A Reader! Endgineer fic for Missiongenocide's Cursed project.
What was your name again? You would think you would remember something that important, but the noise and business of your new lives made it hard to remember anything from before that's not information or experimenting. Think of anything that is not information or experimenting. You, all of you, don't have time to remember the past or think about the future. Too busy, far too busy. None of you have had a moment's break from your task of doing scientific studies for the master, thankfully you all have more than enough endurance, even if you want to think about something else sometimes.
Right now, your current project is on the operating table, but you have been stopped by your master sending you a psychic transmission of singular sadistic glee, "Oh, this Titled has been a defiant little nuisance. Do whatever you please with her, and more so, and try to worsen her situation a little, have her learn her lesson!" Sigh, he never asks for anything but worsening. It gets very repetitive.
This is genuinely surprising. You could have sworn by your remaining eye that you only programmed those robots to pick up untitled and bring them into your lab, the only way one of the Titled could have got into your lab is if they got caught on purpose, or there was a mistake. You would have to look at the husks again and see what went wrong
You interrupt, "Excuse me, but this is a good opportunity! We rarely get to work on Titled unless we are ordered to, we can learn so much about this one ticks...though she doesn't look like a Titled, does she?" Surprisingly, you are not ignored by the others like usual.
This is greeted with enthusiasm, "Ah, yes, that is right. I still remember our work on that girl we where supposed to attach vacuum pumps to, this subject is no different." You peer at her and ask the rest, "Who is this, can anyone remember?"
You pipe up, "Miss Brooke. I remember spotting her with another Titled at one point. Her torment is of a psychological nature, my specialty, so may I lead?"
This does not go over so well, and soon all of you is in an argument over who was best qualified for this situation. You all remember a time you got along with each other much better, laughing, joking, talking about how you where going to save everyone, teaching that Razzil kid all you knew. What happened to the young man anyway? The last you saw of him was him running from that man who could shoot purple fire from his hands. You all hope he's alive, maybe he can get some help, to finish the project you all came her to start. Now all you seem to do is bicker like schoolchildren.
At the time you where more astonished by the way this young man was breaking physics with his fire-shooting to notice he was aiming at you. Its hard not to find this embarrassing, so you rarely speak your piece unless a knowledge of physics was required. Your the quiet one of this group, just like you always have been. You try to ignore how your companions are acting increasingly aggressive, childish and impulsive, but you share their memories, have them constantly next to you, and have an ear to hear them yell with. Your sigh seems to interrupt the fight briefly.
What really gets your attention is how the subject just snickered at you. You look at the woman with the dirty-blonde hair dye and loose, dark clothing, see her smirking even in the dimly-lit lab. Seeing mirth from a fellow sufferer would normally lighten your mood a bit, if not that of the others. But your personal heart burns with anger because the mirth is directed at the lot of you, "If you do not stop that, I shall add removing your vocal chords to our set of experiments." You warn sternly.
You look at the cabinet near the operating table and take advantage of the situation to grab some tools and start working metal into an implant, like you have done twice already. While the cursed body always heals very quickly, this can be an advantage. No tissue rejection, and if you cripple them, well they will recover in time. It really IS nothing personal, and working like this allows you to tune out the others.
Oh, like usual he jumps the gun. Being the only girl on the team has always been hard, especially knowing that during the time period you joined genetics was a science in its infancy. Its hard to get others to listen to you.The cursed body can't take as much mutation as it could cybernetics, you learned that the hard way last time. The man walked out of here looking almost like one dear old Raz called The Overlution. You've heard him also referred to by the simpler title of The Lost, but clarity is more important than sounding snappy! You try to get the attention of your friend the robotics expert, but he is lost in work. You yell at the boys, but they just tell you, "Shut it, we're trying to decide what to do!" Why have all of you turned on each other?
All of you focus your eyes to overlap on the place where the now silent but defiant subject was incarcerated. Well, you had to do something, and a device was taking shape your hands. One of you slips a tentacle into the welding arm and you get to work on what he's doing, otherwise surely you will find your argument worsening. Your master's influence came flooding into your brain core, like a tidal wave made of nightmare imagery and inky black evil. The things you all wanted to do right now, oh, where to start?
This is not you, this is not you stop...you yell, "Why are we doing this?" But it goes unanswered. If you had to guess, the boss has created some sort of compulsive behavior in you all, perhaps through the thick cylinder of neurons that allows you to have a shared memory and experience no matter how hard you argue. It also means that perhaps your individual selves are slowly disappearing. Is it any small wonder that, with this fear, you all try to assert yourselves as much as you can? What happens if you all just become The Endgineer, and lose yourselves in the urge to satisfy your sick curiosity?
You look at what is taking shape, making sure the central eye that belongs to the nerve core gets a good look at it. You want all of you to remember this. It is two antennae, an electronic device designed to stimulate the amygdala, and two wires that link the thing to the nervous system. A life-force battery, similar to the one you all had once attached to The Restrained, powered the whole thing using this cursed's body. That battery was not your proudest achievement, but in exacerbating these people's suffering it was by far the most useful. You tell the others, "Get ready to operate, lets put this in. Will this work?"
You hear the psychologist reply, "It aught to, if this is done right." You have little work to do in this operation, though you can always to the surgical grunt work along with whoever else is not occupied this time. Ugh, it makes you feel nauseated with yourself, which is saying quite a something seeing as none of you have a stomach between you. You see the other arm raise up in a friendly gesture that you shared with the physicist. You where pretty close, once, but since he's on the far side of the body you don't share much with him anymore. Its a shame, since he always could comfort you when you where feeling bad about yourself. Like now.
Its good to actually have something to do. With the hands manned by somebody else, you could focus on making incisions with the scalpel tool and finding the right vices, clamps and hooks to keep the body open while you worked. Like many of the robotics expert's designs, its quite an extensive thing, going down the whole spine and through the neck, but no matter. The subject whimpered but held her resolve until you cut into the neck. She squirmed violently, the girl must have taken that threat you made seriously. Thinking fast, you inject some toxin in her that would make her dazed in a few minutes, though some part of you objects, this should make it easier for you all and that is that.
You say, "All clear, the body's opened up and she's not struggling." You give her an apologetic look, but its not entirely meant. You want to still see what happens, you sick little rat. If Raz is still alive, you hope he forgives you for all the things you have done. You have NO CHOICE.
Ah, seeing your work go in is good, even though the method your teammates have chosen is a bit too far, perhaps. You remember how the medical establishment gave you funny looks for your hip replacement design, if they could see what you are doing now. But down to business, you pull the skin and muscle and organs aside, having the others use anything they could manage to get to keep all the things out of the way so that you could get to the spinal column. Snap! A sharp, sickening crack as you open the backbone vertically, and a whirr as the buzz saw finished the job neatly, showing the gleaming white spinal cord. Attach the wires and there you go. Where is the geneticist's mind at, you need the left hand over here now!
You are coming to that, honest. You just got distracted in reminiscing, that is all. Your job was simple, but it made you sink to the bottom of your shared robotic suit. You still do it for the sake of the job, of course. You still split open the neck, split the windpipe and tilt the head back as far as it can go, the physicist hinging down the bottom of the operating table so that her head could hang limply there, giving you a horrified look from its inverted position. You quickly say, "Can't stop, sorry." But you need to keep at it, the team needs the arm.
When all of you are at work like this, you can ignore your differences, your arguing and the lack of privacy and just focus. Its not much of a release, considering what you are doing, but it is one. Just like how Vassal Vallen gets a release from harming himself, and Vassal Vicky gets one from daydreaming. None of you are any different.
The collective memory shows you that you need to put the wire right here, or it would not work. The base of the skull was now quite free and open for you to push the wires through, and the robotics expert was carefully directing you on the specifics. There was a lot of blood on your bonesaw and scalpel tools, but you can wash them later. "Ok, tilt the head back forward and get the saw over here, who is working the darn thing? We need to get the skull open!"
There is no need to yell. You move the saw over, you have lots of spare tendrils to work the saw as well as the right arm. Brain surgery was not easy, even with how you could access the knowledge of how from the memory core as you wished, hand-eye coordination is not something you share. The racing sadistic thoughts make your concentration difficult, you are quite glad someone else is doing the rest of this. As it was, you quickly take the saw to the scalp and cut in as fast and neatly as you can into a subject that is still doing some weak struggling. The skull parts and the neck is already starting to heal, the cursed body is amazing. If you could talk to the geneticist about it more often, but she's so quiet lately.
The brain is exposed, and you work the wires in while the psychology and neurology expert works on slowly opening up the soft grey-pink brain matter. You don't want to damage her brain too much, that tends to get in the way of suffering if one does not have a clear mind. And you really want this subject to be with it, so you know that this design works right away. You tap the main memory, you see where you need to put it in order to have the desired affect. If you do this right, the slightest possible dangerous stimulus will activate a partial fear response, making her unnerved and anxious in plain English.
You respond to what your partner is doing, "That is right, but you can't do what your doing with the other end, push it up, or you'll lessen the fear response...there, perfect, and we didn't even remove any eyeballs this time."
There he goes with the accusations. The final member of this group was you, the anatomist and surgeon. Your knowledge is the invisible hand that guides the others with their work, you always come up with the most practical answers but are often contradicted. There was a time others listened to you, even as you watched the girl's brain be put back together and the head start healing, you wonder at what point you will turn on each other. Good or ill, all of you need to stick together. You suggest, "All right, lets just focus on the body, leave her head alone." This is greeted with a snicker from the robotics expert, "But I wanted to see what I could do with her eyes." You sneer at him, "Last time you did that, you nearly undid our assigned job." You where the oldest originally, they should respect your authority more. Though your immortal status might make that a moot point.
This starts another argument. Of course. But this time it went on longer, and all of you got involved, shooting accusations at each other and not noticing that your subject was coming to, and starting to slowly pull at the bonds, screaming, "Heeeellllp!" This snaps all of you out of your reverie so the geneticist could dose her with more toxin so she would not make any more noise. You can't have her revealing your location like this. If Claire or any of those other rebellious ones came barging in now, it would surely make the master furious with you. All of you!
And who knows what he would do? From your experience, no natural law applied to that horrible..thing that you now all work for. It could have been so different, but he made sure you where all just another of his puppets. Even you, who remained so calm and quiet all these years are starting to feel the pressure. You are all now starting to hate each other. That is as true as gravity.
You reply, "She almost got away, be careful. I want to see if I can wire this fear machine into her stomach so she'll feel it there too." As much as you like seeing your work come to fruition, its not like you don't know what your doing. There are now at least three people who spend their countless tortured hours hating what you have done to them, collectively and singly.
You tap the collective memory, Miss Brooke is also called The Paranoia Incarnate. She now has a device in her body that extends that paranoia beyond the reach of even her senses. You would not be surprised if you have reduced her to cowering in corners like that girl with the dark wings on her back. What are you doing? What are you all doing?
You wait for the guys to finish and come up with the next experiment. This Brooke girl will spend several days under your harsh administrations, suffering not even for the greater good. And that argument you just had, you jumped in too this time. That's not like you, you've always been rather humble about your opinions. You only wish you had the time to tell this girl what its like to be stuck with each other all the time like this...having to deal with this all the time like this. The psychologist liked this play about a group of people who where all together in a room, a room with no windows or doors. You can access your shared memory core and recall it well. You gently tell the girl on the operating table, secretly so the others can't overhear, "Look up. The sign says No Exit here."
You could hear the genetics expert whispering, but now what. You could see the subject's dark eyes take on an understanding look, and her making a very pained-looking nod before the drugs made her too groggy to react. You, for one, where thinking of Razzil again. He was really young, younger than even the physicist, who was almost a child next to you, but he had so much humanity and strength. The humanity and strength you all have lost. Wherever he is, you know he is trying to help you all. He was your diagnostician so you worked together a lot, despite the age difference he seemed to like you. Wherever you are, Razzil...hurry and help us. Before we get worse.