|Albert Wesker||All the heroism, all the daring escapes and rescues, all the B.O.W.s who failed to stop Officer Caldwell-- and then he's bitten. A victim of probability, the eventuality of the horde: one of them got him. One of them, dear reader, will likely eventually get -you-, if Raccoon City is any predictor. It's not the bite that's the problem, barring infection. It's the fever that sets in soon after, accompanied by a headache that slowly crescendos until it trumps the fiercest migraine, a reverberating thrum that's almost audible in the skull, an entire week's worth of heavy metal shows worth of ringing in the ears.
It seems too late for a bucket list, and all for a stupid mistake. All the self-damning mantras that fill one's head at such a time still lead back to a seemingly singular course, a seemingly certain death, and only one question left: does he try to get back to base, say his goodbyes, put his allies at risk? Does he find a quiet corner in which to die, feverish and alone?
|Prestige William Caldwell||Caldwell is, alas. Bitten in the line of duty. He wasn't afraid to die, this was inevitable unfortunately in this kind of apocalyptic hellhole. His fever already starting to rise up and flare into a migraine. He slowly makes his way back to base and grunts, wiping off sweat from his forehead that comes from the beating drum that is his skull right now. He has his samurai edge armed with but a single bullet, saved for himself should he be on the brink of death. A simple headshot would be all it took to kill himself. But first he wanted to say goodbye to everyone.|
|Albert Wesker||The hour is late, the inevitable likely sparking every shade of denial, anger, and bargaining; the grief might even carry one or more to depression or acceptance, but Caldwell's in no hurry to die, fighting for those extra minutes, that extra hour. Dreams come and go as if alongside a boatride through the fog. Where is he? When is it?
It's the proverbial life flashing before his eyes, with a distinctly looking glass tilt, these final feverish dreams; visions. They take him to his graduation, the RPD hall looming like a dark beast poised to swallow him whole, compelled to walk into its gullet again regardless. To his first kiss-- with a zombie. Eventually, they take Caldwell somewhere more lucid, yet simultaneously somewhere he was certain he'd never been-- had he?
THEN(?): All Caldwell sees is light, brilliant and overwhelming his vision. Movement is difficult, if not impossible, his body feeling numb; distant. Is he dead? Did he die? A disembodied voice inquires, "Do we have the results back on infection status?" He's almost bored, perhaps tired-- he's done this, many many times, recently. Perhaps longer. Whoever answers is garbled, inaudible-- lost to the annals of half-unheard memory even in dreamstate. This assistant is like an adult on Charlie Brown. "Alright. Finish the genetic panel and get me a dose of the test vaccine anyway. Might as well not waste the entire night..."
|Prestige William Caldwell||Caldwell slowly enters the base and then..blackness...His life flashes through his eyes. What was going on? Was this really the end? He had hoped he would be able to say goodbye to people, but instead he would die just before finishing talking to everyone. He listens to the disembodied voice. He struggles to speak, his mouth dry and his words raspy "Am...I dead?" he asks, then slowly fades back to darkness, drifting in and out of consciousness numerous times while the test vaccine is administered to him.|
It's likely his comrades are trying to reassure him, but in his vision, no one seems inclined to answer Officer Caldwell. It's hard to feel any of the sensations of his dream over the overwhelming pain of his body, in his head. Was he injected with something? It certainly sounded like it.
"Interesting. His results fit the optimal profile for the substrain at up to a 92% ratio. We'll commence primary infection tonight, I'll log the experiment." Something about the change in the foggy, distant words still suggests sudden curiousity; something unusual indeed.
"Put him under for another phase." Caldwell's perspective on the situation goes black as pitch, his sensations of pain momentarily abating-- in this moment, it may be a dreadful sensation.
|Prestige William Caldwell||Caldwell tries to stare through the foggy haze of his vision up to the people talking to him..He can't hear anything besides the doctors talking though. He groans and tries to move, his body was deadweight however and he himself was in extreme pain. He wants to scream, tries to scream even, but it's of no use. His voice box has packed up and gone home for the day. Substrain...? What was that..? He had no idea what was happening, were they experimenting on him? What was going on here, wasn't he at the base?|
"... shows no sign of biomass evolution or uncontrolled hormonal spikes, but DNA structure has mutated to unexpected specifications. The substrain's interaction with the Subject's genetic markers seems to have caused several key chains to rearrange, effectively a new and unknown type of R-Modified lifeform. Long-term impact of this mutation and further evolution is unknown, advise tagging and surveilling."
The monologue is spoken as if to a recorder; which it likely was. Caldwell's perception of it drifts-- is it above him, below, all around? Close? So far as to be the scarcest whisper?
There are scarce birds to chirp, now-- those not infected have fled to bluer skies. But the sun rises, the air warms. Somewhere in the distance, there's the sound of a fire lingering, consuming the structure that fuels it.
Another day in paradise-- an impossible day, not as one of the infected, mindless and ravening. Not as a zombie, risen with only incessant hunger. No, Officer Caldwell's fever has broken, volatile and painful and extremely disgusting struggle though it was. He's himself again, still-- or is he?
|Prestige William Caldwell||Caldwell slowly comes to again and listens to the conversation, groaning and trying to look towards the monologuer. He tries to raise his hand and try to whisper for help, the only sound his throat makes though is a light wheeze. Caldwell rises up his position and looks around..had it all been a dream? Whatever the case...he hadn't died, did he have an angel of some sort? As demented and crazy as that angel sounded? He leaves before he has the chance to find out.|