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Posted: Sun Jun 14, 2020 7:57 pm
by Tetsuwan Penguin
When life gives you lemons, make lemonade.
After being confined home (sort of) for several months, I thought of a Michael Crichton novel (and film) whose plot is rather similar to current events. So here is the beginning of a cross over between it and Dr. Blackjack. I'll leave you guessing about which Crichton story I'm talking about, though it should be rather obvious......



Pinoko lay on a rug by the fireplace reading manga books. Seated in a large recliner chair a few feet away, Kuro Hazama puffed at his pipe while reading the shimbun. Although she was deeply involved in the manga, Pinoko heard the birds chipping in the tree just feet away from the front porch. She also heard the sound of tires crunching the gravel in the unpaved driveway. She quickly got up and ran to the front window to see who was coming.

It wasn't at all unusual for a patent to come to Dr. Blackjack's clinic home unannounced. Though most of his clients did first make arrangements over the phone, many simply arrived at his home demanding his attention. Pinoko watched as the black limousine with military markings and flags pulled up to within a few feet of the house. The two front doors opened at once, and the driver bounded out, along with a gentleman wearing a doctor's business suit. The chauffeur walked towards the back of the vehicle, and opened the rear passenger door for the sole occupant of the rear seat. This person was a short, slightly portly man wearing a General's uniform. The driver saluted as the officer exited the automobile, and stood his ground as the two passengers walked towards the doctor's front door.

“You have company Sensi”, Pinoko announced as she ran towards the door. Before she could reach the doorknob, Dr. Blackjack rose from his seat, leaving the shimbun on the armrest. He reached the door, gently waving Pinoko to the side. There were two quick knocks on the door, and then the Dr. opened it.

The man in the Dr's business suit stared into Kuro's eyes for a few moments before speaking. “Dr. Blackjack, there's been a fire.”

“I see,” the doctor replied. He stood motionless, returning the stare, and then he gazed into the face of the General standing a few feet behind.

“Did you understand me?”, the the man in the suit asked, “There is a wildfire”.

“Yes, I understand,” Kuro nodded. “I suppose you require me to accompany you?”


“Please come in and allow me to put some things together,” Blackjack said, motioning for the two to come in.

The two men walked a few steps into the house and stood there while the doctor disappeared into his study, with Pinoko trailing behind him.

“Sensei, who are those men,” she demanded, “and what's on fire?”
“I don't have time to explain,” the doctor said as he grabbed his large medical suitcase and examined its contents. He quickly added a few items to the inside of the case, and then latched and locked it. The doctor then grabbed his topcoat from the stand on which it was hanging. Turning to leave the room, he found himself blocked by Pinoko.

“You're not leaving without me!”, she huffed.

Kuro sighed. “Very well, go pack a suitcase Quickly!”, he said. “But you'll regret coming with me.”

Pinoko ran to her room, and grabbed her large pink suitcase covered with 'Hello Kitty' stickers. She entered the great room by the front door just as the doctor emerged from his study. “We're ready to come!”, she announced.

“I'm sorry, your daughter can't come with us!”, the General barked.

“First of all, she isn't my daughter,” Blackjack gruffed back, “and I'm not coming without her. Pinoko is my assistant, and she was born with her twin over eighteen years ago.”

“She's a midget?”, the General asked.

“You could say that,” Blackjack replied.

“Very well,” the man in the suit said. “Quickly, we must be going.”

The two guests made their way through the front door, followed by the doctor and Pinoko. Blackjack locked the front door, and he and Pinoko were ushered into the rear of the automobile. Pinoko found herself sandwiched between the man in the suit and the doctor, the General now took the front passenger seat.

“Who are you?” Pinoko demanded, softly punching the man on her left in the arm.

“Pinoko!”, Blackjack scowled. “I'm sorry Dr. Stone, I should have told her about our relationship some time ago.”

“That's quite alright, Kuro. It was best that this be kept a secret anyway.” He looked down at the child like person sandwiched between him and Dr. Blackjack. “Miss, my name is Dr. Jeremy Stone. I met Kuro Hazama some years ago when he was an intern. I then worked for an international medical think tank. My task was to assemble a crack team for the purpose of handling extreme medical crises. Secretly our group built several laboratories capable of handling any pandemic type emergency. The members of the team I assembled are on hold to be contacted only in the case of such an event, the code word for which is 'wildfire'.”

“Years ago, when I was recruited by Dr. Stone, I was honored to be considered to be talented enough for the position, and volunteered,” the doctor told Pinoko. “Years past and I had almost forgotten about it, I guess I never believed that such an emergency would actually come to pass.”

“And now something is on fire,” Pinoko said, “and you have to put it out.”

“Simply put,” Dr. Stone nodded, “and unfortunately true.”

They made the rest of the short auto trip in silence, soon arriving at a small airfield where a long range jet aircraft was parked with its engines already running. The General and Dr. Stone were quickly ushered into the plane, and their luggage was stowed away in the cargo compartment. They quickly buckled themselves into their seats, and the jet plane took off.

“Where are we going?”, Pinoko demanded.

“Our exact location will remain a secret,” the General answered.

“We're going to one of your laboratory sites, aren't we?”, Blackjack surmised.

“Actually, Wildfire One, the original site,” Dr. Stone explained. “You've already been there, at least virtually.”

“Yes, I remember your computer generated tour,” Blackjack sighed. “At the time I both hoped to eventually get a chance to see it, and at the same time I also prayed I never would.”

“That's the way I always saw my mission,” Dr. Stone answered. “I wanted to prepare for the worst possible event, and at the same time hoping my efforts would never be needed.”

“Is this the end of the world?”, Pinoko gasped, finally sensing the fear the adults were exhuming.

“With the help of your doctor friend, and others like him, we hope that can be averted,” the General answered.

“Speaking of the others,” Kuro asked, “who are they.”

“I think you know some of them already Dr. Blackjack,” Jeremy voiced. “They're already on site, you're the last member I've had to pick up.”

“Saved the best for last?”, Pinoko smiled.

“Time will tell on that,” Dr. Stone said, “Dr. Blackjack was simply the last team member I was able to locate.”

Re: WildFire

Posted: Tue Jun 16, 2020 1:35 am
by Tetsuwan Penguin

After being in the air for many hours, the aircraft set down on a dirt runway in the middle of a desert. The pilot opened the forward hatch, and lowered the gangway stairs so his three passengers could exit the aircraft. Pinoko carefully made her way down the narrow gangway to the dusty surface of the airfield. Except for a small shack standing next to a large hangar, a windsock on a flagpole, and several fuel trucks, there wasn't any sign of civilization between where she was standing and the horizon, no matter in which direction she looked.
“This is the middle of nowhere!”, She sighed.

“That's on purpose,” Dr. Stone told her.

As soon as the pilot had emptied the plane's cargo hold, and had set Pinoko's and the Doctor's luggage on the ground, a dark colored limousine emerged from the hangar, and stopped next to the aircraft. The driver of the automobile placed the suitcases into the trunk of the car, and then opened the rear passenger doors. He motioned for Pinoko and the Doctor to enter. The General opened the front passenger door, and escorted Dr. Stone into the front seat. “I'll be flying back to D.C. now. I expect to be kept updated via the secure text link.”

“Don't worry General,” Dr. Stone replied. “If there is anything we need, you'll be the first to know.”

“What I hope to be the first to know is that you've found an answer to our little problem.”

“Me too.”, Dr. Stone sighed.

Their driver closed his door and placed the car in drive. Pinoko watched through the rear window as the airfield got smaller, and finally disappeared from sight. “How much further do we have to go now?”, she pouted.

“Actually not far at all,” Dr. Stone laughed.

They traveled on for about another mile along the dirt road before coming to a small paved section of road along side of a metal hut. The installation resembled a truck weight station, except it was too small to accommodate a vehicle larger than the automobile they were in. The driver stopped the car along side of the metal building, closed his door, and then stepped inside of the shack. Suddenly the car began to sink below the surface.

“What's happening?”, Pinoko cried out in fear.

“Don't get scared,” Dr. Stone reassured her, “We're simply on a lift.”

The car slowly continued below the surface until they reached a landing and stopped. A pool of light appeared around them, and the doors of the car opened by themselves. “We've arrived,” Jeremy announced. “Let's exit the vehicle and proceed inside.”

“What about my suitcase?”, Pinoko demanded.

“It will be returned to you later,” he said. Dr. Stone motioned for them to enter an elevator. The interior of the lift was illuminated with a pleasant light blue glow. As soon as the doors of the cab had closed, they felt the elevator start to slowly descend. A few seconds later, they felt their movement slow, and then stop. “Level One”, a pleasant female voice announced.

“The laboratories that we will be working on are located lower down in this complex on level 5,” Jeremy said. “However it will take us awhile to get there as we must first be medically prepared.”

“What do you mean,” Pinoko asked.

“In order to avoid contamination of the lab environments, all unwanted biologicals have to be washed off of us,” Dr. Blackjack explained. “Jeremy, if I remember correctly a different series of protocols must be followed on each level before we can go down to the next lower level.”

“Exactly,” Dr. Stone nodded. “The amount of time that we must spend on each level varies, we will spend the first evenings sleep period on this level after consuming our first meal here, and then going though the first series of detoxifications.”

“That sounds yucky!”, Pinoko exclaimed, with her tongue sticking out.

“It will get worse the further down we go,” Kuro explained. “I told you that you wouldn't like being here.”

They exited the lift, and found themselves in a circular hallway. “The complex is built as a series of rings, one on top of each other,” Dr. Stone explained. “The numbered markings you see along the wall run from 0 to 360 will help you find your location. Each room has a number corresponding to the circular coordinates. The living quarters are in the section from 0 to 45. The laboratories are located in sections 90 to 270, and the administrative and crew medical sections at 45-90, and 270-360 respectively. That pattern repeats on each level.”

Dr. Stone then handed each of them a key card. “These will open the doors to your living quarters for the night. Please remove all your clothing and change into the uniforms provided in your rooms. We will meet in the conference room at location 46 in thirty minutes. You will meet your fellow team members at that time.”

“Hai,” Blackjack nodded as they walked quickly in the direction of their quarters.

Pinoko opened the door to room location 2 with her key card while the doctor entered room 3 right next to hers. It was a Spartanly simple room with a single bed. She noticed that there was no television, radio, clock or phone, though there was a notebook sized computer tablet sitting on the night stand, as well as a smaller pocket sized tablet.

In a small closet hung a light blue outfit that resembled a doctor's scrubs but in a light blue color rather than the usual green. It was the same color that the walls were painted in, along with the color of the bed clothes.

She found a small pile of underwear, panties and a child's sized bra. There was also a pair of slip on sandals. She reluctantly removed her clothing and placed them in what looked like a laundry container in the closet, and then dressed herself in the provided uniform. The cloth felt coarse, but not quite itchy. Pinoko placed the small computer tablet into her pocket and then opened the door to the hallway to meet up with Sensei.

Dr. Blackjack was already waiting for her in the hallway. He was now dressed similarly to her, in the same colored outfit. “The conference room is in this direction,” He pointed, leading the way.

Jeremy Stone was waiting for them outside the conference room, also dressed in the same light blue duds. “What is this stuff made of?”, Pinoko complained, “it feels like cardboard!”

“Our uniforms are actually made of a recycled paper fabric,” Dr. Stone explained. “We will change into new outfits each time we descend a level, and our old uniforms will be burned when we remove them to prevent the contamination of each lower level.”

He held his key card up to the conference room door, and it slid open. Seated around an oval table were several others, each of them dressed in the same light blue fabric. Kuro immediately recognized two of the people present in the room. He first addressed his attention to the white haired man with an eye patch.
“Dr. Kirko!”, he exclaimed, you're the last person I would have expected here!”

“You misjudge me, Kuro Hazama,” Kirko exclaimed. “My medical qualifications are equal to yours, and possibly superior in some ways.”

“You're only qualifications are that of a murderer,” the doctor shot back. “Just how many of my patients lives have you snuffed out!”

“Only the ones that you couldn't cure, and left in misery, Kuro,” Kirko replied softly. “I'm probably the only healer that is willing to end the suffering of those poor retches with incurable aliments in agonizing pain. Your problem is that you simply don't know when to give up, you would perform surgery after surgery on a patient with the delusion that you would get a different outcome from doing the same things over and over. You put your poor patients though much suffering to satisfy your ego, you simply won't give in to the inevitability of death.”

Dr. Stone stepped between the two doctors, placing a hand on each ones shoulder. “I hope you two can bury the bad blood between you long enough to do the jobs that you've volunteered for,” he told them.

“I certainly can,” Dr. Kirko said proudly. “I have no grudges with Dr. Blackjack.”

“And you?”, Stone asked, looking Blackjack in the eyes.

“So long as HE doesn't loose sight of our mission, I have no axe to bury in his head,” Kuro softly spoke.
“Good!”, Jeremy smiled.

“Hello Kuro!”, another voice from across the table spoke up.
Dr. Blackjack turned to the far side of the room and smiled. “Megumi, it's been a while.

“I go by the name of Kei Kisaragi now, as you well know.”, came the response.

“You'll always be Megumi to me,” the doctor sighed.

Re: WildFire

Posted: Mon Jul 20, 2020 2:06 am
by cybotron
You really astound me! There is a Youtube video that must go with this...

Re: WildFire

Posted: Mon Jul 20, 2020 2:43 pm
by Tetsuwan Penguin
I really need to get back to finishing this story. It's based on the book "The Andromeda Strain" by Michael Crichton, as well as the movie of the same name made from it. You linked to a youtube blub from that movie.