Dr. Gabriel Rockwell’s experiments in behavioral science had always been considered odd. Some of his fellow scientists at the institute, (despite their respect for him) would secretly question the validity of Dr. Rockwell’s stats from his research. Still, the board members running the institute were satisfied with the results and continued to approve funding for all of Dr. Rockwell’s experiments. The latest one that recently concluded discovered yet even more significant understandings of the human mind with unfortunate consequences.
“Project- Colorblind” was simple in its theory. Dr. Rockwell hypothesized that, if a person suffering from a psychotic disorder were to be exposed to an environment comprised completely of one color over an extended time period- the result would be that their behavior would drastically change for the better. Miss Arlene Woodard had been the first subject chosen to undergo the test. Miss Woodward had was serving a life sentence in prison for the brutal murder of her entire family. On March 1st, Dr. Rockwell had Miss Woodward moved into a special house that was constructed just for the experiment. The entirety of the house was fabricated completely in one primary color. Every piece of furniture within the four room house, including walls and floors, were decorated in a bright sunny yellow. The subject would have no contact with the outside world or any other colors for a period of ninety days. She would be videotaped throughout the entire process and closely monitored by Dr. Rockwell’s team under secrecy. Miss Woodward was provided with substantial supplies to cook her own meals and take care of personal hygiene. All the food and toiletries were previously dyed or made out of yellow materials, made by a seperate division of the institute.
At the end of ninety days, Dr. Rockwell would conclude the experiment and inform Miss. Woodward that the test was over. What Dr. Rockwell was greeted by upon entering the house was a very different Miss Woodward than the one who entered the structure ninety days before. She displayed no more violent tendencies or thoughts towards others. Miss Woodward was now a polite and approachable woman with a radiant smile. She was quite docile and expressed how happy she was to have company over to “her home”. All memories of her past life (before the experiment) had apparently vanished, with her not remembering any of it. Dr. Rockwell had even jokingly compared her to a “50’s sitcom wife” to one of his colleagues about Miss Woodward’s behavior and look.
Dr. Rockwell was initially pleased with the results. Then, something went horribly wrong. Miss Woodward insisted that Dr.Rockwell and the two accompanying scientists stay for some home baked refreshments and a hot beverage. The invitation was accepted and a few minutes later, Arlene returned from her kitchen holding a serving tray. According to Dr. Rockwell in his statement to the police after the incident, Arlene suddenly became agitated by the complete lack of interest in what she had served. She proceeded then to grab a fork off the serving tray and plunged it directly into the neck of one of the scientists. She was erratic in her movements, screaming out obscenities about “her cooking always being hated”. Institute security soon arrived and subdued Miss Woodward in a straitjacket. It was only later discovered after a closer look into Miss Woodward’s background that a possible reason was uncovered for the accident. The original motive behind the murders of Miss Woodward’s family, was the constant criticism she would receive from her family about her cooking skills. Over an eleven year period, every single meal that Miss Woodward prepared for them was ridiculed and sometimes either ignored or thrown out in disgust. This apparently was still a deeply rooted trigger for Miss Woodward and how the scientists reacted to her current culinary offerings, caused her to have a complete psychotic breakdown.
In his exit interview from the institute, Dr.Rockwell stated, “I still feel the experiment was a success. Being surrounded by the existence of one color in an individual’s world does indeed alter even the most violent personalities. My error was in its initial effects to a perfectly normal person. Miss Woodward became quite a decent cook in the ninety days of the experiment. However, the appearance of yellowed tea served with yellow brownies was simply a ghastly site to myself, Dr. Renow and the late Dr. Corrigan, God rest his soul. Ironically, Arlene’s brownies were quite tasty, once you closed your eyes and took a bite”.
Written for the Haunted Wordsmith’s daily prompt for April, 30 (Long overdue!) and Fandago’s FOWC prompt – “Stats’.
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