On murdering another children's TV classic
He woke from another night of fevered dreams.
Dreams of the time BEFORE.
The time before he found himself in isolation with the three others. The three others who slept, while the sentinel moved between their beds, keeping a watchful eye.
But this time he remembered more. He recalled that he was an officer in the Air Force with a distinguished flying record in the Gulf, keeping an appointment some cold, wet morning in a sterile military facility, meeting the other three volunteers for the first time.
Nervous, joking amongst each other. One from the army. Two from the Navy, one a pretty young Asian woman. Gallows humour before the great unknown that was to follow.
And the general came and spoke. "Gentlemen. Lady. Thank you for coming. This, you realise, is your last chance to withdraw from this programme.
"Our nation's future security may hinge on its success, and we hope the surgical procedure will be relatively painless. There is, we remind you, no pressure for you to enter the operating theatre. It is entirely your decision."
And, together, they walked into the military hospital to receive their implants.
Antenna, receiver and transmitter
Enhanced body armour.
Computer circuits imprinted directly onto the brain.
Phased plasma rifle in hands that could take life with consummate ease.
Cyborgs. Cybernetic organisms. Living, breathing killing machines.
But then, somehow, it had gone awry.
The surgery failed. The circuits never worked. Memories were erased. The military denied they ever existed. Dead. Lost in action. Very sorry.
And the four of them, still in their body suits, were exiled to a secret facility, many miles from prying eyes, with only the sentinel to look over them.
The others stirred in their beds, woke, and they blearily made for the machine that supplied their rations.
Fed, they stepped outside into the open, and prepared to receive their daily broadcast from their superiors - the one concession to preserving their sanity.
As the wind generator whirled above them, the captain turned to his lieutenant and greeted him for the first time that day.
"Eh-oh Tinky Winky!"
He yearned to kill again.
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