Voices - Joseph Dunn '16

The therapist sits down in front of me. The look in her eyes reads pity, but I do not, can not, relate with that feeling. She’s drumming her hands on the table, restless, nervous even, this excites me. The security guards step out, we are alone now. They tell me she is perfect, they tell me I need her, they tell me she is next. The smell of the therapist’s perfume is intoxicating, I take a deep breath through my nose and smile.

Clearly unsettled, she begins to speak, “When was the last time you felt the urge to hurt someone.”

“How long have you been in the room?”

She checks her watch, “Around five minutes, why?”

“Well I suppose three minutes ago.”

Upon saying this I see a small flicker of fear in her eyes, the corners of my mouth turn up into a small smile. She pauses, she rapidly taps her fingers on the table and then scribbles something into her notebook. They tell me her notes are about me being crazy. I agree. Orange light is filtering in from the window. I can see the sun setting over the fence. I can practically taste the outside.

“So it says here you’ve been having night terrors,” she continues. “Can you describe these to me.” I look at her, she is not worried about me, she doesn’t care. She sees me as a monster.

“Well there is this one dream that I keep having.”

“Can you describe it for me?”

“It’s always the same, I pull myself out of the mud and run for the tree line. The rain beats down and blood washes into my eyes, making it harder and harder to find the entrance to the path. I’m breathing loud. I try  to stop it, to control it, to hide it, but it was too much. I find the entrance to path and run, follow it till I reach the old shed.

I crash through the door and slam it shut. I try to barricade it with the rakes, and the pitchforks, but it is not possible. I can hear him outside now.

He is here. He is just outside. I push myself against the door, grasping a pitchfork...wiping the blood away from my eyes. Waiting. He is hunting me and there is nothing I can do to stop him, when he finally gets to me I wake up.”

“Very descriptive, do you feel fear during the dream? Or do you know who is chasing you?”

“The man chasing me is me, and no, I don’t feel fear.”

“Huh, this sounds to me like you are feeling remorse. If it is truly you who is chasing yourself then I think you are feeling for the victims. I think you are feeling bad for what you did.” I pause for a moment. Maybe she is right, maybe I do feel for the victims, I probably should have corrected her when she said night terrors though. I should have told her that this was a pleasant dream. As the therapist gets up to leave, her hair falls across her face. I can smell her perfume as she brushes the hair out of her eyes. I can barely hold myself together.

The car rolls to a stop, I hear the door close tightly. I pause for a moment then crawl from the trunk through the back seat. The sun is down, they are probably just noticing my cell is empty. A clown doll is sitting on the seat, Looking at me, lifeless. I can almost relate. I open the door and walk to the window of the small house. Inside a little boy is showing the therapist his hockey stick, splintered into pieces. There is no husband. Good. I open the front door and make my way to the kitchen. The whole house smells like her, it’s invigorating. They were right she is perfect. The sink is full of detergent, I reach in and grope around until I find a steak knife.

The lights are out in the house and everyone is sleeping. The voices are telling me to go upstairs. They are loud, so loud I fear they will wake her. I open the door and see her, asleep, beautiful. Her skin is soft, so soft. They tell me to lie down so I do. I can feel her breath, the rise and fall of her chest, it calms me. The voices for the first time in a while, fall silent, waiting. I gingerly brush the hair from her face, she lets out a yelp, and then she is silent. The house is silent, the voices are silent.