Chapter 48: Jinmenken
A strange and frantic roar resounded. Gu Jun followed Brother Qian and everyone out of the elevator. He felt that the air on the fifth floor was unusually frigid.
In the different medium-sized animal enclosures, wire cages were used to hold various common animals such as rabbits, dogs, cats, monkeys… whatever one could think of were available. Gu Jun walked by and glanced around. He noticed the caretaker's figure amongst them. However, the strange noise came from the depths of the aisle.
The further they walked in, the more distinct and louder the roaring sound became and goosebumps gradually covered their skins.
"Brother Qiang, what is that?" Jiang Pinxia couldn't help being the first person to ask the question.
"An animal." Zhou Jiaqiang led everyone around the corner of the aisle. The animal enclosures on both sides of the corridor narrowed down to become a single small enclosure and the "creatures" inside…
The crowd cried out in a low voice, and Gu Jun's heart jumped as well. The "creatures" in the enclosure looked like it belonged to the canine family; not much of a difference between the abdomen and the limbs from an average canine, but their heads had a twisted anatomy. Vaguely, one could make out the facial features of a human face.
The human-faced hound or the jinmenken. This long-established creature in Japanese legends appeared in front of them like this.
"You don't have to be afraid." Zhou Jiaqiang's face full of acne marks still retained a happy smile, but there was a trace of seriousness in his following words. "These are genetically mutated dogs. The wolves and dogs were originally from the same species. Though there is no reproductive isolation until now, wolves and dogs are already two creatures with different habits and appearances. An arctic wolf and a chihuahua, can you imagine that they are the same species? However, they can still reproduce an offspring. These dogs, these jinmenkens, are still dogs."
Gu Jun stared at the creatures' monstrous and weird faces. His head felt a little gloomy, and his heart was chaotic. This feeling that had resurfaced again after vanishing for many days.
He looked into the depths of this walkway. A stainless steel door blocked his sight. What other "creatures" were behind that door?
This was not even an animal feeding centre of the Ministry of Medicine and just the experimental animal research room in the training centre.
He also paid attention to everyone's expressions. The jinmenken is obviously a shocker with a significant impact. It was not as terrifying as the Malformed Banyans, but it also caused the atmosphere to become tense.
"Brother Qiang, when was the birth of the first jinmenken?" Sun Yuheng asked, voicing out the question in everyone's heart.
"It happened a few decades ago. I wasn't even born yet." Zhou Jiaqiang waved his hand nonchalantly. "You still haven't reached the level of authority to decrypt the information of the ‘Human-faced Hound Incident.' But think about it, the Phecda Department wasn't just established due to the Banyan Malformation Disease. Who knew how many incidents the department had handled over the years."
Truth be told, Brother Qiang's level of authorisation actually wasn't that high. He only achieved the F grade. Compared to their intern class, there was only the G grade which separated them. So his words that seemed like he was in the know was more or less him bragging to some extent.
As everyone listened, they suddenly realised this truth. The Phecda Department may not have a legacy of hundreds of thousands of years, but it was not recently established as well.
These jinmenkens have been used in experiments by the medical department so there really was nothing to fear.
Logic was one thing. Their hearts still felt a sense of pressure, and the atmosphere remained tense. It was not easy to look directly at the ugly countenance on the head of the dog.
Gu Jun naturally understood the intention behind the department using jinmenkens as experimental animals for surgery. It was only by accustoming themselves to face these abnormal creations and raising their stress threshold during these simulated experiments can they then face more frightening sources of stress on the actual operating table and reduce their likelihood of messing up.
"Ah Jun." Zhou Jiaqiang went to the toolbox on the side of the aisle, took out a steel dog catching pole with metallic jaws at one end, and handed it to Gu Jun. "You are responsible for going in and catching the dog."
Everyone ‘unfortunately' couldn't help out in this matter and only repeated what Brother Qiang said just now.
"It's only a dog."
"Do your best, there's nothing to be afraid of."
Gu Jun glanced at the fierce jinmenken inside the cage, and then shifted his gaze to Wang Ruoxiang. "Brother Qiang, truth be told, we have a black belt in karate here."
"It has to be you!" Zhou Jiaqiang raised his voice and barked out the order. You brat, this task was handed down to me by the higher-ups!
"Now, I finally understand why you need anti-wolf spray," Wang Ruoxiang whispered to Gu Jun. "I really want to lend you a bottle right now."
Gu Jun accepted the dog catcher pole from Brother Qiang. It was one meter long, and he gently gave it a swing, feeling a heavy sensation in his hands.
He approached the single enclosure, where the crazy barking was coming from, one step at a time. Alright, "A price is always exacted for what fate bestows." Today would likely be the day he'll be injected with a rabies vaccine, and someone had to suture his chewed-apart bits of skins. Alas, this was the price he had to pay for having focused training.
"The human-face dog is not a monster. Its speed, strength, and bite strength are only equivalent to that of a strong canine. There's no need to be afraid," Zhou Jiaqiang lectured seriously. "When I open the door, Ah Jun, you will go up and clamp its neck, then press it to the ground. Focus on speed! Don't give it a chance to pounce."
Only equivalent to a strong canine? Gu Jun could only accept his fate. He rallied his spirits, gripped the dog catcher pole tightly with both hands, and unlocked the enclosure.
"AHWOOO." A jinmenken bared its fangs. Its body arched up and retreated to the back of the enclosure. However, its ugly face was still staring at them with undisguised malice.
Everyone stood aside and watched it without blinking. Brother Qiang opened the enclosure door, and Gu Jun stepped in with the dog catcher pole. Brother Qiang shouted loudly, "HOLD IT DOWN! NOW!"
Just at the moment the jinmenken was about to pounce, Gu Jun's hands were still steady and showed no trace of hesitation as he pushed the dog catcher pole forward accurately. The opened metallic jaws accurately clamped onto the jinmenken's neck. He immediately closed the metallic jaws and forcefully brought it to the ground!
The jinmenken fell to the ground, barking and twitching frantically. Its sharp canine teeth kept its relentless attempts of trying to bite him.
It could only be considered a medium-sized dog, but it weighed at least more than thirty pounds. Gu Jun needed to grit his teeth and muster all his strength to pin it against the ground.
"Zixuan, Hengyu, go help pin it down," Zhou Jiaqiang hurriedly asked several other boys to help, but it didn't mean that Gu Jun was injured.
Cai Zixuan and Sun Hengyu ran and joined Gu Jun. They used the combined power of three medical ‘slaves' to pin down the ferocious jinmenken.
Next, it's time to gag the dog's mouth. One must be extremely familiar with this operation to avoid being bitten. Zhou Jiaqiang did not let the students approach the captured canine. Instead, he went up and demonstrated it himself. First, he tied the face of the jinmenken tightly with a long belt and then tightened the strap to its neck, then covered the dog's mouth with a net cover.
Although Brother Qiang exhibited extremely practised actions throughout the entire process, everyone still felt cold sweat running down their back as they watched. The dog really had an uncanny resemblance to a malformed human face.
After putting the net cover over the dog's mouth, the dog's lethality had immediately diminished. If it was an ordinary dog, it could be taken to the laboratory to be weighed and anaesthetised. However, the human-faced dog was incredibly challenging to control. Brother Qiang taught them to measure its weight on the scale located right there in the animal room. The scale displayed 16.3 kg.
According to the standard rule of using general anaesthesia on animals, that was using 3% pentobarbital sodium, intraperitoneal injection. The dosage was 40-50mg per kilogram of body weight. Wang Ruoxiang and Jiang Pinxia were responsible for preparing the anaesthesia and completing the intraperitoneal injection of this jinmenken.
After fifteen minutes, it collapsed, mimicking a death-like state. There was only a weak breath which was proof that it was still alive. Brother Qiang said that the effects of the medicine would last for about 4 hours, and further dosage could extend the duration.
They had a total of 11 people. As they could accommodate 3 people in a single operation, they took away a total of 4 jinmenkens. All of which were captured by Gu Jun.
They transported the 4 jinmenkens back to the second floor of the building with a small cart. Instead of returning to the training room, they walked into a surgical laboratory nearby.
This laboratory was large and bright. It was divided into anterior and posterior treatment rooms, as well as two separate dressing rooms for men and women. The anterior room was for preparations before the surgery, and the posterior room provided a sterilised environment for the actual operation.
What they were practising today was thoracotomy. Over at the anterior room, everyone finished shaving the operation area, which was the human-face dog's chest. There were also techniques for shaving off hair; one could not go about doing it haphazardly. It was necessary to shave everything off cleanly without damaging the skin.
While they were busy shaving, Zhou Jiaqiang took out his phone and picked up a call. "Yes, oh okay… I understand… Alright…"
Gu Jun noticed that Brother Qiang's tone was sombre, seeming as though he was talking to the leader and his eyebrows were furrowed. What happened?
After the call was over, Zhou Jiaqiang put down his mobile phone and said to everyone, "Everyone! When you perform the surgery later, Team Leader Qiu will bring people to spectate. Team Leader Qiu is the boss of our clinical team. The boss said some complications have occurred and a group of new patients suffering from the Banyan Malformation Disease had arrived. All of which were in dire need of amputation surgery."
Brother Qiang paused, looked at their suddenly tense faces, especially Gu Jun, and gravely intoned, "There is a shortage of manpower in the surgical building. I'm going to help out in the afternoon, but I still lack quite a few second and third assistants. Let's see if you guys are up for the task."