Dr. Fatsber was busy in his giant Laboratory working on a project when Dr. Solomon entered. He glanced around and saw upturned test tubes on the white floor of the lab. Beakers stood empty and the usual clean and neat lab was reeking of a noxious smell. Dr. Solomon turned in surprise to Dr. Fatsber and saw the worst of him. His normal tidy hair were standing on his head and his white coat was now multicolored. He was busy adding fluids to a flask, so engrossed in his work, not noticing the presence of Dr. Solomon.
‘Doctor?’ Dr. Solomon asked cautiously, coming to stand next to him.’ What are you doing?’
Distracted, Dr. Fatsber looked up and barely managed to say ’just an experiment’
before bending down on his work again.
‘What kind of experiment?’ Dr. Solomon asked, immediately alert, for Dr. Fatsber was famous for failing experiments, ruining fluids and making explosions in their department. Being head of department, Dr. Solomon always had to suffer the wrath of the head of laboratory for the wasted ingredients. But Dr. Solomon listened to the preaching in silence every time Dr. Fatsber did something wrong and instead Solomon was scolded but he never told Fatsber off because he had a feeling one day Fatsber would succeed to make something useful and wonderful that could change the world or perhaps discover an astonishing fact which no one knew. Or maybe, one of his experiments would miraculously go right.
And boy, was he right.
Dr. Solomon stood by his side, watching Fatsber as he worked, exclaiming in a low voice every now and then, as he poured chemical ingredients to make a smooth cerulean solution.
After a while, Dr. Solomon, who could no longer bear the silence, cleared his throat, making Fatsber jump.
‘Um…so, what kind of mixture are you trying to make?’ Dr. Solomon asked, trying to sound interested.
‘Well, it was supposed to be a gas. I think I’ll convert it into a gas. It’s easy. I won’t ruin the surprise for you but I can hint you one thing. After drinking this, no one will be successful to keep their faces straight and be serious all the time.’ And with that, Dr. Fatsber grinned and went back to his work.
‘Uh-huh. Nice.’ Dr. Solomon mumbled, thinking that when this gas will be made, he’ll come and test it himself. Then he proceeded back to his laboratory. He was only halfway there when he heard a low sparkling sound from Dr. Fatsber’s lab. Before he could turn around, a loud explosion sounded, blowing him off him feet and losing consciousness.
Derrek was standing in front of his friend’s house when he heard the blast and felt himself being thrown off his feet. He clutched the door’s handle to stop himself from falling and looked over to the place which had erupted. It was the experimental science laboratory. ‘What the….’ He muttered, moving forward. ‘Oh god!’ he exclaimed as he saw the debris of the lab and the broken things from where he was standing. Before he could check out anything else, his friend, Tom’s house door burst open and out he came running, confused and anxious with his older brother.
“What’s happening? We heard a blast.’ Tom yelled over the alarms of ambulance and shouts of people.
‘I …uh dunno. A loud thunderous voice sounded and that laboratory exploded. Derreck said, pointing at the remains of Laboratory.
‘Come on, let’s check it out’ Tom’s elder brother, Joe said jogging over to the rubble.
Mr. Monis was being served breakfast from Mrs. Monis while he was watching the morning news.
‘Have you heard?’ he asked Mrs. Monis who was now serving coffee.
‘What?’ she asked.
‘The laboratory of chemicals exploded yesterday. It was a bad sight. The shops next to it were also damaged. Who knows, the chemicals might have been mixed with the other items. I hope they didn’t have a gas in there that is released.’ Mr. Monis explained, sighing.
‘Oh.’ Mrs. Monis said, looking worried too. ‘Then we must take care.’
Everyone was sitting quietly and eating their dinner. Just the occasional clinking of glass and the noise of cutlery. It was then that the father of the household, who was a police officer started laughing. Everyone looked at him, taken aback. The look they saw on his face was shock too.
‘Are you okay?’ the mother asked.
‘What……. No……. why am…. I……laughing………. stop…….me’ the father said between laughing, but his face was still astounded, and he was gripping his neck as though wanting to stop but could not.
‘Daddy?’ his young 5-year-old asked, her face troubled. ‘Mummy?’ she turned to her mother when her father did not answer.
‘I… let me call the hospital. Wait here….’ She instructed as she ran upstairs, her face shocked.
Father was not gripping the table tightly as he laughed.
‘Mummy.’ The girl screamed as her father slumped on the table breathing slowly, still laughing.
The cases were increasing. All around the country, people were laughing and laughing for no particular reason. They couldn’t even stop when they wanted to. The first case, a police officer’s, was the worst. He kept on laughing so hard it was a matter of time when he died due to asthma attacks. More people were dying and the virus of laughing was spreading like a disease, widely. No one could figure out the cause of it.
‘Sir! Sir!’ Officer Percy called Officer Nox as he was passing by his office.
‘Yes, Officer?’ The head police, Officer Nox asked.
‘I’ve just received a message from the officers who were looking through the remains of the laboratory.’ He paused for dramatic effect. When none came, he continued quickly, looking as though neglected. ‘Well, they said they found an alive but badly hurt person under the rubble. Doctors say he might die or can live. We need to reach there now, sir, and ask him…. ask…. him…. ask….’ He paused, his mind working quickly. ‘Sir? Can the laughing disease probably be the result of a gas from the laboratory?’ Percy asked, his eyes growing in wonder at his own thought.
The hospital room was all white. A badly injured man was lying on the bed his eyes on the officers. He had told them everything he knew.
‘So,’ Officer Nox asked looking at the wounded man ‘Dr. Solomon. You are saying that scientist Fatsber succeeded in making this gas to help everyone laugh?’
‘Well, yes he told me that no one can be serious or resist laughing due to this…. thing.
‘And he did not tell you any cure?’ Officer Percy asked.
‘Well, you know he was just experimenting a thing, it must have succeeded but at that moment something accidental must have happened so everything exploded. So The gas is released and there’s no cure. It’s a miracle that I am alive.’ Dr. Solomon said, Shuddering.
‘So if we don’t know the chemicals of gas, how can we make a cure?’ One of the other officers said in a frustrated voice.
‘We will discover one.’ Officer Nox said confidently. ‘In the meantime, everyone will have to take safety measures.’ Officer Nox got up and told Solomon. ‘Get well soon. We will need you.’ And with that he left the hospital.
Everyone was wearing masks nowadays to avoid that gas. People were seldom coming out. The air was being cleaned as people planted more trees. Even if they won’t get the cure, the air was soon to be fresh and clean like before. Dr. Fatsber’s wonderful, or seeing the results: horrible, experiment had worked finally, as he managed to make a laughing gas but did not live to see it work.