It Lays in the Past Pt. 9

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I awake to the rhythm of running water splash into a sink. Who the h*** is taking a bath at two in the morning? I walk past Valentine's room and halt when I hear her talking to herself.
"No, no, I won't do that!" She says to an unknown person, "I'm not doing it, no! Shut up! No!"
"Valentine, shut the h*** up! I can't sleep!"
She shuffles, then she laughs.
"I'm sorry, I'll be quiet."
There's the d*** water again, It's coming from Cole's room.
I push open the door and grind my teeth, "shut the god forsaken water off, it's two in the morning!"
His eyes dart in my direction, "I, I'm sorry," he pumps hand soap onto his palm, "they're not clean enough, they won't stay clean!"
No, this can't be happening, I have to check on Jin. Stumbling down the hallway, I open his door.
"Celestina!" he takes my hand and yanks me to the floor, "I was thinking about you; I thought you were sleeping. How does my hair look? Do you think I should grow it out? Maybe I should wear makeup? I don't think my hair looks good, should I put more gel? Should I put on eye liner? I'm thinking about going back to my parents. Yes, they screwed up, but I'm sure they're sorry. I mean, yeah, they said they don't want or need me anymore since the chip got fried, but they were joking."
I lift my knees to my face and whimper. Does Cole look skinny to you?" I manage to wail, "he's lost weight!"
"He spits out his food. Why are you in here, Celestina? Get out!"
The chips are destroyed and our memories have returned. I remember biting, kicking and punching the nurses. I remember Cole counting and running back to where he started and counting again. I remember Valentine's vacant expression and talking to herself, screaming and pointing at the air. I remember Jin becoming friends with the patients who didn't want to get better and he adapted to that and became one of them, I remember his emotions frequently changing. I remember feeling like... We belonged there. I get up when Jin told me to and he tugs me back down.
"Don't leave," he begs, "I didn't mean it."
I grab his cell phone and shakily press the buttons.
"Is everything OK?"
"1206 Rose avenue. Come and get us, we need help."

"Celestina?"
A calm, soothing voice says my name. I sit up, dazed.
"It's time to take your medicine."
The Nurse hands me a glass of clean, cool water and I stuff the pills in my mouth.
"Good girl," she pats my shoulder, "now, let's go to the activity area."
I walk down the distant hallway, dressed in a long white hospital gown. Cole leaves his room and counts, "1, 2, 3... D*** it!" He runs back to his previous locations and continues once more, "1, 2, 3, 4..."
Valentine casually paces the large activity room, with a stoic expression, "I'm not going to kill the nurse! I'm not! Haha, yeah, she does have a huge nose!"
Jin yanks my arm and sits me down in a small wooden chair next to him.
"Do you like the eyeliner I'm wearing? It suits me right? I found a red lipstick in the Doctor's purse. Do you think I'll look good in red? Why are you sitting in Killer Frank's seat?! Get up!"
I watch the nurses set up the chairs in a circle, so I go to help.
"I'm just kidding, Celestina, you know I love you, right?"
"I know, Jin, I love you too."
We've been residing in Golden Brooks Mental Institution for a little over a year. Medication has been shoved down our throats, group sessions have been forced on us...
"OK, everyone!"
A nurse shouts, "It's group time, let's share, share, share! The Doctor's are here to observe you all for your year and a half evaluation. Don't hold anything in, let out your feelings and keep the profanity to a minimum!"
Everyone rests and some fidget and twitch. Jin sits down beside me and hold my hand. Valentine winks at me and Cole smirks.
"I'm Celestina Reynoso Romero."
"I'm Jinketsu Kingu."
"I'm Valentine Delequax."
"I'm Cole Reynoso Romero."
"We've been posing as mental patients for a year and half, waiting for all the Doctors to be in one place. Now that everyone is finally present, we're here to tell you about a cure for mental disorders. Brain Surgery."





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