Laura's Child Chapter 2

Emily had been half hoping to be caught sending the information; she wanted the army to know it was being sold out to Iran. She’d grown up with abusive parents who also happened to be in the army, and Emily blamed the army for how her parents turned out. She’d been recruited by a fanatic neighbor, who used Emily’s experiences and feelings to great advantage, encouraging her to find a career in the army, solely for the purposes of information gathering and revenge. Because she was very smart and disciplined, Emily ended up in a top-level lab at a very young age…she was only twenty-two.

Once Marc and Arther had found her sending the information, though, she had snapped, yelling and striking out at them and carrying on hysterically about her ‘mission.’ Now she found herself in an isolation room with her wrists and ankles tied and a gag in her mouth. She shivered, wondering what was going to happen to her, but determined to calm down and be brave…she was the one being wronged, she told herself.

To Emily’s surprise, the door opened and only Laura walked in. “It’s time for you to start over, Emily,” Laura said, her voice surprisingly gentle. Emily noticed a syringe in Laura’s hand and began to struggle, not knowing what was in the syringe or what Laura meant by her comment. Laura was too quick, though, and a shot of some burning liquid entered Emily’s upper arm. Briefly it crossed Emily’s mind to wonder why Laura had spoken so gently, but then Emily passed out and knew nothing more.

Days passed, and Emily knew nothing of what was happening to her, because the lab techs kept her too drugged to be aware of what they were doing to her. Late one afternoon, they finished their work and let the tranquilizers wear off.

Emily felt sluggish and numb. It was raining outside, she noticed, glancing at the window. The sound of the rain hitting the glass was the first thing that drew her attention now that she was awake. She began to wonder where she was. It appeared to be a hospital room; non-descript institutional paint on the walls, flourescent light overhead. The bed she was in was awfully big, and there were rails on both sides. They reminded her of a crib, which was an odd thought. Wondering why that had come into her mind, she sat up slowly, rubbing her eyes.

“Ah, you’re awake,” said a voice, and Emily turned to see Laura standing in the doorway. Emily screamed—Laura had become a giant! Knowing what prompted Emily’s terror, Laura stepped close to the bed. “It’s you who have changed, not me,” Laura said, in that same curiously gentle voice. In her hand she held a mirror. She handed it to Emily, who took it with shaking hands. A little three-year-old girl looked back at Emily through the mirror. Emilie blinked. The little girl blinked. Emily touched the mirror, and the ‘little girl’ touched it too. Not being stupid, it took less than a minute for Emilie to figure out what had happened. Angrily, she threw the mirror over the railing and it smashed onto the floor.

“You made me a wittle giwl!” Emily yelled, then realized she had just talked like a child also; her voice was high and panicked, and she couldn’t make her tongue work properly. “What happened?” she asked, feeling tears form in her eyes. A part of her wondered at that. She’d never been one to cry easily, and now suddenly she felt on the verge of hysterical sobbing.

“We gave you a series of injections and laser treatments to reduce your body mass, and hormone therapy and hypnosis to reduce you to the state of a child,” Laura calmly explained, a trace of sympathy in her eyes. “It gave us an opportunity to test our research, and I also get a child out of the bargain.” She saw the incredulous look on Emily’s face. “Yes, Emily, you’re my three year old little girl now.”