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BLUE SUN ROOM FAN FICTION - HORROR
Part 3 of The Thing: Reanimated continues below. Things heat up and personalities collide a bit. I pinned this fic with a more adult rating due to language & violence. ZBP.
CATEGORY: FICTION TIMES READ: 473 RATING: 0 SERIES: FIREFLY
OT: The Thing-Reanimated Chap3
Roster : Vostok #2 (Russian Station, Antarctica)
1)Dr. Kate Lloyd (paleontologist, Thule base camp)
2)Alexander Veselov (lead scientist & overseer of Vostok Base 2)
3)Ivan Alenin (assistant lead scientist and Afghan war veteran)
4)Dr. Greta Dubrovsky (doctor/surgeon- sometime cook of Vostok 2)
5)Dr. Hans Burkov (lead biologist & assistant to Greta)
6)Peter Lapidus (lead engineer/electrician, & most literate in foreign languages)
7)Vladimir Kalagin (engineer/laborer & overseer of Husky sled dogs)
8)Boris Gorev (engineer/specialist of labor trades)
9)Erik Kuklev (engineer/ specialist of labor trades)
10)Alexei Olkhovsky (geologist & main cook of station Vostok 2)
11) Olshefski (radio operator/ polish)
12)Lawrence Boskin (Russian helicopter pilot)
13)Sergei Laptev (Russian co-pilot)
14) Ben Ballard (American helicopter pilot/ main area of station- U.S- McMurdo)
15) Franz Jenson (Danish co-pilot/ American station McMurdo)
McMurdo : US Station, coastline- Ross Dependency
Thule Base Camp- Norwegian Station, continental interior.
Vostok Station 2- Russian Camp, continental interior, located a few miles from the main station at Lake Vostok.
Outpost #31- US Station, continental interior.
* Equipment; Snow-Cat rovers , snow rovers, steam generators, electrical generators, steam & electrical turbines. Flamethrowers, flares, grenades and an assortment of other weapons & equipment that may be needed in the Antarctica.
The Thing : Reanimated - up to this point
Kate Lloyd & Benjamin Ballard have been witnessed entering warehouse building six, where Sam Carter’s body was thought to be kept. As mysterious as it may have been, not finding the body, Kate had jumped to conclusions before she knew the facts. (His body had been transferred to Ben’s chopper per command of Alexander Veselov). The Russian crew tend to want to think that the freezing weather of the Antarctic may be causing the American Paleontologist to loose her mind. Still, she can’t let her guard down. The Chameleon seems so indestructible and clever that she is afraid to relax for one minute. Life can still get complicated when folk don’t trust you, true?
The story continues,
“And why can’t I do it now? You‘ve got plenty of plasma stored under lock and key that’s available!” Kate was irritated that her test would be put on hold. It could certainly provide proof of what she had been telling them this whole time.
“Well, there’s been a problem with that!” Veselov said. He looked over the faces of his comrades around him, which included Dr. Greta Dubiousky, Biologist Hans Burkov, engineer Vladimir Kalagin and helicopter pilot Lawrence Boskin. Their expressions shown of knowing something, of information not being shared, at least for the moment.
Kate was going to ask about this when Veselov provided that information.
“The blood supply was found to be compromised.”
“Yes, compromised, contaminated, mislabeled, misdirected. There are a number of other words that could apply.”
“What’s is it!!? What are you talking about!!? Kate questioned.
“The blood was non-human,” Greta stepped in.
“ Non-human? What!!?” Kate and Ben expressed in unison.
“It was found to be dog blood. Husky, in fact.” The Russian surgeon filled in the blank.
“Dog blood!!?” Kate spoke loudly. She looked with cold exasperation at the base Commander. “And still I’m the bad guy in all of this!…..I went nowhere near that blood, and now I find that it’s what caused the death of the base co-pilot! Contaminated Mr. Veselov? Switched rather, and now you find that someone in your camp is not who they appear to be! Do Russian scientists make it a habit of transporting K9 blood to all their outposts? Your camp is being attacked Alexander, surreptitiously!”
“That is enough Miss Lloyd! The investigation is continuing. And it is something that can be done without your help!” he wanted to put a stop to this questioning of his authority.
“This is our problem and we will conduct business the way we see fit. This began after your rescue, and I find it very suspicious that the base has been in such turmoil since your health has progressed. I think it better if you and Mr. Ballard return to your quarters and remain there until morning, at which time you can be air lifted to McMurdo Station and we can continue on with our investigation of matters ourselves!”
With this, the base Commander of Vostok 2 turned and exited the building.
After a late supper, which was supplied to them in their bunk by the cook, Alexei, who assured Kate that it was safe to eat, the American crew settled in for what was hoped to be a restful night‘s sleep.
Kate knew that she had to destroy the remainder of Sam’s body, and in the process take out the helicopter. Her fear was that Veselov had placed a guard on their quarters, and that individual would be diligent in his duty to see that she stayed put for the night. Thank goodness she’d had Alexei draw up a camp diagram for them. It mapped out all doors leading in and out of every building. She knew her bunk had a back exit, one that would likely remain unguarded. She would execute her plan starting there. As far as destroying the rest of the vehicles, that part of her scheme was still in the works.
She remembered Adam Finch’s description of how humanity destroys a virus, “…. quarantine. We isolate it, and then we kill it”. Destroying the chopper and trying to kill the Beast may cost her, her life, and the lives of everyone at Vostok 2, but it was a price that must be paid to contain the Chameleon. She would worry about making it to Lake Vostok, or McMurdo if she survived. Kate headed out the back door of hut five.
The night was dark, the wind blustery, which the paleontologist was thankful for. Canvas coverings, and tarpaulins strapped over equipment blowing around in the wind would show movement, create noise, and would distract the attention of any guards, so that they would become accustom to things moving around. This would help to hide Kate’s own activity.
She circled around and made her way to the Helo port, next to buildings three and four. En route she picked up a couple fuel containers to help accelerate and spread her illicit deed. The concern still crossed her mind about Sam Carter being human when she had pulled the trigger to end his life? She hated herself for her action, but at the same time she realized that the sacrifice of one, may save the lives of many. She herself may be caught and forced to pay the ultimate penalty, but it wouldn’t stop her. She reasoned that she was the only human in the entire camp who knew the reality of the THING! Was this how the institutionalized felt? Like they were alone with the idea of what was real? Her actions may have her go down in the history books as “The woman who went polar at the South Pole”. However, if she were found to be crazy, death may be preferable to lockup.
She made it to the Helicopter, opened the side door which squeaked, but the wind blowing across some of the tin roofs made buckling sounds which covered the noise. She felt safe that her mission had not been compromised.
Once inside, she located Sam’s body under a tarp. She flooded it with diesel fuel and took Ben’s cigarette lighter from her pocket, which he had placed on the floor next to his cot, and held it high. She looked down before flicking the flint.
“Sorry old friend, but we both know this must be done.”
She struck the guard, and a two inch flame sprang up over the top of the lighter. She tossed it onto the canvas and made sure that it engulfed the entire tarp before exiting the craft. She had covered the pilot controls with accelerant also, and watched as the flame spread to the front of the chopper as well, before leaving.
Kate returned the same route she had taken to begin her mission. She paused in a dark area behind some empty diesel drums as she watched the chopper become consumed by the flames. She heard shouting, and the camp alarm was sounded. There were figures rushing about, some carrying fire extinguishers and some pulling a water hose to spray the craft down in an attempt to put out the flame.
The whole interior was lit by the fire, and Kate knew that she’d done her job well. In several minutes, the fire was under control but the chopper was a mess. The interior had been consumed by the flames.
It was at this time that she notice something from the corner of her eye, movement! She turned to see someone approaching the camp through the darkness. They stumbled and fell just as they made it into the dim light of the main thoroughfare, not thirty feet away from her. They lay face down in the snow and Kate rushed to their side and turned them over.
The man looked half frozen. His arms lay across his chest as he shivered. Kate stooped down to him.
“Help me please!”
Kate turned towards the camp.
“HELP! ANYBODY! Someone come quick!” She turned back to Boris.
“Peter?” She asked.
“He didn’t make it,” he answered through chattering teeth.
Soon she was joined by several others from the camp. Ivan and Olshefski assisted Boris to his feet, and they headed towards the med lab. Alexander was speaking to the man in Russian and had already told Greta and Hans to prepare the surgical room for a patient. The base Commander turned to the paleontologist.
“Miss Lloyd, what were are you doing out here!!?”
“Came out to investigate the fire, just as everyone else!”
She knew that in the camp’s confusion, no one had been able to take account of everyone. Ballard and Jenson were still extinguishing the last bits of fire so she and Veselov were standing there alone.
Veselov turned to walk away, but Kate wasn’t finished with him.
“Boris, you can’t trust him!” She said.
He turned back to her.
“Well Miss Lloyd, unlike the West, we don’t lynch people like in the old cowboy days. We make sure they are guilty of something first!”
He was full of crap! She knew it, and he knew it!
“Speaking of trust, you wouldn’t know anything about the fire set to destroy the helicopter?” he asked.
Her eyes widened. She had played this game before!
“Are you planning to pin that on me too?” She questioned.
Before another word could be spoken Alexei rushed up to them all excited.
“The radio room has been destroyed!”
All three of them rushed to building five B and found it just as he had said. The room was a chaotic mess, a complete shambles. The radio, a ruined heap of metal.
“Someone didn’t want us to contact the outside!” Alexei spoke.
“That is certain!” Veselov replied.
There were photographs pinned to the wall, undamaged. One showed Lawrence and an almost solid white Husky.
“A favorite of the pilot’s?” Kate asked Alexei. He answered that it was. He told her the name in Russian but then realized that she didn’t understand.
“Shepherd, in English,” he answered.
“And here?” She asked, viewing a picture of an individual with a whole group of dogs.
“Peter, with our entire pack!” the cook stated.
“Peter? I wonder if he is somewhere out there wandering about in the snow like Boris?” Veselov asked, seemingly almost of himself.
“He didn’t make it!”
Both men turned to look at the woman.
“How would you know that?”
“Boris told me. I asked and he said that he didn’t make it.”
The men looked at one other, then back to the woman.
“Boris doesn’t speak English,” Veselov said.
They all contemplated one another a moment. Then screams broke their bewildering trance! Horrid shouts of terror and anguish! Without speaking they rushed from the building. The screams were intense and unrelenting. The sounds of a tortured soul, maybe more than one, piecing the night so loudly that they could be heard above the noise of the wind.
“From there!” Alexei pointed, “The med lab!”
They ran to the door, but before they could enter they heard someone behind them..…..
“WAIT!” They turned to see Ballard approaching with a flamethrower strapped to his body.
“I’ll go in first!” There was no argument with that. Ballard entered with the others closely behind him. The medical lab opened up into a hallway first, which branched out into separate rooms both right and left. Surgical operations was on the right, second room down, behind a set of double doors which opened both ways for better access.
They moved steadily but methodically to those doors, hearing different sounds now than the screams that had come from the room just moments earlier. Slurping noises, almost like a baby feeding or a litter of pups nursing. They braced themselves for what they might see. Three of the four had no idea what lay beyond, but Kate knew. And she knew that she’d be shocked along with them no matter how many times she witnessed it. A horror beyond description.
The doors where push open, and the scene that dawned before them was one that caused the three men to become frozen in disbelief! Their eyes barely stayed contained within their heads, and their mouths dropped with no words ushering forth.
There stood Greta, or what had once been the surgeon, in pieces here and there, but still attached to one body, one frame, the person that had once been Boris. The rest was unrecognizable, almost resembling carcasses of dead animals sewn together in some meat market. Like a horrid reflection from a mirror which had been broken, pieces missing here and there with no symmetry, no balance. There was no sign of Hans, but a window on the far side had been shattered completely. Had he escaped, or had his own Thing attached to him and fled through the opening before they had entered?
The Creature stood……it’s height taller than any of them, poised for attack.
“BURN IT BEN!” Kate screamed! “TORCH IT!”
It was a command that the American pilot needn’t be told twice. His finger pulled the trigger and the entire body of the beast was engulfed in flame. It caught fire and burned as if it were made of flammable hydrocarbons. It screamed in pain in a tone that none of them had heard before, save for Kate. It leaped to escape through the same window Hans had exited through, but with it’s bulk, the creature was too large. It was caught halfway in and halfway out and struggled to increase the size of the exit by smashing through bits of the framework. Ben pulled the trigger another time, then again, and the creature wailed in it’s death song as it broke through and fell into a burning heap of snow on the other side. Ivan and Olshefski returned to the med lab then.
“We left Boris with Greta and Hans, then heard screams and came to find you!”
They had supplied themselves with firearms, which unknown to them, would have been of little use. All assembled around the creature outside the med lab and watched as it burned into an almost unrecognizable mass of charcoal. When it was over, there was no more to do but try to organize into some kind of defense. It was suggested they go to a staging area and develop a plan. One that would involve all of them and keep them alive. Though tragic, Kate was sure that they would now believed what she said. They headed for building eight, the activities center.
“So, what do we do?”
Veselov was asking the whole group, not just Kate. That didn’t stop her from speaking.
“First we need to disable the snowmobiles, dozer, and the Snow-Cat that Vladimir and Erik returned with this morning. We have to contain the Chameleon, keep it here!” She looked around, “ By the way, where are those two, and Lawrence? And what about Franz? I’ve seen none of them during this ordeal?”
“Franz was with me when we were fighting the chopper fire, but I haven’t seen him for a while.” Ben said.
There was a pause in the room, everyone looking at the other faces.
“They’ve gone missing. No one’s seen them since after the fueling of Ballard’s helicopter.”
It was beginning to look as if the balance of power was starting to shift, just as it had at Thule Station. Kate seemed to be gaining the confidence of the group, taking the lead and making the right decisions. How long she could keep it depended on making the right choices, even the tough and unfavorable ones.
The more information that came to light, the more the paleontologist became aware that the camp may have been under attack even before she got there. The dogs being transferred to Lake Vostok had certainly not been explained well.
“The dogs, how were they transferred to Lake Vostok?”
“By sled! Vladimir brought them the day after you arrived!” Ivan said, “And Lawrence went to pick him up in the Snow-Cat. They returned with Shepherd, Vladimir refusing to part with the dog. It stayed with him in his bunk.”
The pieces were starting to fit now. Had Vladimir been turned into a THING? What of the dog, and Lawrence? Had all three become Chameleons? Had they brought the dead Husky blood back with them and at some point swapped it out with the human blood?
Kate had no idea how long it took to replicate a person. That was unknown about the Chameleon. Temperature, environment, and other factors may make the process proceed more slowly ? Maybe it depended on the size of the Chameleon itself, and it’s make-up? There were multiple thoughts roaming through the paleontologist’s head.
“Lake Vostok, what’s the story there?” She asked the base Commander.
Veselov thought for a second before replying.
“We don’t know. We were told that their dogs had gone missing and the station needed replacements.”
“That is not the truth!” Ivan spoke up. “Alexander, you know more than you are telling!” Veselov’s assistant looked at Kate and the others.
“We were informed that the dogs were lost, yes, missing, but the entire pack had been found together in a group west of Lake Vostok, slaughtered and malformed. The crew couldn’t agree as to if it was a wild animal or a fast acting organism that caused them to attack one another and rip themselves apart! They were piled in a heap and torched. Alexander was told to keep things quiet until further information could be provided!” Ivan looked at the base Commander, “I think we are beyond keeping secrets now!”
That resolved, Kate was relieved to hear that the animals had been burned. She explained that it was time to conduct a test. Something to prove their humanity. She already knew Ben, Alexei and herself were human. She had to find out if Alexander, Ivan and Olshefski were?
Alexander and Olshefski proved to have fillings in their teeth. Ivan did not. Kate was in a position where a tough decision had to be made.
“Ivan, I’m sorry!” She looked at the base crewman, “ Ben, Alexei, tie him up!”
The group was shocked. Kate was even doubting herself this time. After all, hadn’t Adam, Sander and Colin all been human at the time of the same test at Thule Station. Three out of four, Edvard being the only THING among them! Still, she could make no exceptions for the six people in the room at this time. She would need to be restrained herself if there was any doubt of her being a THING.
There were arguments made, but the group was in agreement that Ivan would have to be secured for everyone’s safety, at least for a time. He looked at Veselov with pleading eyes.
“Sorry my friend, but you chose the American over your comrades, deal with the consequences.”
Veselov was still an asshole, no matter what the situation!
END ACT 3
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