In the summer of 2003, a pharmaceutical company created a new product in their line of sleep aids. The main ingredient was an altered form of Melatonin, a natural hormone found in animals and plants that helps in regulating circadian rhythm and promotes sleep.
The scientists chemically altered this compound to produce faster, more efficient results. The first phase of testing was done with fourteen volunteers, with the first seven given normal Melatonin and the other seven given the experimental altered version.
The volunteers were to report the results every day after waking up. During the first week, results showed that the patients using the experimental Melatonin fell asleep 45% faster than the other seven patients, but their state of sleep was slightly different. They were entering REM sleep much faster and experiencing it much longer. As such, they had much more vivid dreams than the other patients.
During the next week of testing, two patients using the experimental drug experienced sleepwalking. One reported awakening in their outside shed sitting in a chair, disorientated but unharmed. The other reported waking up on their couch after walking down a flight of stairs in their sleep. The next few nights, three more patients reported sleepwalking. After that, all seven patients reported it.
The next week, similar results continued. The patients with the experimental drug were sleeping longer and deeper. Two of the patients lost their bottle and requested a new one. The next week, all seven (including the two from last week) reported losing their bottles. They also appeared quite anguished, with large bags under each person's eyes.
Fearing the drug might cause memory loss or addiction, the researchers asked the patients to set up video cameras in their house if they wanted to continue with the testing process. Strangely, all patients agreed immediately then proceeded to ask for more of the drug.
The next week, the patients lost their bottles of the experimental Melatonin again. Fearing the worst, the researchers asked to view the videos. All declined except one, who was absent and never responded back. This seventh patient was also absent from reporting the details of the drug over the last few days. Any and all contact was cut off, as the patient's phone line was dead. An investigator was assigned to find out what happened.
When he arrived, the door was ajar. He peered in and called out into the home, but no reply came. He tok a step inside and heard his shoe hit liquid. A closer examination showed it was blood. As he looked down, he noticed a severed hand. There was an envelope next to it. Inside was a tape, which said the following:
"No one expected me to fly. Is this a lucid dream or reality? I just don't know anymore. Such fragile times, when you look into the face...when you go upt o a baby and rip off its head in front of its mother just to see what happens, just to see the look on her face...and the look on my face when I pinch myself again and again, the screaming only getting louder and the pain feeling more tangible.
Why won't I wake up? I can't rip off a baby's head in real life. I'm not allowed to pick up a baby, holding it so it faces down. I can't feel the soft neck in-between my hands as I twist it like a corkscrew, a cry of pain followed by swallows, followed by the gag reflex, then a crunching of the baby's neck.
The baby's eyes look at me, expressionless, as they fill with blood. As I twist more, the sounds of ripping and blood emanate from the baby's mouth and neck. Eventually, the spinal cord breaks away and the baby becomes two entities. Then I look up at her face. I run, run, run, back to my house, and wake up in my bed. Was it all a dream? It was so real."
The tape stops there.
The investigator looks down again. There's more blood. It was a different trail. It led to the kitchen, where a severed leg and arm (or what remained of an arm) lay on top of a stool. There were more blood trails. It led to the bedroom, where there was a smashed video camera on a tripod, another severed leg, and two empty bottles - each with a month's worth of medication - were near the entrance.
The bed was in a veil of darkness, so the investigator took out a flashlight and shined it on the bed. He looked for a moment before vomiting. What the investigator saw haunted him for the rest of his life. No one can explain what happened or how.
There was the last severed arm on the ground and in it, clenched tight with rigor mortis and super glue, was a large, sharp butcher's knife. On the bed, back up against the wall, was a body with all limbs missing. A large smile was forced on his face with needles and safety pins. His eyelids were forcefully opened with super glue. Around his neck, through an ice pick with string wrapping around, was a baby's head.
The pills were recalled and testing stopped. The patients, after months of rehab, managed to recover from the drug.
However, in the tape, the man detailed the screams of a woman after murdering her baby. No such woman ever reported her baby murdered and, after DNA testing, the baby's head had no matches on record.