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This was a story that and old war buddy of mine relayed to me a while back while at a reunion for our PMC, or private military contractor, group. See, my buddy and I, we’ll just call him Mike, we hadn’t been friends until we were assigned as battle buddies during Army basic. For those of you who don’t know, a battle buddy is someone you’re put with during basic training to help keep you in check and you keep him in check. Anyway, we spent all of basic together at chow time, shower time, range time, and pretty much every moment since we got to Fort Benning, so you could say we were pretty close.

Anyway, we just so happened to sign up for the Army Ranger School. Again, we were practically inseparable. Countless missions and friendly competitions of who could get the most confirmed kills before we left deployment kept us going, and we eventually served our contract and retired, but both decided to seek out jobs as private military contractors, with success of course, but to our dismay, by different clients. So while I was sent to guard some random compound near Kabul, he was sent to an off-grid facility in the Andes Mountains to guard military weapons development. This is where his story begins. He had told me that while at this facility, the contractors were only referred to by call signs, for security reasons. Mike was known by the four other contractors as Magic. The other four contractors were Snow, Yogi, Doughboy, and Gator. Each patrolled different parts of the facility. Yogi patrolled the front were the main entrance was located, Gator near the emergency exit, Doughboy on the roof, and Snow patrolling the inside scaffolding. That left poor Mike to guard the basement, which contained and enormous vault door to where the weapons were being developed.

Now, none of the contactors knew what was being developed, but they often heard strange noises throughout the night, and often got together during meal time to try to come up with ideas about what was down there. Snow and Doughboy both claimed that they were using advanced robots that could outshoot any soldier, while Yogi said it was secret human experiments on convicted war criminals, to which they all laughed. Gator assured the others that it was probably just run-of-the-mill tactical nukes, and Mike agreed with Gator.

It had been four months since the PMCs had been stationed at the facility, when alarms began ringing all throughout the facility, and odd grunts and banging were heard from within the vault, followed by screaming, then silence. By the time the contractors got down the door, the head researcher, known only as Dr. Young, was already exiting the door, followed by men in cleanup suit carrying several black bag filled with some sort of gelatinous substance inside. When asked by the contractors, Dr. Young waved it off, claiming it to be just another mishap that had, tragically, ended with the death of one of the scientist developing the weapons. Mike had a sneaking suspicion that what had been carried out in the bags was what was left of the scientist, and demanded that he and the other contractors be told immediately what had happened, but Dr. Young said that they weren’t authorized to know, telling the contractors that they better get back to doing they’re jobs or they’d be back home before they could even raise one word of protest. So, fearing being sent home with their heft paychecks snatched up, the contractors went back to their posts.

Later that night, Yogi was awoken from his power nap to Dr. Young frantically pounding the door, demanding they let him inside, to which Yogi obliged, not wanting to rick his paycheck yet again, and figured the doctor had just forgotten something before he went home and now was coming to get it back. Thinking nothing of it, Yogi sat back down and fell asleep. Down by the vault door, Mike escorted Dr. Young to the door, and resumed his post once the ten-ton door had shut behind the doctor.

Several hours went by before loud banging and grunting, similar to the sounds heard earlier, came from behind the vault door, but this time, there was an eerie absence of alarms. Mike, having heard the commotion, radioed for the others to come to the basement as soon as possible. After about five minutes, all of the contractors were standing in front of the huge metal door, wondering what to do. Just then, the door hissed and cranked open, with Dr. Young tripping out of the opening, but he wasn’t alone. A huge, pale creature, resembling a naked gorilla, only twice that size, came crashing through the open vault door. Snow immediately raised his SCAR-H, firing three quick shots into the thing, dropping it quickly. The contractors moved closer to get a better view of this thing, and were horrified at what they saw. Although its shaped had been horribly mutated, what they saw was a humanoid face, almost identical to Dr. Young’s. They turned to look at Dr. Young to ask what exactly the hell was going on, but just as they did, the thing stirred, and reached up and grabbed Doughboy’s head, crushing it with ease. The other contractors turned, emptying their magazines into the creature, making sure to kill it. As they turned back to speak to Dr. Young, they saw that he was no longer where he had been cowering on the ground. The contractors quickly searched the facility, but found no sign of the doctor. They then decided to search the room where the “weapons” were being made. The contractors, now one short, stepped into the rest of the facility, something they soon regretted. What they saw were rows and rows of tanks, filled with fetuses and every stage of the development of these creatures. But the shapes weren’t limited to the gruff behemoth like they had killed, no. There were more. Upon examination, the tanks containing the creatures like the one they killed were labeled “LAND”. But as they ventured further, they came upon creatures with leathery, bat-like wings and enormous clawed feet, with tanks being labeled “AIR”, and like the other creature, they had faces identical to Dr. Young’s.

As they contractors looked at the growing creatures and at each other, they noticed a faint scratching coming from above them. Just as they looked up, one of the creatures swooped down from a shadowed part of the scaffolding that the contractors hadn’t noticed, and landed on Yogi and Snow, piercing their bodies and skulls with its huge talons. Mike and Gator fired on the thing, ripping it to shreds with a barrage of .308 rounds. Mike and Gator knew that there had to be more further, and took even greater precaution than before, scanning everything in every room and hallway. They eventually came to room with tanks of what appeared to be thin manatees, although these things, exactly like the previous two creatures, had Dr. Young’s face. They knew that they needed to keep an eye out, as to not end up like Doughboy, Snow, and Yogi. To their relief, Mike and Gator had no further run-ins with any more creatures. They came to a room, filled with large reports, filled with scientific data on successful cloning and gene splicing experiments that had been performed in China and Russia respectively, and another document showing where Dr. Young had pooled large sums of money in order to buy the equipment needed for these procedures and had them shipped to the facility where Mike and the other contractors were stationed. Mike and Gator talked about what to do with what they had just witnessed, and came to an agreement: that none of this could get out to the public or any of the nation’s enemies, so they decided to destroy the building and everything in it. Mike and Gator backtracked, making sure to look for any more of those creatures, and grabbed as much C4 as they could carry, sticking it any point of support within the building and outside, leading down into the research area, planting small bits of C4 on each tank with any sort of thing growing inside.

They eventually got everything set, and rushed back up to the helicopter pad on the roof. They stared up the bird, and as they left, Gator set off the explosives, leveling the building, leaving just rubble behind. Within days, they were evacuated from the mountain range, sent back to the states, and spoken to by men wearing military uniforms, but lacking any sort of identification. They told Mike and Gator to never speak of what they saw and that they were permanently dismissed from military service of any kind. From what Mike and Gator could best hypothesize, Dr. Young had purchased the cloning and gene splicing equipment, cloned himself, and spliced the clones with different mammals in order to create living creatures that could be used to operate within almost any environment, that could also be controlled to carry out tasks and jobs in environments that regular soldiers could not. It had seemed that Dr. Young had been creating what he believed would be biological weapons that he could sell to governments in order to rake in billions through weapon contracts with these governments’ militaries. Months went by when Mike heard from an old commanding officer that Gator had been found shot in the back of the head, with several torched cameras and video tapes strewn throughout the house. Mike knew who had done this, and he was sure he was next.

I stared at Mike in disbelief, but I knew Mike well enough to know when he was lying, and he was most definitely telling me the truth, or what he thought was the truth. That was a month ago. Yesterday police found Mike dead in his apartment, a bullet wound that the base of his skull. How had they known? When could they have found out? Was I next? I’ve locked myself in the bedroom for the past 24 hours, trying to remember everything Mike told me in order to tell someone, somewhere this story. Dr. Young is still out there, somewhere, possibly carrying the secret to creating mass armies that would soon make an country possessing them into the most dangerous superpower the world has ever seen. I’ve complied as much as I could remember into this document, and I will publish it immediately. I’m expecting a package to be able to send a hard copy of this by mail to several people. I hear a knock at the door, must be my package. I hope someone finds this and is able to expose what happened in those mountains.