THIS THREAD HAS A LOT OF SPOILS INCLUDED SINCE IT REVOLVES AROUND THE LATEST CHAPTERS/STORY! IF YOU ARE LOOKING FOR A SPOILER-FREE DISCUSSION THREAD, THIS IS NOT FOR YOU!
(Summary further down below)
Black Organization's Goal
this is a subject that is a bit hard to address directly since we've only gotten puzzle pieces. The most common possibility, from a typical story standpoint, is that it's deeply connected with the main Antagonist(the Boss). We can pretty much assume that the APTX4869 research is the Boss' true goal, or at the very least a part of it. Since we know that a multiple of big unbelievable names is supporting the organization(File 475), and that Pisco expressed knowledge of the Miyano's research(File 242), it's likely to assume that the big names, along with Pisco, were funding the Miyano's research. It would mean that the boss had to have at least approved the research, if he/she were to accept financial support. On the other hand, Itakura's software really didn't show any significant connection to the boss, but rather to someone who is likely Vermouth.
So far, we've gotten nothing but harboring of ill intent towards the APTX research from Vermouth:
- - Calling Sherry's parent's research foolish (File 434).
- Attempting to kill Sherry, the only researcher with a lot of knowledge of the APTX research, no matter the cost (File 434, File 824[risking her secret being exposed if Bourbon died]).
- her state of not aging, that she doesn't seem too fond of(talking about "angels never smiling upon her"[File 350]), as a possible result of the research.
- her constant hope and trust on the "silver bullet"(Shinichi) taking down the BO(most likely because of their goal).
Another suspicious incident was how Sherry's parents died. The BO wanted to use the Miyanos for their own research, which was indirectly stated by Haibara in her thoughts(File 948). Assuming the parents death wasn't an accident, If they wanted to change the directory of the SB(Silver Bullet) project towards their goal, than the easiest way is by manipulating them into doing it through threats, instead of killing them and use their infant daughter. Even if that was the case, it was a very sloppy move to burn them in their research laboratory, since it could burn important research data and materials that they need, which it did(File 948). This also leaves me to believe that the accident was orchestrated by Vermouth, who we know has shown reasons to stop their research. If Itakura's software is connected to the progression of the APTX research, then it's doubtful that Vermouth would contribute as much as she did, if the one on the phone with Itakura was indeed her.
This leads me to believe that the Itakura software is NOT meant to fulfill the BO's true goal, if vermouth was the one that ordered Itakura. In short, we can consider the APTX research as the Boss' only true goal.
Sherry took over the research of her parents and used their research materials, that was left after the accident, as a foundation. What she didn't know was that she was working with a different drug, "APTX4869", which was the drug the BO was trying to make, contrary to the "Silver Bullet" project that her parents were working on(File 948). Haibara clearly expressed her regret of starting something that was never supposed to be done(File 821).
What we know about the Silver Bullet project and Haibara's parents is:
- - Atsushi Miyano was considered a "Mad Scientist" because of his abnormal style of thinking and theories(File 384).
- Elena Miyano refers to it as a "terrifying drug" while their research mates called it a "Dream drug"(File 821).
What can we get from this? let's start with Atsushi. Gosho loves making reference to old famous novels. The "mad scientist" is clearly a reference to Frankenstein, where Frankenstein created an artificial human. The reason for Frankenstein being called a "mad scientist" is because he tried to achieve something that should be beyond the capacity of a human, and that goes to a forbidden realm, namely the God's realm(according to religious believes). things that classifies as "Godly" are things that is believed to only be achieved by a God, like "Control and creation of life" and "Immortality". So far, we know an effect of both drugs(APTX & SB) that fall into the first category, taking life without a trace("Control of life"). APTX is so far the only confirmed drug that has an effect that falls close to the second category, lengthening life through shrinking (Immortality). Since APTX was based on the research materials of SB project(that was left after the "accident"), it is highly likely that SB possess a similar effect. Our first hint to that is Vermouth. Since she has shown signs of not aging since earliest 20 years ago(File 433), 2 years before Sherry(APTX creator) was born and the Miyanos' death, she is most likely a "victim" of the SB drug, and therefore falling even closer to the second category, halt aging (immortality). The fact that such an effect is shown, through Vermouth, indicates that the "dream/terrifying drug" that the parents were working on has to be something that gives longevity/halts aging. This is something that would label anyone, who is trying to achieve that, a "mad scientist", since it's an effect close to immortality(a divine feature). Another hint to that is Sherry's name, "Miyano Shiho", was written in a guest book of people who wished for longer lives(File 281). Even Conan thought it was strange for Haibara to want it, and sure enough, Haibara had said before that anyone who tries to go against the stream of time will be punished(File 191). This implies that she had no interest in the idea of things like longevity, that goes beyond limits set by the stream of time, and that it might have been her parents who wrote her name in the book instead, wishing their daughter a longer life, which indicates that they are interested in the concept of longevity(immortality).
So what does this say about the APTX research, the BO's true goal?
What we know from Gosho's interviews is that he denied that immortality/longevity is their true goal. Since we know that the Black Organization wanted to create a different drug from what Sherry's parents wanted to make(which we can assume is longevity/halt aging), it confirms Gosho's statement. So then what clues do we have? The prominent clue we have gotten is the statement that Itakura got over the phone:
"We can be both of God and Devil, since we're trying to raise the dead against the stream of time"(File 380).
This comment is something similar to what Vermouth would say(talking about God and Angels). Adding to the fact that Vermouth didn't show signs of denying it when Yukiko presumed it was her(File 823), it makes it more likely that it indeed was Vermouth on the phone. What we know of Vermouth is that she usually makes references to history or novels(like during File 500, about a perfect "hunting ground"). Her comment to Itakura could be a reference to Frankenstein's original inspiration, "raising dead corpses". Luigi Galvani was someone who researched "animal electricity" and his nephew Giovanni Aldini used his unlce's electricity research to make corpses of executed criminals sit upright, as well as making eye, jaw, hand, leg and thigh movements with the help of implanted metal rods. Their research gave rise to the idea of electric reanimation(raising the dead through electricity) and it was a huge influence to Mary Shelley's(author of Frankenstein) novel(for more info:https://www.insidescience.org/content/science-made-frankenstein/1116).
Vermouth's reference is most likely a metaphor that is indicating that the BO is trying to achieve something outrageous, equivalent to electric reanimation(raise the dead), and that belongs in the realm of God, similar to the Miyanos'. It further implies that their drug can be used for good and bad, hence making them God and Devil. The fact that the BO needed the Miyanos' research, in order to make their drug, further clarifies that what they are trying to achieve is still in the realm of God.
Then what could the APTX4869 research's purpose be?
Raising the dead would've have sounded like reasonable assumption, since it could lead to both good and bad aftermaths. Obviously, that is not the case either according to Haibara. Haibara gives us another interesting angle on the APTX research's purpose, after telling Conan that it has nothing to do with reviving the dead. She claims that the APTX research is something that most people would consider non-beneficial or uninteresting, just like the Japanese dolls that only interests Japanese female kids(File 384). Going by the logic that the research is deeply connected to the Boss, this statement could be indicating that the APTX research is more beneficial to the Boss than to other random people.
A possible purpose for the drug, that falls close to this scenario, is a cure. It has been speculated before that the boss could also be a shrunken adult(hence the dial melody of the Boss phone number being the song "Nanatsu no Ko"="child of seven"(or "Seven Children")[File 475] that indicates the Boss is a 7-year-old child), just like Shinichi(which creates a perfect parallel). If the Boss is trying to develop a cure for his condition, it would make sense why it wouldn't seem that beneficial to others, and that "immortality-like" features is needed in the drug to "reverse an age regression"/"speed-up aging". When it's completed, maybe it can be used to speed-up the growth of other things like bacteria and viruses, to be used as weapon or be utilized for medical purposes(hence making the drug good and bad).
This leaves us with questions like "how did the boss shrink in the first place?"
It's possible that Conan's recall on haibara's statement, about punishment that awaits those who rush and forcibly tries to go against the stream of time(File 380), is a foreshadowing to what could have happened to the Boss. The Boss might've previously tried to achieve something like a "growth speed-up/rushing drug", and ended up shrinking as a result from a prototype side-effect, as a form of "punishment".
Itakura's Software / Vermouth's Secret
We find out that Tequila had a mission to make a trade with a Mantendo company worker and that he was apparently supposed to retrieve a list of professional programmers(File 116). It's unknown who this was ordered by. Long after that, we found out that Itakura Suguru had already been manipulated to agree on working with a software. He was requested to make a software with an unknown purpose(File 380). If the woman is Vermouth, it's less likely that it had something to do with the BO's true goal, since she wouldn't have cooperated to that extent to something she despises. The that fact they were still looking for a programmer, after already requesting Itakura, hints to that he might've been slowing down on his work, probably because of his eyesight going bad and that he had doubts. The fact that Sharon(Vermouth) always argued with him a lot(File 823)(because she probably didn't like the program project he was working on in the past) strongly implies that there must be something to gain from using him and his project(despite not liking it).
Then what could Itakura's software's purpose have been?
Our biggest clue was the conversation that took place between Yukiko and Vermouth in the Mystery Train Case(File 823). After asking why Vermouth is hiding Shinichi and Shiho's shrinking, Yukiko mentions that she and Conan are suspecting that Itakura's software might have something to do with why Vermouth is hiding Conan and Haibara's shrinking. Vermouth reaction to Yukiko seemed to point that it hit the mark. If Gosho is indeed implying that the software is connected to why Vermouth is hiding it from the BO, and since we know that Vermouth found out about the shrinking effect long after she already ordered Itakura, it means that the thing she is trying to cover up is something that the shrinking effect might reveal about something in the past. Examples to what it could be is the progress of the APTX/SB research and the truth behind the Miyanos' accident. If Vermouth hid her halted aging from the boss and the rest of the BO, in other words, the effect of what SB might've done to her, then it makes sense that she would want to hide the progress of Sherry's research, who is based on the SB project. This could most likely be what motivates her to keep her Boss-relationship-secret(File 898) hidden from the BO. If the Boss were to find out that his relationship with "Chris" is the same as with "Sharon", the Boss would realize immediately that they are the same person, and that she has been keeping the info of SB's progress a secret, and then eventually conclude that she was behind the Miyano accident. Whatever their relationship may be, this could be the main reason why it's such a big deal to keep it hidden.
If that's the case, going back to Yukiko and Conan's suspicion about the software's purpose, maybe Vermouth wants to use the software to hide information on "the drug's progress"/"her double identity"/"Miyano's accident". It could be through the means of erasing all information of the drug from the BO database(like the "Night Baroon" Virus), as well as hack into hospital database to change/delete "Sharon's" DNA information, in case the Boss wants to verify if she is the same person(which could be the ongoing case, considering she may have been in a hurry to finish the software). Whatever the software does, If it's used incorrectly, it could potentially harm humanity, which is what Itakura was implying(File 380).
What's left in Itakura's diary is the info of the "cat" that bothered the caller(likely Vermouth) with it's loud cry before making her hang up in a hurry(File 398). If for some reason, however unlikely, the caller wasn't Vermouth who talked to Itakura, then the cat in the background could attest to that, since Vermouth has never been shown with a cat. But we still have no confirmation that the sound Itakura heard was from a cat. It could have been someone captured, that had their mouth taped/covered, making cat-like sounds in order to call for help for example or some kind of relevant sound interference. Either way, it was definitely given to us as a foreshadowing to something down the road.
- The Boss of the Black Organization's True goal most likely lies only in the APTX4869 Research, Sherry's research, and not in Itakura's software.
- The Organization's aim was to use the Miyano's, Sherry's parents', research(Silver Bullet Project) as foundation for their own. The Silver Bullet project's purpose is most likely to achieve longevity/halted-aging.
- The APTX4869 research is something that might be more beneficial to the Boss than anyone else. Example for that is a cure for his possible shrinking. In that case, the true effect of the drug is likely to "speed-up aging"/"rushing growth"(not necessarily just on humans).
- Itakura's software's purpose is probably to ultimately hide the progress of the research, Vermouth's double identity or/and the truth behind the Miyano accident. Vermouth was the one that orchestrated the "accident".
- Vermouth's secret relationship with the Boss is important to hide because she is hiding her halted aging(double identity) from the whole Black Organization, including the Boss. If the Boss found out about the secret relationship, he would realize that she is the same person as her "mother", and eventually, everything she attempted to hide with Itakura's software.