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The Pond Girl

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The door opened, and a girl walked in to the psychiatrist’s office.

Dr. Ophelia Frank looked up from her desk. Fish fingers and custard. The Pond girl. Here we go again.“Amelia. Please, have a seat.”

The girl flopped down on the long couch, her pale skin shining like newly fallen snow against the dark, worn leather. She put her feet up on the pouf at the end of the couch, since her legs had grown too long to fit comfortably. A much-too-short skirt could just be seen at the legs’ beginning, paired with a homemade t-shirt with a box painted on the front. The brilliant blue of the shirt. made her ginger hair look like fire. Truly, it did seem to dance like a licking flame when she flopped down on the couch for yet another one of these boring talks.

Let’s get this over with, both women thought simultaneously.

“How are you today, Amelia?”

“Just fine, thanks.”

“I see you brought a snack.”

“Yeah, want some? It’s really good.”

“No, no thank you,” Dr. Frank refused politely. Where this child got the disgusting idea to dip fish fingers into custard was beyond her skills as a therapist.

“More for me, then.”

The seventeen-year-old continued to eat ravenously, as Dr. Frank asked, “How are things with Rory?”
“I broke it off.”

“Why?”

The girl shrugged. “He didn’t believe me.”

“Believe what?” Dr. Frank could guess the answer, and silently prayed that the girl wouldn’t say the two words planting her on this couch.

“Raggedy Man.”

Dr. Frank put her head in her hands. “Again with this, Amelia?”

“Call me Amy. I hate Amelia.”

“Amy, then. I thought we’d been through this. I thought we were going to leave your imaginary friend behind.”

“He’s not imaginary, he’s real.”

“But you’re the only one who’s ever seen him.”

“Why would he want to see anyone else? The Doctor said...”

“Amy, I’m the doctor.”

“No, you’re a doctor. You’re not the Doctor.”

“Doctor Who?”

“The Doctor. My Raggedy Man.”

No. No. Not again. Not after all this work. Amy was so close. Dr. Frank was the fourth psychiatrist in a row, the other three having nearly been driven mad by this poor child’s fantasies. She had worked so hard to get Amy to see the truth, but now it seemed to have all been for nothing.

“Amy,” Dr. Frank said calmly, “remember what we said. The Doctor is imaginary. You dreamed him up when you were seven. But you’re almost a grown woman. It’s time to move on.”

“I can’t. He promised.”

“What did he promise you?”

“To show me the stars.”

“When?”

“In five minutes.”

“And how long has it been?”

Amy fidgeted in her spot on the couch. “Ten years,” she muttered grouchily in her Scottish accent.

“Doesn’t that seem like a lot more than five minutes?”

Amy didn’t say anything. She looked down at her hands.

Dr. Frank saw the window open and proceeded to climb inside. “Amy, if your imaginary friend were real, as you say, wouldn’t he be here by now? It’s time to face facts, Amy; he’s not coming back.”

Amy began to cry. “But he is! I know he is! He promised me he would.”

“People break promises all the time, why not an imaginary friend?”

“He wouldn’t. I know he wouldn’t.”

“How can you be sure?”

“I just know. I don’t know how I know, but I know. And that’s good enough for me. So good day!”

She stood up and stormed out of the room, leaving her fish fingers and custard discarded on the floor. Dr. Frank picked up the vile snack and threw it in her trash can. Patience. I’ll get the Pond girl through this, somehow.
Amy Pond ran back to her house in Leadworth, out to the backyard and straight to the bush. There she pulled out the suitcase she had packed ten years ago, when he left, promising to take her with him. She thrust it on the ground in the exact spot she had ten years ago, and sat on it, curled up her legs, and rocked back and forth as she sobbed. He promised he’d be back, what was keeping him? He promised. And she would wait. No matter what they said, he promised he’d be back and she would wait.



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fangirl-writer said...
Apr. 7, 2013 at 8:01 pm
I really enjoyed this story. It makes me feel rathere sad to know how much The Doctor had affected Amy when she was a child, and how she had managed to attempt to deal with it.
 
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