

I look over at her and asked “You okay?”

“I think so,” she replied. “It isn’t every day I get hit with a Saser twice in one day. One more and it could cause permanent damage.”

“What is a Saser? And who are you, lady? Where are we? And what just happened?” Sticks asked frantically.

I could see the guys getting agitated. I tried to calm them down as best I could. “Let me talk to the lady, okay guys? Just chill and I will brief you in a minute.”

I went over to her and introduced myself. “I am Capt. Mansfield Grey, and these are my buddies – I call them The Band. That’s Bronco, Sticks, Axe, Pogo, and Q,” I pointed out each in turn.

“Interesting names Captain. What are you doing here?” she asked.

“First things first, lady. What is your name, and why are you a prisoner here?”

“Okay, we won’t have much time. I saw you guys take out that guard, so I know you’re not one of them. My name is Sara, I am a scientist. I have been down here for two years. I used to work for the Headlock Corporation in epigenetics. My research included symbiotic bio hybrids, Saser technology, and resonance weaponry. When they asked me to test my theories on human subjects, I refused and tried to quit, but they wouldn’t let me. They said I was too valuable. They faked my death on the surface and kept me here to work on their perfect soldier experiments. My family thinks I died two years ago. They make me watch videos of my family weekly. They say they can eliminate any hope one would have in an instant. They are always watching them. I have to stay here and do what they say. Seeing them every week on video gives me that hope; the hope that I will be with them again one day.”

Just then one of the monstrous guards walks by the cell without acknowledging we are even there. He walks like a machine.

“Those big jaw breakers that took us down out there are all bio hybrids; part machine part, biological life. They are all connected to the hive and each knows what the other is doing instantly. They all move as one. That’s why they were on us so fast. The beeps you heard when your guy axed the guard were the warnings that one of the hive was down. The other guards became aware of us and used the Saser with a general stun shot. Lucky it wasn’t on kill like it was for Frank…I can’t believe he’s gone.”

“Sorry for your loss, Sara,” I said.

She paused for a second and then replied, “No, I ‘m good. He was a dick anyway. I didn’t take any of his shit. He was always trying get in my pants. I had to deck him a couple times. It was Karma.”

“Sara, what is a Saser?” I asked hesitantly.

“Oh yeah, that is sound technology. We have harnessed the ability to direct a beam of sound toward an object, disrupting its electrical field. The light you see is produced by sound. This is the same for the pyramid which generates the power, heat, and atmosphere down here. The Saser clubs that the guards carry are programmed to the biological algorithms of each guard’s genetics. Each Saser has its host,” she responded with more energy.

“Can we use a Saser?” I asked.

“Yes, if I get your genetic code, I can program a Saser,” she answered.

Just then the doors of the jail room burst open. Two eight-foot meathead guards walked in and behind them was Colonel Clark.

“Hello, Manny. You got here a little early; we weren’t expecting you until tomorrow.”

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