Dan hesitated. He knew this might be the only time his captors would give him a choice in his fate, and he wanted to choose wisely. Still, all the options seemed...terrible.
"Paranormal," Daniel said finally. "I want to join the paranormal section." The scientist looked at him oddly for a moment, but said nothing, instead focusing on his computer. This time, there was no automated voice from the device. Instead, the scientist merely ushered Daniel into the cage. There was a flash of bright light, and he had arrived.
Daniel's new location did not seem at all to fit the description of "paranormal." It looked more like a worn-down office building. A dirty gray linoleum floor stretched down a generic taupe hallway, broken by periodic doors. Most of the space was filled with dusty boxes and stacks of paper. It seemed deserted, and for a moment Daniel had no idea where to go. Suddenly, though, he heard a rustling behind one of the stacks.
"Is somebody there?" called a smallish voice. "I thought I heard the telethingy."
Daniel was taken aback, and stammered a simple, "Ah, yes. Hi." There was a muffled squeal of delight from the unseen person, and a pile of boxes abruptly collapsed, revealing a short, stout, balding middle-aged man standing behind what had previously been a pile of boxes, and was now more accurately described as a mess. This man was like all the other scientists Daniel had seen since his capture, but this one was wearing a filthy, wrinkled black robe over his lab coat. He stumbled over the wreckage of whatever organisational system he had just knocked over and put out his hand to greet Daniel.
"You have no idea how glad I am to see you. I'm Max."
Reluctantly, Daniel took Max's hand. "Daniel," he said stiffly. The two stood in an awkward silence for a moment, before being interrupted by a third person.
"Maxwell, did you disturb my samples again?" came a voice from beyond a slightly ajar door. It was an old, tired voice, but it retained a degree of what Daniel assumed to be a sort of former elegance. The voice's owner stepped into the hall, an incredibly old man. He, too, wore a robe like Max's, but his was immaculately clean and pressed. His thin, white hair was pulled back into a long ponytail, and he walked with his hands perpetually clutching at the air ahead of him, giving them a talon-like appearance. The man stopped in his tracks, and turned abruptly to face Daniel. The old man eyed him hungrily for a moment before turning back to Max. In the old man's pale blue eyes was a question, and Max needed merely nod. The old man turned back to Daniel and said, as if introducing him to the group for the first time, "the human sacrifice."
Written by Zodiac on 06 September 2008
The end (for now)