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The Giant Mechanical Chicken That Ate Everyone

By Middlerun

Thunder. Lightning. Two things Dr. Milt VanDrake loved. The thunderstorm raged all around his castle, while he worked in his lab at his latest genetic engineering project, a giant, robotic chicken. The inside of his lab was rather bare, with a cabinet containing all his genetic engineering tools and parts, and a desk, scattered with screws and other tools, bits of rotting flesh, and a quite larger than usual chicken brain. The room itself was mainly stone, with the worn remains of a once red carpet, now grey in most places, and extremely dusty, and an old, cracked light bulb hanging from the ceiling, swinging slightly from the breeze flowing through the glassless window near the door.
     Sitting on a stool at the desk, was the mad scientist himself, Dr. Milt VanDrake.
     A thin-lipped smile spread across VanDrake's wrinkled, colourless face. "At last," his ancient, deep voice boomed through the lab, "after years of slaving away, collecting parts and skin and feathers, years of hard work and calculations, finally my masterpiece is finished! I am no longer just a scientist, I am beyond doctor, I am a creator!" He looked over at the stretcher he had made after a fashion and muttered, "Unfortunately, I'm lousy at sewing." [Yeah I know I blatantly stole that joke from MAD Magazine]

"On the local news tonight, sightings of a giant mechanical chi-" The news reader stopped suddenly and leaned off the set, and mutterings could be heard along the lines of, "Is that right?", and, "Has someone been messing with the cards?" The man he was talking to answered, "That's what the witnesses said." The news reader turned back to the camera and cleared his throat. "Sightings of a giant mechanical chicken reported by several people." He was clearly trying very hard to keep a straight face.
     Watching the news, in a caravan littered with rubbish in the Kasulus Caravan Park, were five people. A young man in his mid twenties, a girl, about 10 years old, a middle aged man, a middle aged woman, and an elderly lady, about 80.
     "A giant mecaynaical chicken?", said the young man, "Thayt's impowssible! Hey dad! Yuh reckon thayt guy's full of it?"
     "Well, y'know Troy," said the middle aged man, "they're makin' a lotta advances with thayt technolology thang."
     "Well I thank it's total baloney!" the old woman said. "Giant mechanical chickens my wrinkled old butt!" She lit a cigarette.
     The little girl turned to the old woman. "Now put thayt out, grandma! You know thayt's bad fer yuh health."
     "Health shmealth! Ah gots ten years tops ta live, and I wanna enjoy 'em!"
     "Ah still don' believe in mechanical chickens, especially gian' ones!" said Troy.

In the cold lab of Dr. VanDrake, lighting flashed through the narrow window as VanDrake hunched over a stretcher on which lay his masterpiece. A fresh stitch was shown on its forehead where the brain had just been inserted. Outside it rained heavily.
     "Igor!" his voice boomed through the lab. "Get in here!"
     A small man with slightly green skin, wearing three pairs of glasses and carrying a tray burst into the room. "Yes master?" he asked, in a rough, high pitched voice.
     "Are all the fuses in place?"
     Igor placed the tray on VanDrake's desk and turned to the console next to the stretcher. Coming out of the console were at least ten wires, each running to different parts of the chicken. "All fuses in place, master."
     "Good," VanDrake replied. "Activation of the C-97 commencing. On the next flash of lightning, Igor, throw the switch." He could tell the storm was right over them, as the light from the lightning reached them at the same time as noise from the thunder.
     Igor peered over at the switch protruding from the console. "Yes, master." He said, letting out an insane cackle.
     Apart from the rain, there was silence. A very cold silence, thought VanDrake. Suddenly, CRACK! "NOW!!" he yelled, but Igor was already flipping down the massive switch. The lightning faded, and they watched the power scale on the console. The needle pointed to zero.
     "Damn it!" he shouted. He gave himself a few seconds to calm down, breathing heavily. He reached behind his back and grabbed a small but heavy sword from his desk. "Now we must wait for the next crack of lightning because of YOUR INCOMPETENCE!" As fast as the lightning that just struck, he swung the sword over his head and towards Igor. It hit Igor's hand, and his hand flew off and landed on the other side of the lab.
     "AAARGH!" screamed Igor as he fell onto the floor. Rats came out through holes in the walls and began devouring his hand. On the floor, he writhed in pain and bled all over the frayed carpet.
     VanDrake smiled slightly. "That, my apprentice, is what happens to people who fail." His tone grew harsh. "Now get up off the floor!"
     Igor pulled himself up, grabbing the console, still shaking. The last rat finished eating the flesh off Igor's hand, and scampered back into its hole, leaving a pile of bones sitting on the floor.
     "Now get ready, Igor!"
     "Yes master," he replied, hid voice still shaky. They waited. Then, CRACK!
     "NOW!!!" He yelled at the top of his voice, as Igor pulled the switch down again. A jolt of electricity came through, as the needle on the power scale pointed to 30%.Then, silence. "I'll kill you!!" VanDrake shouted, as he swung the sword again. This time it hit Igor's other hand.
     "EEEARGAAAHAHAH!!!" Igor screeched in agony, and fell to the floor again. This time, his hand landed at VanDrake's feet. VanDrake lifted a foot and slammed it down hard on Igor's hand with a crunch. He said nothing.
     "It looks like I'll have to do this myself." He placed his hand on the switch and waited. Looks like I'm the only person here with the skill, he thought darkly.
     And then, it happened. It was one of those moments when VanDrake was sure he could foresee the future. His hand moved down faster then the wing of a hummingbird. CRACK!!!! The power scale needle flew up to 100% as thousands of volts of electricity shot through the console, through the wires, and into the chicken. The current remained active for five seconds and then the console exploded and bits of metal, wood and rock flew everywhere. It didn't take long for the smoke and dust to clear, and when it did, VanDrake looked out from behind the console. He felt his head and found it was bleeding. He looked around and saw that the ceiling and walls had been blown out. Igor's remains lay on the ground near him. He looked into the horizon, and saw something white moving rapidly away from the castle. He glanced at the stretcher. It was empty.
     A smile spread across his face. "It's alive. The chicken is alive!!!!"

POSTSCRIPT: Everyone died.