Monthly Archives: October 2011

Notes from an expedition


"Subject" smiling. Origin of photo unknown.


Subject first contacted under _____ Expedition to _____rainforest, in a quadrant that has remained isolated since the abolishment of the _____ government. Expedition lost. Documentation and photo of Subject recovered from ice chest floating in the _____river. Fragment of description regarding Subject follows:

…possesses prehensile tail, canines outsized for carnivorous diet, and oddly Platyrrhinic nose. Subject theorized to have s-curved spine, due to ease of bipedal habits. Subject possesses power of human speech, grasp of general idioms and rules of grammar.

December 12
Contact made with Subject.  Offering made of fruit, chewing tobacco. Unexpected verbal exchange with Subject. Asked if we’re “here to finish the job.” Subject made sound akin to human laughter and scurried out of sight. Base camp established under mahogany tree, observation cages erected. Codenames assigned to avoid discussing personal information within earshot of Subject. Research assistant _____ ______ will be RA-1 and so forth.


December 20

Second contact made. Subject seems intimately aware of camp movements, allows itself to be seen at odd intervals. Staff under explicit instructions to feign obliviousness, but to note time and position as inconspicuously as possible. Several RA have described the feeling of being watched as a physical sensation of pain, nosebleeds under direct gaze appear common.

Addendum: RA-5 was detailing the Macaques when Subject dropped onto the cage, startling her. An abbreviated conversation as follows:

S: Genner?
RA-5: Excuse me?
S: Are you Dr. Genner?
RA-5: I’m sorry, you must have confused me with someone else.

RA-5 continued to work as if unaware of Subject, but admitted to being “disquieted” by Subject’s intent study of her movements. A further twenty minutes passed without incidence. Then:

S: How’s _____??

Note that _____? is the name of RA-5’s birth mother. RA-5 denies discussing either her or her adoptive family within camp. Whether Subject has somehow gained knowledge of this due to lapses in staff protocol or simply “got lucky” is debatable, but one thing is certain: we must limit the amount of time unprepared staff have in contact with Subject.


December 23

First official contact with Subject. Myself, Dr. _____ and RA-3 presiding. We preemptively placated Subject with tokens of food and amusement. Subject seemed to take most to the fashion doll, though Dr. _____ was hoping more for the sliding wooden puzzle. After what was deemed a suitable interval, we began our Rota of questions. It consists of twenty seemingly innocuous queries, such as “how do you like where you’re living?” and “what food do you prefer?” peppered with several more ‘need to know’ questions. Each query is to receive the same attentiveness, to further screen Subject from their supposed importance. Subject however seems to possess an uncanny intuition as to which questions would serve us best in research and gives seemingly flippant answers back, though these in themselves can be telling. I have provided the answers here:

Question 2: Never met the man.

Question 5: How do you know I’m one of them?

Question 8: *raucous laughter*

Question 9: No, have you found any?

Question 13: I’m sorry, he can’t come to the phone right now.

Question 22: That was yours?

Question 25: Bend over and we’ll see.

While Subject remains evasive, it has been decided to persist in questioning, being as courteous and generous as possible, without drawing suspicion to the aim of our research. RA-5 has requested secure bunking, denied for the time being. RA quarters are grouped and RA sleep in shifts, so she is never alone for long. No proof of Subject’s supposedly continual “stalking” of RA-5 has been witnessed y any of the staff, so the motion is dismissed.

December 25

RA-3 has disappeared.

December 29

DR. ____-_____, presiding research scientist, has died. An appropriate mourning period has been scheduled, during which the remains will be cremated as close to the _____ river as possible and scattered. Several staff have requested leave, including RA-5. I, presiding Dr. _____, have taken them into consideration, but will wait for much more drastic situation before authorizing a mass exodus. Such a departure would leave even less than the minimum required to be considered a “Skeleton crew” so for now we sit tight.

No sign of Subject for days now. Perhaps pragmatism on its part, as RA-7 has been overheard saying he would “like to shoot that *expletive* out of the sky.” He has been reprimanded and a watch has been issued.

Jan. 10th

Doctor’s gone. Don’t know where. I don’t miss him. Hard-hearted old bastard. Made Annelise cry.

None of that alphabet nonsense now. It knows us. Knows our names. Always could. It was just waiting, laughing at us, the pretty little farce we’ve made. We set up people-things in the jungle. His jungle. A little splash of futility against the green. We’re like those people who went to Australia and planted lawns in the outback. He knows why we’re here. I doubt he’s going to cooperate. He has something better in mind.

I know the others are scared. They didn’t see what I saw. I’ve gone past terror now. I’m cold, I’m all cold in the warm green and I can still see its eyes his eyes oh god

January 15

Control has finally been wrested from RA-7. After days of ingesting smuggled caffeine pills to stay awake, RA-2&4 restrained him while RA-10 stole the pistol he’d been keeping the camp hostage with. It only had three shots left, no further ammo has been found. RA-7, before sedation, made us promise to “save a bullet for me” in case Subject comes back.

RA-7 is confined to enclosure D, forcing us to relocate the Mangabeys. Discussion in camp, personal or otherwise, has been curtailed unless absolutely necessary. The more personal information Subject possesses, the greater the ease of manipulation. RA-5 has requested extradition, approval pending.

January 24

RA-7 found dead, enclosure D’s cyclone fencing was chewed through to form a hole 5’X4’. Nearby family of Macaques discovered with blood on their paws and abdomens. Specimen obtained and dissected was found to have ingested human meat.  Macaque family, though appearing quite docile, were executed in case of further incidence. RA-8 discovered on forage detail later that they were only one of many familial groups within the area with evidence of Anthrophagy.

In contact with Subject later, an apology was issued for the decommissioning of the Macaque family. Subject was found to be in good humor and referred to the monkeys as “dumb animals”, asking if we would feel any sorrier for a dog hit by a car. Subject was inquired as to how he obtained knowledge of both domestic animals and automobiles. Subject suddenly produced genitalia and projected a stream of urine onto RA-6’s head. Subject fled from RA’s wrath and the discussion was ended. RA-6 has been in the river washing since the incident, but the odor from presumably pheromone-containing glands has yet to become fainter.

January 28

Subject found nursing infant Mangabey in mess tent. Inquiries as to how it gained entrance were fruitless. Mangabey finished breastfeeding and attempted to leave, only to fall down coughing. Subject appeared to take amusement in this. Subject was pleased to see RA-5, stretched visibly, displaying genitalia to full view.

Unscheduled  Q&A session enacted. Subject asked what it wanted with the camp:

S: it’s more fun if you just guess.

Subject inquired, for the fifth time, what it thought it was, whether it was a monkey or something akin to human.

S: now that’s an insult. I’m not like you, I’m better than you.

Subject asked what led to its retribution against Drs ____-_____&_____ and the several RA’s that have been MIA or otherwise dispatched. Subject pulled lips back in accommodation of human smile. RA-5 became visibly uncomfortable and requested to leave mess tent. Request granted. Subject remained “smiling” following RA-5 with its gaze.

Subject was asked whether there were any more specimens like it.

S:…*a mumbled response, said by RA-9 to be “not yet” or something like it.*

The session was suddenly ended when Subject stood on hind legs and began emitting high shrieks of estimably 125 dB. Subject fled from the room, leaping from countertop to RA-2’s head(RA-2 has considerable scalp wounds from contact) and then through the entrance.

RA-6 is still under recovery after an attack by a jungle cat. RA-9 hypothesizes the wild cat was attracted to the pheromone, a diversion tactic evolved from some unknown self-defense mechanism perhaps?

RA-5 requested leave. Request granted.


I’m writing this as fast as I can. he’s outside, he’s everywhere here and I have to get away

Calm I’m calm

Annelise Mitchells, Des Moines, Iowa. I graduated from ______Tech in 199_, my specialty is Primate  Ethology. Dr. Muir is dead the last doctor is dead, he killed her after she told me I could go home. I didn’t think he would let me get away anyway.

It killed Ben. It killed Terry. It ate Anthony’s eyes right out of their sockets. It could only be Him, he’s the only thing around here with canines that big. You could see it through all the nips from those poor Macaques, those gentle vegetarians he inspired to carnivores.

He’s outside now. Standing on his hind legs. Face like a human but not a human. Doing that odd dance.

God I know what it wants now, why it let us live so long. I know he was behind the other expedition’s  demise too, he must’ve been bored before they came. He let them go just long enough to throw his hook out, far as they could. He was fishing for people and it was so easy god why was it so easy?

I know how they died, I know how they died and why they died and I only wish the same would happen to me.

Phyllis is out there right now. He must know, must have a sense or something of what’s “right” because he’s rejected Phyl, her and her hysterectomy. He’s making the Macaques feed on her, laughing as he watches them choke the meat down against their will. Oh poor Phyllis, poor Macaques! I love you both, I hope you don’t suffer very long but you must because he’s a sadist—

I don’t think it even is a “he”, for our given value of male anyway. How could something like that survive just on its own for so long? It must be an opportunist, it keeps the monkeys around so it can always have breeding stock handy, but lost the taste for them when people came. It’s done with monkeys done with things that can’t speak walk upright wants to try something new.

Getting tired nose bleeding its staring in here I know it.

Found the pistol. Three shots left, a lot good they’ll do the others. Dan ran for the trees, I heard it when they caught up with him. It’s going to come in now, it’s going to come in and do something and I’ll stop it if I can but I don’t know if it will work oh god please just please just work send no more research teams to this jungle rope it off don’t burn it for farms or cattle leave it alone leave IT alone and don’t give it the satisfaction bullet in the head here it comes


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Cordyceps Suspiriae

When we caught up with Phillips, he was too far gone to do anything for. He was still talking, lips moving, but that didn’t mean anything. Some of those dogs were still walking when we got into town. Tony tried patting his arm, telling him it would be okay, and I cold-cocked him before he could make contact. Stupid shit. Lucky bastard was wearing gloves, otherwise I would’ve shot him and then put the torch to him.

You can’t explain shit like this to anyone who hasn’t seen it firsthand. Like when we found that farmer face up in front of the Laundromat, all swollen like a bag of popcorn in a microwave. We tried to lift him up and his arm separated from his body. Made a sound like ripping hair. I tried telling that to those uniformed shits they have back at the base, and they laughed. Sounded funny, I’ll admit. Didn’t stop me from beating their asses.

I have to scrub real careful around the stitches now. Two against one. Bastards had knives. Not fair not fair.

Just because you’re a soldier doesn’t mean you appreciate the reality. Town. Plague. Infection. They’re just words, words for something you can’t really envision, have to experience to even begin to see. Gas masks and E-suits over E-suits over E-suits.

Dowling died two weeks ago. I watched that punk from sunup to sundown, never once took off so much as a glove. They wrote it off to heart failure. Wonder what they did with the body.

There’s still a bruise on my ribcage from my fall on the steps. I’m okay. The one who turned back to help me, one of the raw dogs sent in to fish us out when we realized just how deep in the shit we’d gotten ourselves, he got the short end of the dick. I wonder if they told him going in to always have something between your skin and the miasma. I doubt they told any of them, they were wearing home-security epidemic getups, all taped seams and condom boots.

I told them I didn’t look back after I got up. I lied.

Ever kicked a puffball? That’s what his body did.

Even in the shower I cough phlegm like bullets. I tell the doctor it’s the cold weather, he gives me NyQuil and wags his finger. Fuck you very much. I want something to knock me out for a while. I want to sleep without dreams. In dreams I see Phillips and the farmer. In dreams I shoot the dog again, the first movement we saw in the town, and he splits right down the middle. His inside is all cloudy.

None of it made any sense. The labels on the bottles, the papers, nothing. I think we were wrong, looking for a cause. It’s here now, that’s what matters.

The water on the bathtub floor is pink. My lungs feel hairy. I’ve been spitting teeth for a few days now, been shitting liquid for a week. I’ll finish here and then I’ll climb up to the roof of my house.

I feel a yawn coming on.

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