From: Advanced Chemistry
There is a lot of entertainment and also a great
deal of truth in this story. We recommend it highly.
Professor Carbonic was diligently at work in his spacious laboratory,
analyzing, mixing and experimenting. He had been employed for more than
fifteen years in the same pursuit of happiness, in the same house, same
laboratory, and attended by the same servant woman, who in her long
period of service had attained the plumpness and respectability of two
hundred and ninety pounds.
"Mag Nesia," called the professor. The servant's name was Maggie
Nesia--Professor Carbonic had contracted the title to save time, for in
fifteen years he had not mounted the heights of greatness; he must work
harder and faster as life is short, and eliminate such shameful waste
of time as putting the "gie" on Maggie.
"Mag Nesia!" the professor repeated.
The old woman rolled slowly into the room.
"Get rid of these and bring the one the boy brought today."
He handed her a tray containing three dead rats, whose brains had been
subjected to analysis.
"Yes, Marse," answered Mag Nesia in a tone like citrate.
The professor busied himself with a new preparation of zinc oxide and
copper sulphate and sal ammoniac, his latest concoction, which was about
to be used and, like its predecessors, to be abandoned.
Mag Nesia appeared bringing another rat, dead. The professor made no
experiments on live animals. He had hired a boy in the neighborhood to
bring him fresh dead rats at twenty-five cents per head.
Taking the tray he prepared a hypodermic filled with the new
preparation. Carefully he made an incision above the right eye of the
carcass through the bone. He lifted the hypodermic, half hopelessly,
half expectantly. The old woman watched him, as she had done many times
before, with always the same pitiful expression. Pitiful, either for the
man himself or for the dead rat. Mag Nesia seldom expressed her views.
Inserting the hypodermic needle and injecting the contents of the
syringe, Professor Carbonic stepped back.
Prof. Carbonic Makes a Great Discovery
"Great Saints!" His voice could have been heard a mile. Slowly the rat's
tail began to point skyward; and as slowly Mag Nesia began to turn
white. Professor Carbonic stood as paralyzed. The rat trembled and moved
his feet. The man of sixty years made one jump with the alacrity of a
boy of sixteen, he grabbed the enlivened animal, and held it high above
his head as he jumped about the room.
Spying the servant, who until now had seemed unable to move, he threw
both arms around her, bringing the rat close to her face. Around the
laboratory they danced to the tune of the woman's shrieks. The professor
held on, and the woman yelled. Up and down spasmodically on the
laboratory floor came the two hundred and ninety pounds with the
professor thrown in.
Bottles tumbled from the shelves. Furniture was upset. Precious liquids
flowed unrestrained and unnoticed. Finally the professor dropped with
exhaustion and the rat and Mag Nesia made a dash for freedom.
Early in the morning pedestrians on Arlington Avenue were attracted by a
sign in brilliant letters.
Professor Carbonic early in the morning betook himself to the nearest
hardware store and purchased the tools necessary for his new profession.
He was an M.D. and his recently acquired knowledge put him in a position
to startle the world. Having procured what he needed he returned home.
* * * * *
Things were developing fast. Mag Nesia met him at the door and told him
that Sally Soda, who was known to the neighborhood as Sal or Sal Soda
generally, had fallen down two flights of stairs, and to use her own
words was "Putty bad." Sal Soda's mother, in sending for a doctor, had
read the elaborate sign of the new enemy of death, and begged that he
come to see Sal as soon as he returned.
Bidding Mag Nesia to accompany him, he went to the laboratory and
secured his precious preparation. Professor Carbonic and the unwilling
Mag Nesia started out to put new life into a little Sal Soda who lived
in the same block.
Reaching the house they met the family physician then attendant on
little Sal. Doctor X. Ray had also read the sign of the professor and
his greeting was very chilly.
"How is the child?" asked the professor.
"Fatally hurt and can live but an hour." Then he added, "I have done all
that can be done."
"All that you can do," corrected the professor.
With a withering glance, Doctor X. Ray left the room and the house. His
reputation was such as to admit of no intrusion.
* * * * *
"I am sorry she is not dead, it would be easier to work, and also a more
reasonable charge." Giving Mag Nesia his instruments he administered a
local anesthetic; this done he selected a brace and bit that he had
procured that morning. With these instruments he bored a small hole into
the child's head. Inserting his hypodermic needle, he injected the
immortal fluid, then cutting the end off a dowel, which he had also
procured that morning, he hammered it into the hole until it wedged
Professor Carbonic seated himself comfortably and awaited the action of
his injection, while the plump Mag Nesia paced or rather waddled the
floor with a bag of carpenter's tools under her arm.
The fluid worked. The child came to and sat up. Sal Soda had regained
"It will be one dollar and twenty-five cents, Mrs. Soda," apologized the
professor. "I have to make that charge as it is so inconvenient to work
on them when they are still alive."
Having collected his fee, the professor and Mag Nesia departed, amid the
ever rising blessings of the Soda family.
* * * * *
At 3:30 P.M. Mag Nesia sought her employer, who was asleep in the
"Marse Paul, a gentleman to see you."
The professor awoke and had her send the man in.
The man entered hurriedly, hat in hand. "Are you Professor Carbonic?"
"I am, what can I do for you?"
"Can you----?" the man hesitated. "My friend has just been killed in an
accident. You couldn't----" he hesitated again.
"I know that it is unbelievable," answered the professor. "But I can."
* * * * *
Professor Carbonic for some years had suffered from the effects of a
weak heart. His fears on this score had recently been entirely relieved.
He now had the prescription--Death no more! The startling discovery, and
the happenings of the last twenty-four hours had begun to take effect on
him, and he did not wish to make another call until he was feeling
"I'll go," said the professor after a period of musing. "My discoveries
are for the benefit of the human race, I must not consider myself."
He satisfied himself that he had all his tools. He had just sufficient
of the preparation for one injection; this, he thought, would be enough;
however, he placed in his case, two vials of different solutions, which
were the basis of his discovery. These fluids had but to be mixed, and
after the chemical reaction had taken place the preparation was ready
He searched the house for Mag Nesia, but the old servant had made it
certain that she did not intend to act as nurse to dead men on their
journey back to life. Reluctantly he decided to go without her.
"How is it possible!" exclaimed the stranger, as they climbed into the
"I have worked for fifteen years before I found the solution," answered
the professor slowly.
"I cannot understand on what you could have based a theory for
experimenting on something that has been universally accepted as
impossible of solution."
"With electricity, all is possible; as I have proved." Seeing the
skeptical look his companion assumed, he continued, "Electricity is the
basis of every motive power we have; it is the base of every formation
that we know." The professor was warming to the subject.
"Go on," said the stranger, "I am extremely interested."
"Every sort of heat that is known, whether dormant or active, is only
one arm of the gigantic force electricity. The most of our knowledge of
electricity has been gained through its offspring, magnetism. A body
entirely devoid of electricity, is a body dead. Magnetism is apparent in
many things including the human race, and its presence in many people is
"But how did this lead to your experiments?"
"If magnetism or motive force, is the offspring of electricity, the
human body must, and does contain electricity. That we use more
electricity than the human body will induce is a fact; it is apparent
therefore that a certain amount of electricity must be generated within
the human body, and without aid of any outside forces. Science has known
for years that the body's power is brought into action through the
brain. The brain is our generator. The little cells and the fluid that
separate them, have the same action as the liquid of a wet battery; like
a wet battery this fluid wears out and we must replace the fluid or the
sal ammoniac or we lose the use of the battery or body. I have
discovered what fluid to use that will produce the electricity in the
brain cells which the human body is unable to induce."
"We are here," said the stranger as he brought the car to a stop at the
"You are still a skeptic," noting the voice of the man. "But you shall
The man led him into the house and introduced him to Mrs. Murray Attic,
who conducted him to the room where the deceased Murray Attic was laid.
Without a word the professor began his preparations. He was ill, and
would have preferred to have been at rest in his own comfortable house.
He would do the work quickly and get away.
* * * * *
Selecting a gimlet, he bored a hole through the skull of the dead man;
inserting his hypodermic he injected all the fluid he had mixed. He had
not calculated on the size of the gimlet and the dowels he carried would
not fit the hole. As a last resource he drove in his lead pencil, broke
it off close, and carefully cut the splinters smooth with the head.
"It will be seventy-five cents, madam," said the professor as he
finished the work.
* * * * *
Mrs. Murray Attic paid the money unconsciously; she did not know whether
he was embalming her husband or just trying the keenness of his new
tools. The death had been too much for her.
The minutes passed and still the dead man showed no signs of reviving.
Professor Carbonic paced the floor in an agitated manner. He began to be
doubtful of his ability to bring the man back. Worried, he continued his
tramp up and down the room. His heart was affecting him. He was tempted
to return the seventy-five cents to the prostrate wife when--THE DEAD
The professor clasped his hands to his throat, and with his head thrown
back dropped to the floor. A fatal attack of the heart.
He became conscious quickly. "The bottles there," he whispered. "Mix--,
make injection." He became unconscious again.
The stranger found the gimlet and bored a hole in the professor's head,
hastily seizing one of the vials, he poured the contents into the deeply
made hole. He then realized that there was another bottle.
"Mix them!" shrieked the almost hysterical woman.
It was too late, the one vial was empty, and the professor's body lay
In mental agony the stranger grasped the second vial and emptied its
contents also into the professor's head, and stopped the hole with the
Miraculously Professor Carbonic opened his eyes, and rose to his feet.
His eyes were like balls of fire; his lips moved inaudibly, and as they
moved little blue sparks were seen to pass from one to another. His hair
stood out from his head. The chemical reaction was going on in the
professor's brain, with a dose powerful enough to restore ten men. He
Murray Attic, now thoroughly alive, sat up straight in bed. He grasped
the brass bed post with one hand and stretched out the other to aid the
He caught his hand; both bodies stiffened; a slight crackling sound was
audible; a blue flash shot from where Attic's had made contact with the
bed post; then a dull thud as both bodies struck the floor. Both men
were electrocuted, and the formula is still a secret.
Next: Tight Squeeze