I was shown around the lower floor. The screams never stop here. I left my room in the middle of the night to get a glass of water, and I could hear them, faintly, coming through the ventilation shaft.
The lower floor is built around a large central corridor, with smaller corridors branching from it at regular intervals. Each smaller corridor leads to a research station with desks and equipment, and a glass-fronted cell. I knew what would be in the cells before one was shown to me; it was obvious from the terrible sounds that echo around this place. The cell I was shown contained a sedated woman. Her stomach was a bulbous pus-filled wound the size of a dinner plate. A hairy, segmented leg protruded from the centre of the wound, twitching. I felt bile rising in my throat, but I forced it down. I've seen enough, here in The Sick Land, that even the deeply wrong no longer affects me the way it would a normal person. Two scientists were working outside the cell, examining samples cut from the woman's wound.
My guide told me the research here is focused on discovering how the mal affects human tissue, and how the effects can be controlled. They believe this is the only way humanity can get some grasp of what it is The Sick Land does, and gain some insight into how it works. They think the only way we can gain enough information to stop the expansion is through the vivisection of human subjects. It's terrifying, and I understand why the outside world can never know what goes on here.