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Trigatipede

Trigatipede

The days were growing shorter and the project's failure was becoming apparent. My

crew and I had been researching on a little island just south of Australia for over three

months, and we were making little progress. I was hired as the team leader for this excursion

by a private investor from some breakthrough zoo. The investor, a man by the name of

Henry Shrinton, asked me along with my crew to go down under to find new, unknown

animals. I found this request very unusual simply because my formal education had been in

DNA research, not biological hunts. Nevertheless, my grant from the University had run out

so I desperately needed funding. We had only found a new species of butterfly, and I feared

my return to the states with nothing to show of our three month stay. Our time was up,

however, and the crew and I left Australia disappointed and empty-handed.

At the airport in New York, I was greeted by Mr. Shrinton and a few of the other zoo

investors. They quickly hurried me into a stretched limousine, and then my life changed

forever. The investors asked me quite plainly if I would be willing to create their zoo for

them. At first I was unclear of the meaning, but quick clarification had me realizing the

enormous biological disasters such a project would generate. They wanted me to chemically

produce hybrid's of different animal species.

My first thought was that such a thing was impossible, but they showed me research

and experiments done by the government that proved it was possible. The investors sensed

my unwillingness and placed a briefcase in my lap. I opened it and found stacks of neatly

wrapped bills. It had to have been at least ten million dollars. I was informed that the

briefcase was merely an incentive and if I was able to successfully create one of their

creatures, then the payoff would be even larger.

I reluctantly agreed, still doubting my ability to do any such project. The investors

all smiled, shook my hand, and then dropped me off at what would become my home and

office. It was a little cabin in the middle of nowhere. As I entered the cabin I was astonished

to find at least a 4000 square foot basement that had been totally converted into the most

advanced chemical lab I had ever laid eyes on.

I worked day and night on the project, trying combinations of "simple" structured

animals. After three weeks of work I had finally made a breakthrough. By chemically

restructuring the DNA of a frog and rat I had produced a tadpole with hair. I was very

pleased with the results, as were the investors. They informed me, however, that such a

animal wouldn't attract enough visitors. They told me that the creatures had to be larger and

more unusual. Before they left, a white van pulled up to the cabin, and the driver began

unloading cooler after cooler. The investors said that they had brought the DNA of certain

animals and wanted them to be combined into one animal.

As I unpacked the coolers I found the labeled DNA very disturbing. There were five

coolers in all, labeled with each different animal. There was a Bengal Tiger, an African

Tree Frog, an American Fruit Bat, a centipede and a biohazard cooler labeled radon.

As I sat at my computer, trying to find possible matches to string all these animals

together, I began to imagine what the creature would look like, but I wasn't able to find a

suitable picture in my head. After two weeks I finally had found the necessary chains in the

DNA to combine the four creatures into one. I assumed that the Radon was the substance

that would best incubate the specimen during growth because the previous experiments by

the government also used a toxic chemical to speed up the mutation process.

Once I combined the restructured DNA with the Radon, I placed the embryo with the

new DNA into a reinforced steel cage, and sealed it with a clear plastic, developed by NASA

for use in the space shuttles. The cage was built at the request of the investors by a former

NASA engineer. I expected an incubation period of at least a month, which was the average

gestation period of the four animals. Quite horrifically though, the creature became full

grown in just six hours. It was the most revolting creature I had ever seen, and it's odor was

almost as bad as it's appearance. I was quite intrigued, however, with the manner in which

all the animals had combined into one. The head of the animal was a triangular shape with

the chin coming to a point. It had two eyes on the top of it's head which I attributed to the

frog DNA. It's ears were pointed and were placed on either side of the two frog eyes. Since

the ears were quite hairy and pointed, I imagined that they were the result of the bat DNA.

The mouth sat just above the chin and was filled with huge carnivorous teeth, much like a

tiger's. The nose was one of the only features that couldn't be explained. It was positioned

correctly on the head, but it was very similar to the snout of a pig. My only theory was that

some of the DNA strands were contaminated with other animals. Strangely there was also a

single eye, about the size of the mouth, centered on the forehead just above the nose. I

imagined that this was the result of the toxic material. The head sat on top of a huge tiger

body that was supported by three pairs of legs. The multiple number of legs was the only

evidence that the centipede DNA successfully combined with the others. The usual black

tiger stripes were replaced with deep red stripes that seemed to encase the body. Even it's

tail took on these unusual markings. This, I believed, was a combination of the normal tiger

markings and the markings of the African Tree Frog. On it's back was a huge pair of

deformed bat wings. This was far beyond anything I could have imagined.

After observing it for a while, I determined that it predominately took on the tiger's

characteristics. It's walk was that of a predator, and the additional legs seemed to add to it's

agility inside the cage. It's frog eyes searched desperately for insects, but continually failed

at convincing it's tiger tongue to catch them. I was curious as to whether the batwings were

functional or not, but I found their deformity far too severe to be able to function as wings of

flight.

Once the investors arrived at my lab they were as disgusted by the creature as I was.

They decided that such a creature would be far too repulsive to display, and asked that I

terminate the creature, along with my other experiments, immediately. I understood their

concerns, and frankly, was relieved with the prospects of once again enjoying a normal life.

I couldn't, however, discern how I should go about killing this creature that just 8 hours ago

had been nothing more than data on my computer. I determined that filling it's cage with

lethal gas would be the easiest way to kill the animal while avoiding actual contact. The

investors stood by as I allowed the toxic fumes to engulf the creature in the cage. It quickly

fell to the floor. After fifteen minutes I began to clear the cage of it's fumes. As soon as the

gas was cleared the creature darted to top of the cage and with one big swipe with it's arm,

tore open the cage and flew out. My assumptions about the deformed wings had been

wrong. The wings had just not had time to dry out, much like a butterflies wings when it

first emerges from it's cocoon.

The investors and I ran to a small lab in the back of the larger laboratory. We sealed

the door shut and looked at each other with astonishment. I stared passed the investors, into

the laboratory, in time to see the creature breakthrough the basement window and fly

towards the forest.

Mr. Shrinton was the first to break the silence. He declared that the best way to

handle the situation was to simply destroy any evidence that it ever happened. The other

investors nodded in agreement and breathed sighs of relief. I, on the other hand, began to

realize what I had done. The surrounding eco-system would be destroyed in a matter of days

if the creature were to be allowed to just kill freely. It's genetic make-up allowed for a diet

of nearly anything; rodents, bugs, cows; anything that a tiger, centipede, frog or bat would

eat, this creature would eat as well. Still, I was sworn to secrecy about any of the

experiments and their results.

I regret to say that my cowardliness, coupled with the extra 50 million dollars given

to me by the investors, has kept the truth from the world for over ten years now. Recently,

though, I have read reports of similar creatures being seen in the surrounding forests. I fear

that this creature may have somehow reproduced. If this is the case, then all people must be

warned of it's capability. Unfortunately, I only have a few months to live due to the high

doses of radiation I exposed myself to during the experiments. Please inform the public of

this creature. They deserve to know. I can't keep this a secret anymore.

Source: Essay UK - http://www.essay.uk.com/coursework/trigatipede.php



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