Magical Truthsaying Bastard Shadesong (shadesong) wrote,
Magical Truthsaying Bastard Shadesong
shadesong

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Cadaver

She caught a glimpse of movement in her father’s office, and slowed, knocked on the slightly-ajar door.

“Enter.”

She did so, smiling. “Father. I didn’t know you were returning to the island so soon.”

He nodded, smiling back, tapping a stack of papers together on his desk. “No place like home, is there… Doctor Stone?”

She blushed delicately. “I don’t actually have my doctorate yet.”

“But you will soon.”

“Actually, I wanted to talk to you about something along those lines.”

“Graduation gift?”

“No… materials for a pet project. May I sit?”

He gestured toward the chair. “Please. What do you require?”

“Well. I’m not the first to work on this project. Psychics and mages throughout our history have taken it on. But never scientists.”

Her father stilled, keen interest in his eyes. “Katrianna. The restoration of our immortality?”

“Yes.”

“You’ve been researching.”

“As much as I can. I need to go a step further.”

“How?”

“I need… bodies.”

“Cadavers?”

“And live subjects.”

His eyes flared, mouth tightened. “Really.”

“It sounds extreme –“

“It does.”

“I’ve been dissecting human cadavers in med school. What I need to do is pinpoint the differences between humans and Dasaroi, both physically and metaphysically. Once I determine exactly what we have that they don’t… I can determine what must be done to enhance us.”

“You are aware, of course, that there’s a bit of a taboo just regarding cadaver dissection.”

“I am.”

“But – live subjects, Kat?”

“Physically and metaphysically, Father. When we die, our soul leaves, is reborn. Who knows what else it takes with it? You know of my early experiments on rodent anatomy. You know that I can keep the subject alive.”

“I remember.”

She leaned forward earnestly. “I know we’ll have no volunteers.”

“There are Hounds.”

She waved the suggestion away. “Hounds are substandard. They’re mentally altered; some of the alterations likely affect the very areas of the brain I’ll need to study most.”

“Then where do you suggest we obtain subjects for you?”

“The Council has enemies, Father.”

“So you suggest performing psychic surgery on people, then releasing them back into the world to tell everyone what you did?”

“Don’t be ridiculous.”

He raised an eyebrow. “I want to make sure you’ve considered all the angles here.”

“When I’m finished with the subjects… well. I don’t know exactly how you train Hounds – but I imagine they’d be useful for that.”

“They would,” he allowed.

“But I’d like to keep a few.”

“To what end?”

“I would like to study the moment of death. What happens to the body, the mind, the soul.”

“Ambitious research proposal.”

“I have always been thorough.”

“That you have. I’ve always been proud of you, Katrianna.”

She blinked, surprised. “…thank you, Father.”

“You’ll have your subjects. When and where do you want them?”

“My old lab in the basement. Perhaps we can set up some bunks for them next door…?”

“I’ll put Hounds on it.”

“Give me a week to prepare?”

“A week it is.”

“Thank you, Father.”

“Get results, Kat. That’s the only thing that’ll save you, if news of this gets out.”

“I have faith that I will.”

-------------

My ice queen, my mad scientist - Katrianna. Those early experiments are referenced in a previous Blogathon-sponsors reward story, by the way, available to new sponsors as well as old.

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Tags: blogathon, shayara, shayara.katrianna, shayara.stephen
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