Artwork for podcast DEADLAND
1 - Meet Doctor Crenner
Episode 131st January 2021 • DEADLAND • Philip A. McClimon
00:00:00 00:13:18

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In which we meet the man behind the apocalypse and learn two things: His experiments don't always end well, and his efforts are not always confined to the lab. 

This is how the Zombie Apocalypse begins.

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Buy the E-Books (or print books)

SUBSTATION: THE LAST STAND OF GARY SYKES

LIBERATION

and

TEST SUBJECT.

Click the link, pick your favorite store.

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https://books2read.com/testsubject

https://books2read.com/theliberation

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Philip A. McClimon (books2read.com)

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Credit and Attribution

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Music from https://filmmusic.io

"Volatile Reaction" by Kevin MacLeod https://incompetech.filmmusic.io/song/5014-volatile-reaction

License: CC BY (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/)

Distortion and voiceover applied.

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Transcripts

0:01

[Music]

0:12

human

0:14

extinction level loss

0:21

new test subjects

0:24

the white panel van rolled to a stop

0:27

the driver's movements cautious and

0:30

observant

0:31

the length of the alley was demarcated

0:34

with large trash cans

0:35

filled to overflowing

0:38

multi-colored ambient light from the

0:40

surrounding sprawl broke up the darkness

0:43

creating intermittent shadows

0:46

there was only one other present

0:48

a vagrant in threadbare pants and

0:51

t-shirt sat against the wall

0:53

his head down

0:55

knees against his chest a tattered and

0:58

soiled trench coat hung off his

1:00

emaciated frame

1:03

abner freeman wasn't always like this

1:06

but he was weak

1:07

unable to resist certain carnal urges

1:10

it was two in particular that were his

1:13

downfall

1:14

alcohol and gambling

1:16

like the devil's one-two punch

1:19

the drinks were complimentary as long as

1:21

he was playing

1:22

abner freeman was eventually tossed from

1:25

every casino in the city

1:27

the number for gamblers anonymous on a

1:29

business card stuffed into his hand on

1:31

his way out the door

1:34

even now a handful of them lay crumpled

1:36

in the pocket of his coat

1:39

life on the streets was hard and like

1:42

the rest of the human flotsam and jetsam

1:44

he had heard the stories of young punks

1:46

filming their bum fights or playing

1:48

knockout

1:50

once he heard of bums being doused and

1:52

set ablaze

1:54

it added paranoia to the mix of

1:56

dependency and homelessness

1:58

so when abner freeman raised his head

2:01

and saw the van idling in the alley

2:04

its lights off and the driver staring at

2:06

him through the windshield

2:08

he ran

2:11

inside the van dr wilhelm krenner

2:13

gripped the steering wheel

2:15

this was not his area of expertise after

2:18

all

2:18

he was a scientist and a researcher his

2:22

best work was done inside a lab not a

2:24

panel van

2:26

but if there was one thing his

2:28

experience taught him

2:29

it was that science could often lead you

2:31

in places you never thought you would go

2:35

like the dank underbelly of the city in

2:37

the middle of the night

2:40

seeming satisfied that his efforts would

2:42

go unobserved he saw the vagrant raise

2:44

his head and look at him

2:46

dr crenner cursed under his breath as he

2:49

watched him rise and shamble off down

2:51

the alley

2:52

dr krenner hit the gas and gave chase

2:55

the harsh glare of the van's high beams

2:57

washed over the sickly frame of abner

2:59

freeman as dr krenor clicked on his

3:02

lights and tried to negotiate the maze

3:04

of trash cans and garbage lining both

3:06

walls

3:08

the van swerved left and right down the

3:10

alley its top heavy design making it

3:13

cumbersome as a chase vehicle

3:16

as abdul freeman propelled himself out

3:18

of the alley and into the deserted

3:20

street the van careened after him in an

3:23

uncontrolled turn

3:25

he let out a single yelp as the van's

3:27

left fender hit him in the back

3:30

even as the van came to a screeching

3:32

halt abner freeman went flying

3:35

his body rolled across the street

3:38

ending up against the far curb in a

3:40

crumpled heap

3:41

unmoving

3:44

in the van dr krenner clenched and

3:46

unclenched his fingers on the steering

3:47

wheel whipping his head around as he sat

3:50

across two lanes of traffic

3:52

his breathing became rapid

3:55

throwing open the door he hung his head

3:56

out his mouth opened wide

3:59

he dry heaved once but nothing came up

4:02

he took a breath

4:04

wiped his mouth and climbed down out of

4:06

the van

4:08

seeing nobody his attention was again

4:10

drawn to the vagrant

4:12

he needed him but things had not gone

4:15

according to plan

4:16

a plan simple in design but decidedly

4:19

more complicated in its execution

4:22

what was supposed to be a simple grab of

4:25

a forgotten member of society had turned

4:27

into probable vehicular manslaughter

4:30

dr krenor could not be detained or

4:33

questioned about his activities

4:35

there was too much at stake

4:38

he debated within himself

4:40

in the alley his chance of being seen

4:42

was next to nothing

4:43

but out here any passerby would

4:45

certainly witness his illicit actions

4:48

what was worse

4:49

now it appeared that the vagrant was

4:51

severely injured

4:53

maybe even dead

4:54

and that changed everything

4:57

or did it

4:58

what might be learned by testing the

5:00

agent on a subject mortally wounded or

5:03

already deceased

5:05

the pure science of it was enough and dr

5:07

krenor made his decision

5:09

he climbed back in the driver's seat and

5:11

brought the van alongside the vagrant

5:14

putting the van in park but leaving the

5:16

engine running he crawled out of his

5:18

seat and burst through the back doors

5:21

working quickly he hauled his ill-gotten

5:23

cargo into the van

5:24

pulling the doors closed behind him

5:27

seconds later dr krenor sped away and

5:30

was gone

5:31

with no other sounds to disturb it

5:34

the city slept on in indifferent silence

5:39

animal testing

5:42

it practically glowed

5:45

the green translucent fluid in the auto

5:48

injector

5:49

seemed to pulsate with a life and power

5:52

all its own

5:54

at least that's how dr krenor thought

5:56

about his creation

5:58

and he did call it his creation

6:01

he might admit begrudgingly that his

6:03

life's work was still in its adolescent

6:06

stage

6:07

and not without its problems

6:10

what adolescent didn't experience

6:12

growing pains

6:14

all would be well in time however

6:16

his creation his life's work would

6:19

thrive and fulfill every ounce of its

6:22

potential

6:23

of that he was supremely confident

6:27

corpsman cindy jones inserted a blank

6:29

video disc into the console

6:32

and hit record taking a thick black

6:35

marker she wrote

6:37

test subject e

6:39

on a blank sheet of paper

6:42

tessie is ready doctor corman jones said

6:45

standing still

6:47

her hands holding the paper in front of

6:49

her

6:50

tse please miss jones

6:53

we must not allow ourselves to view

6:55

these creatures as anything but what

6:57

they are

6:58

test subjects for a greater

7:00

good gorman jones frowned

7:04

yes dr krenner

7:05

you may begin

7:07

dr krenner said

7:09

corman jones looked up into a video

7:11

camera suspended from the ceiling

7:14

and held up the page

7:16

having categorized the experiment she

7:19

activated the auto injector

7:22

in an airtight enclosure an adult female

7:24

chimpanzee sat

7:26

calmly observing the clean brightly lit

7:28

laboratory through the glass

7:31

tse gave only passing interest to the

7:34

robotic arm that swung on its servos

7:37

the metallic appendage turned and

7:39

unceremoniously plunged the needle into

7:42

tse

7:43

the auto-injector doing its work quietly

7:47

having fulfilled its program the

7:49

auto-injector swung up and away

7:52

docking itself at the top of the sealed

7:54

chamber

7:55

dr krenner his eyes full of hope and

7:57

anticipation watched for any reaction in

8:00

tse

8:02

the irony was that if his latest tweaks

8:04

to the agent were even remotely

8:06

successful

8:08

then nothing observable would happen

8:11

only when it was allowed to join the

8:13

others would he know if advancements had

8:15

been made

8:16

would the chimp exhibit increased

8:18

fidelity to his troop

8:21

even in the threat of attack

8:23

though not one to needlessly harm an

8:25

animal in the name of science dr krenner

8:28

intended to do just that

8:31

the psychobiological effects of trauma

8:33

on the beast should be minimized under

8:35

the influences of the agent even if the

8:38

injuries themselves were severe

8:41

corman jones stood beside dr krenner

8:43

ready to assist

8:45

the seconds ticked by and the nothing

8:48

that dr krenor hoped for

8:50

seemed to be achieved

8:52

he smiled as he approached the enclosure

8:54

and put his hands up to it

8:56

tse recognizing the social gesture did

8:59

the same on the other side of the glass

9:03

raised a petition

9:04

dr crenner said

9:06

corman jones pressed a button and the

9:08

wall behind tse rose

9:11

revealing a habitat area

9:14

several other chimpanzees milled about

9:17

sensing them tse turned and scampered

9:20

away from the glass rejoining her kind

9:24

are the men ready

9:26

dr krenner said

9:28

yes sir corman jones said checking a

9:30

monitor showing three men in protective

9:33

suits with cattle prides just outside

9:35

the habitat

9:37

dr krenner and corman jones watched as

9:39

tse joined her troop

9:42

all seemed normal as they welcomed her

9:44

in

9:45

dr krenner was about to signal to let

9:47

the men in when he hesitated

9:50

his smile faded as through the glass he

9:53

watched tse began to first shake her

9:55

head then beat her chest and howl

9:58

the rest of the troop began to react

10:00

nervously and screech alarms to each

10:02

other dr krenner went to the glass and

10:05

watched as tse became aggressive

10:09

tsc reached out to the nearest member of

10:11

its troop and tackled it to the ground

10:14

at first nipping and snapping

10:17

tse seized its terrified companion and

10:20

bit down hard on the fleshly part of its

10:22

thigh

10:23

the animal screamed out in pain even as

10:25

it managed to break free and drag itself

10:27

away

10:29

wasting no time tsc turned and chased

10:32

after another raking its teeth down the

10:34

fleeing animal's back

10:36

corman jones gasped as she watched the

10:38

carnage being perpetrated in the

10:40

enclosure

10:41

dr krenner's shoulders fell

10:43

his face too as he watched the

10:45

chimpanzee with the wounded leg drag

10:47

himself up

10:49

seemingly forgetting his injury and give

10:51

chase to a smaller adolescent female

10:53

chimp

10:55

seconds later the smaller chimp's arm

10:57

hung broken and limp by its side a gash

11:00

bleeding freely

11:02

dr krenner what do we do

11:04

corman jones said her face pale

11:07

dr krenner only stared seemingly too

11:10

taken aback to answer

11:12

a second cry from the corpsman stepped

11:14

him out of his fugue state

11:16

let them in put them down

11:18

he said

11:20

corman jones leaned over and shouted

11:22

into an intercom go euthanize the

11:24

subjects

11:26

on the screen she watched as the three

11:28

men in protective suits abandoned their

11:30

cattle prods and drew nine millimeter

11:32

pistols

11:34

in the habitat every monkey bore some

11:36

injury and all had become horrifyingly

11:39

aggressive

11:40

seeing the men enter the troop hung

11:42

together and worked as a unit to attack

11:44

their enemy the chimps ripped and tore

11:47

at the protective suits of the men

11:49

biting and trying to sink their teeth

11:50

wherever they could

11:52

the men tried to fight them off hardly

11:54

managing a tactical retreat firing their

11:57

guns as they backed away from the

11:59

aggressive chimpanzees

12:01

dr krenner and corman jones jumped at

12:03

every report from the guns as the

12:06

panicked men fired now in defense of

12:08

their lives

12:10

the men continued to retreat as they

12:12

witnessed the high velocity rounds

12:14

ripped through the chimps but not slow

12:16

them down

12:17

only when it was realized that headshots

12:19

were the single injuries stopping them

12:21

did the tide turn minutes later the

12:24

three men stood still their suits in

12:27

tatters

12:28

around them lay the torn and

12:30

bullet-riddled carcasses of 20

12:33

chimpanzees

12:37

before you go

12:38

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12:51

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12:52

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12:56

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13:01

thanks for listening

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