A growl, cloaked in mucus and blood, heaved from the boy. He lay on his back, still as a corpse. Slowly his chest expanded outward, and then what seemed like an inhumanly long time, retracted again. At the same pace and depth, the boy breathed rhythmically every forty seconds.
Dr. Krane watched the boy from another room. Asha stood next to him with her arms crossed.
“Thank you for letting me see him,” Dr. Krane said quietly.
Asha turned and faced the doctor. She smiled, stretched out her arm and placed her hand on his shoulder.
“Thank you for helping us change the world,” she said softly, as she stroked him with her thumb.
Her hand was cold and brought a similar chill to Dr. Krane as what came to him when he heard the voice of the man in the doorway.
“Do you have what you need?” she asked him.
“Yes… I think I do,” he replied timidly. “One of the chemicals I used is a naturally occurring biological chemical. It is an endorphin released in hyper-aggressive canines. I developed a chemical that combats this one; producing dormancy as opposed to aggression.”
“Like a sleeping pill?” Asha asked, hoping to be following along.
“Exactly. Except if too much is used, the patient will die. If too little, the cure won’t work.”
“What are you saying?”
“I’m saying if the dosage isn’t perfect, the patient won’t be cured,” Dr. Krane responded cautiously.
“But if the dosage is perfect it should work on anyone affected with this disease right?” she asked, her frustration rising.
“Yes and no. Each dosage has to be different depending on how long the patient has been affected. Patient Zero here has had the disease for three months now. Let’s say there’s a girl in South India with the disease and she’s had it for three weeks. Their dosages cannot be the same. Meaning the formula has to be different. Each individual, depending on the length of their exposure will need a specific level of the endorphin in their cure.”
“Dawson… Why did you have to make it this complicated… Distributing the cure will be an absolute nightmare.” Asha rubbed her face with her hands and then ran her fingers through her hair.
“You hired me to make an incurable disease,” Dr. Krane stated.
“And now you have to make the cure,” she responded shortly. “Have you made it?”
“Yes. Now that I’ve seen the patient I know that-” Dr. Krane stopped as he turned back to look at the patient in the room.
The patient was no longer lying still on the bed. He was sitting up with his face pointed towards the floor. His breathing no long was scarce, rather it had begun to accelerate. With every breath, the next came sooner and more blood and mucus spewed forward each time. The growling became louder.
Asha gasped. “Dawson…” she began quietly. The patient shot up from the bed and charged toward the window screeching loudly. Asha and Dr. Krane shot back in reaction, covering their faces with their arms as the patient’s body slammed against the glass.
“Get the formula ready, now!” Asha yelled.