Dr. Hazel Capon was deeply concerned. The funding for project “Broken Fish” was running out, and without significant results in the next four months, it was unlikely the Flugler Foundation would continue its support of her work.
Dr. Capon was the only ichthyo-orthopod in the country specializing in rib injuries to broken salt-water fish. Her previous work with crustacean amputees led to the development of “Capon’s Leg,” a salt-powered prosthesis that allowed amputee crabs to sidle normally, had vaulted her to fame in the marine biology surgical world and opened the funding wallets for new research. The people at Flugler poured millions into the Broken Fish project, hoping to be associated with new, cutting-edge surgical techniques for repairing shattered fish bones. But now, two years later, the foundation trustees were rethinking their position. Without the slightest hint of a breakthrough from Capon’s work, they were considering moving the foundation’s funds to a group that was doing groundbreaking work on alleviating pre-menstrual stress in bison. If that happen, Hazel’s once-proud standing in the fish field would suffer considerably.
Dr. Hazel Capon faced a dilemma, a moral dilemma. She knew exactly what the problem was that was hindering her research, she knew it two months after project Broken Fish began, and she knew how to solve it. By solving it, however, she would have to cross a line she wasn’t sure she could cross.
The problem, Hazel learned early on, was that fish seldom received rib injuries. Occasionally, a high-powered speedboat piloted by a drunken fat guy from Minnesota would slam into a carp and snap a rib, but usually resulted in the quick demise of the fish. Other than that, fish just didn’t seem to break ribs…unless…unless you punched them. That was Hazel’s problem; should she start beating up fish and get more money, or admit she screwed up and slink off to obscurity? To make matters worse, Dr. Hazel Capon was born under the sign of Pisces.
Unwilling to become an ichthyo-terrorist, Dr. Capon told the Flugler Foundation her research was proving to be “going nowhere” and closed down the Broken Fish project. She has since changed her specialty to gastropod psychiatry.