Deep Sleep


















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The blue tint from the daylight fluorescent light overhead, painted the brushed steel walls and cryochamber with its soft glow. The crinkle of her plasticene lab coat and hum of the machinery clashed in their difference. Melissa had not gotten used to the stiffness of the plasticene lab coat yet. It was more flexible than plastic but didn't carry germs. Thus, all medical personnel were required to wear them.

As she pressed the button to visibly check the man's vital signs, she looked at his muscular and well toned body. The same questions kept haunting her about this client. He was the oldest client in the system. Not in physical age, but in how long he'd been cryogenically preserved. There was no name on his chart, just an inception date, 12/15/1966. She knew that date was before the first "registered" instance of putting a human in cryogenic suspension, in 1967. That person was a 73 year old psychologist by the name of James Bedford.

It had been eight years of working here, before they would let her check this client. Although she had already signed a confidentiality statement, she had to sign a second and longer one. There had been many whispers among the staff who had been here for a long time. Though none of the current staff, including administration had been here as long as this gentleman. The date of inception was also the date of a well known person's death. His name was Walt, but he supposedly is in stasis below one of the attractions in his theme park. But this couldn't be him. She'd seen pictures of the famous man, and he died in his late sixties. This fine specimen looked to be in his mid thirties at the very most.

There was the other fact that this John Doe was put into suspension while he was alive. The old clients who had been frozen after death had a distinctly different color to their skin. What made it even stranger, was that Congress didn't approve the freezing of live humans until the summer of 2031. It was rather apparent that doctors may learn how to cure certain diseases in the future, but they were unlikely to conquer death.

Little did Melissa know, that all her questions were moot. The well preserved body that lay there, stared mindlessly up at the ceiling. In those early days, the method of putting someone into a cryogenic suspension was flawed. The first error was that the client could still think. Laying there frozen, unable to move, he went mad as a hatter within the first year. The other problem was that the human brain is more susceptible to damage by the crystalization of the water in the human body than the other organs. So as this poor fellow went mad, the shards of water turned to ice, sliced his brain to ribbons.

 

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