Kimitu Inoue walked into the main reception area at the Kachinok Pharmaceutical site located deep in the remote mountain range of the island of Aka-shima. A recent graduate in Molecular Genetics at the Osaka University, Kimitu had been discreetly relocated to this remote island by his father. In turn a thriving social life of pubs and decadence was exchanged for barren seashores and long humid days doing nothing.
The relocation had hardened Kimitu’s soul even more. Left aside he indulged in making every effort to lead a thankless life. Cruel and dark his heart had tightened to a knot. It was in his nature to betray every human trait and succumb to the darker areas of the human soul. He relished living a cold and unfeeling life and took little care in making friends at Kachinok.
The Kachinok laboratory housed a state-of-the-art in genetics wing that led the way in human genetics. Amazing discoveries had yielded new treatments for cancer and diabetes. Due to the high workload three shifts were worked every day at the laboratory. Since day one Kimitu had been assigned to the night shift, his colleagues deplored him, while the lucky ones worked at other shifts.
At Kachinok Kimitu was responsible for the enzyme extraction step in phase I trials for a new and highly anticipated medication used to treat patients of the Aids virus. His task involved the careful insertion of a syringe into the eye gland of laboratory mice to extract tear enzymes, a task that could lead to the rupture of the mouse eye membrane if not done very, very carefully. At Kachinok there was a certain pride in doing the insertion technique with minimum damage to the mice. This did not apply to Kimitu who took special pleasure in missing the specimen’s eye gland as often as he could.
Late that night Kimitu was in the laboratory area alongside another colleague. He was feeling especially bitter that night.
Akia Stalone his new co-worker was one of the unlucky one’s, the new recruits that ended up on the night shift. She’d been there a couple of days and already felt that working with Kimitu made her feel as close to hell as she’d ever been. Only this hell was full of white lab coats and the devil’s impersonator was just a few feet away.
“These poor creatures have never seen the moon,” Akia remarked. “And yet they’re so smart, it is sad they will never feel free.” Akia continued, as she caressed the soft white fur of her specimen.
Akia carefully inserted the syringe in the specimen’s eye gland, its large black pupils and pink nose set behind the cold fangs of the laboratory instrument.
“Poor little prince,” Akia whispered to the specimen curled in her gloved hand, “If you could only escape… escape this terrible place.”
“Don’t be an idiot Akia. The one that I have here won’t even see his food after I finish with him,” bluntly remarked Kimitu holding up his specimen by the tail.
“And even if he did escape, all specimens are dipped in florescent isotonic dye making them highly visible in the dark. He wouldn’t make it ten feet out of the building before being spotted,” continued Kimitu.
Akia was not going to stand there and watch Kimitu blind the poor mouse. “Dam you Kimitu,” Akia mumbled as she walked out of the laboratory area.
“Fuck her,” Kimitu whispered to his specimen. “Now me and you Mr…,” Kimitu bended the specimen’s leg band to check its id, “Yes, Mr. F-00738 …me and you are going to have some fun.”
Kimitu picked up the syringe and held it against the specimen’s eye, “You see this big pointy syringe?” he asked. Uuups, well I guess now you don’t, not with that eye.” moving toward the other eye Kimitu started to say, “Now, do you see this…”
Kimitu could not finish that last phrase as the whole laboratory floor started to shake. Laboratory ceiling panels fell over him, tables flipped over while acid fill glass beakers fell to the floor shattering into pieces. A large laboratory refrigerator suddenly tipped over knocking Kimitu to the ground.
The major earthquake hit the Aka-shima mountain area knocking electrical poles and destroying the laboratory electric generator. The major power outage left the laboratory in complete utter darkness.
Still in his hand, specimen F-00738 lit up like a light bulb. “The fluorescent dye!” Kimitu thought, surprised he dropped specimen F-00738.
Kimitu could not see the way out of the laboratory and could not discern between the fallen walls and caved in ceiling panels…
“Unless” he suddenly thought, “unless he followed F-00738, rats would always leave the sinking ship first, knowingly they would find the way,” Kimitu rationalized, “then why not a fallen building?”
Kimitu had to decide fast. Specimen F-00738 had already made a dash ahead of him. Pushing aside the lab table Kimitu crawled after F-00738. It was total darkness all around as he felt glass cutting into his hands and knees.
“I will make it out of here” he thought as he tracked the small fluorescent glow just ahead of him. After what seemed miles of crawling in the dark, his hand and knees soaked in blood, Kimitu saw light at the end of the corridor, light beyond F-00738.
“He would be saved,” he thought.
“Hope that dead beat Akia is under the rubble,” he thought, as he made his way toward the end of the corridor.
Picking himself off the floor Kimitu made a run in the direction of the light catching up with F-00738, which suddenly changed direction into a secondary corridor.
“You dam rodent can’t you see you’re going in the wrong direction,” Kimitu yelled, “I guess you aren’t that smart after all,” he thought.
As Kimitu got closer and closer to the end of the corridor the emerging light almost blinded him, making him cover his eyes. In one great leap he jumped into the illuminated room from the darkness. It took him a few seconds to adjust to the room’s brightness. Light, light everywhere, pulsing, alive and vibrating, tensing his eye muscles.
And then he saw them!
The light was alive, “Oh God!” Kimitu screamed. The room was filled with thousands of mice. Walls and floors covered with fluorescent mice.
“Fuck!” he thought “the power outage opened the electronic cage locks”
Kimitu did not have time to decide if he’d run back into the darkness, by the time he reacted the rodents were biting out his eyes. A few minutes later nothing was left of Kimitu, but his steel toe safety shoes.
Out of the building Akia cuddled specimen F-00738 in her soft hands and for the first time F-00738 saw the shiny moon… through one eye.