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63 Six Years Ago

 "Mutagen..."

Gen. Miguel murmured as he roamed his eyes across the room. His gaze stopped at one corner of the room and approached before pulling the chair placed there towards the desk and sat on it.

"What are you doing?"

Prof. Isaach asked.

"You did not invite me to sit down so I just helped myself."

"Don't you have more things to do?"

"I do but I needed to know the details first before I pass the report to others."

The professor looked at him with disbelieving eyes.

"I already compiled every single findings we had so far in those reports! Seriously you..."

"You know that I'm a person who doesn't read too much. Can we get back to topic?"

"I'm really surprised how did you get into that position given that attitude of yours. Now, where are we again?"

"Don't worry about that, I keep up my image good in the eyes of the public. Back to the topic, you stopped at the name of the pathogen. My next question for you is why the children are more susceptible to the mutation caused by the Neutral Strain?"

Isaac nodded at the General's question.

"There are no clear causes but the most reasonable reason is because the children are still undergoing a period that we adults are already done with. We adults, our physiques change overtime due to different causes but we already stopped growing while the children are still in their growth period. Their growth is being influenced by the Neutral Strain in their bodies."

"Then, what about the mutants?"

"Which mutants? The mutated Z-types or the Mutators?"

"Z-types? Mutators?"

"The Z-types are those infected that turned. That was what we labeled them. Those running pathogen spreaders were the Z-type 1 while those undead infected were the Z-type 2. Under them were the mutations we called Z-type 1a, Z-type 1b and so on. The Mutators on the other hand were the people who mutated after being bitten but they are different from the Z-types."

"What is the difference between the two kinds of mutants?"

"Even though both variants originated from people who were bitten, the mutated infected remained zombie like while Mutators retained their consciousness to some extent and gained superhuman abilities. And the mutant variants from the latter kind cannot infect others. The mutated strain in their bodies already merged with their DNA after they mutated."

"Then the mutated people first. Did your team find out why they became like that? Most people bitten turned into those zombie like infected while these people are very rare aren't they?"

In response to that question, Prof. Isaach took out a remote from the drawer below his desk and changed the feed being shown by the monitors.

There were two people who were staying in different rooms was shown in the monitors. One was a man in his thirty's while the other was a woman in her teens.

The man looked human. No, he's definitely a human. He sat on his bed reading a book. On the other feed however, it showed the teenaged girl whose arms and neck was covered in snake scales. She was tied up with chains and was unconscious.

"Yes, they are really rare. As you can see, these two are the only instances that we can observe. Well, there's actually the other one."

"The guy that was already killed, right?"

"That's right. We still haven't found the reason why they did not turn into those Z-types since we can't observe the pathogen that changed them but there is only one theory we're looking into. It is the compatibility of the mutated strain to their DNA. Still, the proof we gathered is not enough to prove this conjecture.

Also, there are two variants to that. First is that man who successfully mutated without any issues who is a "Successful Mutation". He looked like normal right now but his strength was higher than an average human and if he activated his ability as a Mutator, his muscles will bulge and his strength would be multiplied by several times. The second variant is that girl over there which are the "Failed Mutations"."

Prof. Isaach pointed at the monitor showing the unconscious girl.

"She is like that man we had to put down earlier. During initial stages of their mutation, they retained their consciousness but as the mutation started to spread through their bodies, they started to lose control over their body. I personally asked this girl earlier how she felt during the initial stages of her mutation. Can you guess what she said?"

Prof. Isaach paused waiting for the General's answer.

"Nothing comes into mind."

"She said that there was another consciousness, a more savage and uncontrollable one eroding her own and wrestles over the control of her body. Once her mutation ends, she would be like that man who lost reason and behaved like a savage beast. You know, I suspected that those strong savage mutants that came out of the crashed planes are in the similar circumstances."

The General nodded then looked at the professor.

"I remember that those mutants were attacking the Z-types and vice-versa."

"It's true, we already observed it. The Z-types and Failed Mutators don't acknowledge each other but don't be complacent that they would kill each species. It's just a mild theory but there is a possibility that Failed Mutators grow by defeating Z-types and Z-types will mutate further after eating the bodies of dead Mutators. Still, whoever wins will become a danger to our existence as humans."

The general massaged his temple as he felt his headache getting stronger as he listened further. Still, he needed to know what he must know to properly guide the people in this camp to survival.

"Actually, the circumstances with the Failed Mutators reminded me of the event six years ago."

Prof. Isaach closed his eyes as he reminisced.

"What event?"

"Oh right. I forgot that you're still a lower ranking soldier that time so it was no wonder that you didn't know."

The professor looked at his two assistants who sat on another table on the other side of the room.

"It's the event that caused me to be taken in by the government. Remember the large meteor that was about collide to Earth and was shot down using a missile by the American Aeronautics Institute six years ago? There was an event hidden to the public at that time. Before, I can't tell you but who cares much about the confidential bull stuff the government enforces right now."

The General listened intently as he really had no idea about what Prof. Isaach was saying aside from the things disclosed to the public.

"Even if the meteor exploded, several fragments of the meteor still entered earth. What was hidden to the public was that the fragments that crashed into earth had a property that changed the bodies of the people who came in contact with it. Unfortunately, it seemed that the fallen fragments mysteriously disappear after being held by people so I never really saw the fragments myself.

According to description, the fragments looked like a crystal with a deep violet color about the size of a marble. And even though it just fell from outer space, it did not create any crater, did not discharge radiation and did not even release heat.

There were two reported sightings of those fragments falling into our country. One was in an orphanage in Quezon province while another was in a rural area in Bacoor."

Prof. Isaach spread his hands towards his assistants.

"These two children were the orphans who came in contact of the fragment that landed in Quezon. After the examination and experiments that I conducted on them, their bodies evolved and gained abilities like the Successful Mutators. But you know, they had the same symptoms like the failed mutators back then. They had another consciousness in their minds trying to corrode them and wanted to take control of their bodies. Fortunately, the foreign consciousness was weak. The corrosion failed and they retained their minds after "devouring" the foreign consciousness."

The two assistants nodded with a smile hearing what the professor.

"That's..."

The general could not believe what he just heard as he started at the two. He looked back towards the Professor and questioned him.

"Wait a minute. Aren't they valuable pieces for research? Why did they become your assistants? If what you said is true, then they should already be taken away by those greedy pigs?"

"HAHAHA"

The Professor laughed loudly.

"I bluffed the results of my research back then. Their bodies might have evolved but the structure of their bodies did not change. Because of that, unless these two children showed their abilities, other people will only think that they are normal. Six years ago, just think how old these two are back then. As if I will give these good children to those corrupt people who only think for themselves. Using the pretense that these two children grew closer to me, I adopted them after they were released when the research ended."

"I see. You're lucky that you managed to pull that off."

"Of course! Those pigs in the upper brass know nothing but fatten their pockets making them easier to fool when it came to terms regarding science."

"By the way, you said that there was another fragment that fell in Bacoor. What happened to it?"

Prof. Isaach shrugged his shoulders to that question.

"No one knows what happened to that. The Special Forces dispatched there located the ground zero but found nothing. No witnesses, no fragments, no anything. It was likely that the fragment was found by someone but that person was not found until now."