The Custom Common Experiment #84
Owner: Faber

Age: 2 years, 3 months, 2 weeks

Born: March 17th, 2018

Adopted: 1 year, 11 months, 2 weeks ago

Adopted: July 16th, 2018

Pet Spotlight Winner
October 20th, 2019


  • Level: 4
  • Strength: 14
  • Defense: 10
  • Speed: 10
  • Health: 10
  • HP: 10/10
  • Intelligence: 69
  • Books Read: 66
  • Food Eaten: 0
  • Job: Candy Maker

They made me. The lifeform. That's what they called me. I don't seem to have a name like they do, but then again, there's a lot about me that's different from them.

I was made, not born. From the moment I first opened my eyes to the blinding white light that filled my birthing tank, I could see that I was different. The scientists stared at me with a mixture of excitement and fear: excited their creation had lived, and fearful of what they had made. They looked at me with two eyes each. I stared back at them with six.

I learned their language within the first few days. They didn't speak directly to me, but their thoughts were loud, and in those days I could not shut them out. The biggest hurdle was deciphering which thoughts were coming from which person, but I quickly figured it out.

The experiments didn't begin until day 4. I know it was day 4, because the scientist who came to fetch me for them had the thought that "Surely, four days is long enough to know the lifeform is viable." I didn't like the way he thought it, like I was just some thing utterly unlike himself. Was he not a lifeform too?

Their experiments started easily and harmlessly enough. First, they applied patches and strips of material that sent readings and data to their computers, and simply observed my behavior. I did a lot of cowering in corners then. I didn't know the horrors that was to come, but I could sense no good will from the people who tested me, and though they were not hurting me yet, I took no comfort in that.

When the real tests came, my body, once a smooth expanse of unmarred navy, became scarred. The wounds would begin as bright red cuts and welts in my skin, and eventually they would turn purple and then, as they healed, would turn to gold. The scientists loved my scars, and congratulated themselves for causing them. They did not seem to understand my pain. They would, eventually. With a little help from me.

It was a Friday when I escaped. I pulled that detail from my creator's heads. Days, nights, weeks, they meant nothing to me here. I knew the concepts, I'd heard them talk about the sun, and the moon, and barbeques on Sunday afternoons, but they denied me even the dignity of a window. I decided to correct their oversight.

One of the scientists was named Amos. Amos thought very highly of himself. He clashed a lot with the rest of the team, but especially with their leader, Cain. Cain was a quiet, but cruel man who pushed his team with a calm and strong hand. More than once Amos had got right up in Cain's face, openly challenging Cain's authority. Cain had so far succeeded in shutting Amos down, but some of the others were swayed by Amos's boldness, and tensions among them were already running high. If they had been able to make it through Friday and take a break from each other over the weekend things might have quieted down, but I wasn't about to let that happen. Not when I could use it to my advantage.

So far, I had only succeeded in reading the thoughts of others, but I had a feeling I could do more than that. It was time to run some experiments of my own. As one of the scientists, a younger man named Lee, began running the first tests of the day, I looked into his head. He was worried about something back home. His wife was home sick with their son.

I held the image of his son in my mind. He was probably just fine, but I imagined what he might look like if he was also sick. It would start with a slight blush in the cheeks from a light fever, then he would start to get fussy as the fever caused his joints to ache. Finally, he'd start to shiver, and the first stomach cramps would make him lose his breakfast.

I held the image of the sick boy in my mind, and slowly pushed it toward the mind of the scientist. He didn't even seem to notice at first, but then I saw him start to tense with stress, and he glanced at the clock on the wall to see how much longer his shift would last. It was 9:30 in the morning, and he wasn't supposed to get off until 5. He normally worked days so he could spend evenings with his family, but he had been asked to watch a night shift the day before. He'd already been here 5 hours. "Long time to go without seeing your child," I thought, letting the idea float towards the oblivious Lee.

Lee shook his head and turned back to the tests he was running on me. I barely noticed. It was taking a lot of concentration, what I was doing with his head, but it was working. I then conjured the image of Cain, looking stern. There was no way Cain would let anyone go home early, probably even if it was an emergency. It was one of the things that Cain and Amos, who also had a young son at home, often clashed about.

Lee ran his tests quicker than usual, and was wrapped up by a quarter til 11. Normally he'd go until lunch, and then they'd take a break until starting on the really hard tests in the afternoon with their bellies full. Since Lee had finished early though, it was Amos's turn to run his own brand of experiments. There was a long silence before anyone came back, but when Amos returned I understood why.

Amos had been talking to Lee. It seemed Lee had gone right from working with me to Amos, to beg him to cover for him so he could go home early and check on his family. Amos had explained that there was no way Cain wouldn't find out, but Lee couldn't get the image of his poor wife and son, sick and crying out for him, out of his head. Amos had eventually relented, thinking of his own son, and agreed to try and cover for Lee. I could see the entire conversation in Amos's head as he played it over and over. He was also psyching himself up for the inevitable clash with Cain when he found out. He was almost excited for the prospect of it coming to a head. That was exactly the opportunity I needed.

Amos started in on his experiments, first pulling my blood out with needles and tubes, then pumping me so full of a cold substance and I could feel my veins threatening to close in on themselves to protect my heart. I had a heart just like they did, and they loved to run it through paces they'd never subject one of their own to. Today I set my bones hard and bore it as best I could. The entire time I pushed one thought towards Amos. "Cain doesn't care about any of you, and it's up to you to do something about it."

The experiments stopped around 1. It was past when lunch was usually held, and Amos was a solid wall of hunger and anger. The growling in his belly only seemed to fuel the rage in his head. Cain would be coming in shortly to relieve Amos from duty, but he was running late from lunch. I sensed his approach through Amos's anticipation. I opened all 6 of my eyes and fixed them on the glass one way mirror that separated me from them. Looking into Amos's eyes, I could see the scene.

Cain came into the room, his posture was stiff, and looking into his head I could see he'd just learned that Lee left early, and that Amos had been the one to allow it. Amos surmised as much on his own. "You did not have the authority," Cain began.

"Authority? That's what you're worried about? The man's son is sick!" Amos said, voice rising quickly to a shout.

"We have procedures for a reason-"

Amos cut Cain off again, "Procedures don't mean shit to a man with a sick family!"

"You will watch your mouth," Cain hissed.

"I will not!" Amos replied, loud enough for me to hear on the other side of the glass even with the sound proofing.

"You will be disciplined for this, and so will Mr. Lee. In fact, seeing as this is likely your third offense I can start the process of having you removed from his laboratory." Cain said, his temper rising to meet Amos's.

"You wouldn't dare."

"I would. And I'll take your pension too. I'll have you dismissed with contempt. You'll be lucky if the company doesn't sue you."

"You can't do that!" Amos slammed his hand on the panel attached to the glass and I could feel it shudder under the impact.

"I can, and I will. You pushed me too far this time." Cain typed his code in to open the door to the hallway and shouted "Security!"

Now was my chance, if there would be one. "He's threatening your family," I thought, pushing it towards Amos. It was easier this time, his rage making him somehow more open and vulnerable to my persuasion. I gave him another thought, "You have to make him pay."

It happened quickly. Amos lunged at Cain, who tried to jump out of the way. Security rushed the room right as the two collided, and soon fists were flying. While they were struggling to get the situation under control, I began pulling off monitors and needles and tubes, all the various instruments they'd attached to me against my will. Alarms started blaring, some of them from the things I'd been attached to, but some also from the security alerts from the commotion in the other room, just adding to the chaos.

I didn't have time to see if they would notice, or stop me. I climbed to the bed I'd been confined to for weeks, then lept to the ceiling. There was a weak place around the central bright light that hung from the ceiling on a swivel. I used the light as leverage to break through the ceiling. I scrambled away from the noise and confusion. There was a space about a foot high between the ceiling below me and the floor above, so I followed that until I could find a way up.

Eventually I ended up in a long shaft going all the way down and all the way up, far as I could tell. There was a box below me, held by cables that attached to the top wall, far above. I jumped down on the box. It made a loud clang, but I doubted anyone could have heard with the alarms still blaring. I gripped the cable attached to the top, and began to climb. The going wasn't easy, but I could feel freedom beckoning above me, so I kept going.

There was a noise beneath me, which I barely heard above the din still going on, but when I looked down my blood nearly went cold. It was Cain. He had opened a hatch on the top of the box and he was climbing through, his eyes fixed on me.

"That was clever, little one," he said. I couldn't hear the words with my ears, but I heard them in my head. It was like I was reading his mind, except I wasn't. Was he reading mine? I could also feel his emotions, a mix of anger, anxiety, betrayal, and something else, pride? I climbed faster.

"I didn't think you were quite capable of that," he continued, "I should have known you'd find a way to turn us against each other, I just didn't think you were that sophisticated just yet. I gave you that ability, you know. Or at least hoped I did. The others couldn't handle it. They died from the strain, or killed themselves rather than face it. But you aren't afraid, are you?"

"Leave me alone!" I thought, pushing it down towards Cain in a panic. I climbed as fast as my body would allow, but their tests had left me weak and fatigue was beginning to set into my limbs.

"You can run, but you can't hide, little one." Cain's words were like ice in my head. "I'm like you. Not in body, but in mind. It took me a while to figure out yours. Humans are easy, they're weak, but you, I made you strong."I reached the top of the cable, and looked around for some way to keep going. I had to get away. Cain was still standing down below on top of the box, but in my head he sounded louder than ever.

"Wherever you go, I'll be with you. It's my gift to you. Even when we get too far apart to connect in mind, I've printed myself on your DNA. I'll find you again."

I found a hatch along the edge of the ceiling. It was just a few feet away, but there was no way for me to reach it. I was going to have to jump.

"If you jump, you'll fall. Don't be stupid, I made you smarter than that!" Cain's voice showed a hint of true fear for the first time.

"I said, leave me alone!"

I jumped.

That should have been the end for me, just like the others, like Cain said. But, it wasn't. When I opened my eyes I was hovering in midair. It shouldn't have been possible. There was a strange light glowing all around me and it took me a moment to realize it was coming from me, shining from my scars with a bright golden hue. And I wasn't dead.

Below me, I could still see Cain, staring up at me, now with a look of confusion and horror on his face. I could see him, but I couldn't hear him. It was like his voice had been banished from my head the moment I jumped.

I looked forward, and now the hatch was in reach. I grabbed it, and opened it, and pulled myself through it. The golden light faded as soon as I had my feet back on solid ground, but Cain's voice remained absent from my mind.

I climbed out on the roof of a building that looked to be two stories tall. The floor I'd been kept on must have been further underground, for I'd climbed up at least four floors to get here. I didn't stop to wonder how many more floors there might be, or what would happen to the scientists inside once they realized their prized creation was missing. I didn't care. I fled the roof and ran to the woods, certain with every breath that I was heading towards my freedom.


Credits: Overlay by CORE, Story/Profile by Faber, background pattern from toptal, and a thank you to hollow for letting me adopt him.

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