This is a whacked out story about a crazy-assed experiment our friends the Russian’s were performing in the 1940’s. Folks just lost their damned minds during the 40’s! Everybody was in the middle of doing these brutal and grotesque experiments in the name of science and defense back in the day, and that included the Russians. Why should they miss out on being sadistic bastards when everyone else was having their fun right?!
So, toward the end of the 1940s, these Soviet researchers seal five prison inmates in an airtight chamber and dosed them with one of their experimental stimulant gases so they could test to see the effects of prolonged sleep deprivation. So the room has this two way mirror in it. On the other side, were these “observers” a microphone and a camera, so yeah, it’s safe to say the test subjects were monitored closely. Every moment of their movement, behavior and conversations was under constant surveillance. That’s enough to make you go ape shit right there! So, what landed these prisoner in to this posh position? They were promised their freedom if they could stay awake for 30 days, no sleep, at all!
Well, the first few days of the experiment go by with no major issues or events. But, by the fifth day, the inmates start showing signs of stress. Their unknowingly broadcasted conversations were centering around them becoming a little hostile about their situation. After a day or so, they stopped speaking freely among themselves, instead they had started whispering back and forth between each other. Yeah, that was the first stages of paranoia setting in. I’m thinking stage two was when they started whispering to the microphones instead of interacting with their fellow cellmates. They were all whispering the same kind of things: they where spilling compromising information about their fellow inmates. It was almost as if they were trying to win the favor of the researchers.
On the ninth day the screaming began. First one subject, then another, was observed running around the chamber screaming at the top of his lungs for hours on end. Those that weren’t belligerently screaming their lungs out had started ripping apart the books that they had been provided with. Then it got interesting. They start smearing their shit over the mirrored window then smacking the pages from the books on top of it, basically blocking out the observers from watching them. Then, just as suddenly, the screaming stopped. The subjects ceased communicating altogether. Three long days passed without a sound from inside the chamber. Fearing the worst, the researchers start trying to rouse them through the intercom. When there was no response, they made an announcement: “We are opening the chamber to test the microphones,” they said. “Step away from the door and lie flat on the floor or you will be shot. Compliance will earn one of you your immediate freedom.”
A voice from inside the cell answered, “We no longer want to be freed.” Fearing what may happen if they opened the cell door, the scientists decided to leave them be for just a while longer.
Two more days passed without contact of any kind, now the scientists are debating on what to do next. Finally, they decided to terminate the experiment. At midnight on the fifteenth day the stimulant gas was flushed from the chamber and replaced with fresh air in preparation for the subjects’ release. Far from being pleased at the prospect of leaving the chamber, the subjects began screaming as if in fear for their lives. They begged to have the gas turned back on. Instead, the researchers unsealed the door to the chamber and sent armed soldiers inside to retrieve them. Nothing could have prepared them for the gruesome nightmare they witnessed upon entering.
One subject was found dead, lying face-down in six inches of bloody water. Chunks of his flesh had been torn off and stuffed into the floor drain. All of the test subjects were found to have been severely mutilated, in fact. What’s worse, the wounds appeared to be self-inflicted. They had ripped open their own abdomens and disemboweled themselves with their bare hands.
Some had even eaten their own flesh.
The four who were still alive seemed terrified of falling asleep and refused to leave the chamber, they were still begging the researchers to turn the gas back on. When the soldiers attempted to remove the inmates by force, they fought back so ferociously that even the soldiers hadn’t been prepared to protect themselves properly. These test subjects were violently crazed, even in their mutilated conditions. They fought back fiercely. One suffered a ruptured spleen and lost so much blood there was literally nothing left for his heart to pump, yet he continued flailing for a full three minutes until his lifeless body collapsed.
The remaining subjects were restrained and transported to a medical facility for treatment. The first to be operated on fought so furiously against being anesthetized that he tore muscles and broke bones during the struggle. As soon as the anesthetic took effect, his heart stopped and he died. The rest underwent surgery without sedation. Far from feeling any pain, however, they laughed hysterically while on the operating table — so hysterically that the doctors, perhaps fearing for their own sanity, administered a paralytic agent to immobilize them.
After surgery, the survivors were asked why they had mutilated themselves, and why they so desperately wanted to go back on the stimulant gas. Every one of them gave the same answer: “I must remain awake.”
The researchers considered euthanizing them to obliterate every trace of the failed experiment, but were overruled by their commanding officer, who ordered that it be resumed immediately; with three of the researchers joining the inmates in the sealed chamber. Horrified at the prospect, the chief researcher pulled out a pistol and shot the commanding officer point blank. He then turned and shot one of the two surviving subjects. Pointing his gun at the last one left alive, he asked, “What are you? I must know!”
The test subject then responded: “Have you forgotten so easily?” he said, smiling. “We are you. We are the madness that lurks within you all, begging to be free at every moment in your deepest animal mind. We are what you hide from in your beds every night. We are what you sedate into silence and paralysis when you go to the nocturnal haven where we cannot tread.”
The researcher fired a bullet into his heart. The EEG monitor flat-lined as the subject murmured these last words: “So…nearly…free.”
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