In a sudden rush of clarity he understood what the problem was; he was still alive. Opening his eyes, he was met with the familiar sight of the lab. His body lay on top of one of the work benches, and ten or so interns surrounded him with their white lab coats and clipboards. They scribbled fiercely, each wearing pained expression on their faces. One of them, an Asian girl with bubble gum pink hair, whispered to a brawny boy on her right. They both looked displeased. Whatever they had been expecting to happen didn't.
Louis exhaled loudly. "Thank God." When he had signed up for the experiment, the outcome hadn't sounded great. Perhaps it was the words, "possible death," and, "permanent disfigurement," that had made him a little hesitant to hop on the table. But as he checked to make sure he had ten toes, fingers, and that his skin was still tan, he decided it was worth the risk.
He pushed himself up off the table. The interns jumped back. "What?" he asked. "Is it my face?" He touched his face. Nope, chiseled jaw was still in place and he was sure his dashing smile hadn't disappeared.
The Asian girl stepped forward. On her lab coat was a tag with the name Brenda scribbled in with sharpie. "We apologize. We're just surprised that you're awake so soon." She looked into his eyes, checking for something.
"Why, what happened?"
She looked back at her fellow interns. They shook their heads. "Nothing important." She helped him off of the table. He stumbled as he tried to right himself. The world spun a bit and he blinked to clear his eyes.
"Careful," she warned. "The effects of the drug won't wear off for at least an hour." Louis grabbed on to her as he regained his footing.
Brenda yelled at another intern. "Get him some food." A frumpy looking intern scampered off. Louis was led to a black chair, which he flopped down like a dead fish. "Are you sure nothing's wrong?" He touched his forehead, which felt unusually warm.
She smiled reassuringly at him. "Side effects are normal. Your body just ingested an unknown substance. It's understandable that you'd be a little sick."
She made more notes on her clipboard. "We just want to ask you a few questions. Is that alright?"
He nodded and she proceeded. "Name?"
"Place of birth?"
"Augusta, Georgia, What does that have to do-"
It continued like this for sometime, until Louis was sure she knew more about him than he did. After a good ten minutes she concluded the questioning.
Louis relaxed in his seat. "Well since you know everything about me, want to grab a bite after this?"
She didn't even spare him a glance. "I don't date test subjects."
Ouch. He winced at the insta-rejection. That definitely wasn't something he was use to. Perhaps this drug they had given him made him repulsive to females? He tried to stuff his pride away. "Whatever. Where's my money?" That was the real reason he had agreed to this entire trial. Five thousand dollars for some science nerd to stick a needle up his arm was a good deal.
She pulled out a clipboard and started making notes. "Test Subject 13: Fail."
He repeated his question. She looked up at him. "I'm sorry, what?"
"My money. Where is it." He enunciated each word so she'd understand.
"Oh, of course. Just wait one moment." She started talking to the brawny guy from before. He opened his lab coat to reveal a thick brown envelope. He stepped forward and tossed it in Louis' lap. Louis grunted as it landed heavily near his precious jewels. The guy didn't bother to apologize. He stepped back in line with the other faceless and bland white coats.
Not one for words, I see, he thought dryly. He rubbed at his groin. The pink haired intern blushed at the action and glanced away.
"Well, Mr. Sparrow," she stopped to clear her throat. "After a light snack, I think we can release you." The frumpy intern came forward with a bowl full of peanuts and some water.