General Fiction posted July 1, 2016

Not yet exceptional. When the exceptional rating is reached this is highlighted
Betrayal. Does the end justify the means?

The experiment (434 words)


The author has placed a warning on this post for language.

Dara rolled off the lumpy, stained futon. She looked up at the small, screened 2x4 rectangular opening at the top of the stone wall and recoiled as the breaking dawn penetrated her cell. Shading her eyes, she crawled into the furthermost corner, as if trying to avoid it touching her. And as it began to paint its swatches of gloom all over another uneventful day in solitary, she caved into the muddied hues of lethargy bleeding down her waning desire to remain alert.

Her once feisty attitude was crumbling into an I-don't-give-a fuck-who-cares mantra. She hadn't seen another human being for weeks or was it months since Jake and his co-conspirators had kidnapped and thrown her into oblivion?

The only contact she'd had so far was with the ape that slid her cold slop under the rusted grate in the heavily barred steel door once a day. A look of disdain; an unintelligible grunt or two, and then back to the menagerie that housed the rest of his kind; the other freaks that got lost somewhere in the evolutionary process.

She wasn't sure how many of them there were because they all looked alike. Another experiment gone awry. They were all about six foot, too tall for Cro-Magnum or Neanderthal. And their cranium was further developed; the forehead neither concave nor flat. Landon had extracted DNA from the remains of both several years ago. She had accidently discovered that little tidbit of information on one of the thumb drives he had squirreled away before the accident.


Landon was barely settled in his grave before the house was swarming with some of the most renowned Geneticists in the country. They confiscated the hard drives from all three of his computers under the auspice that the work he was doing was top secret and vital to the proliferation of mankind.

Dara, still in shock from the auto crash, didn't question the home invasion. The team was headed up by Landon's partner, Jake Hudson. They had been friends with him and Lorna for years, even going so far as sharing the same bed, on those rare occasions when too many after dinner drinks led to secrets sealed in silence.

Dara had no reason to question Jake's loyalty, or his motives that day. It wasn't until the following week when the detective investigating the accident grilled her incessantly about why the partnership was in the process of being dissolved. Once she digested that shocking revelation, she began to slowly piece together the mysterious events leading up to the night of the accident.

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Thanks to Renate-Bertodi
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Artwork by Renate-Bertodi at

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