Lab Rat part 21

Posted: January 31, 2011 in Fiction, Fighting, Mental health, Test Subject

“Uhhhh.” I wake to the sound of someone moaning. My eyes are stuck shut, but I can’t lift my arms to wipe them clear. My biceps burn with the effort. Funny, I remember being able to lift my hands to my face earlier today. I try to sit up, but I can’t manage that either. I try to ask what’s going on, but groaning seems to be all I can manage is another groan. That must have been me making the noise a second ago.

“Don’t try to move, Asher.” Ally’s voice. She’s here with me, wherever here is. I know I’m wet and I suspect I’m sticky too. As I become fully aware, every part of me starts to announce that it hurts. What the hell did I do to myself? Something went wrong with the fire power. I must have only harmed myself; that little sun I made was probably enough to open even the Blast Room by force. “I should have waited for you to recover some of your body mass before we tried the extended dose. I’m… sorry.” Her voice cracks just a little, and suddenly I’m scared. I must be in pretty bad shape. “I’ll be back in a minute with the gurney.”

I hear sloshing as she leaves. I don’t hear the airlock cycle. Hearing must be damaged too. I do as much of a self-diagnosis as I can manage. I try to move my toes, and the resultant pain tells me that they’re still there. No way to know if I’m bleeding, since I’m all wet. Even my breathing is labored. I can feel my entire body itching, but the sensation is muted by a blanket of pain. “Ahhh!” The effort of calling for Ally sends a spike of agony into my diaphragm. Hey, I can see red. My gallows humor does nothing to alleviate my distress.

I hear a splash, and I feel something cold splatter on me. A second splash follows, with a series of clicks. She must be back with the gurney. More splashing, and then I’m being shifted. Ally picks me up and puts me down again, this time on a padded surface. I feel her strapping me down. As if I were capable of getting up. Then the gurney jerks. I feel myself sliding a little as I’m boosted into an angled position. I guess I did break the Blast Room. Shit. The sun must have contacted the wall when I fell over. Did I wreck the airlock too? I really miss being able to see. The gurney jerks around for a bit, but eventually I go level again. I think. Feels that way, anyway. There’s the sound of the castors rolling, and a couple of doors swinging open and shut. The only doors that don’t lead outside or into a bathroom here go to medical.

I hear things clanking as they are laid out on a tray. I really hope she doesn’t have to operate on me. I feel a towel running up and down my left arm and then on my chest. Another stabbing sensation. I’m being hooked up to an IV. I think. A pair of slaps on my chest, followed by a feeling of tension at the sites of the slapping. Sensors. I hear a click, followed by beeping. Man, I’m good at this. Wait a minute. The beeping is way too slow to be my heart. Or maybe it’s too slow to be my heart when I’m healthy. I hear a warning tone. Damn it, I need to see! I groan again in frustration.

Ok, so I’m not taking a break from the story. I like the story. Actually, I love the story. I feel like the pace for this part of it is necessarily slow, but I promise we’ll get back to the more exciting stuff soon. There was a war practice on Sunday down in Colorado Springs. It was fantastic. I got to wear my new armor in a melee for the first time, but I didn’t really take any hits that would have required it. I think my battlefield awareness is improving, and I’m figuring out that greatness is really just (idea + opportunity). By the time anyone is reading this, it will be T minus six days to vacation. It can’t come fast enough. 


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