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It’s 8 PM at the National Science Research Centre Airbourne Warfare Department in Flin Flon, Saskatchewan. The Centre is tiny compared to most others in Canada, only 19 scientists and 127 soldiers. The research teams have all gone but the goons and several care takers are keeping Dr. Byron Floyd company as he watches over the pressure levels for one the new experiments. As he enjoys his dinner of a tuna sandwich and a coke, he presses the same button every five minutes. At the 4 minute 51 second mark, Floyd goes for a quick sip of coke.
The liquid flows into Floyd’s lungs and he begins to cough. It takes him a moment to get it back together. Once he has, he notices the clock now reads 5:17. A red light with the word “LEAK” written over it is now flashing. It was now in the air.
“Damnit,” Floyd says to himself as he press another button on the other side of the control panel.
A few seconds pass and a mile away Dr. Lee Scup picks up the red phone in his study.
“What’s wrong Byron? Oh God, how much? Shit!” Lee pauses for a moment and takes a seat. He is not listening to Floyd on the other end but rather thinking of what the next step should be. There are only about 5500 people in Flin Flon, the 146 workers at the Centre have had their shot, everyone else in town is doomed. In less than 30 minutes, it will be in the town’s blood. In an hour it would take hold of Channing and Phantom Beach and another 500 would die. It would not go beyond that, not by much at least.
“Byron, I want you to call General McMasterton and tell him to get the troops ready. There’s gonna be a slaughter tonight... and notify the other five department heads right after that. How did you fuck this up so bad? Seriously Byron? You stupid fuck!”
He hangs up the phone. Right away, he goes into a drawer in his desk and removes a small leather shaving bag. Inside the bag is small vile of liquid and a syringe. He quickly fills the syringe with the liquid and places the safety cap back on the needle and places it into his pocket. He goes back into the drawer, this time removing a pistol.
In the living room downstairs, his wife Ellen reads as his daughter Grace watches the television. They don’t have a care in the world. As Captain Zippy saves Mona and Dr. Lang tells Jessa Johansson that she’s got cancer Lee enters the room. He’s chalk white, syringe in one pocket and gun in the other.
“Grace, it’s time for bed,” he said in a quiet voice.
“Can’t I stay up for a little bit longer? I got all my homework done.”
“No Grace, I’m afraid it’s too late.”
“Are you sure Lee? It’s only 8:15,” asks Ellen.
“Alright, Grace let’s go.”
“I’ll tuck her in.”
Grace gets up and heads past her father towards the stairs.
“Honey, tell your mother you love her,” Lee ordered in a quiet almost dead voice.
“I love you mommy.”
As Grace runs up the stairs, Ellen focuses her attention to Lee who is still standing there looking to the floor.
“Are you OK Lee?”
“Yeah,” he says, not breaking attention from the floor, “I’ll go tuck her in.”
He turns and heads up the stairs. When Ellen is out of his sight he stops.
“I love you Ellen.”
He removes the syringe. Grace lays in her bed, pjs on and blanket folded up to her waist, wanting for her father to fold the other half up to her chest. Lee enters her room and closes the door.
“Honey,” he says walking towards her, “I need to give you a shot.”
“Will it hurt?”
“No, not really... but it’s very important to me that you let me do it without making a peep.”
Lee takes a seat on the edge of the bed and removes the safety cap from the syringe. Grace makes a face as the needle and liquid enter her body. Removing the needle and tucking her in, Lee’s asks: “That wasn’t so bad, was it?”
“Good,” he says with a light smile.
“Daddy, tell me a story.”
Lee thought for a moment as he listened for any strange noises coming from outside the door. It would be any minute now. He adjusts himself and looks to Grace.
“Once, there was a man and a woman and they loved each other very dearly... so one day they decided to get married and make a lovely little girl...” he chokes up a little and nearly looses composure until he hears the sound of glass breaking.
“What was that?” Grace asks followed by a yawn.
In a worried tone, Lee replied, “I think mommy dropped a cup... anyways, one day there was a problem and the man had to make a choice and he...” he fought back some tears, “made a choice and helped their lovely girl.”
He pauses and listens, there are moans, shrieks and bangs. He looked to Grace, her eyes were closed. He waited with her for a few moments, crying softly. Finally he got up, whipped the tears away and exited the room.
Heading back downstairs, he finds his wife in the living room. A window is smashed, the furniture overturned, books and knick knacks all over the floor and his wife convulsing in the middle of the floor foaming at the mouth. She sees him standing there and lets out a screams. He begins to cry again as he sees her there and falls to his knees.
“Ellen...” he says, removing the gun from his pocket and pointing it at her, “You’re going to wake Grace.”