It was an ordinary lift, but it transported us around 100 metres below sea level based on the velocity that the lift was traveling. I did the calculations in my head to keep my head off the painful reality that I might not be able to resurface again to see the sun, the people, and the world. The lift came to an abrupt halt, they jerked me out of the lift and landed on the cold hard ground. The slab of concrete which was the lift was suspended in the air left my mind blown, I turned my head from it and saw three gigantic platforms towering over me, and I was encircled by holograms which was sporadically projected. The holograms were faceless but it felt like they were all staring dead into me. The platform was empty but there was an eerie presence scowling at me. I was scared shitless.
I guess I need to play by their rules for a while, once I found a loophole, I’m out of this place. I thought. “You think you can get out of here?” a booming voice reverberated the hall, “Mr. Caine?” I immediately stopped my faculty of thoughts.
“Let’s see how long you can stay empty from the inside, we need your specialties to bring good to…”
“To you rapacious fools?” I interjected.
“Mr. Caine, you are in no place or whatsoever to speak, let us do the talking, and please do keep your mouth shut until I had finished what I have to say.” There was a brief silence. I muttered a curse word under my breath, an electric shock went up my spine, I let out a scream that broke the silence. “Don’t ever disrupt when I speak, Mr. Caine, if you value your life, you are forced to cooperate with…”
“No.” I asserted.
“Take him to the room. Lock him up for 24 hours without oxygen, food, and water. And after that tell me that you had changed your mind.”
Fighting back was worthless, I followed them to keep myself alive. There were foggy figures hovering across our heads. The atmosphere started to loosen, the tonality of the hall started to turn smoky. The walk there was short, it had a completely different atmosphere compared to the previous room. They pushed me forward, a glaze of breeze swept over my body, the air instantaneously thickened by dust particles, there was a low count of oxygen in the room. I looked back and realised that the men that escorted me were gone, I tried to run back, the air was still hard to breath. I’m trapped.
Panic smacked my nerves, I was hyperventilating due to the lack of oxygen. Calm down. I told myself, but my body was starting to malfunction, I saw stars above my head in the thick clouds of smoke.
“Mr. Caine.” It was familiar, “Mr. Caine!” I was shaken awake by someone, my eyes pried open, and saw her, Jennifer, my past lab assistant, gourgeous as ever standing behind me.
I yawned, “Don’t you realise I was catching some Zs? Why did…”
She pointed at the fish bowl, “Look.” the goldfish was swimming again, it was alive.
“How… I thought… it wouldn’t work…” my voice was shaken by bewilderment. “Did you replace the fish, Jennifer?”
“No. I watched it came back to live before my very eyes.” her pupils dilated, she was over herself, “It was… beautiful.”
I still did not get how did I revive the dead fish. “Do you record the entire process?” I asked.
She gulped, “Nope. The battery was dead when I was mixing those reagents…” she said guiltily, and swept strands of hair on her face back, “and I did not want to bother you in your sleep. I also thought it would be impossible. So, I just omitted the recording part.”
Luckily, if this gets out the world will change, “Oh… recording the process of an experiment is of utmost importance of being a researcher, it acts as an evidence, just remember to do so in the next few experiments.” A sense of relieve tinged my tone. I still don’t trust her in handling my experiment data and my work just yet. But I need someone to help me out.
“Yes, Mr. Caine.”
“Stop calling me Mr. Caine. Call me Walter.” She wanted to refuse. “Your one-week trial is done. Do expect more to come.” Her face was lit with joy like a child who had gotten an ice cream.
“Thank you Mr. Caine!” She beamed.
“Thank you.” She hesitated, “Walter.” An outlandish pang struck my heart, I think she is the one. my heart skipped a beat, everything seemed to stop, even the world had a hiccup.