Experiment C

Experiment C

It is unclear how many people took part in the third experiment, due to its very nature. Experiment C was an experiment structured very differently from all the others. It was an experiment into the effects of isolation on the human psyche.

Each participant was given a room. Each room was identical in every way - including the fact that there was no obvious way in or out of the room, save through a single door which led to a bathroom. The room and the bathroom was to be each participant's home for the next twelve months.

The rooms

Every Princess Room was, as far as the camera feeds available to the other occupants were concerned anyhow, identical down to the last detail. If you ever saw a feed from one of the Princess Rooms what was viewable was the majority of the room, yet the 'fourth wall' was never seen. A viewer could see three of the walls and the entrance to the bathroom, but all the cameras were positioned so that there was one wall that could never be visible. Camera feeds also showed the bathroom, but not a direct view of the shower, toilet or bath.

The main room was large and lavish. There was room enough for a king-sized four poster bed up against the right hand wall, the hangings a rich dark red velvet, the wood a dark mahogany colour, intricately carved and beautifully put together. The bedding was thick and comfortable, rich cottons and linens of the finest quality. The carpets were equally rich and expensive, with thick, deep pile. There was also a two seater sofa along the opposite wall - comfortable and, again, the finest quality, this time a soft brown leather. The other visible wall held the door through to the bathroom and a wall-fitted television, together with a large bookshelf and closet. The walls were a deep cream colour and for all that the soft furnishings are dark, the lighting in the room meant that the atmosphere was never dreary, simply rich and elegant.

Lighting in the rooms was provided by way of the usual types of electric lights. There was a light on the stand on either side of the bed and another hanging from the ceiling. There was also a light tube in the centre of the room to bring daylight into each room. This light tube was approximately a foot in diameter and covered with a frosted plastic cover. This cover was not removable! What this did mean though is that whilst ExC participants could not leave their rooms (no ExC participant was ever successful in escaping the confines of their room, though some were known to have tried), unless they were being specifically tested in that way by the scientists, they did not endure the effects of sunlight deprivation. Also fitted into the ceiling was a hatch which was the only way in and out of the room. This hatch could not be opened from the inside.

The television fitted to the wall had a full menu system which allowed access to a large range of movies and television programmes, both factual and fictional. There was no access to any channel-programming though and no access to outside news. There was also access to console games through this television and all necessary controllers were provided.

The fourth wall could not be viewed over the camera system and this fourth wall was unique to each room. It was decorated and fitted out to suit the wants and likes of the individual participant. What was unknown to each participant was that nobody ever saw anything connected with this fourth wall. If the participant removed something from this wall to another part of the room (for example to play with something on the couch) the feed for that room will become unavailable for other participants to see during the time they are on camera. There is no way for any participant to find out this happens.

Also against the fourth wall is the computer and desk. Meals were ordered through the computer (bearing in mind the possible presence of food-based tests - see below).

The bathroom was likewise huge and lavishly decorated. All the walls were tiled in white and the floor was a dark grey granite, heated from below. There was a large fitted mirror above the sink and another, full length mirror on the opposite wall, next to the toilet. Both mirrors were fitted into the wall. One corner of the bathroom contained a walk-in shower and standing alone in the middle of the room was a claw-foot bath. A large cupboard in one corner contained all the bath products anyone could ever desire.

Communication

There was no real communication with the outside world during the experiment. The participants did not have telephones or any outward communication devices (such as messenger systems, skype etc) to allow them to contact anyone outside their rooms. Each participant had access to a journal and keeping a journal was mandatory during the experiment. The participants, however, did not have access to the journals of the other participants on any kind of regular basis, though it was the case that about once a week, a participant would generally find that there was someone's journal entry available. This happened on random days of the week, sometimes it didn't happen at all, and there was never any indication about who the journal entry was from (unless that participant happened to sign their name on their entry). There was no ability to comment on anyone's journal, even when they did randomly pop up.

The participants had access to the camera system which would show them all the other participants of ExC, however they would never receive a feed of their own room.

Tests

Experiment C was a unique experience for each participant as their tests were specifically designed for them and whatever the scientists judged would affect them. Some of the tests were standard across the board for all of the participants, some of them were selective.

Listed below are the various tests. Any tests listed under 'standard' are compulsory and your character must have gone through these. There is also a list of selective tests - your character may have gone through these, dependent upon who they are. Please note that the scientists are bastards and they would have chosen the tests that would have screwed with your character's head the most, so bear this in mind when creating your character's experience within the experiment. The selective tests are in no particular order and characters can have experienced them in whatever order you see fit and they can be mixed and matched, for example, no sound on the monitor and a dodgy picture.

If you wish to suggest other tests which the participants may have gone through, please contact a mod. We're more than open to other ideas and if approved, we'll add them to the list below!

Standard Tests

  • All participants were held in strict isolation. For avoidance of doubt, that means they did not have any other actual human contact for the duration of their stay in the experiment.
  • The random diaries. Occasionally a participant may come across a journal entry posted by one of the other participants. There is no rhyme or reason for when or why this happens. It's not always the same participants and there's no structure or timetable for when this happens.

Personal Tests

Phobia-based Tests
One thing the scientists are always interested in is fear and weakness. If your character has any fears or phobias, or weaknesses that can be explored or exploited within an isolated environment, the scientists would have tested them (see above re: they're bastards). Any tests of this nature would have been progressive, starting off with suggestions and non-physical tests and judging reactions, before taking it from there. The one thing that would never have happened though is that the subject would never have seen another person in the room (ie, if they have a fear of being tortured, no matter what the scientists did, this wouldn't involve someone coming in to physically torture them.) Some people may also have undergone some of these tests just to judge reaction in the absence of any specific phobia/fear.

  • Rats in the walls - scratching behind the walls, under the floorboard, across the ceiling at random times. If escalated, this would get steadily worse until an actual rodent infestation was in progress.

Sound Tests

  • On mute: The video feeds are silent, showing only pictures. (Note: The fact that the video feeds are silent does not mean that there might not be other noises coming through the speakers)
  • Dubbed sound: The video feeds have sound, but if you watch them, this doesn't actually correspond to what is going on in the room. If someone's talking to themselves, or to the screen, the lip sync is off, or possibly it's clear that what is being heard is not what is being said.
  • Random sounds are delivered through the speaker system. These could simply be momentary, or may last for hours, or even days. Suggested scenarios include:-
    • Screams - and sounds of probable torture
    • Annoying music on loop (anyone want to listen to the badger song for three days straight? Whatever music as would annoy your character the most would be what was played)
    • Sounds of the subject's loved ones talking
    • White noise
    • Music and/or conversation that is just too quiet to make out
    • Dripping water
  • Foreign language dub - there's full sound over the cameras, or on the television, but for some reason everything is dubbed into a language that you are not familiar with.

Video Tests

  • What do you see?: In this case, torture. Sometimes the feeds would run footage of people being tortured in their rooms. The room shown is always another Princess Room and the person on the footage may be someone who has been seen on the footage before, maybe someone who has attempted communication, maybe someone who is being seen for the first time. (Note: your character will never have actually personally experienced this 'torture', the subjects are always scientist plants, but your character would not know this either!). This type of footage is the only time that two people would be seen in a Princess Room. It is highly realistic footage of torture and sometimes results in apparent death. If the person 'dies', then their body is left broken and bleeding for some hours before the camera feed cuts out. If the person does not die from the torture, then if they are shown again on the feeds in the days and weeks following they will be shown healing at a normal rate and will apparently have received no medical treatment of any description for their injuries. Some victims of this apparent torture could be seen days, weeks and months later apparently disfigured and with lasting scars and other injuries (note: the 'torture' never included any type of dismemberment).

Other Tests

  • Prolonged darkness: Just what it says. The subject was kept in total darkness for a given length of time.
  • Prolonged light: Again, just what it says - the lights were kept on constantly for a given length of time.
  • Sleep deprivation: This is something which sometimes formed an accidental part of other tests as insomnia was a possible side effect of what the subject was put through, but the scientists as times chose to test just how long a single subject could remain awake and the effects which sleep deprivation had on a subject. This would go on for as long as the scientists felt necessary.
  • Food-based tests: The participants were completely reliant on the scientists for the provision of nutrition. There were no cooking facilities in the Princess Rooms at all. Different people had different experiences of the food provision, and this may have changed over time. The scientists would have tested the following on various subjects:-
    • 'fad' diets
    • Detox
    • Over supply of food (remember, there is limited scope for exercise in these rooms)
    • Under supply of food
    • Starvation
  • Mirror mirror: The mirrors in the rooms are all attached to the walls and they are all video screens (though they all look perfectly like mirrors). Most of the time, they play a real time reflection, but occasionally the scientists put in place a very slight lag, never more than a fraction of a second, so that the reflection just appears a little 'off'

    A variation of this is all mirrors being removed, to test the idea of self image, and how attached it is to being able to view oneself on a daily basis. In this case, the television and anything else reflective would provide only a distorted image, or would be treated to have a matte finish.

  • You are wrong: The books in the room and the factual television programmes are all replaced with ones which contradict everything you've ever been taught is right and correct. This test must last at least a week.
  • Time tests: What is time? It's a clock on the wall, a calendar. But what if the clocks you could access ran too slow? Or too fast? Or the calendar date kept changing? The scientists liked to play around with time, to really screw things up. They could also play around with the light coming down the light tube, so not even the hours of night and sunlight could be relied upon...
  • The test to end the tests. Sometimes, after a participant had been subjected to a test for a number of days, they would be given a choice - either continue with the test, or go through a short term, but usually painful, test to bring it to an end. Examples of these would be lying on a bed of nails for a number of hours, or eating something incredibly noxious.

Events
The following are things that actually happened during the experiment that other ExC subjects would have been able to view over the camera feeds. If you wish to add to this continuity, please talk to a mod about it!

  • The first death (January 22nd): The first death was a suicide and during it, every camera was working, anyone in the experiment could see this. She was eighteen years old, a pretty little thing with strawberry blonde hair and freckles. It was three weeks into the experiment and she'd been crying for two days solid, talking to the room, obviously hoping that someone out there would be watching and hear her. She'd stopped writing in her journal a week beforehand, she just talked to the room instead. She didn't want to die - that she made clear. But she couldn't handle the isolation. She came up with the plan, she thought it through. They wouldn't let her die, she explained. They'd come in an cut her down - they'd have to. She hung herself from the light fitting, climbing up and hooking the sheet around her neck, before kicking the chair over, making sure that she didn't have too much of a fall - she wanted to strangle, she'd explained. To give them time to get in and cut her down. She didn't want to risk breaking her neck. The footage showed when she realised nobody was coming and the panic set in. After that she fought every moment until she died, trying to stop it and failing. They left her body hanging there, the feed running, for over 24 hours before it went dead.