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《Fatal Weakness》Intro, by Yang Hengjun

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热度1276票 时间:2008年12月22日 21:07





A corpse specimen processing factory in the suburbs of Qingdao, Shandong province.

"Mr. Yang, thank you for coming. May I ask how you know about our factory?" the receptionist asks Yang Wenfeng, smiling professionally.

"I saw the corpse specimen exhibit held in Hong Kong three years ago by your German boss. Hundreds of thousands of people came out to see it."

"Ah, yes, our boss made over a million Hong Kong dollars off the tickets to that show. But that wasn't all he made." The factory receptionist lady shows Yang Wenfeng around, explaining with interest: "before the exhibition, people came and tried to dissuade our boss, saying Chinese are too superstitious, that human corpses are taboo...but our boss pushed on, and a few hundred thousand Hong Kongers came out to see it. Turns out they're far more interested in the process of plastifying corpses than Westerners, so our boss decided to open this factory here in China. Now, this factory is his biggest in the world. With 1,860 employees, we process over 6000 corpses each year..."

"Where do you get the corpses?" Yang Wenfeng interrupts.

"They're all shipped from overseas."

"Ahh, so...do you have any as tall as me?" Yang Wenfeng probes.

The receptionist lady gives Yang Wenfeng a startled look, then laughs. "You thought all Germans were so big? Actually, many corpses aren't much bigger than yourself. The corpses are shipped here soaking in chemicals and our technicians apply a special chemical treatment, a process which takes about nine months all together, until the corpses are properly plastinated. That's why the body specimens are twenty-five percent shorter than when the corpses were alive.

Yang Wenfeng nods as they pass the words 'Workshop One' written in blue on the wall. The lady says, "here is where we open the containers containing corpses, most of which are sent from Germany; we pull out the freezing corpses, clean out their insides, and move the corpses to soak in an airtight box of chemicals. This chemical formula was invented by our boss."

"Just like the formula for the Coca-Cola you drink every day, the patent is kept top-secret all over the world. The corpses soak here for six months and then are moved to Workshop Two for air-drying treatment, mainly to prevent decay. After they are finished here, corpses come out as tight as a Jinhua Ham[1], resilient and semi-permanent, they won't deteriorate no matter how hot or cold it is."

"They're all the more like Jinhua hams in that even if you put them in the supermarket, they don't attract any flies, barely organic. The next procedure takes place in Workshop Three, where all work is carried out by technicians who have received at least six months of training directly from our boss. Their task is to pay special care to the post-treatment corpses in creating the various poses as specified by our clients. Some are made to appear as though leaping for a ball; others just hold guns, like soldiers to be plopped down on a battlefield ready to fight. Others are positioned for use in eighteen different sexual positions, and then there are those which if placed in a library, you would just think was someone stilly reading a book."

"Finally, we apply another special technique to place these corpses in a rich variety of poses. At present, only our boss possesses this technique. And not only are these poses fixed, no matter how strong you might be, you won't be able to alter them. Our body specimens have one more special characteristic: with the special care paid to ensure that muscles and facial features appear realistic, the lifelike laughing, angry, sorrowful and happy faces our body specimens are given don't change even after fifty years."

"Other factories are laying workers off," scoffs Yang Wenfeng, "but you're still hiring. Looks like business isn't bad."

"We can't keep up with demand," the reception lady says, unable to keep down her pride. "At the start, only experimental medical laboratories and medical schools that would buy them to be used as teaching materials. Later many companies started placing orders, and now even individuals like to buy them as decorations for their homes or offices..."

"Is it only foreigners who buy them?" asks Yang Wenfeng.

"No, not only. Lately some Chinese companies have started buying from us. The reason our boss wanted to set up his biggest factory here in China was in wanting to tap into the potential of the Chinese market. At the time, this factory worked mainly with materials—corpses—supplied by the customers, and the products were meant to be exported. From what I hear, before long he wanted to open up a second and a third factory here in China, and applied for a domestic license. So, Mr. Yang, which kind of specimen pose would you like to buy?" the reception lady asks Yang Wenfeng, uneasy from head to toe.

"I...I'd like to buy a sitting corpse, like it was driving."

"Interesting. Although, our clients have ordered every kind of pose there is. I think Mr. Yang must be a car collector, no? I don't see any problem with that. Fifty thousand Hong Kong dollars[2] and we have ourselves a deal. But it won't be ready for a year..."

"No, I need it this week. I'll throw in an extra twenty thousand to speed things up," Yang Wenfeng says, eyes darting around.

The lady thinks for a few seconds, pulls out her computer out and pretends to check it. She raises her head and lets out a breath. "You're in luck, Mr. Yang. It so happens that we have one body right now in a sitting pose. We just need to add a few touches, lift his arms up and then we're ready to go. So I think we've got a deal. Once you've paid you can go back to Guangzhou, and in a few days the product will be shipped."

"Thank you!" Yang Wenfeng says, ending the conversation, just wanting to leave.

[1] Jinhua Hams:

[2] 50,000 HKD is nearly 6,300 USD


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