“…a new beast, slouching towards us…the beautiful mutant”

(From previous blog, unedited)

Thought I might speed up the process and post two more stories I wrote a while back.
Here’s the first.

A sci-fi story with quote “…a new beast, slouching towards us…the beautiful mutant”.
The date is Friday, the 31st December. The year; 2027. The location; Downtown New York, Sacred Mind Laboratory. The night had rolled in over Manhattan. The air is still and the sky is tormented with clouds. The city lights dwindled to the smattering of stubborn night owls. A cold breeze rustles the trees. The owls are sent on their way.
One of the owls catches the gaze of one absent-minded scientist, Phil Tucker, age thirty-four, seen wearing a white lab coat with brown slacks staring out into the starry night, seated facing the spine of his caster-wheel chair. Amber Grey, age thirty-one, blonde, wears a similar lab coat over her blue dress shirt, calls him over to join in before the clock strikes midnight, but he ignores her. Cecilia Cross, age twenty-seven, a kind young woman with silver-like hair, crystal blue eyes and a smile that convinces Phil to join them in the celebration.
They all count down “Ten. Nine. Eight…”. Phil turns his head towards the window, refusing to say the words. “Three. Two. One! Happy New Year!” The sounds of popped confetti and party horns are followed by a celebratory crack of the cork by Phoenix Temple, age twenty-five. Phoenix has the appearance of a lanky young man. He has short black hair swept back and has a small amount of stubble on his chin. Cecilia holds the glasses while Phoenix pours the champagne. Everyone clings their glasses together “Cheers!”. Phoenix and Cecilia trade smiles.
Amber observes Cecilia’s hand “Cecilia! When did you two-”
“I’ve been wearing it since Christmas. I’m surprised it took you this long to notice.” she says playfully.
“I should have noticed sooner. Sorry.”
Cecilia giggles “It’s alright, Amber.”
Phil glances around the room in an almost paranoid manner.
Phil is caught off guard by Phoenix’s pat on the back. He turns to Phoenix, scanning him up and down.
Phoenix asks “Is everything alright? You look a bit overworked. Maybe you should get some shut-eye.”
“I’m fine.” Phil argued. Phoenix places his arm around Phil’s neck.
“Don’t overthink it, I’m sure we didn’t overlook anything import-”
Amber interrupts urgently, “Guys! You might want to see this.”
They rush to Amber’s computer only to find on screen-
“It’s out!? How did it get out!?” Phoenix exclaims frantically.
“I told you! I told you this would happen!” Phil complains.
Amber looks closely in on the camera “Is that Cecilia? When did she-”
They turn and examine the room, then quickly return their gaze to the monitor.
“Cecilia!” Phoenix yells anxiously.
“She can’t hear you.” Phil says sulkily.
Phoenix rushes out the door, through the corridor and down the flights of stairs until he hears a scream of agony from Cecilia. “I’m coming, Cecilia!”. He makes his way to the room where Cecilia was last spotted “Not here.” He then passes through the corridor until he discovers a trail of blood leading into the room labelled ’17B’. His eyes widen as he hesitantly pulls the slide door open. Nothing could prepare him for the horror inside.
One glimpse. That’s all it took. His skin turned pale and his appetite rendered him nauseous. He drops to his knees, facing the ground, weeping. He can’t bring himself to look, but he can’t look away either. His fiancée, Cecilia Cross, soon to be Cecilia Temple, lies with but a torso left to recognise. Her intestines have been half-chewed and her legs have been devoured whole. What remains of Cecilia Cross is but a disemboweled corpse with a pretty face. Before Phoenix gets a chance to compose himself his phone starts to ring “Phoenix! You daft maniac, get up here before it… before it… Amber, what are you doing with that-Ahhhh!”
He hangs up the phone. “I’m sorry.” he cries softly.
The thought of being eaten alive by that beast is what gives him the strength to stand up and lock the door. He does everything in his power to ignore Cecilia. He rummages through the desk drawers in search of something to defend himself. His mind drifts “Why should my fate be any different than theirs? After all, this was my idea. This was my project. This was my fault.” With eyes closed he hits his head off the wall, clenching his fist, bearing feelings of both grief and guilt. He checks the last drawer, Phil’s. Inside the drawer is a handgun. He takes the gun from Phil’s desk and checks the magazine. “It’s loaded. What was Phil thinking?” He shakes his head. “It doesn’t matter anymore.” He walks over to Cecilia (or what’s left of her). “Nothing matters anymore.” He takes a seat with his back against the wall, right next to Cecilia. The lights go out. “It’s even smart enough to cut the power, huh? I guess in the end, we reap what we sow. ‘A new beast, slouching towards us… the beautiful mutant.’ That’s what Amber called it. Remember how we laughed, Cecilia?” A roaring snarl is echoed through the corridor. “It’s on its way, Cecilia. Death will soon come knocking on my door, and then we will be reunited.” There is a clamorous clonk at the door. It makes a noticeable impact. Phoenix looks to Cecilia “You always wore that cross, even when I teased you about your name. Your faith is so much stronger than mine, but… for you I’m willing to give it a try.” The violent thumps at the door are beginning to take shape. “Forgive me father…” (thump-thump) He raises the handgun at the door. “… for I have sinned…” (thump-thump) He steadies his aim, lining up his shot. “… for I have sinned…” The door is knocked down. It is too dark to see the beast, but that’s not what the shot is for. “… a lot.”
An ear-piercing bang echoes through the laboratory.

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