CDC Site 11a

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Operation 1108: Red Cell Death

Setting

Hidden in the Rockies, a high-level research facility codenamed "Base Four" oversees the development of the Insurgency's military capabilities and the advancement of anomalous warfare. The man-in-charge of the Item Arsenal, a doctor known only as "J. Creed," is preparing his forces to go on a warpath. His target? The facilities of his organization's many enemies, including the SCP Foundation's Site-57.

At the East Coast sits another key Insurgency facility, "Base Six," where several of its leaders from the United States and from across the Atlantic are looking forward to discuss a radical proposition made by an aspiring Romanian upstart. Bright, new ideas for conquest are blooming, and the Insurgency's Alpha Command is aiming to assign researchers to expand the Arsenal and assess the capabilities of the organization to begin a large global offensive.

The Insurgency has never pulled its punches when it came to waging war with the anomalous. As the summit draws to a close, and the bells of war begin to toll, the question everyone at both bases isn't asking is:

Will they deliver?

Characters

Dr. Martin Caduceus: A medical researcher and Item usage specialist for Base Eleven, assigned to studying the effects of various anomalous diseases and their potential weaponization.

Dr. Lewis Brine: Field research assistant and hunter-tracker. Martin's friend.

Agent Roderick Hockenberry: Selected observer of the 55th Field Observations Unit, assigned to personnel security and defense.

New characters in unwritten tales are not listed.


rating: 0+x

To Martin Caduceus, watching samples of anomalous diseases grow in the lab was as exciting as watching a human cadaver lie dead in his observation ward. Which was to say, not really at all, for most days he's on the job… but sometimes, on some special day, there's some really freaky shit to be seen.

He recalls, for instance, the day he had one particular agent strapped to the bed at his operating room, under some severe gastrointestinal effect caused by a parasitic worm he got from his last assignment. After hours of malpractice by way of failure of conventional modern medicine to extract or eradicate the parasite, which involved, at no small part, striking the agent's distended stomach repeatedly with a police baton and using a special vacuum inserted via NGT to root the pest out, Martin Caduceus recalls vividly of putting his hand inside the patient's oral orifice, locating the vacuum-sucked and half-dying worm hanging on to their uvula, and pulling at the undulating thing straight outside their throat and dumping it into the specimen vat.

On most days, Dr. Caduceus' encounter would have ended there, raising his 'Parasites forcibly removed by hand' count to eighty-seven, but once he was done with taking basic notes on the new invertebrate specimen, he very quickly noticed a visible change in his patient. A zombie change.

Martin had just pulled down a new pair of clinical gloves when the patient started to thrash violently on the bed. In moments, the agent's flesh became sickly tan and black blood sputtered from their eyes, nose and mouth. A foul smell also came out. And there was piss leaking into a puddle on the floor.

In another moment, Martin quickly knocked the specimen case open and grabbed the writhing and languid giant horsehair worm. The dismissed medical technologists that peeked through the curtain at that point were left in terrified awe as Martin started violently cracking the worm in the air like a whip and whipped the floor with it, the walls, and the ceiling until they were pretty sure that the worm was dead. Not a moment was left to wondering about the doctor's intentions when Caduceus pulled the worm taut in his hands and formed a loop, then another one, then coiled one end around the loops…

Using the worm's body as a grisly hangman's knot, the doctor jumped on the patient, planted a foot on their chest, forced the noose around the zombie's neck, and jumped off, yanking the agent's head loose with him with a satisfying snap.

Indeed, Martin Caduceus relished the thrill in those days. Though, in realistic terms, what had really happened on the evening he battled a zombie horsehair worm, he mused openly to himself between fingerfuls of durian slices, involved a lot less improvised decapitation and physical contact, and a lot more hitting the patient with the baton, and at one point, the fire extinguisher. And that was after the agent's zombification. Most of it.

His reverie was interrupted when the service phone began to ring.

"This is Caduceus." He said. "You've got an update on the retrieval?"


"Nuh-uh. Not really." Lewis Brine, research team member of the 55th Field Observations Unit, replied in the hangar room of Base Four. "The TL just wants to get your heads-up, since we're going to be delivering the first specimens of Macbeth over there in three hours. Better ready your lab equipment."

Caduceus, at the other end of the line, sounded perplexed. "Wait a minute, are you saying fifty-fifth isn't on the field yet? I thought you guys drove to the specimen site an hour ago."

"There was a change of plans." Lewis said, rising from the crate he was sitting on. "We spotted patrols coming from a few ridges. They look armed. No clue yet whether they're Site-57, USAF, or UIU. So our excursion's gonna be delayed, but we'll move out on the other side of the base. We have some nice routes. And plenty of foliage once we're at-field. The Colonel's confident that this is going to be just another trip to the woods."

"In that case, you'd have nothing to worry about." Cad said, picking off a wedge of jackfruit.

"Right-o." Lewis said, excited about the prospect. "It's an excellent autumn this year. I'll blend in perfectly."

With that, nothing more needed to be said. They exchanged goodbyes and carried on. Lewis paced back to his crate.

Agent Roderick Hockenberry came down from a set of stairs at the opposite end of the hangar, fresh from his medical inspection, already wearing his full combat uniform. He was the assault operator tasked with observing the security detail on the 55th's roster on this mission. He was headed towards the hunter-tracker.

Roderick, to some, looked like Elon Musk, down to the massive head and the vaguely reptilian eyes, but Lewis never met him without his aviator sunglasses on, so he could never really confirm it. The research assistant scratched an itch on his forearm.

"Hello, Starfox." The agent said. "How ya doin'? I hope the science crew is ready, because we're gunning to give you guys at least two hours with locating an extant sample of the Macbeth fungus. Your security element's already worked out a perimeter in case we run into anything dangerous, but hey, what should we worry about? An HT specialist like yourself could take care of any patrols by your lonesome, right?"

Lewis smiled. "Well, on the off-chance that we find a pack of Shoggoths, I could use some extra firepower."

The assault operator grinned.

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