Lab Rat part 43

Posted: February 26, 2011 in Fiction, Test Subject

“Okay, Johnson. I’ll level with you.” Probably better if I stick with his chosen alias. “This guy named Parish wants to know the name of my doctor.” Idiot kid let people see him use a power? I resent being called an idiot, but he’s got a point. “It’s like the guy can’t pick his own health insurance or something.” What the guy wants is to get his hands on a scientist that used to be DOD. DOD? Like in Department of Defense? Looks like Johnson is pretty keen on knowing about my healthcare too.

“Who is your doctor, Brinks?” Get this questioning back on track.

“Doctor Allison,” I tell him. Finally, some cooperation.

“Listen, your Doctor Allison is in some trouble.” Why did she think she could just run out on a government agency? “There are some parties out there who are very interested in her work.” Hah! I don’t need to be psychic to catch that slip. Allison can be a girl’s name, sure, but last names are gender-less. I love it when I actually feel smart.

“What kind of trouble?” Another answer I can guess. I don’t really have to though; Johnson unintentionally fills in the details. Taryn was a top DOD brain who used to deal in making the battlefield more survivable. There were dozens of teams trying assorted approaches. A lot of people focused on developing new ways to see and kill the enemy without ever leaving the base. Five different types of robots were created to attempt to replace human soldiers. A few worked on new armor and equipment to help conventional soldiers when they had no choice but to go into hazardous situations. Taryn and her group started working on ways to improve the soldiers without giving them extra weight to carry. Now that she’s apparently been successful, they want her back.

“Doctor Allison’s work is pretty important to our government, but we aren’t the only interested parties. Several groups in the Middle East have discovered her work.” I love the Middle East. Easiest scapegoats since Soviet Russia.

“How did these guys find out about her?” I avoid asking my real question. I want to know how the Department of Defense is aware of me. Taryn never told me where the research started, but if she cut ties with the government there has to be a pretty good reason. I focus as my unwitting stoolie recalls the truth behind his lies. Johnson’s thoughts are all memories of various reports. He wasn’t there. Doctor Allison’s research didn’t get the support it deserved from the brass because of lingering resistance to genetic and stem cell research. Most of the opposition was motivated by money. There was a lot of money to be made in the development of all of the technological wonders that the various research teams were putting together. It’s getting easier to distinguish my thoughts from downloaded information. I almost want to try to read the paramedic too, but I’m afraid to break my connection with Johnson.

The prospect of being legitimately unemployed is more than a little scary. As part of my New Year’s reso-mo-lutions, I determined to get a handle on my finances. I’ve stopped buying shit. There are necessities to acquire, but I am doing a pretty damn good job of not blowing money on stupid stuff anymore. Hell, even the recent artistic addition to my appearance didn’t cost me a dime. Sure, that was luck, but it totally still counts. I think that being thrifty is going to pay off in the days to come. Like I posted on facebook, I want this writing thing to work. I have to live long enough to make it happen though.


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