THE RED PLAGUE
SCIENTIST: Science log M-2645. Two years since the colonization of Mars. The colony is holding, but with our new environment comes new diseases. While many similar diseases remain a daily nuisance, the unfortunate reality of living in closed quarters with roughly 50,000 people in a single colony. While we continue to grow and develop the colony, the fact remains, in an alien environment we will encounter alien diseases.
[The sound of static cuts in]
SCIENTIST: Science log M-2655. We’ve discovered a pathogen. The higher-ups are calling it the red plague. It seems to feed off moisture in the subject’s body, drying them out and mummifying them within weeks. We’ve tried keeping the bodies hydrated, but that only seems to speed up the process. The colony President has ordered a quarantine in hopes to try and stave off mass panic from the public. We’ve been told to take any means necessary to find a cure before it infects the entire colony.
[The sound of static cuts in]
SARAH: Who the fuck is that?
SCIENTIST: Please. Don’t shoot. I’m not a threat.
DEVLYN: No one is supposed to be in here.
SCIENTIST: Fortunately for me, being locked in here has helped me survive.
DEVLYN: Who are you?
SCIENTIST: My name is Dr. Simon Strauss. Chief Scientist of colony M-54821. I must admit, I’m just as surprised to see you.
DEVLYN: How the hell did you survive?
DR. STRAUSS: Those doors are reinforced. Nothing can get in or out.
SKIP What the hell is wrong with your skin?
KIT: Vast abrasions and scarring with minor protrusions and irritation. Am I also seeing a slight discoloration?
DR. STRAUSS: Oh….This is the next step in human evolution.
SKIP: Evolution? It looks like you’ve dipped half your body in acid.
THEO: He’s spliced himself.
KIT: I’m sorry. Did you say, spliced? As in—
AARON: You’re injecting yourself with Martian DNA.
SKIP: And from the looks of it, his body is rejecting the treatment.
DR. STRAUSS: Sadly, the body was not meant to handle multiple injections at such a high dosage.
RAVEN: So, the bodies in these tubes, they’re…. Martians?
DR.STRAUSS: Some are Martian, some human, and some in between. Many of them failed subjects in trying to find a cure.
SARAH: A cure for what?
DEVLYN: The red plague.
SARAH: I’m sorry, the what?
THEO: The red plague. An infectious disease effecting humans on Mars. The virus would literally mummify you alive. Drying you out like a raisin.
DR.STRAUSS: Very good, Doctor.
SKIP: He’s infected. That explains the multiple injections. The high dosage.
DR.STRAUSS: It has kept the disease at bay, despite the unfortunate side effects.
DEVLYN: You two know each other?
DR.STRAUSS: If only by reputation. The doctor and I were hired for the same—
KIT: Are these things…Still alive?
DR.STRAUSS: Very much so. The splicing process took quite some time to perfect. Many of the human specimens went quite mad with rage when going through the process. You see Martian DNA contains more chromosomes than an average human. Splicing required finding the proper chromosomes to fit perfectly into human DNA.
RAVEN: But for what purpose?
DR.STRAUSS: For our survival of course. Man was never meant to survive outside of his habitat, and instead of waiting a millennia for our species to adapt and thrive in space, we decided to expedite the process.
DEVLYN: So you tortured these poor people?
DR.STRAUSS: Tortured? No. No. No. No. No. All of them are volunteers. Victims of the red plague.
SARAH: What happened to them? They don’t look—
DR.STRAUSS: Unfortunately, the addition of Martian Chromosomes to human DNA had some unfortunate side effects. Many of the patients became ill and died while others…changed.
KIT: What changes?
DR.STRAUSS: As you can see from the tubes many of the changes were physical while some…some became rabid, killing many of the other patients. So we had to subdue them.
SARAH: You didn’t kill them?
RAVEN: Devlyn. Is it just me or do those things look like the ravagers that attacked us.
DEVLYN: Almost identical.
DR.STRAUSS: Of course not. We had to understand where we went wrong and so we kept them here.
THEO: We’re looking for a child.
DR.STRAUSS: A child? My dear woman. I have barely been out of these walls since the incident occurred.
THEO: Maybe your files?
DR.STRAUSS: No. Those are top secret. I couldn’t possibly allow you access.
DEVLYN: Step aside, Doctor.
[Devlyn cocks his blaster]
DR. STRAUSS: I know your kind, Space Ranger. It was the Rangers who raided my office before the attack. Who laughed at my work and whispered behind my back. You’re nothing more than witless thugs, trying to steal my secrets. It just so happens I do have a secret to share…You’ll never make it out of here alive.
[An alarm sounds]
[With a hiss a metal door slides shut]
RAVEN: We’re locked in.
[The hiss of compressed air being released followed by the sound of liquid flowing down a drain]
KIT: That can’t be good.
SKIP: I think they’re waking up.
[Glass cracks and shatters]
DEVLYN: Go. Find cover.
[Blasters fire as the creatures awaken]
SARAH: Theo, no!
THEO: I have to get the contents from that computer.
DEVLYN: What is she doing?
[More blaster fire]
DR. STRAUSS: Dr. Theo Jones. What an unpleasant surprise.
RAVEN: There’s too many!
THEO: Dr. Strauss. Where is she?
DR. STRAUSS: My dear, I’m not sure who you’re talking about.
THEO: You know damn well what I’m here for.
[Skip lets out a bloodcurdling scream followed by the gnashing of teeth and tearing of flesh from the creatures]
SARAH: Skip! No! We’ve got to get out of here now.
AARON: Theo! Let’s go!
THEO: The girl. Patient Zero.
DR.STRAUSS: Died in the attack for all I know. You’ll die before you find her.
THEO: Step away from the computer.
DEVLYN: Theo we have to go now.
THEO: Not yet!
DR. STRAUSS: I’m afraid you’ve found yourself on a fruitless errand, Doctor.
[A button clicks as Doctor Strauss activates--]
COMPUTER: Self-destruct sequence initiated.
[A blaster finds out]
[Doctor Strauss laughs as he dies from his wound]
THEO: Doesn’t matter. As long as that girl is found, the project can be salvaged.
DEVLYN: Theo, now! We’re out of time!
SKIP: Take this you ugly fuckers.
[A metal clink as a pin is pulled from --]
DEVLYN: Everyone, to the airlock!
[The grenade explodes. Metal crashes as Dr. Strauss laboratory collapses around them]
[Eerie music fades in]
DEVLYN: Humankind. The ever-evolving creative innovator. Our species longs to be the all-powerful creator. We improve upon ourselves, forcing our own evolution. The constant struggle for man to stay at the top of the food chain.
[END OF EPISODE 3]