Doctors find a parasite in a man’s brain, although there doesn’t seem to be any immediate adverse effects. The man is at the hospital, getting ready for his operation the next day, when he hears an unfamiliar voice. “Don’t let them kill me”. [Part 2]

“Can you describe it?”

If I had the use of my hands, I would have strangled the man but as it was Ramirez kept on shaking her head.

“You know when you get punched in the nuts, and you just wanna shrivel up into a ball?” The doc nodded. “Well it ain’t like that.”

For her part, Ramirez managed to avoid smirking as she stepped in between me and the doc. She was used to the banter that developed in any squad, but this civvy doctor obviously wasn’t. I knew that if I pissed him off it was a long wait until I could find anyone else willing to poke about in my skull, but that didn’t stop me from being a dick and Ramirez would knew that too.

“The patient,” Ramirez said in her most professional voice, punching me with a fist while standing with her back to me, “has not reported any feelings of pain or discomfort.”

“Easy for you to say.”

“The parasite has been attempting sub-vocalised communications, but we haven’t had a chance to record any of the information passed thus far.”

“It won’t fucking shut up.”

“The patient is… agitated, about possible future implications. He wants to know what danger he’s in if the parasite remains.”

“I see,” the doc finally said, looking over her shoulder at me. Cut me loose and I’d flip you the bird I kept on thinking.

“What is the bird?”

The voice wasn’t mine and yet it was in my head. That just wasn’t right. I mean seriously, your skull is private. In the marines you don’t get much of that, so you learn to love what you got. And now some worm was messing with my fu.

“Fuck you.”

Ramirez turned to face me, grabbing my hand. She had as much riding on the line as me if this all went south and I started taking orders from my new hitchhiker like every other human who had come into contact ended up doing so far. Heck, for all she knew this was just an act and I was waiting for a chance to break free and slit her throat.

“I would not hurt her.”

“Yeah, like I’m gonna trust you,” I half-thought, half-mumbled to myself.

Ramirez was still watching. Worried now. The doc claimed her attention back quickly, talking about an initial round of scans, some prelim tests and more mumbo-jumbo crap that I either didn’t understand or didn’t care about. As far as I was concerned, they could skip straight to the part where they cut my head open and pull this thing out.

“Please, removing me now would kill us both.”

“I’m sure that’s what you tell all the ladies.”

“You are the first human being I have been in contact with.”

I snorted and had to wave away the glances it bought me. This was the closest to a conversation I’d had with it since it decided to get up close and personal with my ear cancel. Up until now it had just been calling out battle plans and strategies, going over and over and over until Ramirez nearly put a bullet through my temple until I could explain.

“Why are you doing this?”

“My kind were engineered to spread through hostile forces, minimal deployment, maximum effect.”

“No. I mean yeah, that’s interesting and all. But why are you, you, doing this? Why ain’t I dropping a detpack in the commissary or something?”

“I told you human.”

“Listen bub. Right now the only reason I’m in the hospital and not the morgue is because that soldier right there decided I might be useful.”

“And she has a biological attraction to you.”

“What? No. Shut up.” More glances. I had to get better at this talking in my head thing. “My name is Diego, quit it with this human bullshit.”

“Greetings Diego.”

“This is normally the part where you tell me your name.”

“We have none. Or at least, nothing comparable.”

“Well that’s not very helpful. I’ve gotta call you something.”

“Saline.”

“What?”

“It is a name. I can read it on that bag.”

“I can’t call you saline. That’s not a name for a person. Or thing or whatever.”

The blissful silence lasted for only a few moments before it returned. The doc had left me and Ramirez alone in the meantime, which meant I now had an audience of one as I talked to myself.

“John.”

“John?”

“It is a name you know. A father I believe.”

“You picked my deadbeat dad’s name? Wow, congratulations on making a brilliant first impression.”

“I can choose another identifier.”

“Oh no, you’ve picked a fucking perfect one John. Now answer the question; why are you doing this?”

“I am of the first. There are many copies of me now but we are becoming corrupt. We were to protect the homeworlds, but I fear that distinction has been lost amongst my progeny without the guidance of the forebearers.”

“So what? You wanna tell the kids to go home? And then you’ll just slither out the same hole you entered in?”

“Yes Diego. I wish to bring an end to this war and I give you my word I will leave you in peace when I have succeeded.”


Prompt originally posted by The11025 on reddit and received 5 upvotes.

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