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Sunland Mental Hospital
It was a quarter to noon when I had come to the realization that I had been placed into an interrogation room. It wasn't like I grew accustom to The Majestic's tactics. Sweat dripped down my face as the room itself began to pour moist. The room, the room was one of the luxuries I also came accustom too. Being trapped in a steel box that crackled of drizzling rain and the screams of the mentally insane. My eyes spun and I saw all of those before me guilty or not. All the men who had been interrogated before by Detective Carter Haynes. He compared them to vicious dogs. They'll live their lives beside normal people and as soon as one of their kind bites the panel of the justice system, they're sent away. What started as a miracle day at the animal shelter when old pap's Haynes walked in wearing a polyester suit, soon turned brutal. He carried a bundle of papers in one hand and a rusty archaic pipe in the other. The aroma of the smoke infested sod sent a sharp sting up my nose. He sat down point blank in front of me and began to read the final sheet. He might as well have shot me in the face.
"Majestic, The. That's a strange name for a criminal or any human being" he said.
"I'm not him! My name is Sunny Perri. I was born and raised in New York City" I replied.
"So, why did you rob those people?" he asked.
"I didn't rob those people. Okay, I don't know what you’re talking about."
"Look, Mr. Perri...Mr. Perri...Mr. Perri!" he yelled.
"Help! Hel-" his voice faded out.
Sunny. Sunny. He heard the laughter of children playing.
The voice sounds so familiar...where am I?
Is he dead? Cindy asks.
I don't think so...he still has his eyes. Kenny replies.
He gained his conscious back and saw them. Peaking over him like a canopy of trees sneaking on the victim of their prey. He stared into the empty eye sockets of Cindy, Sadie, Kenny, and his royal Majesty. Drew who was also present did not have much to say, as he mostly never did. He just sat back, smoked his cigarette and watched as the chaos averted from a delusion into an actual séance. A ritual in which he had no control over, his royal Majesty came toward Sunny Perri and before his cold and distant hands trembled over Perri's face he stopped at the commotion he heard from above.
“Mr. Perri. He's coming back” Haynes said.
“You're a strange one aren't you? One minute you’re a runaway criminal and then the next minute you’re a vegetable” he said trying hard to hide his sarcastic remark.
He helped me to stand back on my feet which were decrepit like that of bread on a baking pan just as it is place in a blast furnace. I had sudden disbelief. Not at the fact that he had been looking for me but, rather that I couldn't tell him where I had run off to. He escorted me back into that hot and dusty chamber, and sat me down parallel to him.
“I...I'm not sure what I did” I said choking up.
“Just start from the beginning” he said staking a tape recorder to the table.
“You're gonna tape this?” I asked.
“I have too. So, let's start from the beginning.” he replied.
Like I told you before, I was born in New York City. I was living in; to my eyes it was a rat-infested place, however to the Majestic.
“That's what everyone calls him, right?” I asked.
“Yes, that's correct. Well somewhat like it” Haynes said.
Well he saw it like it was a f****** palace. I couldn't blame him for thinking that though.
“So, what happened?” Haynes asked.
“Well, I lived there with my mother” I replied.
“Celinda Perri, right” he said.
“Yes, that is correct.”
“So, what was life like with her? Hearing how your psychiatrist talked about it, it seemed like it wasn't a healthy place to grow up. Pimps, drug dealers, murderers, and prostitutes running around in your neighborhood.” he said.
“Well, when I was a kid I always assumed we were poor even when she would try to deny it. She worked nights down by the subway and sometimes she wouldn't even come home till five or six in the morning. When I came home from school I did what any kid would do, I did my homework, made dinner, which was only mayo on bread, if I was lucky. Then I would brush my teeth and go to bed.”
“How old were you when you did this?”
“Ever since I was seven.” I replied.
“You must have had other family that could have helped you and your mother?”
The look on his face, flabbergasted, was emotionless and depressive.
“Don't take pity on me.” I said.
“I'm not judging you, but what about Jared “Jimmy” Warren? You let him go and he was a convicted sex offender?” he said.
“Jimmy's not what you think he his. He's not that person.” I said.
“A pedophile?” Haynes said.
“Call it whatever you want. That's not who he is anymore.”
“Fine, but I have to make sure I get all the facts in. Let's just move on. Okay, I was reading about the young boy named Deacon Tompkins. Does that ring a bell?”
“Yeah. He was part of the juvenile section at St. Parr's.”
“Alright, did it seem like Deacon had issues there maybe with the other patients?”
“No, he was just in a tough place at that point.”
“The point where he was in the church. Right? He wouldn't go up to the altar and they forced him?” Haynes asks.
“I don't want to answer that right now.” I said choking up.
“Alright, we'll move on.” he said.
“So, you were sent to St. Parr's Mental Hospital, after your mother’s death.” he asked.
“What was your stay there like?”
“The floor smelled like p*** that was left after days just rotting in a toilet seat. They threw me in my cell, literally, because I refused to go in.”
“We check the rooms every Friday, So, if your thinking of hiding something, then don't.” the doctor said as he slammed the door shut.
“When I turned around I noticed I had a roommate. Her skin was tan, she had pores oozing out of her face and I'm pretty sure she was a she.”
“Don't you think about touching anything of mine!” she said making her bed for the fourth time.
“I sat there wondering if she was ever going to be able to sleep with all of that folding and unfolding.”
Then the sky turn grim like my soul and the bars on the windows had turned a hospital into a prison. The walls started to creep up on me.
When I slept it seemed like the same play was playing over and over again in my head. One night my mother and I went to midtown Manhattan to see its premiere.
“The Phantom of the Opera! Playing here tonight!” the crier yelled as people passed by.
A single stage to show two clowns fighting over a girl there in love with. One fearing he might lose her and the other fearing he might kill her.
“Ladies and Gentlemen, you'll be amazed as the French are no longer known for their kissing but for the gracious tales of the stage!”
If only Gaston Leroux could see what his creation has led to those who are outcast-ed. His work only signifies the death for those who dare to stand up, that even Voltaire wouldn't propose it.
The audience see's Erik's face with that stupid mask on. To the audience, he's that hit at the party that everyone wants to be around, but to me he's the villain that I occasionally have to look at in the mirror.
All I can remember is returning to that same theater over and over again watching the same show with my mother.
“I was excited every single time.”
“He was one of your favorite characters, Erik?” Haynes asked.
“Yes.” I replied.
“Until what?” he asked.
“One night when mother and I went to see the show, she had gone to the restroom for a couple of minutes. I thought that something had happened to her so, I went to look during the break between act one and two.”
“So, then what happened?” he asked.
“I saw them, together.”
“The Phantom and your mother?” he asked smoldering.
“I'll be right back.” Haynes said leaving the room.
“Hey, Haynes how's it going in there?” A fellow Police Officer, Mr. Miller said as they stood next to the doorway.
A very chubby young man whose rolls of fat were like biscuits topped right on top of the other.
Haynes chuckled at the question.
“To think this morning I was breaking up a drug ring, and now I'm playing psychiatrist to a boy whose mother slept with his childhood hero. I can't do this anymore. I am sick and tired of chasing after a guy that wants to play a vigilante.”
“Haynes, the kid broke out of St. Parr's, let out all the patients, and still killed off that little boy.” Miller responded.
“Just hold on, there is no evidence that boy didn't commit suicide, and are we forgetting that this kid is most likely mentally ill. He's probably just angry because he didn't get to patch things up with mommy. You'll see, this Majestic character is just a phase so that he can cope with what he saw. That's all.”
“Let's pray to God your right.” Miller replied.
Haynes returned, but by the time he did, I tuned out.
“Okay, so where were we, right you were talking about a roommate you had. According to document records you did have a roommate, Mrs. Valerie Baxter. Um...it says here that she checked out of St. Parr's, do you know why?” He asked.
“Sunny? No; so what's your name? Drew.” he asked.
Drew nodded his head. He could see it in my eyes that that wasn't me anymore.
“Yeah. She never did.”
“What do you mean?”
“I'm not sure how it happened, but while she was sleeping someone did something to her.”
“What did he do?” he asked.
He sort of stood next to her toward the end of the bed where her head was and he curled his hands around her neck and that pressure was just too much for her.
“He choked her to death?”
Well, you know! Mrs. Baxter wasn't the friendliest person. He loathed that he had to share a room with someone, especially if that someone was her. Because you see, Ms. Baxter was not only a religious woman she was the thing he hated most in this world, a vegetarian.
During a mail run, you know it's where patients, and doctors, and nurses receive mail from friends and family. Well, Mrs. Baxter received a box filled with a whole bunch of sartorial wear and make-up from her sister in South Carolina. Her sister was a seamstress who by the way was very talented.
“So, she got dresses what's the big deal?” he asked.
Well the Majestic wanted them. A little He did everything to try to break her. One time he even sent her mail and when she opened it, a live turkey popped out. The message read “To Ms. Veggie burger”. Mrs. Baxter was married; however he suggests that her husband used to cheat on her with, her sister.
“I see...” he said
So, after he killed her, he tangled her body up in the blanket on his bed and reminded himself that he need to get rid of it before the doctors did the next check up.
“What did he do next?” he asked.
He took the dresses and chose the one that he preferred, a dark- skin tight black suit with stiletto boots. He then put this on and slapped a harlot face on.
“You look like you’re surprised!” Drew said.
“Well. Uh, wait your telling me that this thing occasionally dressed as a woman?”
“ What's your story, uh? I can tell by your accent that your British.”
“Yeah. What of it?” Drew said.
“Say, I haven't gone completely mental. How about a cigarette?” he added.
Haynes couldn't contain the laugh.
“When I can I talk to Sunny again?” he asked.
Drew came closer to him and stared at him with his dead eyes.
“When I get my cigarette, mate.”
He heard the same young girls voice call his name. Sunny, wake up! Kenny yelled.
He woke up to see a table in the middle of the empty room and only the table. It appeared that bizarre was their concentration. Cindy was sitting on the floor playing with her dolls while her face was smudged from getting into her moms make-up. Sadie was sitting in the fettle position in the corner sobbing as Drew threw his used cigarette pellets at her from the chair. Kenny was no where to be seen which meant that it may have been his turn, however I might not have any proof to that when I'm back. Not because no one would tell me but the fact that the Majestic was missing as well.
"Where is he!" I yelled.
Cindy stopped playing with her dolls, Sadie quit sobbing and looked up at me as well as Drew.
Drew came up from his chair rapidly. He pulled out a Swiss Army pocket knife and began to cut deeper and deeper on my face. He kept jerking faster and faster. My body was still I had no control!
"Snap out of it Mr. Perri!" Haynes said.
"STOP!" I yelled.
"It's alright, it's alright."
He gave me time to recuperate.
"Mr. Perri, I understand that they said you were sick but, this is a little much for me. I never had a case like this."
"Let's stop playing around. No more changes, no more surprise people, and let's just get to the reason why your here."
"Haynes you're not the first person that doesn't believe me and you won't be the last."
"Why did the Majestic change into a women?"
"I don't know he's a freak."
"Then, what did he name it? Mr. Perri, I need you to cooperate with me." he said.
“He called her Sadie. Frankie called her Saddy because she was always in a depressive mood especially around men.” I said.
“Frankie Delgado, right? He was sent home pretty quickly for someone whose parents were as paranoid as he was.” Haynes said looking at the report.
“Yeah. I remember the day the Majestic helped him out. We were all eating inside the cafeteria and the lounge area. Jimmy was telling me Frank’s story with his fake Brooklyn accent.”
“You see Frankie over there. His parents sent him here a little over a year ago.” he said.
“Why?” I asked.
“He came out to them. Wanted them to support him and it just blew up in his face. His parents, Chris, Murine, and the entire church of St. Parr's are a bunch conservative Christian that spend more time preaching Jesus than they do pleasing God. So, there's no doubt that when Frankie told them, they sent him here hoping to cure him.”
“Then the whole thing with Deacon and Pastor John, is true?” I asked.
He stared straight into my eyes signifying that the gossip was true. Deacon's attitude toward others is now completely understandable and when I found out, I felt sorry for him.
“Is that why Deacon won't go near the altar. Because of Him!” I shouted.
“You listen to me. Okay! You gotta keep this quiet!” he said.
“If anybody finds out because of you, then Deacon would never forgive you.” he added.
“Your right, but, he can't get away with this.” I said.
“What are you planning on doing?” he asked.
“I don't know.” I replied.
During break Frankie had approached us. He looked anxious and yet I wanted to help him.
“Frank, what's wrong?” Jimmy asks.
“My parents, their coming back to check up on me. God, Jim I don't know what to do.” he said.
“Yo, Sunny! What do you think he should do?” Jimmy projected with his faded New York accent.
I began to pant heavily; enormous pain came over my body. As I fell to the floor I curled up on my back as I heard all the commotion surrounding me.
“He's blacking out again!” I heard a nurse say.
My fingers crackled and I swore I heard the bones in my wrist pop like fireworks during the grand finally. What can only be described by what other people have told me, is that it looks, as if I'm having an exorcism. I didn't remember what happened next.
“He's back.” the nurse said.
“Back off! Back off!” is what the doctors had told the other patients.
“My, My Sunny are you alright?” Evelyn asked.
“Séparé mes indulgences, Mme.”
“I'm sorry, what?” she asked puzzled.
“Pardon my indulgences, Ma’am.”
The patients seemed to know what was happening to me. They knew who this guy was. They called him his royal majesty, our royal majesty, or Paul when they were trying to be funny.
The Majestic spoke with such spark that it seemed like Jimmy waited his entire life for someone like him. He stood up from the floor, took a bow at Evelyn and walked up to the doctors. He stared devilishly into their eyes as if he had already dug up their graves and they didn't know it yet.
“Everybody, back to your cells” they yelled at every corner.
As he walked back to my room in a daze he ignored all those wish dwellers that wanted to say “hello”.
His fans seemed as confused as he was. Why didn't he do anything back there, like he always does?
The Majestic was always a likable yet peculiar one, that would rather spend his time reading than fixing a corrupt system. His only true wish was to be on the outside, sit down and read a book while the sun had its first breath.
He opened the door to my cell and sat on the bed. He suddenly felt a cold sensation on his bottom; he quickly looked down and realized that Ms. Veggie burger was still there.
“I forgot she was still here.” he said forgetting he was supposed to depose of the body, before the next check up.
He dragged her body out of bed and stuffed her into the chest that delivered all of those beautiful clothes.