A visit to Dr. Vahzilok




The air of the Reformatory was cool and faintly scented with the bombarding aroma of sanitizing agents. The Packrat's bare feet whispered over the immaculate grey stone floor as she followed along after the prison guard, her arms up to hug herself as she instinctively drifted toward the side of the wall for the safety of the feeble shadows there. She stopped when the guard, Philips his badge said, did.

"Now remember," he said, "Don't touch him. Look, talk. Whatever else he may be, your hands stay off. He has rights."
The Packrat nodded. The guard stepped aside tolet her through, and in she went.
The cell inside was large and very nearly bare, save for a large plastocine cube structure, to which were attached an array of life support systems, alarms, and various other devices Packrat couldn't identify. And in the middle of all this, carefull restrainted by heavy chaps, Dr. Vahzilok.

The rat and the massive body of stitched together parts regarded each other. Packrat was impressed by how..clean..he was. She expected something smelling of decay and reeking of pestilance; but it was as though he had just stepped out of a bath. Packrat focused on the human torso ejecting from the middleof the mound of muscle.

"Dr. Vahzilok," She murmered, as if to get his attention despite the fact he was staring at her. The once-handsome face split into a crescent grin filled with highly polished white teeth.

"Margarite Jordan. How delightful to see you, my girl. Lovely weather we're having outside, so I'm told."
Packrat hugged herself again.
"I'm surprised you know me, Dr. And yesÂ…the weather's been very nice."
Vahzilok shifted position slightly, never once losing his smile.
"You were an architecht's dream design, Maggie. How could I not know you? May I call you Maggie? The perfect assassin..a living tesseract..an aware Moebius Strip. Out of hundreds of candidates, only you would be capable of surviving the grafting."

His eyes, bluer than blue became warm. Fatherly. His tone matched.
"I am sorry about your father, my dear. That was most unexpected."
Packrat looked up sharply.
"Unexpected? Your reapers were sent to assassinate him."
Vahzilok took on a look of alarm, one massive meaty hand coming up in a gesture of surrender.
"No no, my dear. I sent my reapers to collect you. Only you. I had no idea the Family had found this out and offered a substatial increase in salary for the abducation of your most eloquent father. A remarkable speaker, I remember. He could have been Governor."

Irritably, Packrat brushed all that aside.
"Who made me, Doctor?"

The laugh that fell from that ever smiling mouth was cold, acidic. He locked eyes with her, his own cerulean orbs filled with mirth.

"You yourself did, Maggie."

...to be continued...