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Dr. Arflund's Day at Work
“Come on, you’ll be late for work,” Nicole Haasson said, pushing Yves Arflund, her boyfriend, out to his car.
“Oh, yeah. Work,” Yves replied with a dazed look on his face.
“Yves,” Nicole said with a serious look, “are you O.K.? You’ve seemed kind of – unresponsive lately.”
“What?” Yves had just put his seatbelt on in the black Volkswagen Slug Bug he had. “Oh, I’m feeling.”
“Feeling what?” Nicole was a bit angry with him.
“I’m feeling fine,” Yves replied, a little bit snappy. “I said that, didn’t I?”
“Never mind,” Nicole said, walking back to their beige condominium, just like every other condominium in the area. “Have a good day at work!”
Before driving off, Yves got one last look at himself in the rearview mirror. He brushed his dark brown hair to one side, and he looked perfect after that. His dark brown eyes seemed friendly, and his smile stretched his light-brown, half Middle-Eastern skin in the happiest looking way possible. So he drove off.
He had a pleasant drive to work. It was a day when gray clouds filled the sky and it was humid, but it didn’t seem like it was going to rain any time soon. Just as he was driving into the parking lot of the hospital where he was a doctor, he thought he saw a deer right in front of him. He swerved to his right and hit a pole. He looked back to his left and saw that there wasn’t really a deer in the parking lot after all.
“I swear there was a deer there,” Yves thought. His airbag went off, but when he looked at the front of his car, he saw that there wasn’t really any significant damage. He could still drive it. So Yves corrected his parking place and went into the hospital, glad no one saw him crash.
When he got in, he soon had to start a checkup on a child. He recognized the child from his first year in doctoring a year ago. Yves had only been 24 – he had advanced so quickly through school that he became a doctor at that age. The boy had slightly long blonde hair that was turning brown and was eight years old. His name was Chet.
“O.K., Chet, this should be pretty quick,” Yves said going into the room where Chet was. It had sky blue paint, a hospital bed, some Spanish magazines near the heavy wooden door, and some cabinets that held gloves, cotton balls, all the things necessary for a hospital room. He held his stethoscope to Chet’s back. “Now breathe.”
Chet breathed in and out. “I said breathe in,” Yves said a little impatiently. Chet looked a bit confused, but he followed the order. Yves swatted at Chet’s back.
“Ow!” Chet confusedly exclaimed.
“Sorry, I thought I saw a spider,” Yves replied. He looked at his hand, but was surprised to see that he hadn’t killed any spiders. He looked around, but he still didn’t see anything even remotely like a spider.
“I’m not bringing my boy back after this,” Yves thought he heard Chet’s large, red-headed mother say. However, as he was hearing her, he whipped around and saw that her lips weren’t moving at all – she was buried in her magazine doing nothing but reading. And that’s when Yves knew he needed to go home after this checkup, because he could never fully cure himself.
Yves finished the checkup with nothing else weird happening, thankfully. He hurried out of the room and went to Penelope, a doctor who also worked at the hospital. “I need you to cover for me,” Yves told Penelope. “I feel like I’m about to vomit, and I don’t want to spread a bug to anyone else.”
Penelope looked a bit impatient with the idea, but she eventually said, “Fine. It will be a bit hard for me, but I don’t want you spreading a bug around if you’re a doctor.”
“Thank you so much,” Yves said as he was walking out of the hospital. He didn’t get in any crashes on the way home, but he did see a fly or an old woman on the sidewalk that weren’t actually there along the way. He came into the driveway and Nicole had already left for work.
He came into his condominium and went to his pet parrot, Lopsa. “You know how I would hate for you to outlive me, right?” Yves asked his parrot, turning deranged.
“You’ve only told me about a thousand times,” Yves thought he heard the parrot say.
“Well I can’t live anymore, Lopsa. I’ve diagnosed myself. Have you seen me see things that weren’t there, seen my lack of motivation, my inability to complete some sentences. Well, I’m starting to receive fake mental messages from other people too; I’m also probably getting them from you. I’m 25 years old – it’s the perfect age for a male starting to get schizophrenia. I can’t continue to live like this, but if I’m going to commit suicide, you’re going down with me.”
“Get the steak knife,” Yves thought he heard Lopsa reply. “I don’t like a painful death.”
“Coming right up,” Yves said, going into the kitchen. Before he did, however, he wrote this note:
Have you noticed my strange behavior from the last couple of weeks? Clearly you must have somewhat, because you asked me about it this morning. Well, I’ve diagnosed myself – I have schizophrenia. Because of that, I know I will be a negative impact on society from here on out. I’m sorry about the disturbing sight, but I must kill myself before I kill other people. It is the right thing for me to do. Goodbye.
First he slit Lopsa’s throat and made sure he was dead. Finally, after Lopsa’s death was confirmed, Yves put himself at the ready with his knife, his hands trembling and his instinct to live almost preventing him from completing the task he was committed to do. He died laughing.