An electric light scoured the darkness. The--the subject--flinched, trying to shield its eyes with the stump of a severed limb. It slouched toward a corner, trying to hide from the approaching light.
"Aesh's ashes, what a wretch," said the bearer of the light. "I mean, I've read the reports, but this is just..." A dozen questions tried to ask themselves at once. He settled on one: "How long has it been down here?"
"Down here? About a month," said the man at his side. "In custody? Roughly a year, almost to the day." He was smiling.
"How is it still alive? Have you kept her engine cool? Should I even ask if you've looked at it while she's been here? I trust you haven't actually tried to open it..." He crept closer to the subject. He dimmed the light on his shoulder mount to allow for a better look.
Some time ago it had been a person, a