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Survival of the Fittest I: The Experiment Fails


Thechosenone
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(So here's the opening chapter in my Gremlin Origin story for the newest crew i have. As always expect a completely different take on the material than Wyrd's. It does reference an event that happened in a previous game I played with a friend which can be found here http://wyrd-games.net/forum/showthread.php?t=27968

So as always, please read and enjoy it. And please do comment.)

Progress Log of Doctor Jefferson Tate

Day sixty-Two

Something very interesting happened last night. From our post in the Gorenchen wilds the team witnessed a strange glow that rose up from somewhere in the badlands and drifted over the bogs. It played havoc with some of the instruments and riled up all the test subjects. It took hours to calm them down. The locals serving on the staff were quick to call it an “ill omen” but Mr. Mctavish was able to calm his people down. Very strange night.

Day Sixty-Four

The staff has observed some odd occurrences among the test subjects. Their usual wild and violent demeanor is stymied. They seem more docile and withdrawn. They congregate in groups and demonstrate no violent behavior. Mr. Mctavish believes they are still “spooked” from the strange lights. This seems a likely observation.

Day Sixty-Five

Another test subject has been taken into surgery. Implantation of cogitors into the subjects brain proved difficult again and construct enhancements were rejected by the body. This is the fourth subject that perished while being operated on. Progress in weaponizing the Bog Gamin has stalled and the Pinnacle is demanding prototypes. This is a problem.

Mr. Mctavish continues to profess the impossibility of “wranglin’ Gremlins”. I and the rest of the staff firmly believe that even these noisome beasts can be put to use in the war against the Pinnacle’s enemies. The Gremlin, as the locals are fond of calling the test subjects, will be remade. It’s not a matter of difficulty; it’s a matter of inclination of which I possess in abundance.

Day Seventy-One

The staff and I have returned to the post in Gorenchen after a brief resupply in Malifaux. As suspected, orders from the Pinnacle are to proceed with urgency to produce a weaponized Bog Gamin. News of an Arcanist attack in the badlands was interesting though. Seems as if the light we saw had something to do with a ritual they attempted. The Chronicle says they failed and were all punished to the fullest extent of the law. My good friend Ms. Isabella Flood, who happened to be part of the Guild sting that opposed the Arcanists in the Badlands, says that the site was secured but not before the ritual was briefly completed. Devious terrorists. Their actions are forcing my staff to move quicker than we’d like. It’s reckless. I’ve ordered another subject be prepped for surgery early tomorrow.

Day Seventy-Two

Something interesting happened today. When Mr. Mctavish entered the Gamin enclosure in the past the subjects were terrified of the Albino Alligator he uses to keep order in there. They usually scurry away screeching. Today they seemed to watch him like cunning predators. The regarded the Alligator with caution and slowly repositioned themselves to safety from the animal. Mctavish pulled the selected Gamin from the enclosure and we attempted another surgery. Some success was earned through very careful and gentle probing but ultimate this surgery failed as well and the subject perished.

We’ve decided the tools need to be redesigned for a more delicate procedure. Mr. Mctavish and his people in the machine shops will be working to craft new tools for us.

Day Seventy-Four

New tools are something to behold. Corbin Mctavish is truly a man for all seasons. The staff is excited about the new approach. I’ve asked that they prep another subject.

We’ve practiced a few trial runs on some of Mctavish’s pigs from the local pig farms. The test seems to have gone well on the porcine subjects. They still perished during the procedure but it gave the staff valuable insight into the tiny workings of such diminutive creatures.

Day Seventy-Five

We were all in such good spirits till the Pinnacle’s Minister of Science arrived with his posh entourage. Minister Luther Cahill is a boisterous belligerent taskmaster who seems to believe every step we’ve taken has been overly cautious and amateurish. He’s also very cruel. He assaults the subjects with his cattle prod while strutting proudly in his ivory long coat and top hat. He’s pompous and arrogant.

So much so that he took over the lead on the surgery. He’s skilled yes, but he butchered the subject and ruined what could have been a successful day. He asked me to prep another subject for surgery tomorrow as well.

Unbelievable.

Day Eight-Four

Minister Cahill has killed off one of my subjects every day since arriving here and in the process of savaging my resources he’s learned nothing new. He’s suggested that some thaumaturgy and hedge magic be employed alongside science? What sort of learned man suggests the occult as an answer to difficult queries?

Mr. Mctavish has brought to my attention some observation he and his crew have made regarding the subjects. He says they’ve organized into a pride of sorts. Like Mctavish’s parcel of pigs, they seem to have chosen the largest member of their group. Corbin calls this one Jones. He’s a brute for certain and larger than the rest of the Gamin but he’s also organizing them. I’m told they cluster around him, obey his grunts and growls and tend to his needs like lionesses to their alpha male. Their behavior has been odd since the light in the sky.

I’ve inspected the holding area as well and the Gamin are different. I don’t care for the way they look at me. Their eyes are accusatory and wicked. They regard me as a plague to be avoided. I suspected they’ve learned that when I come around one of their number vanish never to return. I just didn’t believe that the Gamin were capable of such higher learning. Considering what we know of the Gamin lifestyle I see no biological reason for them to possess brain functions that allow for long term memory or deep reasoning.

Curious.

Day Eighty-Seven

Mr. Mctavish and Minister Cahill nearly came to blows today when Corbin defended some of the test subjects from the bullying of the Minister and his shock prod.

The subjects are no longer eating the pigs that we round up for their consumption. They divvy up one hog for rationing and the rest are corralled. Some of the subjects seem to be capable of enough thought to command the pigs with the same level of dominance that wolves exert over their own young.

Day Eighty-Nine

More failed experiments. More dead subjects.

Also, Mr. Mctavish has mentioned that he needs to replace some of the locks and cage doors. He’s noted that the Gamin are taking quiet a toll on the enclosure. I’ve agreed and sent his people funds to begin work on them.

Day Ninety-Two

The last few hours have been blissfully quiet. Minister Cahill has been thankfully out of my sight for hours now and I couldn’t care less about what he’s up to so long as I don’t have to listen to his moaning. Also, Mr. Mctavish has made me away that one of the subjects is missing. The one he calls Jo……..

=======================

Jefferson Tate turns away from his journal entry; the constant tapping noise in his hallway is starting to become as aggravating as Cahill’s voice. He runs his hands through his auburn hair hoping for the noise to cease but it doesn’t.

“Lord in heaven…” Tate leaves his desk and throws open the door of his study and into the main hall.

“Can we please keep it down? It’s nearly midnight and…” The sinister glow of the Bayou moon shines through the hallway windows and onto the floor. A carpet of red seeps out of his research assistant Ellen Hodge. The metallic click is the sound of a metal surgical knife jabbing through her still torso and chipping into the floor over and over. It’s gripped in tiny green hands. One of the Gamin is perched upon her chest, ears wide and sharp, and needle mouth snarling. Yellow eyes stare into Ellen’s lifeless orbs.

It looks up from its wet messy task to hiss at him.

“God… God… God….” Tate turns to his office and scrambles back in. “God!” He slams the door shut but his eyes creep from the locks on the door to his desk. One of the subjects is there.

He knows this one.

“Easy Bernard.” Tate holds his hands out in a conciliatory manner. His voice shakes. Hands tremble. He watches the old Gamin trudge across his desk, its tufts of hair stiff and grey. Mctavish said that Bernard was the oldest of Gamin in the enclosure but that he was as ornery as the boldest of youths.

The subject reaches down with its spindly green limbs and grabs a handful of Tate’s papers. He brings them close to his dulling eyes and cocks his head. Anatomy pictures of vivisected hogs and gamin. The pictures are gruesome and sickeningly detailed. Tate can hear the scratching of Gamin at the door to his back.

He watches Bernard slink off his desk and grabs up Tate’s surgical coat from his desk chair as he waddles. The subject puts the coat on mimicking the precise dress of the doctor. The buttons are snapped crooked and the length of the coat drags behind him. He walks up to Tate, who presses against the door hard with nowhere to go.

“Bernard, calm down.”

The Gamin mocks a shushing gesture just as Tate has done for weeks now to the test subjects. He reaches up to the doctor’s pocket and snatches the spectacles resting there and places them on his wide crinkled snout. Bernard gasps at the shocking clarity they bring.

“Good. They… they look good. Keep them.”

Bernard smiles and nods. He then takes the wadded papers and holds them up, studying the splayed out Gamin sketch closely. He then reaches into the coat and pulls out one of Mctavish’s new scalpels.

Tate’s screams can be heard through the door. So can Bernard’s gentle shushing.

It lasts a very very long time.

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Edited by Thechosenone
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