Picture of the Day:
Okay... time out. Need to catch up on my reading backlog.
I subscribe to BookBub and during the last several months, while concentrating on writing and editing the Revenge Series for publication, I managed to purchase a lot of books‒twenty-three to be exact. Included in this collection are a lot of new authors, but some old titles from my favorite authors whose works, in paperback, I've had in my library for too many years, and I'm slowly replacing with digital for posterity. The old paperbacks have become a bit worn.
Working titles and Cover (Author's depiction)
Subject to change
Excerpt from Ruthless Redemption:
Hours of ear-piercing screams stopped.
The abrupt silence—eerie and more unsettling—held everyone spellbound, even though the medical team had performed dozens of these grueling labor and delivery procedures. Linda thought she’d get used to the process, yet the conclusion of each birth continued to disturb her.
In the beginning, the mothers received something for the pain, but those anesthetic endeavors had had detrimental effects on the altered gene structure of the embryo. Management quickly issued bureaucratic directives that mandated the staff withhold any type of sedative for the hosts. After all, sustaining the life of an engineered specimen was top priority.
Linda soon realized the matter of sedation for the women was a moot point because of the multiple intravenous therapies required throughout the gestation period. The complexity of the drugs used in that intervention diminished the life expectancy of the mother. Hell, in an age of medical and scientific evolution, why hadn’t the scientists developed a drug that eased the woman’s suffering, increased her mortality rate, and didn’t harm the fetus?
She continued to stare down at the serene childish face and smooth pale skin that glistened with the perspiration of the woman’s final efforts. The inertness of the body was proof the beautiful young woman had taken her last breath and Linda couldn’t prevent it. The women were of legal age when they signed up for the experiments.
The silence lingered.
She knew the intent wasn’t to kill the women. The goal was the success of their project, which would have been much more successful if the mothers survived the process. Nonetheless, the scientists regarded the hosts as throwaways. Recruiters acquired women with at-risk lifestyles, which eliminated problems with concerned relatives or friends. From foster homes, they solicited naïve eighteen-year-old females, whereas runaways, who wanted jobs, signed up as soon as they arrived in town. Others, ages eighteen to twenty-one, were prostitutes who had wearied of the life.
The PsyD—Parapsychology Development—Institute promised the women a standard of living that none had ever visualized and they willingly left all behind. The organization kept its word and housed the young women within the research compound. They received the promised education, job skills, experience with pay, and lived the anticipated lifestyle. They believed they had a future. After the births, when none of the women returned to their living quarters, if there were questions about their absences, management responded with the pre-arranged directive.
After recuperation in the recovery dorm, the institute arranged employment and accommodations for each woman with an outside corporation.
The women deserved better.
Linda Forsythe, lead surgical nurse, had been present at too many of these debacles of modern medicine. The PsyD group had hired her to replace the previous supervisor, Sadie Marlowe when she retired. Linda had accepted the position because she expected research in genetic mutation and cloning. After she attended her first birth and realized they weren’t experimenting, but implementing, she immediately suspected covert government agencies or military interests were orchestrating the entire program. She never wanted any involvement with government mechanizations so she questioned the nursing administrator Lincoln James about her suspicions.
The powers-that-be swiftly issued the standard denial of governmocracy intervention and remained adamant that private scientific sectors were their only source of research funding. What management had left unsaid reminded Linda of decades-old gossip about viewing trials done at the Stanford Research Institute purportedly funded by a certain covert agency. Back then, rumors rampant throughout research communities had suggested some Intel agencies considered adding remote viewing to a roster of psychological phenomenon as a potential resource. And now, the PsyD institute had a similar agenda.
Hell. She worked for a research foundation that used a camouflaged compound on the fringes of a Marine Corps base located in the Arizona desert. It was a facility that came equipped with a military attaché and a security detail of USMC MP’s—Military Police—who stood guard at all entrances. In addition, a Technical Services Division of one intelligence agency had shown an inordinate amount of scientific curiosity in PsyD’s work.
During the early seventies, rumors that said tech group had done secret studies similar to PsyD research had been persistent…was that coincidence? Those studies were purported to explore what role genetic makeup doctored with genetically engineered biological specimens played in the use of telepathy, hypnosis, and remote viewing. The difference between that agency’s experiments and PsyD research was the covert agency had used mature test subjects, but methodology was on the same page. Obviously, PsyD management assumed she was gullible if they thought she believed federal funding wasn’t involved with the institute’s project—yeah, right.
Despite what her employer’s goals were, she’d had enough and wanted out. She’d watched each attempt to create, birth, and nurture a new-order of intelligence and realized she wasn't hardcore enough. Empathy for the women took precedence over her need for medical and scientific knowledge.
Damn that non-disclosure statement.
Included in all contracts, as a condition of employment, was a declaration employees signed that restricted outgoing staff from sharing, with their replacement, the specifics of what their job entailed. In view of the experience required for the position, management maintained the expectation that replacements would learn as they attended each trial. That had seemed odd and should have prompted her to question the surgical lead she’d replaced, anyway. Hell. Neither of them had anything to lose. She would have declined employment, then any revelations from Mrs. Marlowe remained between them.
Linda detached herself from the group surrounding the dead woman and took the newborn from the doctor’s outstretched hands. She moved to the back of the room where the neonatal team waited for the child. The team cleaned, weighed, and examined the baby for any defects, then they coded and documented vital statistics. While the baby was processed, the morgue team prepped the young woman’s body for disposal and the surgical team readied the operating room for the next birth.
Four more deliveries were on the schedule for that night. Linda and her staff had speculated about the reason for transporting this child before neonatal personnel inspected the other newborns.
That wasn’t standard protocol.
Humor of the day:
Humor of the day: