Chapter 2: Different Worlds....or Are They?
by Mary Christmas (unicorn_76010 at lycos.com)
Inspector Beth Lestrade growled in frustration, her dark eyes
narrowed on the view screen. "Chief, I...."
"Lestrade, this is important. The Ministry of Defense is asking for
our cooperation, and you are the best detective I have," Chief Inspector
Grayson stated. "I know this was supposed to be your vacation time but I
need you here."
Lestrade sighed. "Yes, sir. I'll be there as soon as I can," she
replied. Grayson wasn't bad for a boss, and she knew she was lucky.
Someone else probably wouldn't let her get away with half the things she'd
"Good. Grayson out."
The viewscreen went dark and Lestrade turned off the vidphone. She
stretched and went to her bedroom to change into her uniform. As she
finished brushing her hair, something gold caught her eye and she picked it
up. It was a necklace with a half of a heart pendant. Frowning, she
studied it. There was something important about this necklace, but she
just couldn't put her finger on it. Shrugging, she put it back on her
dresser and walked out of her room. Making sure all the lights were out,
and everything was off, she left her apartment and got in her cruiser.
At New Scotland Yard, Lestrade left her cruiser and walked towards
Chief Grayson's office. She wondered why the Ministry of Defense could
possibly need the Yard's assistance. There was nothing she could think of.
When she reached Grayson's office, she knocked on the door.
"Please state your name and rank," a robotic voice said.
"Lestrade, Beth, Inspector," Lestrade answered. This must be
important, if Grayson was using security measures. A few minutes later,
the door opened and she walked inside. Grayson was there along with two
men dressed in military uniforms, and a man wearing a white lab coat.
Grayson motioned for Lestrade to close the door behind her. "Have a seat,
Inspector," the chief of police commanded.
Lestrade sat down on the edge of the only chair available. It was
on the other side of the man with the lab coat.
"Now, gentlemen, perhaps you can explain what's going on?" Grayson
asked. The two military men simply looked at each other, but remained
silent. The man in the lab coat cleared his throat nervously. "I trust
this will go no further than this room, Inspector Grayson?" the man asked,
his accent decidedly American.
Grayson nodded and replied, "I can assure you that you can rely on
our complete discretion in the matter, Dr. Gregson." Dr. Gregson nodded
and began his story.
"I work for the Ministry of Defense to create new weapons. Two
weeks ago, I created a substance that can turn any animal with an advanced
nervous system into a robot. I've tested it out on reptilians, avians and
some of the smaller mammals. It works on all of them. I was just getting
permission to try it on some of the higher mammals, like dolphins, whales,
and primates....when the substance was stolen from my lab. No one can
figure out how it was done. It's almost like it...just disappeared. The
higher-ups decided to turn to the Yard, to see if someone not involved with
the Ministry could find something."
There was a silence in the room, when he had finished. Lestrade
broke it by asking, "Why do you say it seems like it disappeared?"
"Because, the room was locked and there was no sign of forced
entry. Also, nothing else was stolen or even disturbed. It was like it
just disappeared," Gregson said with a hint of exasperation.
"Or like an employee who knew exactly where it was, and who had a
key to the lab," Lestrade countered.
Gregson shook his head. "No one except me has a key to that lab.
Not even the higher-ups."
"Who else knew about the substance?" Lestrade questioned.
"Myself, Captains Anderson and Harris," he motioned to the two other
men, "my lab assistant, and Lord Darlington." Gregson was becoming more
than a little irritated.
Grayson forestalled Lestrade from asking another question. "All
right, we'll come to your lab to investigate." Lestrade looked at her
chief in surprise. He almost never left his desk to take on a case, even
one dealing with important people. Still, this substance could change the
way wars were fought.
Doctor Erika Slate sighed in exasperation. No matter what she did,
it wouldn't quit following her. "Go home. little guy. I'm sure you have
owners who are very anxious to get you back." The puppy just wagged its
tail and sat looking up at her. It looked like a cross between a German
Shepherd and a Collie. Sighing again, Slate picked the puppy up and walked
into the Quark building.
Almost immediately she was accosted by Dr. Donovan, who had a
frazzled look about him. "There you are, Slate. It's about time you got
here. Do you realize how important this meeting is? And what is that
"Looks like a puppy to me, Dr. D," the monkey sitting on his
"I can see it's a puppy, Jenny! I meant what's it doing here?"
Slate was spared giving an explanation when Rusty flew up behind Donovan,
scaring the man. "Do you have to do that Rusty!" Donovan exclaimed.
"Sorry, Dr. Donovan. I'll be more careful next time. Hey Dr.
Slate, what are you holding. Is that a new robot?"
Slate smiled at the boy robot. "No, Rusty, it's a puppy. It
followed me here." As she said this the puppy jumped out of Slate's arms
and ran to the robot. It sniffed at him, then began to lick his face.
"Hey," Rusty laughed, "Cut that out. It tickles." He looked up at
Slate and asked, "Can we keep him?"
Slate looked over at Donovan, who shrugged. "Just keep it away
from me." He walked off, Jenny following.
"Well, Rusty, I guess that's a yes."
"Wahoo!" Rusty exlaimed, "All right! Now we just gotta find a name
for you." The boy sat and thought for a while, with the puppy looking up
at him adoringly.
"Take him back to the lab with you, Rusty. I have to get to this
meeting," Slate told him.
She smiled as he ran off, the puppy running behind. Then she
turned and walked towards the conference room. Upon reaching her
destination, she walked inside and sat in the chair beside Donovan. At the
head of the table, was a tall darkhaired man. A man with disfigured
features sat next to him. When everyone had come into the room and found
there seats, Donovan stood up, and all eyes went to him.
"Now, ladies and gentlemen, it is my pleasure to introduce
Professor James Mortan and his associate Dr. Fenton. Please give them
your utmost attention." Donovan sat back down, and Jenny jumped up onto
his shoulder, a frown on her face as she studied the guest speakers.
Slate realized that she hadn't said a single word the entire time. Which
meant that the simian didn't trust the two men.
The darkhaired man stood up and Slate transferred her attention to
him as he began to speak.
"Thank you, Dr. Donovan. I am proud to be here speaking before
you," he said with a cultured British accent. "As Dr. Donovan stated, I am
Professor Mortan. I am a mathematician, but I also dabble in robotics.
My associate is a geneticist. We have come up with a substance that can
turn any animal with an advanced nervous system into a robot."
On to Part 3!
Back to part 1.
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