Born To Die

Burn.  That's all I want to feel and hear.  After what that asylum, no, after what that hellhole did to me, I never want to feel a good thing in my life again.  Because I know that anything that is good in life is only a false promise to cover up something bad that is about to come careening straight at your face like a runaway train!  I've had my fair share of hardships, but nothing could ever compare to what I have endured over the last several months.  I've done some horrific things to survive, and I never thought I'd want them to surface, but this is the only thing I can think to do, while this fire burns the rubble and wreckage that once stood as a barbaric cage.

I was a patient at the Greenwood Mental Asylum, and I was there for only a few months before this new "doctor" arrived.  I say the word "doctor" loosely because this man was more of a psychopathic monster than a doctor.  I was being treated for severe bipolar disorder inside the facility by the main medical professional, Dr. Caston.  For the first two months, things operated in a regular pattern.  I would wake up to a schedule, laid out by Dr. Caston and enforced by his nurses.  It was a decent system and one that slowly helped me to recover.  That was until the day that Dr. Murdoch arrived.  I don’t feel comfortable calling Dr. Murdoch a doctor because the first thing you do once you earn the title of a medical doctor is you take an oath to perform out of the benefit of healing others.  There was not a healing bone in that man’s body if you could even consider him human enough to be called a man.

The way he operated within that facility could only be described as the desires of a sadist to test what was the most painful and agonizing way to die.  He would always preach how “humans decide for themselves whether or not they want freedom or whether or not they will give it up.”  That statement in and of itself would imply some form of torture or gruesome punishment for anyone who disobeyed him.  After a few days of him being around, Caston grew tired of his methods and wanted him to leave the facility, but when he went to go and speak with Murdoch, he was never found again.  I remember searching throughout the entire facility for him, but I could never find him.  This was at the time that Murdoch began laying out his plans to turn the facility that I once called a “safe haven” for people like me to heal into his own free-for-all bloody battle playground.  He turned patients and nurses on each other, forcing each other to fight for basic things like food, medication, and the freedom to sleep without the risk of someone looming over you, ready to kill you in your sleep.

Those first few days marked the transition in practice, from Caston’s slow healing environment to Murdoch’s machine of death.  The facility was equipped with all of the means to survive on its own.  It had its own garden, it’s own water filtering and recycling systems, and a furnace to burn any trash or clothing that had become contaminated with diseases that could infect other patients.  Murdoch knew where everything was and took advantage of those resources.  He restricted everyone’s food supply and only fed those who “took advantage of their free nature”.  Many, many patients died off within the first week.  The bodies could have been burned, but they weren’t.  Murdoch wasn’t merciful enough to at least dispose of the desecrated and deceased.  No, he began ordering the patients to use the bodies as they saw fit.  Some of the patients, out of delirium, began to use parts of the bodies like arms or the blood as tools to create artworks or sculptures.  Others gave in to the madness and began to give in to dark desires like necrophilia and cannibalism, all out of the “freedom” that Murdoch allowed them.  And those who refused to participate in his vile idea of freedom were “liberated of their freedom” by the nurses who still obeyed Murdoch and removed the arms and legs of the patients who refused to participate.  Their wounds would be cleaned and they would be taken to what was referred to as the “freedomless” room, where they had metal bolts implanted in the joint gaps where their limbs used to be and would dangle by iron chains above the floor, staring at a television that only displayed static. To say that those who died within the first week received a form of mercy would be an understatement.  As time passed on, all that I longed for was death.  I longed for something, anything that would bring me freedom from this place, but it never seemed to arrive.  That was until a young boy by the name of Michael Farrell arrived at the facility to try and take up a position as an intern.  No other person had been to the facility aside from Dr. Murdoch in nearly two months.  Meanwhile, everything had been divulging into chaos.

When I first saw Dr. Murdoch bring him into the asylum on what he referred to as a tour, I felt the first ounce of empathy I’ve felt for a human being in months.  An innocent young boy had been brought into this hellhole, and would likely die if he didn’t agree with Murdoch.  I made sure to stay out of their way, but I never let them get out of my sight.  I hated participating in the “sculpture making” that Murdoch offered, but it was better than being killed or losing all of my limbs and my what was left of my sanity.  Doing what I did keep me alive, long enough at least to watch him bring in my last chance for hope.  I hoped that there was someone, anyone who would come to the asylum and free me, and Michael was my only hope of that ever happening.   I followed him around the entire day, doing my best to try and separate them without getting caught, but I had no success.  In the process of following the two of them, I was almost caught by the specialty nurses and nearly got sent to the chamber where they hosted what was called the “Wheel of Death”.  I escaped into another room and hid underneath one of the beds as they passed by down one of the hallways and took another patient who was trying to escape.  After making sure they were gone, I made my way back to the “freedomless” room to watch Michael's reaction to Murdoch’s barbaric means of eliminating those who he deemed too “high risk”.  I had hope in my heart that this one boy would be able to withstand Murdoch’s horrors and would escape.  He was my once chance at freedom, and from what I had seen before, he seemed like the only person capable of withstanding and escaping Murdoch’s clutches.  Murdoch asked him if he would stay or if he wanted to leave.  I had done my best to make sure I was near enough to Michael to help him if he needed someone, anyone to help him fight against Murdoch.  I was ready to fight and gain my freedom, once and for all from Murdoch, but something inside of Michael had changed.

His nervous breathing and horrified demeanor had vanished.  It was almost like I was staring at a completely different person.  Michael not only agreed, but laughed as he told Murdoch how relieved he felt after coming and visiting the asylum, and how he never wanted to leave.  For the first time in months, I felt truly angry.  I didn’t feel the anger that came from my violent mood swings, no, this was a pure and righteous fury.  I tried to strangle Michael, but I had been so engulfed in what had just unfolded before me that I never noticed two of the specialty nurses had been waiting behind me.  I was quickly taken out of the room and passed out when I was injected with a tranquilizer.  I awoke in a state of delirium and blurred senses.  I had a light dangling over me in a large, empty room.  From just beyond the light, I could see the shadow of a figure.  Just by the shape of the shadows around this person, I knew exactly who it was; Dr. Murdoch.  He had come by to gloat over my failed attempt to escape and planned on punishing me.

He started the conversation off by laughing at me and then slapping me across the face.  “You never learn, do you, Jake?  You couldn’t just accept the freedoms I gave you, could you?”

“Your idea of freedom and mine are very different, Murdoch.  I could never stomach your fucking cruelty!”

He slapped me again, then revealed a pair of pliers.  “Oh, but I know I will make you see my way, someday.”  He wasted no time in shoving the pliers into my left eye socket and removing my left eyeball.  My screams and cries were all trapped within the room.  No one could hear my suffering, and no one would care.  As much as the pain felt unbearable in that moment, what Murdoch said next truly made the blood pouring out of my face boil.  “I have to leave soon, but I believe Mr. Farrell, or should I say Dr. Farrell will do a good job in my place with this old place.”  I wanted to do something, anything to rip this man apart, but of course I was restrained to the chair I was in.  I couldn’t hold any of it back anymore.  I began to laugh, slowly breaking down as I realized what was happening.  Murdoch had completed his little sadistic playground experiment here and was off to do something else.  

“What’s so much more important than the asylum, Murdoch?  You got some kind of end game?”

He turned around and smirked at me before leaving me with a statement that inspired both rage and fear inside of me. “Oh, but why would I end the game when my master is just getting started?  We’ve only moved one space.  There’s still several other spaces to move before the king falls.  Enjoy your life, Jake, or what will be left of it once Dr. Farrell decides what he’s going to do with you.”

I tugged at my restraints for what felt like hours, doing whatever I could to try and break free, but there was no hope of release.  One of the nurses came and released me from the room.  I made sure to go and stay in my room.  The nurses would continue to bring me food and water, but I began to grow more and more restless as I waited for Michael to come and see me.  After three nights passed, Michael finally arrived in my room to address me.  “So, Jake Diesler, it appears that you have been moving backward in your recovery.  It appears that I will be having to take some extra measure in ensuring you recover.”  He left the room and two of the nurses came in and strapped me to a wheelchair.  I was wheeled down the hallway and into a room that was designed for medical diagnostics and testing.  

“What are you gonna do to me, Michael?”

“You’ve been selected in a new program designed to eliminate an advanced case of malaria.  You will be one of the first to both be injected and receive the test antibodies.  Everything is in order, and we will begin the testing now.”  Before I could even verbally protest, one of the nurses had already injected me with a vial full of the antibodies, and then another one injected another tube of fluid into me, likely full of malaria.  They left the room and stood inside of another room behind a one-sided window.  I couldn’t stand them staring at me while I couldn’t see them.  I couldn’t stand them being able to watch me like a caged animal.  I began to freak out, trying to toss and turn, hoping to escape my restraints and get some help, but as before, it was of no use.  I remained there as Michael’s concoction made its way through my system.  I slowed down my breathing, thinking that this was just his way of slowly trying to kill me.  I ended up falling asleep and waking up to Michael and his nurses coming in to check on me.  “The test is complete, subject #12 shows no signs of the virus in his system.  The test was a success.  Congratulations, Jake, it looks like you’ll stay amongst the living for a little while longer.”  I felt in that moment an overwhelming sense of relief and sadness, knowing that I had stayed alive only to be tortured further.  I was sent back to my room promptly after Michael had concluded what he wanted from his “little” test.  He was intelligent but horribly misguided.  He was playing a game no man should ever play, and the scary part was he was winning.  That was until one of the nurses screwed up and one of the patients threw a vial of it into the “freedom room” the place where everyone cut and butchered each other for entertainment.  The virus spread in a matter of hours and every patient had been infected.  

Michael made sure to inject himself with enough antibodies and decided it was best to abandon the asylum.  He went down to the asylum basement and set the furnace to heat up to the max.  He tossed in enough bodies into the furnace for it to burn for a week, and made a hasty escape out of the facility.  I tried to leave, but he was quicker than everyone else to leave and had locked up the gate and all exit doors.  I wasn’t about to give up on my life, though. , I made my way into the asylum and looked for some tools, any tools that would help me to break through the fence or doors that kept me caged inside.  Everyone else was doomed to die, but I still had a chance to escape.  I found an ax and began to chop away at the front door.  I continued to chop and chop until the door gave way.  When I got outside, there were no cars, no means of leaving the premises other than on foot.  I made my way out to the parking lot, hoping to find some signs as to where Michael could have gone.  All I found was a single note that Murdoch gave him.  What was written on the sheet of paper drove me to start writing down my experiences at the asylum?  This asylum was no mistake and was a part of a much bigger project.  

“Michael, I have to leave, but I promise it is for a good reason.  I am entrusting my great project to you and encourage you to perform experiments of your own.  I know that I can trust you to create our master’s weapon and will make sure that his dream comes to fruition.  We will not be able to conquer our fears until we have disposed of all those who could threaten it.  Continue your work on Project Volvox, and make sure that it sees it’s fruition.  My informants in Russia believe they have found the perfect specimen for you to try your experiments out on, and I have an ally in the American military who would be willing to help.  His name is Dr. Sennerd, and he owes me a favor from another life.  He will guide you and teach you his methods of manipulating and controlling plagues and death.  Go to him, and learn how to master your craft.  I leave this to you now to bring about the death of humanity.  Once all opposition is gone, we will be free of all worries and will be able to serve at the foot of our mighty master Gidnash and the all-mighty Creator.  Once you have completed phase one, burn the facility to the ground and head to the location I have written on this note.  We are counting on you to release Volvox.  Too many have died and failed before, do not disappoint us.

After reading that note, I knew that I had to do whatever it took to make sure that not only Murdoch, but Michael pay as well for what they’ve done.  I only want to feel things burn.  I want this facility to burn, I want all of the people inside of it to burn, but most of all I want both of these monsters to burn for what they’ve done and for what they plan to do to the entire world.  I feel that, as horrible and evil as Murdoch is, something he said before truly rings true in this moment.  “We were all born to crave freedom, we were all born to demand destruction, and we were all born to die!”  I’m coming for you Michael, and I’m going to make sure that you fail in releasing Volvox.



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