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Living Stone


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One particularly dark night, an important scientist was getting ready to leave his laboratory. Turning off all of the lights, he flipped the switches, locked the windows, and closed the cabinet doors. The air was thick with the smell of cleaning solution. The doctor was in the process of leaving to go see his sister in Boston. She would be waiting for him there, and it was time to close up and leave his beloved laboratory’s white walls and floors. It was very neat and organized. There were little instruments everywhere and they all had a special purpose. The doctor liked that. He liked the fact that everything had its own job to do.

But before he could leave the nearly lightless lab, he saw something that made his gray hairs stand on end.

The petri dish on the counter was completely empty. Only an hour before, it had held a mutating mass of cells. He had been studying their cell membranes when he realized there was something a little different about them. The cells were completely unique. Nothing like them had ever been discovered before. The only thing known about them was that they were some kind of mineral or rock. But minerals weren’t living organisms, were they? Dr. Livingstone was to be the first scientist to ever study them. The project was top secret.

But now his specimen was gone! It had completely disappeared. The possibility of danger was imminent. If someone had gotten into the laboratory, then the doctor had serious problems to deal with. He knew this too, and the moment he saw the empty petri dish, he became furious. The mutating mass of cells had to be found before danger erupted. Dr. Livingstone wasn’t sure what would happen if they got out of the lab.

Dr. Livingstone moved about the room, frantically overturning microscopes and beakers. He looked into graduated cylinders and even his safety goggles. But he couldn’t find any evidence to show that someone had been trespassing in his laboratory. There was no one in the lab with him. He had been entirely alone only an hour ago.

The doctor cautiously approached the deserted petri dish again. It was still on the counter right next to the door. A small splinter of light was flooding in through the cracks in the doorway. A ray of fluorescent light from the hall spilled across the white linoleum floor, leaving the doctor just enough light to see something dark out of the corner of his eye. He heard a strange sound from behind him. Rushing to face the assailant, he turned quickly, grabbing a glass beaker. He expected to see a person, of course.

Instead when the doctor turned, he saw a horrid, dripping, dismay of cells that were hungry for blood. The mass itself was about a foot long, and it seemed to be moving in every direction. Instantly, the doctor became frozen in place. He could smell his own fear, hanging in the air like a thick, black fog. He knew that the cell mass from the petri dish had only been about an inch long. Now it seemed that the cells had undergone rapid mitosis.

The mutated cells were apparently spreading- and fast. They had divided. Perhaps now they would conquer.

The slimy, dark mass of cells slid across the white floor toward Dr. Livingstone, allowing him no time to scream.

-The End-



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