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Not translating DDD

DDD: HandS(R). \0, part 1

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I'll be out tomorrow, so next part probably coming the day after tomorrow.


Beginning of summer, 2003.
Clinic's lobby was concreted.
The glazed entrance, about ten meters wide, was covering a picture that was nothing but a nightmare for a patient here, and I think that physically blocking the only entrance and exit was a very bad idea.
Not even because the patients, me included, couldn't go outside. But because such a huge medical complex doesn't have any incoming - well, coming from outside patients. Not a single one. A hospital you can't come in to - I think it can't be called hospital anymore.
Of course, that was my personal perception on it, because that was strictly a hospital. Five buildings, even though there wasn't much medical staff, not even a hundred people, made it the largest hospital of the prefecture. Actually, not a single patient knew where are we. People conventionally thought we're "somewhere in the north", but that doesn't actually matter, as you can't leave here. They say that before becoming a patient here, while possessed is still living in a society, he's sent to a laboratory. Laboratories were called "Origa", "Kinui" and so on. Of course, it's not such a happy place here, it's an unambiguous clinic, and day after day dozens of doctors are tiring themselves for the sake of curing us.

Completely white buildings without a single stain.
Tranquil alley, crystal clear chambers, huge garden surrounded by high walls, glazed from one side waiting room embraced by sunlight. Nothing to pick on, everything in order.
That's why lobby's facade was extremely out of place. Well, after all though, it was the only place in clinic where you could see gray color, and it was lobby that was, in a way, telling us our place here.
Just as I was coming back from lobby to building B, the only one with an inside garden, music filled the clinic.
Adagio by Albinoni.
At the same time some patients in the waiting room of building B limply went to their chambers.
Private time for one of the buildings was over.
When the time comes to come back to chambers, music is sounded for patients. If you hear it - come back to your chamber. It's improper to announce "Dear patients of x building, your private time is over!" - and it's no good for other patients to know who's from which building.
Looks like everyone's music is adagio today. I'm from the C building, and we had adagio by Brahms. That means that ones returning now are from either B building or A building. Patients from D can't come here, to B building, so D building is excluded.
Music is changed everyday, and if you're curious, you can find out who's from which building, but patients here don't feel like doing such nonsense. That was in a mutual assent with staff.
All patients that are allowed to leave the room are harmless like corpses, that's why in a waiting room everything's so in order that you get dizzy. On a sofa, that probably wasn't stuffed from the clinic's opening day, are some dormantly sitting patients.
Bleached with an afternoon sun waiting room reminds of a church. It hurts my eyes. The sight of praying corpsies under the bright sun.
-- ...
That brings me to thought about that summer day, and I join the corpse company. I fall on the sofa, unable to bear dizziness.


Opening of that isolation ward is a ten year old story.
Ten years after discovery of the carriers of A-syndrome - in common parlance, "possessed" - specialized health center was finally built, where the earliest, and maybe the latest diagnosis was confirmed about twenty years ago.
Symptoms of the illnesses were so surrealistic (or exceeding expectations) that medical institutions couldn't react in time.
As a result, country bought an unfinished public hospital not in the greatest area of N prefecture, and prepared it for curing the "possessed", so it became this health center.
Later, the inhabitants of building A, after moving to clinic, got a duty and rights for special procedures.
To this clinic, the only and greatest health center in the country, all Japanese carriers were being brought.
... Though infection patterns were limited to west part of Japan, so "all Japanese" term is inaccurate.
Normally, patients diagnosed with A-syndrome received state care, after which they were brought to this clinic, and then they were allocated to one of the buildings, A to D.
Once in a clinic, patient could not leave until he was cured and wasn't allowed to meet with his family. That was necessary both to prevent leaking of distorted information to society and to protect patients' private life.
Even now, ten years after, security classification was still high, but everything noted here isn't about specific patients.
That completely isolated from outside world sterile space.

And now I think that this little world, that made you think if everything's extinct in the outside world now, was for them, carriers and patients, best possible environment.


-- ...ri-san? Hisaori-san, are you not feeling well?
Gentle words make my dizziness fade. Geting up from sofa that I fell onto, I answer: "I'm alright".
Doctors that were crowding the waiting room quickly and habitually test my pulse and my pupils, and note: "No abnormalities".
-- Okay. Don't overexert yourself. If you can't return to your chamber, don't be shy, shout.
As usual, showing his knightly attitude, Dr. Dolittle, also known as Dr. Kinui, left the waiting room.
"Carriers" - it doesn't mean that our illness is spread through air or some other type of contact. It isn't spread through fluids, skinship or animals. Normally, carriers don't increase number of carriers. That's the only common feature of the polymorphing A-syndrome.
As for confirmation of this theory, Dr. Dolittle fearlessly touched the patients. Of course, other doctors weren't so heartful, or humanitarian.
On streets, people with A-syndrome are called "possessed". A rude nickname, but in the sense that they can't be handled like normal humans, it's absolutely right.
All their thinking processes become a little bit excentric, and body grows new organs. In mild cases, physical abilities become stronger or weaker, in heavy cases they're multiplied. To put it bluntly, it's apparent.
For example, my face nerves became more sensitive than normal human's, but I didn't have any special changes.
Nevertheless, among those patients in the waiting room, there are some with sixth finger or unknown outgrowths. It's easy to see them.
Which means, we're divided to those, whose old abilities were changed, and those, whose body was changed.
The latter are frankly freaks, and they're very lucky, Dr. Kinui became like a native to them. It's like they met Buddha in hell. The nickname "Dolittle" isn't just for appearances. When you talk to him, you feel like maybe you can really get cured?..
Whatever you say, though, even if you get cured, the crimes you committed aren't going anywhere. But even just because I'm put to this clinic, my life is over.
-- ...I overdid it. I didn't have to go that far.
It's been two years since then. I blundered and was caught. Full of determination to commit a full-blown crime, I, without dirtying my hands, inflicted injury on my parents. For half a year I was spending my life with those people, for whom for the same amount of time a trap was being prepared. You can't really get out of a trap like that. Dad and mom both stepped on a mine so good, it was a pleasure to watch. But it missed a little, and as a result two dead bodies fell on the ground one next to each other.
-- ...It's a shame. Well, whatever. Screw the result, everything was perfectly prepared. But all my tricks weren't worth a broken penny when I was accidentally spotted as possessed and caught.
It's like karma. Order of my actions was perfect. My blunder was that I had a goal, and in the end, as a compensation for that, I became confined in this hospital center.

Though, compared to other patients, I have some hope.
Two years after, my parents' death was noted as an accident, and my innocence was, actually, proven. I didn't kill anyone yet, and I could let myself be a little optimistic.
Right now I was concerned with my full recovery and, finally, freedom from this place.
I want to come back to society. From the very beginning, I was trying hard for that. From the very beginning, it was my goal. I was delayed by that case with mother and father, but I'm going to be innocent again and recreate myself.
I repent. This time I'll live like a human, in a way not to harm anyone. For that, I first have to find a new way to exist - no other way, it seems...

-- ?..
Just when I got filled with optimism and raised my head, a weird something caught my eye. In front of the glass door, leading to the inside garden, something impossible was happening.

Dissolved in sunlight, a man with a paintbrush in front of a canvas. Around my age, but with gray hair. That gray-haired youngster, with bored look, was drawing a worthless painting.

For the first time in two years, my cheeks spread by themselves.
Youngster, sticking out his lip, was moving a paintbrush on a canvas. He was just having fun drawing, to kill time. Amazing. Why did he decide to do that? Unable to fight my curiosity, I went up to him.
-- Sorry, you don't mind if I stick around?
-- Hm?
My tongue started to talk before awkwardness came. In this building, it's uncomfortable to talk to other patients. It's not prohibited - but you just won't get answered. Probably that youngster was looking so carefree that this theory, absorbed by me in the past couple years, got completely forgotten.
-- Sure. But I only have one chair.
He appeared to be even more carefree than it looked like from afar. I remembered the almost forgotten, heard who knows how many years ago, art of naturally talking.
-- I'll sit on the floor. Can I watch for a bit?
-- As long as you won't be a bother. But a weird taste you have.
Gray-haired one snorted, looked at me and engulfed himself in drawing.
His glance was a bit scary. He's probably always like that, but his glance was like snake's. I have a childish face, I try to look admiringly. He looks originally, like a street bully.
Which building he's from, I wonder. I didn't see him in C. It's either B or A. Probably, A - I can't imagine people looking this healthy in building B.
-- Mm, which building are you from?
-- From A. Sorry that I occupied the place in B. I have a scary sister there. I'm trying to flee to where I don't catch her eye.
I looked closer - he was all in moles.
I only know about that from rumors, because I'm quiet, but they say that disobedient patients are examined by some medical expert, that is like a demon from hell. Somewhy I decided that this man is his permanent client.
-- Hm? Eh, you don't have a hand?
-- Yeah, dropped it on the way here. That's why I'm now in a hospital.
-- Woah, I envy you. A normal clinical reason.
What am I saying... But that's true. The patients they're bringing here are those with weird outgrowths. And this gray-haired one - with a normal wound, normally went for treatment, a normal patient.
-- Ah, no, that's just, unthinking observation, mm...
He looked at me, amazedly.
He grinned - one that said "a", would say "b".
-- I see. Pessimist, but optimist. By the way, yes, it's logical that I came to a hospital...
His right hand with a paintbrush draws a sharp line.
For a while I'm watching his movements. He isn't drawing something in particular. He just has nothing to do, and painter's utils caught his eye, so he's using them. He doesn't have a motive to display, he's caught in the very process of drawing. Naturally, he doesn't care what gets drawn, his mind is in other place.
-- Hm, that hand of yours...
-- M? Which hand? One that I have? One that I don't?
-- The one you have. Your movements are very agile, they're fascinating.
He looked at me amazedly again. Maybe he's always this amusing?
-- "The one I have", amazing. Usually people ask me about how I lost my left.
-- There's no meaning to talk about what is not. I have more interest in your right one. Is it possible to be so agile at handling everything with one hand?
Gray-haired chuckled.
-- I don't have the other one, so I'm doing my best.
Movements so natural, it feels like he was born with one hand.
I wanted to talk with him again, but then heard music. Adagio by Brahms. The slow classic tune, pressuring the freedom of building C's patients.
-- Are you going to be here tomorrow too?
-- If I'll be able to move after examination. The picture's going to take a while.
Relieved, I get up. I have to say my goodbyes and go back to building C.
-- Wait. Let me write down your name.
-- Hah?
Looks like he has a horrible memory. He seems to have a habit of writing down everything new and important.
-- I'm Hisaori Shinya. And you?
-- Shinya? It doesn't fit you. Well, I'm not the one to talk...
Gray-haired writes "所在" in the corner of canvas, which means "location".
-- Weird name, right? - Gray-haired ironically, but with some pride in it, smiled, and added: - And it's read as "Arika", with that.
That's how, on the second year of my confinement, I got acquainted with Ishizue Arika.
If you think about it, from the handful of friends I have, with two I got acquainted with this clinic.
One, as you already guessed, is this gray-haired.
The other one is, afterwards drowning this clinic in blood, his sister.

Updated August 10th, 2012 at 09:06 PM by Enhance