“The meeting of two personalities is like the contact of two chemical substances: if there is any reaction, both are transformed.” – Carl Jung (1875 – 1961)

Matt walked down the hall of the science building. Today began the test procedure of the mouse exposed to both his hormone treatment and the Gamma Knife Procedure. While the theory was sound, Matt couldn’t help shaking as he was about to see if his hypothesis was correct. Opening the door he met with Rick who was smiling.

“It’s amazing Matt, the mouse doesn’t even look fazed. I ran the fear test today and like yesterday no response. I was going to start the aggression test right now but an urgent message appeared and required you to read it.” Rick handed Matt the note. Quickly, Matt read.

“Damn, the board of directors wants us to give our presentation today. It seems that they double-booked a fundraiser with our presentation time. So we have to scramble our notes and meet with them in a half hour.” Matt crumpled the note in disgust. He went over to the mouse cage, staring at the mouse. Good ol’ Mickey, he thought. Still docile and happy. Hopefully by the end of today I can do the same thing for my race.

“OK Rick I want you to pick up the white board and move it to the board room. I am going to gather our notes and do most of the talking for the board of directors. When I give the signals you just turn the page. Got it?” Matt gathered his notes stopping to look at Rick.

“Ooh, yeah I got it. You ok boss?” Rick asked while preparing the table of notes and the whiteboard.

“Yeah just a little frazzled. I guess I am also thinking of…”

“Veronica, Jesus man do you ever think of anything else? What about this time?” Rick said with a wry smile.

“I just think its time I opened up to her. Really opened up and told her everything. maybe then she will…I don’t know.” Matt shook his head while finishing gathering his notes. Rick walked over to his and put a hand on Matt’s shoulder.

“Look Matt, take it from me. If you open your heart out to her, she will open up to you. I mean she has to, and when she does I think you two will finally connect and a whole new level. Now get your butt ready cause we got a presentation to give, Doctor Smith.” Rick smiled and carried the white board away. Matt watched him leave, took a deep breath and followed him out the door.

Inside the cage the mouse had watched. A slice of cheese was outside its cage. the smell was intoxicating. Its black fur twitched with anticipation. Slowly it got up and moved towards the cheese. Its black eyes focusing intently. Its nose got up to the cage, but to its dismay couldn’t reach the cheese. It was outside. Calmly it sat down outside the cage, awaiting the cheese. Curling up it went to sleep.

Matt went down the hall quickly. Checking his watch he noticed it had been 22 hours since the process was done on the mouse. Good, so far so good. Matt smiled as Rick opened the door like a butler for him. The Board of Directors wasn’t in yet so they had time to prepare. Rick set up a stand with notes and set up the white board while Matt went over the notes and key information he wanted to convey.

Ten minutes later the doors swung open and the board came in. 8 members of the scientific community ready to judge the new experiment. Rick had sweat trickle down his back as he shook hands. Matt was cool, collected smiling and shaking hands. Soon the board was seated and the presentation began.

“Hello Ladies and Gentlemen. My name is Doctor Matthew Smith and this is my associate intern Richard Smythe. Today we are going to show you our purpose for destroying the monster within all of us. I can see some of you don’t understand what I mean by ‘monster’. Within each of us lies a sort of beast, made of primal emotion. Driven by hate, fear, loathing and other dark emotions. Its a side we all, have some more repressed the others.” Rick smirked at the comment.

“What I am proposing is a way to eradicate this ‘beast’. Think of it, humanity without its darker personality taking over. War, Poverty, Persecution no matter who or what against, all gone. Humanity is an evolved race but we are still chained to our primordial instincts. I am ready and able to break this chain and allow humanity to achieve its destiny. Emotional Enlightenment to free our minds of darkness and bring us into a new destiny. One of freedom, and one where we are not afraid of each other anymore.”

Matt looked at the board directors. They seemed intrigued by his speech. He had left out his own reasons, he felt that purging the beast would free people of depression and repression. Freedom from the pain of unrequited love…

“Excuse me, Doctor Smith? my colleagues want to know how you account for the metahuman population?”

“An excellent question. Even our metahuman population is still human. They too would benefit from this process and we would no longer have to fear supervillians in our midst. They are prime examples of the beast within. A beast I aim to destroy.”

“But Doctor if you destroy the beast, do we not destroy ourselves?”

“Tell me, is it not a part of you that you wish would go away? Irrational anger, resentment, fear of walking down the street. These emotions are unnessacary. My procedure will eliminate these base emotions and leave only the ones that have positive results.” Matt signaled Rick to turn reveal the whiteboard.

“As you can see the process is simple. I have genetically engineered my own hormones. Electrical mail carriers of my design. Two injections in the buttocks. The hormones are programmed to go to one of two areas. The brain, where emotional response hormones are created, and the adrenal glands where the great fury of the beast is created. The adrenal glad creates a unique hormone that strengths our emotional investment and supercharges our body and cells. But at what cost? We all know that continued adrenal exposure is hazardous, so I am offering a solution.” Matt signaled for Rick to show another page from the stand.

“The subject is sat down on a chair. His body is strapped down electronically by voice command. On the seat their are holes for the hormone injection in the appropriate area. Three Gamma Knife emitters are used. Positioned around the head and near the kidney’s where the Adrenal Gland’s rest. When my hormones find where in the brain negative emotional response hormones are located and where in the Adrenal Glad they are received the Gamma Knife Emitters fire a concentrated beam of radiation eradicating the producer and receiver.”

Matt smiled as he saw a few board members smile. They understood what he was after. Freedom from themselves. Rick moved to the last page.

“Ladies and Gentleman. I am giving you the future. We tested the procedure earlier on a mouse with satisfactory results. I would enjoy very much if you deemed our work not only worth your time, but worth continued funding. Good day, my friends.” Matt breathed a sigh of relief. It was over. Board members gout up and shook hands with him and Rick. When they exited both looked at each other and broke into a nervous laugh.

“Well?” Rick asked cleaning up the stand and whiteboard.

“Well what?” Matt responded putting his notes away.

“What are you going to do about Veronica?” Rick smiled at him.

“I’m…I think I’m going to do it.” Matt smiled back.

“Damn right you are. Man I KNEW you would. Give her a call right now and set up man, I will take everything back to the lab.” Rick grinned and picked up the stuff and rushed out. Matt couldn’t help but smile and picked up the phone and dialed.

“Hello?”

“Hey Veronica, its Matt.” Matt said smiling.

“Oh hey Matt, what’s up?”

“Nothing much, I just finished a presentation to the Board of Director’s. Talk about being nervous.”

“How did it go?”

“Truthfully, I think they are going to go for it. But that isn’t why I called. I think we need to talk. To really clear some stuff up, about me and you.”

“Ooh, sure. How does Saturday sound?” Veronica sounded worried but anxious.

“It sounds great, I’ll be there.” Matt smiled

“Are you ok Matt?” Veronica asked.

“Never better, I’ll see you then. Have a good day.”

“You too, Bye”

“Bye.” Matt hung up the phone. He was really going to open up to someone. He…never had opened up. Sure he could talk to Rick but actually telling about his past, Matt felt cold inside. Anxiety creeped in on him when the door burst open.

“So, did you call her?” Rick smiled as he came in.

“Yep going to talk to her on Saturday.”

“All right, now lets go check on Mickey. Its almost been 24 hours.” Rick said while chewing on a Twinkie.

“Yeah we better see how he is reacting to the treatment. Come on race you, ya sugar junky.” Matt smiled as they both exited the lab.

The cheese was still there, taunting its nose. The mouse got up. It wanted that cheese. Pressing its face against the wire mesh…its face contorted. Its black eyes inching closer to the promise land. The mouse did a shrill shriek as the mesh poked its sensitive skin around his muzzle. Suddenly another shriek.

Its body began to convulse as it once again reached for the cheese. Its eyes began to turn almost cherry red…its body began to grow bigger. Its fur turned from grayish black to almost jet black. Its pounded its now claws against the wire mesh cutting it free, the cheese within its grasp…it let out a roar of triumph.

“Ok Matt I win.” Rick said dashing through the door.

“Yeah I bet, I would win too if I body slammed you into a door” Matt said rubbing his side.

“Hey all is fair in love and war and…Matt, look at the cage.” Matt turned to where Rick pointed. The mesh cage was broken and the mouse was eating the cheese. Its grayish black fur and black eyes content. A few drops of blood were around the wire mesh but the mouse seemed fine.

“Guess they don’t make cages like they used to,” Matt said, “Come on…I’ll spring for Taco Bell.”

“Again?”

“Jeez I don’t need any children, I got you…speaking of kids…”

“Oh how is Veronica?”

“We both need to get a life,” the two said in unison. Rick put the mouse int he cage with a fresh supply of cheese as Matt got their coats. Who knew that this guy was Mighty Mouse, Rick thought smiling and following Matt out the door.

“We call them dumb animals, and so they are, for they cannot tell us how they feel, but they do not suffer less because they have no words.” – Anna Sewell (1820 – 1878), Black Beauty, 1877

The Monster Within Us All – Chapter 3

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