First off, I'd like to apologize for any spelling or grammar mistakes. I wrote this fast, and I'm a biologist, not an English teacher
Over the past few years, I have worked at a biological technology testing lab known as Zinkon Biotech. We are a classified company working secretly under the Federal Government in an underground facility. The company made and tested things such as vaccines, parasites, hormones, etc. Now, you may be wondering why we’re a secret company if we do normal things like that, and it’s because we created cures to the worlds “incurable” diseases such cancer, schizophrenia, dyslexia, and a permanent cure to depression. The government didn’t want to release the cures to the public for reasons they didn’t tell us lower-end workers in the facility.
A few months ago, I was working in the lab testing a new flu vaccine. The work was normal, until the alarms began going off. It’s not uncommon for them to be tripped, so none of us made a big deal out of it. We all calmly locked up our test subjects, put down our instruments, and took off our lab coats and gloves. Just before we could walk out of the small, code locked door, a larger, metal, computer locked door closed over it. “What the,” I said.
“What’s going on? Think the alarms are real?” asked one of my coworkers. Metal bars closed over the windows and the air conditioning vents closed.
Suddenly, the head of the facility showed up on the television screen beside the door. “Please disregard the alarms, they were accidentally tripped. Workers on level 6 and 7, we are aware of the quarantine doors, so just go back to work and we’ll have the problem resolved in a few hours. Workers on level 7, we are aware that your air conditioning vents closed, so you will be our first priority. Again, please disregard the alarms. Thank you.” The screen went black.
“Well, I guess we should get back to work,” said one of my coworkers. I put back on my lab coat and gloves, and picked up my syringe. Before I could open the rat cages, the power went out. I set my syringe back down and stood there.
“Great,” said another coworker. I red battery light shined from the screen next to the door before the head of the facility appeared again.
“Workers, please sit tight while we restore power to the facility. We sincerely apologize for the inconvenience. For now, we will deliver temporary, low power just enough for lights, but not enough for machinery and such, so just hang out for a while. Consider this a break. We will have full power up and running in a few minutes, thank you.”
Small, dim lights turned on overhead, allowing me to find a chair. I walked over to it and sat down. I looked around the room and saw the other workers sitting on the floor and tables. Suddenly, we all heard a scream from outside the lab. A few of the workers jumped. “Did you hear that?” one of them asked.
“Yeah, what the hell was that? A scream?” another replied.
The screen glowed once more with the head of the facility. “Workers on level 7, please disregard the scream you just heard, the sound effects used in drills are playing without activation. Thank you.”
“Is this some kind of sick joke? How is all of this suddenly happening all at once?” a coworker asked.
“If the systems are down, all of this falls into place as a normal thing, so let’s just wait it out,” someone replied.
Suddenly, someone began banging on the door. We could barely hear screams for help through the heavy metal door. “Oh God, how do we open it?” someone asked.
“I don’t know, the keypad is on the other side. I think it’s controlled by the main panel. If it is, we can’t open it from here,” a man replied.
I just sat there, my heart racing a bit. What could I do? I had no control over the situation. I kind of felt guilty for being so passive. Everyone around me was examining the door, trying to help the person on the other side, completely blind of the fact that they stopped screaming. And I just sat there waiting.
“I don’t think they’re there anymore,” I softly said.
“What?” someone asked.
“Listen, they’re not banging on the door anymore. Maybe someone else was able to let them in.”
“Yeah, I guess he’s right,” someone said.
About ten minutes passed before the head of the facility appeared on the screen again. “Workers on level 7, please hang on for just a little longer, we’re having some difficulty getting your power back online. It appears a wire has been cut. We’re sending maintenance down there immediately to fix the problem. For now, just sit tight. Thank you.”