The Bullpen Ch. 06byWonderstorm©
"There are some kinks to be worked out, for sure," Bill Forrester agreed with the group of men and women around him. "Side effects, bodily responses, more accurate predictions, et cetera, et cetera. But we're not going to be able to isolate the secondary responses to the deuterotone without further testing."
"Meaning...?" This came from Ken Hastings, Forrester's direct superior and the chief operating officer of Connecticut Pharmaceuticals, in its entirety. He was a balding man, in his mid-fifties, a bit pudgy like Forrester himself. And, over the course of the previous few weeks, he'd been playing devil's advocate to those who had been short-of-breath due to the excitement of Erica Rivers's experiment.
"Meaning," Jake Rinaldi interjected, "that we won't be able to isolate whether the concomitant is an individual psychological response to unrelated stimuli, or an effect of the deuterotone itself, without moving forward with Phase One trials."
Rinaldi was the most junior executive in the room, a vice president in a throng of executive vice presidents, senior vice presidents, and members of the Board. He was, however, Forrester's right-hand man, with direct responsibilities for the Human Hormones Lab, among other things. It was Rinaldi who worked directly with lead scientists, research principals, and – in this case – with Dr. Natalie Hart, director of the Human Hormones Lab itself. Thus, Rinaldi was perhaps the most informed person in the room, aside from maybe the peroxide blonde technician behind the ops desk, or the naked scientist writhing on the floor behind him.
There were fifteen men and women in all - not including Wendy Milne, who watched the group with disinterest from the far side of the room. Forrester had assembled the Board of Directors and all of management that Monday evening, leading them down to ConnPharm's state-of-the-art data collection device, the Bullpen. The Executive Vice President of Corporate Strategy, the Senior Vice President of Sales and Marketing, the Senior Vice President of Finance, the Chief Medical Officer, ConnPharm's General Counsel, Hastings the COO, and even Andrew Donnelly, the Chairman, President, and CEO, stood before him, peering through the one-way glass at the dark-haired woman confined to the Bullpen. They were joined by the seven members of the Board, six men and one woman, all of whom seemed enthralled in the peep show to which they were being indulged.
Erica Rivers could have perhaps better explained the science behind her recent breast augmentation, but Rinaldi had kept the group's visit from the scientist, and had instructed Wendy Milne to do the same. There were concerns about Erica's erratic behavior over the past few weeks, and Rinaldi had doubted that the girl would be able to divorce herself from the various perversions she had wallowed in to adequately respond to the queries of management and the Board.
Even now, despite being entirely unaware of the twelve men and three women on the other side of the mirror glass, Erica was on her knees, bent over and supporting herself on her left elbow, with her posterior in the air. Her right hand was moving rapidly back and forth between her legs, and it was clear to all present that the girl was both gasping for air and moaning with gratification. Thankfully to some, and perhaps disappointingly to others, Erica remained facing the wall to the left of the Bullpen, meaning her left leg blocked a direct vista of her vagina itself. Her forehead was resting against her left forearm, inches from the plastic keyboard she'd been heavily engaged with just minutes earlier.
Projected onto the wall were a series of biochemical structures, hardly pornographic, hardly arousing. Forrester and Rinaldi had both warned their audience that they might be exposed to "questionable" content being projected in the Bullpen, but Erica hadn't needed visual depictions of nudity and sex to start masturbating sixteen days earlier, and she apparently didn't need them now, either.
"Shouldn't the deuterotone be out of her system by now?" Michael Yamamoto, the Chief Medical Officer, asked quizzically. His eyes remained fixed on the black-haired woman before him, but he seemed to be looking at her as a puzzle, and not as sexual object. Yamamoto had mostly been detached from the deuterotone project, though his underlings in Medical Oversight had nearly shut it down. He, like many in ConnPharm's upper management, had doubted the results of Dick Abbott's report – it seemed less likely that sweet, conservative Erica Rivers had been masking a vulgar exhibitionist streak all these years, and more likely that she was simply reacting to the drugs in her system. But the deuterotone had run its course, and after the girl's final injection seven days earlier, the compound should have been flushed.
Which left Yamamoto, among others, to begin wondering if Dick Abbott's report was indeed correct.
"There are trace amounts," Rinaldi conceded, but it was clear from his answer, and his tone, that even he had begun to believe that Erica's behavior was psychologically-induced, and not thrust upon her by foreign chemistry. He added, "And I should note that, even in the week following Dr. Rivers's first injection, the level of deuterotone in her system was no higher than the level of testosterone in the bodies of each and every man in this room."
"So she's a...?" Jane Allard, the head of sales and marketing, obviously wanted to finish the question with a range of choice words, from slut, to whore, to nymphomaniac, but she instead just let her voice trail off.
"She was a poor choice for this early analysis," Rinaldi answered, diplomatically, "given the amount of exposure she has undergone, and given what sort of personality quirks may or may not have existed in the recesses of her subconscious."
"On the one hand," Forrester stepped in, "we have twelve years worth of trials and experiments on rats and rabbits and chimps. We have a mountain of data, and any number of models that should predict side effects in the human body. On the other, we have one early analysis, performed upon a woman who might very well be battling her own inner demons and repression."
"But the science works," Donnelly said flatly. He had been quiet for much of the expedition into the Observation Room, taking in the beautiful girl that was hunched over on the clinically white floor of the Bullpen. Her paced had lessened, and the heaving of her chest had slowed with it. If she'd hadn't just orgasmed and was coming down, than she was slowly building to her climax.
"The science works," Forrester agreed. "We overshot the model a bit, but individual body chemistry is always going to prevent us from being exact."
Donnelly raised an eyebrow.
"She was shooting for a D-cup, Andrew," the head of research and development explained. "She's a double D."
"From a B-cup?" Harriet Vanoza asked. She was a member of the Board, a successful biochemistry professor at the state's university in Storrs.
The room was silent for a moment, each person staring in at Erica, each one of them lingering upon the girl's breasts, dangling down beneath her in the Bullpen.
"If the science works," Donnelly began, "and we're at least fifty percent sure that Dr. Rivers's behavior is, in fact, Dr. Rivers, and not the deuterotone, then I'd recommend that we go forth with the Phase One trials. Stephanie," he gestured to the General Counsel, Stephanie Smith, who stood behind him, "can do a more thorough examination of whatever sort of legal implications we might be opening ourselves up to."
Donnelly looked to Forrester, and asked, "Do we need to do a psych evaluation on our subjects?"
Forrester looked to Rinaldi, who responded for his boss. "It won't be an issue, if we're not using the Bullpen. I doubt, very much, that Dr. Rivers's idiosyncrasies would have been triggered to the degree they were, had she remained fully clothed and gone home every night."
"Hmm," Donnelly replied. After a few moments, he turned to Ed Mollohan, the head of corporate strategy, and ordered, "Get in touch with Jagdesh Trivedi and Elisabeth Parker at Green College."
Turning to the others, he explained, "If we do this, I want a small, contained community, like Hancock, New Hampshire, and I want both professors involved, Trivedi on the biochemistry side, and Parker on the women's issues."
Donnelly's eyes moved away from his executives and his Board, and back to the shorthaired scientist, whom he swore was barking curse words through her climax. The sound was muffled by the heavy amounts of sensors, wiring, and glass between the Bullpen and the Observation Room, and given that none of the others was standing as close as the CEO, he doubted that the others had heard the same string of expletives. All of them, however, saw Erica roll onto her backside, satiated for the time being.
Glancing at Rinaldi, Donnelly suggested, "Have one of your people put together a reception for Wednesday of next week – in one of the function rooms upstairs, or at a restaurant nearby. Invite the Human Hormone staff, the technical staff, the Board, everyone here, and so on. Self-control aside, that little girl has done a bang-up job on this project, and I want to make sure that we all know how appreciative we are of her sacrifices."
Donnelly looked back at the naked girl. Was it truly a personality fault that had set the girl off? Was she truly in the possession of a subconscious tic that had been the impetus behind her behavior? Or would another woman, given the same external stimuli, react that same way? Did the women around him – Smith, Allard, Professor Vanoza – secretly harbor the fantasy of being a wanton sex object? A nude goddess?
Perhaps it was an experiment for another time.
Hannah Cho slid her card key through the slot next to the Observation Room's door. The light blinked three times, and the biologist was allowed in; into the small universe that her friend had made her home for the past four and a half weeks.
Erica was locked away in the Bullpen, watching something on the projection screen, something Hannah thought was familiar, but did not recognize or give much thought. She was, unsurprisingly, knuckle-deep in her own pussy, seated with her back against the wall and her legs spread wide before her. Initially, Hannah had been extremely uncomfortable about seeing her friend masturbate. But now, though the awkwardness had not dissipated completely, she was no longer shocked to find Erica in the throes of self-pleasure, in the Bullpen or out of it.
Colin Eggert was hunched over the ops desk, making sure the programs he'd spent the past few days on would all run smoothly once he'd gone home for the night. The Bullpen constantly needed to be tweaked, repaired, and improved, and the demands upon Colin didn't stop with the deuterotone project – he was running analyses for Dr. van Guilder, doing prep work for Dr. Brigham, and completing feasibility studies for people like Hannah Cho. To Hannah, it seemed as if Colin's life, at least lately, had been all work and no play – he was probably looking forward to the end of the experiment as much as Erica was, to find his release.
Hannah was dressed casually, wearing a pair of straight-legged, grey wool pants, closed-toed shoes, and a simple white-with-blue-stripes blouse. She had, slung over one shoulder, a small bag, which she set down in front of Erica's locker. Erica's pink panties, long hung on the hook inside her open locker, had mysteriously disappeared a few days earlier, though the scientist herself seemed unconcerned.
Hannah's hair was shorter than it had been the previous week. She had explained to Erica, and to others, that the nude girl's new haircut – courtesy of Colin – had inspired her to trim her locks, as well. Hannah had gone for a trim that weekend, and Erica had received another on Monday.
Erica's experiment was entering its final week, and given the enormous breasts she now possessed, it seemed as if it had been a success. Most of the deuterotone had been flushed from her system, but the final seven days in the Bullpen were both necessary and precautionary. Erica and Noah wanted to make sure that their subject's body was, in fact, clear of their artificial hormone. It was also important that Erica's readings closely matched those of her first week in the Bullpen, when they had recorded her baselines.
Though Erica wasn't quite sure why Colin needed to trim her hair back again, she hadn't questioned him. He'd done a halfway respectable job the first time, and Erica knew that she could visit a salon in just over a week if there was repair work to be done. Her black strands were brought back above her chin, and though it didn't look quite as professional as her Korean friend's hair, Erica had to admit that it didn't look awful.
If anything, the haircut had allowed Erica another escape from the Bullpen; on Monday morning, the technical staff had met with the lab staff to discuss a few "irregularities" in some of the readings.
During Erica's forays into the Observation Room, she was forced to wear a corset, of sorts. Equipped with similar technologies and sensors that were built into the very walls of the Bullpen, the corset covered little, leaving Erica's tits bouncing out in the open before her, and keeping her pussy exposed, as well. In the first few weeks, Erica had hated the corset – she had a measure of denial behind the mirror-glass as to who was looking in at her, and she felt that the little amount that the corset covered only drew more attention to those parts that were not. But, as the days passed, Erica began looking forward to her time in the Observation Room. She began enjoying the looks from her co-workers, she began feeling more comfortable with her body, and she began getting off on them watching her get off. If nothing else, Erica looked forward to escaping the sweet smell of her sex that had engulfed the interior of the Bullpen, owing the scientist's near constant self-pleasure.
But the corset had its limitations. Readings were not as encyclopedic as those obtained by the Bullpen, which both the lab staff and the technical staff knew going into the experiment. But Erica needed time outside the small room, for food and exercise, and they'd agreed that the corset was a necessary evil.
Lately, however, there'd been problems of "phantom heartbeats" and confused readings. In addition to Erica's own information, the corset would pick up data from seemingly thin air – most of it garbage. Most of the Bullpen's staff believed that it was a problem with the corset – the tactile waves in the Bullpen were perfectly calculated for the rectangular box in which Erica sat. The corset was not. The misreadings seemed to happen during periods of increased heart rate, shallow breathing, and vaginal contraction – while Erica was bringing herself to climax outside the Bullpen. It didn't happen every time, though, and the technicians couldn't get the problem to recur during examination.
Erica had been quite willing to fuck herself in the Observation Room that Monday morning, to see if Colin could isolate the problem. She spread out, on her back, on the floor of the exercise area, and went to work. While Colin and Marty Coombs pored over the readings, Erica reached orgasm with one of her vibrators. And then with a simple dildo. And then with a different vibrator. And then with a different dildo. They were simply unable to recreate the problem.
Colin had been concerned, at first, about the timing of one of the malfunctions. That previous Saturday evening, when he had fucked both Erica and his wife every which way, the corset had misfired and picked up a second heartbeat. Colin grew concerned that his physical proximity to the girl, or Jamie's, had caused the misread. He said nothing about this to his staff, or to the lab staff, but he shot a troubled look at Erica, who didn't seem as anxious about being discovered as Colin.
But the echoes had first appeared the previous Tuesday, and had popped up a few times since then, when Colin was off-duty. Erica assured him, in private, that he was the only man she'd been with in the past four weeks, and Colin was left scratching his head.
In the end, it was Natalie Hart that stepped in. Since the problem seemed to be occurring between the hours of five in the afternoon through one in the morning, Erica would be forbidden from leaving the Bullpen outside the hours of nine to five. They'd gotten much more liberal with her trips into the Observation Room over the previous few weeks, and though there were only a few isolated instances of technology failures, it didn't seem to hurt to try and stop them from happening again.
Secondly, Erica was asked to refrain from masturbating outside of the Bullpen. Natalie had been the one to tell Erica.
"No one's asking you to stop altogether," the blonde had assured the girl. "It's not an issue of decency, or any sort of puritanical notion. You can touch yourself from the moment the door closes until the moment it opens again – I don't care. But you're going to have to remember some semblance of self-control for the short sojourns in the corset."
Erica had acquiesced to her boss's wishes. Self-control had not been her strength, of late, but she did not want to compromise her experiment if she didn't need to. She, alone, realized that the problem wasn't her masturbation, or the toys, or even the corset, exactly – it was the fact that she kept getting too close to her sexual partners. Colin had been right about his presence, and Jamie's, that Saturday night. On the other occasions, Erica had been gasping in ecstasy as Wendy had eaten her out, for the total cost of $600 to date.
The hard part would be giving up her toys, though. Mike Takahashi had carried Erica's entire cooler out of the Observation Room on Monday afternoon, on Natalie's instruction. The older woman assured her protégé, who was visibly upset, that they'd be safe in Erica's office until the end of the experiment.
Finally, Erica's trips out of the Bullpen, even during the nine-to-five shift, would be drastically reduced. Erica would be allowed to eat breakfast at nine, lunch at 12:30, and dinner at 4:40, each meal taking no longer than twenty minutes. She'd exercise inside the Bullpen – stretching, sit-ups, push-ups, squat-thrusts, and so on – thereby spending twenty-three hours per day inside the Bullpen for every one hour that she spent outside of it.
Thus, when Hannah walked by the exercise equipment on her way to the lockers, none of it had been used in two days. Erica hadn't complained, though – she had only a week to go, and she was getting plenty of activity inside the Bullpen, from her assigned drills to the more pleasurable calisthenics that she put her body through with her fingers.
"Are you sure you want to do this?" Colin shouted across the room.
Hannah had seated herself upon the work out bench, facing the door back into the hallway, her duffel bag neatly against the lockers to her left. She glanced over at the technician, whom she'd known for years, though never to same level of intimacy that Erica had. She nodded. Admittedly, it was easier to do this in front of Colin than it might have been in front of the peroxide blonde technician coming in later that night.
"I do," she said aloud. "Not that it makes it any easier."
"Erica's doing this for her science," Colin offered.
Hannah paused for a moment, before meeting the technician's eyes. She answered, "I'm doing this for my friend."
She kicked off her shoes, sliding them temporarily under the bench, and began to undress.
It was official. Erica's name had leaked out around the ConnPharm campus.
The Bullpen was both a terrifying and alluring place, and when inhabited by a human occupant, the subject of significant conjecture and speculation through the company. In the past, the test subjects forced to strip down and undergo examination had all been male, and thus the chatter throughout the halls had been a bit more subdued. But, with a female occupant, the experiment had taken on a hint of eroticism, from male and female employees alike.