Clear Springs Press

The Non-Conformity Chronicles

Chapter 18 - What Scientists Do

" In our material reality, our concept of everything is formed through our five senses and intellectual reasoning. Our perception of a reality beyond the physical world involves the exercise of Spiritual Faculties. These faculties are referred to as "paranormal" abilities, psychic abilities, extra-sensory perception, telepathy, etc. The existence of these abilities is generally discouraged by the thinking paradigms of the forces of conformity. The issue is simple. The possession and exercise of these abilities has a fundamental impact on power and control."- From The Non-Conformist Training Manual

         Dr. Baker was somewhat in shock at being confronted with a world that was so different than what he had ever imagined. He was almost conditioned to expect the unexpected . . . almost. Getting into the laboratory was helping him to settle down. The laboratory possessed familiar tools which performed familiar functions. Still, the pressure was on. With Central Accounting Administration becoming suspicious and running increasing numbers of audits, they were quickly running out of time.

         Dr. Schrodinger had obtained a large library of genetic material, part from archives and part from the population, the population outside the Central Accounting domain. There were additional materials that were needed but not in their immediate possession. One of these was a delivery vector, the carrier organism that would deliver the new genetic material to the recipient. They would have to use a carrier vector because it would be logistically unfeasible to apply magnetic resonance genetic re-sequencing treatments to the whole population.

         The two began computer modeling to estimate the logistics and effectiveness of the various delivery vectors in the database. Only one proved effective in reaching the entire population and delivering the new genetic material and doing it quickly enough to prevent the public health system from interfering with the process.

         This vector was a variation of an H5N1 virus that had once been known as the Spanish flu. This pandemic struck worldwide in 1918 and is believed to have killed 5% of the world's population at that time.

         "My GOD!" Dr. Baker gasped. "This carrier virus is programmed for unrestricted virulence. It will rapidly spread an infection from one person to another by airborne particles, through food and water and even by skin contact. The virulence of this organism will create a pandemic that will put the whole population at great risk!"

         "Do you have this virus here?" Dr. Baker asked.

         "No. It is in an archive at the World Genetics Institute," Dr. Schrodinger replied.

         As a genetic surgeon, Dr. Baker was familiar with the WGI.

         The fastest, most effective and possibly only way to distribute the genetic programming vector to the whole population was to use the resources of Central Accounting Administration. The World Genetics Institute (WGI) had the laboratories and factories to produce and package the pathogens in bulk. They would be labeled as a vaccine mandated for universal distribution. The Central Health Administration would then dutifully distribute the "vaccine" to all clinics and with total efficiency inoculate everyone. To accomplish that someone had to get the samples to the WGI and program in the orders for manufacture and distribution. The most qualified person to do that was . . . Dr. Sam Baker.

         Dora traveled to Los Alamos to assist Dr. Baker with this step of the mission. There is a tube transport station in Los Alamos, but the hackers had programmed the Central Transportation network to delete all reference to it. To send a tube capsule to Los Alamos required special access codes and some programming skill. For Dora, this was routine. Dr. Schrodinger picked her up at the tube transport terminal. It was dark, deserted and dusty . . . definitely less well maintained than the transport terminal in the mothballed city. No one had used it in a very long time. Since they had access to gravity hoppers, it represented a connection to a world which was no longer relevant.

         "The first thing I have to do is create a new identity for you so you can move around", Dora said as she addressed Dr. Baker. You are now Dr. Julius Axelrod, senior genetics scientist on special assignment from the World Genetics Institute. Your security clearance is now elevated to Omega level. You are now a totally different person! If you forget to play the part, you will be executed for hacking and a lot of more serious things that you haven't done yet!" she said with a solemn look.

         "Why did you give me the title of a genetic scientist?" Dr. Axelrod asked.

         "Scientists are the lowest ranking members of your society. Exploration and creative thinking are nearly non-existent, remember. The combination of low rank and high security clearance will give you the greatest freedom of movement with the minimum attention and accountability."

         Dora accessed the Central Accounting core database. Omega level security clearances were rare. She had to give him a complete background and biometric profile with appropriate time and date stamps to make it look like he had always been there. Once all of the core databases had been appropriately modified, she printed him a new set of personal ID and access cards.

         "We're going to have to give you a forehead tattoo so you will attract minimal attention," she said.

         "No. I've never had one and I'm not starting now," he objected.

         "I can make it removable so you can get rid of it when it is safe to do so. I have to insist. It reduces the chances of mission failure," she replied.

         Mission failure! That would mean that he would have been detected and executed. "Ok," he reconsidered.

         "And don't forget to play the part!" she added with a grin.

         "Do you know why I have absolute confidence in your ability to do this?" she asked. "I know you can because you have a major humanitarian trait in your Psycho profile! You really do care about others besides just yourself!"

         Dr. Schrodinger handed him a shiny metallic attaché case. "Here are the samples that we created," he said. "We are activating a portable terminal and connecting it into the Central Accounting backbone through a back door. This way you can contact me if you need assistance or backup. I can't give you a quantum entanglement transceiver because that is technology that doesn't exist there and having it could put you at risk," he added.

         Dora printed him a set of luggage and a fresh wardrobe to match his new position and rank. She handed him the modified portable terminal. "With this you can access anything you want or need," she said.

         They collected Dr. Axelrod, his new identification, mission authorization documents, and his luggage and sample case. Dora and Dr. Schrodinger escorted him to the transport terminal and loaded him aboard. Dora showed him how to program the off-grid transport capsule to slip into the network and look like it had always been there.

         "Once you are in route, study your new identity and background so you can play the part properly. Your counterparts may not be very imaginative, but they are suspicious and paranoid," she said.

         "Once you arrive, you'll have to work fast, before some beige darling figures out what questions to ask," she teased with a smile.

         He entered the codes into the COMM terminal of the capsule to integrate the capsule back into the grid. The airlock closed and pressurized and the capsule paused, silent and still, for an unusually long time. He was beginning to sweat profusely thinking that something may have gone wrong.

         After what felt like an eternity, the COMM screen flickered and said, "Priority Scheduling! Omega level clearance authorization!"

         He spoke into the voice recognition module, "Destination: World Genetics Institute, Bethesda, Maryland."

         After a brief pause, the screen flickered and displayed, "Tube passage route secured, estimated arrival in three hours and twenty two minutes." The capsule accelerated at the maximum allowed 2 G's pressing him tightly back into his seat. He could imagine the grumbling of other travelers as their capsules were jerked aside and delayed to give him priority passage. Omega level clearances are extremely rare and jealously restricted. An Omega level clearance confers privileges that only Omega cleared individuals are permitted to know about.

         He settled back into his seat and relaxed. Then he ran his identification card through the terminal and issued verbal commands to display his identity records, resume, psych profile, and work history.

         Dr. Julius Axelrod, genetic scientist, holder of doctorate degrees in genetics, biology, epidemiology, psychology, sociology, social engineering and epigenomics. He had been employed by the World Genetics Institute since the age of 16 in facilities in Geneva Switzerland, Arlington Virginia, Bethesda Maryland, Moscow Russia and Shanghai China.

         He leaned back and took a deep breath and paused to reflect. Only a few short days ago, he had been a productive citizen with a secure, predictable, comfortable, conforming life. Now he was no longer certain what he was . . . except, that he was becoming Dr. Julius Axelrod . . . a man with a mission, a mission that he would have never contemplated as possible or necessary such a short time ago!

         It was all so different from any reality that he was familiar with that he would have categorically rejected the whole concept, except for one thing. He was haunted by the vision of the COMM terminal operator telling him he had to become . . . like her! Every time his resolve wavered, he remembered the blank stare on her face and saw himself, getting old, leading a pointless existence and staring into his own COMM terminal.

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