For Jared, having a guy over at his house this late was normal. Hell, having two guys over was normal. It's just that usually, both of them would be alive, and neither would be wielding a scalpel in a shaky hand. Yet, here he was at 11:37 pm, with one anxious boy named Evan Hansen, and one corpse named Connor Murphy.
Connor's body was gently draped onto a sofa, surrounded by several running fans and a portable cooler. Underneath his head was a large towel Evan had placed there in order to (hopefully) leave as little evidence on the couch of what he was about to do.
He cringed as he forced himself to press his scalpel into the surface of the skin above Connor's skull. Once he had cut a clean incision through the skin, he used the scalpel and a small tong-like tool to loosen it and pull it off, revealing the bone underneath. In that moment, Evan was weirdly glad that Connor's heart wasn't still beating, because if it was, there would have been a looooooot more blood.
"Uhhhm... Jere..? What do I do now?"
Jared swiveled around towards him in his chair seated at the computer before answering.
"Now, this is where the drill comes in, Ev. You're gonna want to drill a few wide holes around the diameter of the circle I'm drawing right now," He said, using a ballpoint pen to draw a large shape encompassing the entirety of the top half of Connor's head. "- and then you'll use a small bone saw to cut along the perforation you've made. After that, just pop off the bone and boom! We've got ourselves a brain."
"Ahh-alright. G-got it,"
Of course, the entirety of what was going on made Evan sick to his stomach. He hoped Jared couldn't tell.
(He didn't exactly have experience with "Drilling Wide Holes," wink wink.) He finally managed to get to the brain, and then gingerly pulled it out with his gloved hands after snipping the cord, trying very hard not to drop it due to his shaking arms and legs.
"Trust me here, Ev. I'll have you know I'm an expert. I always do so well on those weird online surgery games, and this can't be that different!"
By the time the worst of the trauma was over, Jared Kleinman had a human brain in a cooler next to him, albeit in individual, incredibly thin slices held in dozens of little plastic bags. (Evan had freaked out the entire time, making the first cut slightly uneven.) One by one, he scanned these pieces in, tagged their distinctive sections, and logged them together, all while filing them in every format he could think of.
It was then that he realized that they had no plan as to what to do with the rest of the body.
He hurriedly shoved Connor's scalp back onto his head, stuffed his body back into the smartTomb, lugged it into his attic, and plugged it back in so it could function as if it was still where it was supposed to be - that is, six feet underground.
He was lucky his new setup had so much data storage. He would spend the next week without more than two hours of sleep nightly, using his scans as reference for endless lines of code.
It wasn't just a matter of mapping Connor's brain, oh no. He had to actually tell his computer what everything meant. He had to tell it what those meanings meant when it came to activity and responding. Then he had to tell it how to respond using actual words, in English. Every time he encountered a bug, or his software crashed, Jared just sighed deeply, took a swig of vodka he was in no way old enough for, and told himself, I'm doing this for money. I'm doing this for nearly $1150 in Evan's old Bar Mitzvah and birthday money... I'm gonna get paid get paid get paid gonna keep my car insurance.
At the end of the week, 3AM Sunday morning, the scripts seemed ready to go. Jared backed them up onto his hard-drive, a google drive, and two flash drives. He closed all of his tabs and windows but one. With shaky hands and shaky breath, he started up an application.
Loading. Please Wait.
Opening new save slot. Allow Connor to make changes to your files under the selected folders?
Saving options. Please Wait.
Then, there it was. It wasn't exactly beautiful, Jared was a programmer, not a designer. He could ask Alana for aesthetic help later. It was a simple-looking program. A box for typing, and a response box.
User: hello connor
Jared typed as Evan watched intently over his shoulder.
"J-jared, I - Well, is this really going to work?"
"It fucking better, Ev. Otherwise, we desecrated the body of a suicide victim for nothing." He let out a dry laugh.
Connor: What in the shit is going on?
Jared actually squealed, wrapping his arms around Evan and hugging him tightly to his chest.
Then he collapsed and passed the fuck out.