Copper Acropolis – Chapter 5

Chapter 1, Chapter 2, Chapter 3, Chapter 4

And this is chapter 5

    5

‘Amalga-Girl,
Hello’

             “An
orphan?!”

            That is what
Doctor Dewar said when she first saw the child. 
“You brought me an orphan?”

            Yune was
amazed.  He hadn’t said a word about the
girl.  “How did you know she is an
orphan?”

            “Look at
her!” shouted the doctor.  “Dark rings
under her eyes, sallow complexion, a smile that so obviously hides the pain and
turmoil of being all alone in the world. 
I see that smile every day in the mirror, Yune.  Of course she’s an orphan.”

 

            At first,
Lucille was dead set against using an unknown waif’s brain as such a crucial
part of her experiment.  The brain, the
most intricate piece of the puzzle, the piece that would ultimately meld all
the other limbs and organs together, had to be a brain of a girl from a stable
background, of that she had been adamant. 
An orphan’s brain had too many untold influences thrust upon it, of that
she was certain.

            “Send her
back,” said the doctor.

            “Well, now,”
replied Yune, “why do not you get to know her. 
Maybe she will be okay.  After
all, there really are no other brains available.  Maybe her brain is a good brain.  She did tell me she was smart.  And on the way back from the train station
she was asking me all kinds of curious questions.”

            Doctor
Lucille Dewar was in a tough situation. 
She knew when she began the planning for her experiment that she would
have to make sacrifices and this might very well have to be one of them. “I’ll
give her a day.  If her brain doesn’t
seem acceptable, she’s out.  And I’ll use
your brain instead of hers!”

 

            All the next
day, Doctor Lucille Dewar spent time with the orphan girl, to find out all she
could about the girl, her history, her intelligence.  All but the final, last moment tasks of the
experiment had been taken care of. 
Doctor Lucille thought it might actually be advantageous to be diverted
from the experiment for a while, to rest before its culmination so she would be
fresh and alert.

She had to admit, the girl was a sprite.  This girl reminded her of a young
herself.  The girl had much in common
with Lucille, in fact.  While both were
orphans, and lived with many foster parents, they both excelled in
education.  They both were fiercely
independent thinkers.  They both had low
self esteem, although both imagined themselves in the future as great
successes.

Lucille had made a full 180 degree turn in her
decision to use the girl’s brain for her experiment.  Now, deciding that it must truly be Fate’s
hand that delivered such an identical being to her, such a kindred spirit, she
exclaimed (to herself, so as to not upset the child) that no other girl’s brain
would do.  It must be this girl’s brain
that was used in the experiment.  “This
girl’s brain will make the experiment,” she told Yune, who was just happy that
his brain wouldn’t have to be used.  The
doctor so loved the look of the girl’s fiery red hair, that she decided to use
it, instead of Pristle’s black, curly hair that she was planning to use.

At the end of their day of bonding, Lucille looked at
the girl, who was getting ready for bed and thought, “This girl, through her
brain and red hair, will live forever, and will become the most famous person
of all time.” Lucille kissed the girl goodnight, the first kiss she’d given
anyone since before her parents’  deaths
all those years ago.  As she closed the
door to the guest bedroom, Lucille said to herself, “Correction.  She’ll become the second most famous person
of all time.  Second, after her creator,
Doctor Lucille Dewar, that is.”

            On the next
morning, the morning of the night of the experiment, while the girl was still
sleeping, Lucille and Yune crept into her room and slit the girls’ wrists,
carefully draining the blood into sterile milk bottles.  They then carried the bloodless body, and the
bottles of blood up to the laboratory and put it all into the large
refrigeration unit which she had bought from Yune when he sold off his kitchen
supplies from the restaurant.  Doctor
Lucille Dewar then shushed Yune Mune out of the laboratory and told him not to
come back until eight o’clock
that night.  For the rest of the day, she
remained, locked up, in the dome, performing the crucial final stages of what
would soon become her greatest triumph. 
Yune spent the rest of the day polishing the tarnished dome and shutters
on the outside of the house.  He wanted
to finish before the rains started, as clouds were moving in from the North.

 

            It was a
dark and stormy night, that night, and at eight
o’clock, Yune knocked tentatively on the door of the laboratory.

            “Enter,
Yune!” yelled the doctor from inside the room.

            Yune opened
the door.  The first thing he saw that
was different about the room was the placement of the autopsy table, which had
previously been stored in a corner.  It
now had total prominence in the centre of the room.  All kinds of wires, tubes, and such were
coming from it, leading to various other medical looking machines which
surrounded the table.  On the table was
some obviously large mass, covered over by a white silk parachute cloth.  Areas of the cloth looked like they were
stained with blood.  The next thing he
noticed was that it was raining in the room.  That was because, he discovered when he looked
up, a large section of the domed roof had been retracted, and a large metal
pole, connected to the table, now emerged from the room, through the hole, and up
into the night sky.  Flashes of lightning
could be seen cracking through the hole. 
He didn’t like lightning.

            “Here,” said
Doctor Lucille Dewar, handing Yune a notepad and pencil.  “I want you to document everything you are
about to see and hear.”

            Yune noticed
how calm the Doctor seemed, on this, her night of nights.  Yune himself was nervous, yet excited.  He began to write in the pad, describing the
room.

            Doctor Dewar
walked over to one of the medical machines, turned a switch, and a low humming
sound permeated the room.  She then
trotted to the autopsy table, grabbed a corner of the silky cloth, and said,
“Behold!  Science is about to leap
forward one hundred years this night. 
For I, Doctor Lucille Dewar, present the world with a creation of my own
device.  A creation that will no longer
need the externalised love of parent, the affection of friend, the kindness of
stranger to survive.  For it will find
the love, the companionship, the camaraderie that all people need, within
herself.  It will never experience the
pain of losing a loved one, for all her loved ones shall be contained within
herself.  She will never be without a
chum with which to play, as she can play with herself.  Nevermore will she be teased by her
classmates, for she is her own school.”

Lucille grabbed tighter the sheet.  “I present to the world, Amalga-Girl!”  Lucille pulled the sheet from off the table,
and for the first time ever, another human being gazed upon the result of
Doctor Lucille Dewar’s life work.  Yune
Mune was mightily impressed.

Amalga-Girl, Yune Mune figured, was about five feet
seven inches in height.  She was wearing
a very plain, khaki green frock, which covered her torso, down to her
knees.  Her arms and legs had scars over
them, some healed over, some fresh. 
Areas of the skin on her arms and legs had different pigments of colour,
indicating that they were taken from different girls.  One foot seemed bigger than the other.  Her face was bruised and slightly swollen,
scarred, but strangely pretty.  Her hair,
of course, was fire red, having been taken, along with the brain, from the
orphan girl.  Yune Mune liked red
hair.  The woman who ultimately cost him
his restaurant had red hair, but was not, Yune reminisced, a natural redhead. 

Over the top of her head was a metal helmet, and
attached to the helmet were all kinds of wires which went to all kinds of
machines of all sorts.  Yune Mune had to
admit that, while he oftentimes doubted his employer’s ability to pull it off,
it seemed that she had created something truly marvellous.

            “I must
applaud your genius, Doctor,” said Yune.

            “There’s no
time for congratulation,” said the Doctor, making last minute checks and
changes to the instrumentation of some of the machines.  “For the moment is at hand.  The tide is high and the time is nigh.”

            Doctor Dewar
ran up to the machine that housed the base of the metal lightning rod that went
through the hole in the roof.  She
flicked a switch, ran to the middle of the room, beside the autopsy table that
held her lifeless Amalga-Girl, and looked up to the sky, through the missing piece
of dome, and waited.

            She stood
motionless for about ten seconds.  Yune
Mune was looking up into the rainy, stormy sky as well.  He jumped when the Doctor screamed, “Now!”
and a second later a magnificent, deafening crack of lightning raced overhead.  Lucille clapped her hands together and
laughed.

            “How did you
know it would lightning, Doctor,” asked Yune.

            “Because,”
said Doctor Dewar, “I am not only creating life tonight, but also lightning.”

            “You’re
causing the lightning?”

            “Yes.  Lightning will recur in five minutes and
twelve second intervals.  And we must be
ready when the sheet of lightning that will hit that lightning rod gives me the
juice to jump start my experiment.”

            “How can you
guarantee that any lightning will hit the rod at all?” asked Yune.

            “Well,”
replied the Doctor, “if you did a good job of cleaning the tarnish off, and
polishing all the copper I asked you to, then the lightning will be drawn to it
like flies to honey.”

            “Ah,” was
all that Yune could say.  Inside he was
hoping that he did a good enough job. 
The Doctor would kill him if the experiment failed because of his poor
workmanship.

            “Now,” said
Doctor Dewar, flipping the switch on a machine, “I turn on the Energy
Containment Receptacle which will store the energy from the lightning.  The potent energy will then travel down these
wires,” said Lucille, following the course of thick wires, which led to
another, smaller, machine, “and be received by the Energy Conversion Unit,
which will convert the energy from its raw, deadly form.”   She flipped a switch on the Energy
Conversion Unit and the machine began to hum. 
“Once converted, the energy then make its way to the helmet, and from
there, it will enter Amalga-Girl’s brain, and course through her body,
regenerating and rejuvenating all the various organs, tissues, fluids,
etceteras.”  Lucille had moved to the top
of the autopsy table and was stroking Amalga-Girl’s cheek.  “Then, once the energy dissipates, Amalga-Girl
will be left to her own devices.  She
will be alive and free thinking, never to rely on the love of others!”

            Yune Mune
applauded the Doctor.  He was truly in
awe of her genius and forward thinking.

            Doctor Dewar
looked at the clock on the wall.  “Come,
Yune,” she said, grabbing him by the arm, “Our work is finished here.  All there is to do is wait.  We will watch from the corner.”

            Doctor
Lucille Dewar and Yune Mune ran to the corner and crouched down behind a
desk.  From this vantage point, they
could see the whole room.

            They waited
a few moments, then the Doctor shouted, “Now!” as she had done before.  Right on cue, a flash of lightning and crack
of thunder roared over the open roof.  It
had missed the lightning rod, however, and all that was heard was the rain
falling, outside and inside the dome. 
They waited through two more blasts of lightning, both missing.  Yune Mune was starting to doubt his copper
polishing.

            The next
crack of lightning smashed into the rod, causing the whole room to light up,
blue and white, as if it were midday
in a snowy field. “It has begun!” shouted the Doctor, although no one, not even
herself heard her, due to the incredible noise of the lightning.  The lightning, the electricity could be seen
travelling down the lightning rod, humming and buzzing blue as it went, into
the Energy Containment Receptacle. 
Finally after ten seconds of electrical buzzing, the last of the power
from the lightning made its way into the Receptacle.

            Once again,
all was quiet, except for the rain.

            “Why has it
stopped?” asked Yune.

            “The energy
is travelling through the wires to the Conversion Unit. It will begin to whine
as it begins to convert the raw electrical energy into tiny but powerful
electrical impulses”

            As if on
cue, the machine started making a high pitched whine.  With every passing moment, the whine got
louder and higher pitched, until Yune was forced to cover his ears.  Then the whine levelled out and the wires
going from the Unit to the helmet on the Amalga-Girl’s head started to jump in
regular intervals.  What’s going on,  Yune was about to ask.

            “It’s the
electrical impulses travelling to the helmet, and throughout Amalga-Girl’s
body,” said the Doctor, anticipating Yune’s question.

            After a
minute of once-a-second impulses, they began to occur more rapidly, until
finally, the wires were jumping all the time, all over the place.  Then, all at once, they stopped.

            Doctor Dewar
stood up from behind the desk.  Yune did
the same.  He noticed that he now did not
hear the rain, as he expected in this quiet. 
He looked up through the hole in the dome and saw that the rain had
stopped.  When he looked back down, he
saw the Doctor carefully approaching the autopsy table.  The creature on the table had not moved a
muscle.  Yune Mune decided to stay where
he was, behind the desk.

            Doctor Dewar
made her way to the table where her creation lay still.  She glanced at the hospital equipment around
the table, the heart monitor was silent, none were showing any signs of
life.  The power must have knocked them
out, she decided.  She leaned over the
table and surveyed the body, the feet, legs, torso, the head.  Everything was in the exact same position it
was in before the impulses coursed through its body.  The body had not moved an inch.  “Maybe I failed,” Lucille heard herself
think.

            Yune saw the
twitch of the sewn-up leg, and saw that the Doctor had missed it because she
was looking at the creature’s head. 
Before he could yell to her, however, the creature sprang to life,
jumping off the table, wildly flailing its arms around, knocking into the
medical equipment.  It was as if she were
trying to move in six different directions all at once.

            “It’s
alive!” yelled the Doctor.  ‘Amalga-Girl
is -“

            The creature
turned towards the Doctor’s voice, and before Doctor Dewar could scream her
second “Alive!” the creature grabbed the doctor’s throat.  It was strangling the doctor.  The creature punched the Doctor in the head,
knocking her unconscious.

            Yune Mune
threw a book that was on the desk toward the creature.  “Amalga-Girl stop!” he yelled.

            The creature
turned to look at him, not letting go, nor loosening her breath-restrictive
grip on the Doctor.

            “Let go of
her,” yelled Yune.  “That is your mother,
Amalga-Girl, let her go!”

            Amalga-Girl
looked at the woman.  Doctor Lucille
Dewar was not moving, she simply stood limp in her creation’s grip.

            “Let go of
her you stupid creature,” yelled Yune, feeling totally helpless.

            Amalga-Girl
let go of the doctor, her ‘Mother’. 
Doctor Dewar fell to the floor in a heap.  She didn’t move.  The creature turned to look at Yune Mune, and
began walking towards him.  She looked
angry.

            Yune Mune
began to panic.  His heart was pounding
very fast.  He was short of breath. He
tried to back up but quickly found the wall impeding his retreat. The creature
was getting closer and closer.  As she
reached out to grab him, Yune screamed and grabbed at his chest.  He didn’t know it, but he was having a heart
attack.

            The creature
didn’t know it either, and if she’d known, she wouldn’t have cared.  She reached out, grabbed Yune Mune by the neck,
and twisted his head from his body.

————————–

Next time, Chapter 6, “The Lake Of Shimmering Waters”

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