“Desperate times require desperate measures.” Bartolo bowed to his old mentor and opened a door in front of him. Ambrosius stepped into a dark house and was horrified by what he saw there. Bartolo transformed his home into a combination of a cabinet of curiosities, place of torture, and laboratory. A few plague victims were lying on the tables for an autopsy, huge rats were making squeaking noise trying to escape their cells, a long table next to a wall was littered with alchemical tableware and papers, and there were bunches of cold magical figures on the floor. “Some plague victims can recover on their own, and afterwards, they become immune to the disease. I found a way to transmit this immunity to others. At least it almost perfectly works on rats.” Bartolo continued.
“Almost?” Genuinely shocked Ambrosius couldn’t think of anything to say at that moment. Bartolo loudly clapped his hands, and all rats hid in the corners of their cells stopped making any noise. Suddenly, a closet door opened, and a rat as big as a donkey entered the room. Mechanisms on its back were connected to its face mask by special tubes, and it had some bald spots on its fur caused by the plague disease.
“This is my best test subject.” Bartolo came closer to the rat and patted it on its mask. “Some effects are still unresolved as this process is deadly for humans and goblins. And I didn’t test it on other species.”
“Listen, you can be banished from the Guild for what you do. They assume you do something illegal, but I’ll tell them you’re trying to find a cure. I was assigned to figure that out and report about your activities. Gazzini discovered a way to stop the outbreak, and the council orders all guild participants to use only this method.” Ambrosius reacted with revulsion.
“I understand. You’re obviously not thrilled with my work, but you promised to cover it up. What Michelle offered you for that?”
“Burn all the infected and everyone who is under suspicion.”
“Desperate times require desperate measures.” Bartolo smiled thinking over the phrase he said a few minutes ago. He packed some notations and vials, took his scythe and saddled up the rat.
“As the council endorsed such measures, I don’t need to hide my work. It’s interesting to see their reaction when they see this thing.” The healer handed Ambrosius a test tube. “Meet the Plague at its purest form.”