The idea was just crazy enough to work. What better weapon to use to attack than an army of the undead? Whether or not they were as invincible as the little man believed was not important. The important thing was casualties would be one sided.
Pryor walked over to a slab and lifted a sheet. The body was sallow, the eyes dark and sunken into the face. Otherwise it looked to be perfectly fine. He looked over to the little man.
"How did all these men die? I see no wounds on the body. Their limbs are still attached. How did they wind up here?"
The little man scurried over and ripped the sheet out of Pryor's hand, then gently place it back over the body, tucking it in slightly around the form. He threw a quick glance up towards Pryor.
"A gas leak at the barracks in Company E. They all died in their sleep two nights ago."
Pryor didn't believe him. Company E had been intact when he left for the bar earlier in the evening. The little man began to scurry about the room, adjusting wires, smoothing sheets. He seemed to have grown tired of Pryor's company.
"How soon can you have your army ready" Pryor called out to him.
The little man continued his nervous ministrations, doing his best to keep his distance from Pryor.
"I'm not sure. Come back tomorrow. Tell Edwards I'll have a better idea in the morning."
Edwards?! What did he have to do with all of this? Pryor strode over to the little man and grabbed him by the collar, pulling him off the floor. The man squealed and thrashed about, trying to break free. Pryor stuck his face close to his.
"What else should I tell Edwards?"
"Let me down, let me down! I have to monitor the lycan drip, too much and you'll be unable to control them, not enough and they won't turn when the moon rises!"
Pryor's mouth dropped open. When they turn? He dropped the little man and walked slowly towards one of the bodies, hesitating slightly before pulling the sheet away. Once again he studied what was lying before him. He started to speak softly and slowly.
"Do you mean to tell me these men will turn in werewolves when the moon is full?"
The little man looked down at the ground.
"Yes, yes. The moon will be full in two nights. Edwards wanted them ready by then."
Pryor shook his head. How could anyone control an army of lycans? What was Edwards thinking?
He sat down next to the body.
"Have you tried it before? How do you know it will work?"
The little man shuffled closer to Pryor. He kept his voice low.
"I've had success with one or two reanimations. As soon as the moon rises they change, and that combined with their military training makes them easy to control. The trick is to make sure they've completely changed into a wolf. They follow a pack mentality then. They'll follow the alpha male."
"And how do they determine the alpha male?"
"They fight for it. They fight to see who's the most dominate."
Pryor thought for a minute. Two days. Could he afford to wait for two more days? He needed to get back to the base to destroy the evidence, but if he had an army with him he could do more than that. He needed a way to get a false report of his death out. And then what? How would he control them? How would he keep Edwards at bay? He pulled out a piece of paper from his pocked and began to illustrate a map. He finished, then ripped his dog tag from his neck. He held it out to the little man.
"You need to take this to Edwards. Tell him I'm one of the bodies here."
The little man took the dog tags. He shook his head.
"Edwards will never believe me. He'll want proof. He'll want to see a body."
Pryor smiled and rolled up his sleeve.
"Then let him see one. Hook me up to one of those machines. Turn me. I'll be the alpha male."