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The Psychiatrist

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“What can drive a man mad? What can make his skin crawl, his mind shift and change? What can make a boy go mad? Can the sheer knowledge of all there is around him come into play? Is that the cause or is he truly born mad?” These thoughts the psychiatrist pondered as he paced his office floor. This new patient was really going to make him lose his mind if he tried to understand him any more then he already did. Now he looked out the window as the boy was lead to the awaiting car, he saw the boy steal a quick glance back and felt a shudder run through him as their eyes locked for a split second.

He sat down in his chair and released a sigh. He would be mad himself before he would solve the riddle that was the child’s brain. He chuckled and sipped his coffee. “The boy mad? Surely not!” Nothing he had ever heard had been so funny. With all of his prestige and the things hanging in his office people should be considering him for the Nobel Peace Prize. He had treated so many patients that they should treat him as a leader, not some run of the mill psychiatrist. But no, he was still a mere doctor who dabbles and pries into others to find an answer to their problems.

Now granted he was never strong nor trust worthy but he always got his way, and in the world today that’s what really matters. He always wore the same thing every day, consistency was important to him. It made him feel as if he was in control; he was the master in his office where he rules. But lately he had begun to doubt his ability, insanity those who know him call it. He was one of the greatest doctors the world has ever known, yet now one boy had twisted his knowledge. The boy had made him doubt himself; it was no wonder the boy was mad if he could do this.

Well now the job had begun, though he wished he could take back the case he knew that if he did he will lose all respect from his peers. It all began with a phone call, and with that phone call came hundreds of headaches. He saw the boy later that day, oh that is a day he will never forget. The boy came in a straight jacket with his head down being dragged in by one of his three guards. His hair was long, and shaggy, and yet he looked as if he used to be a gentleman. It was the strangest appearance he had ever seen.

But this boy seemed to be different; when they locked eyes he could see that he had a grownup understanding of the world. It was as if he knew exactly what was going on. So the question was, “Is the boy truly mad? Or is the world a h*ll hole that had taken yet another young victim?” Well, only one way to find out, ask those closest to him what happened. Those were the priorities and if they weren’t done soon he wouldn’t be able to solve this patient’s problem.

The ride to the patient’s neighborhood took a while but was clear of traffic. He was surprised to find the houses were in good shape and that there were many kids outside his age playing. Most strange for his condition, a parental problem maybe? He would soon find out. On the door was a dragon’s head knocker, it was obviously self installed because it felt as if it would break on contact with the door. So he decided to just knock, but before his hand made contact with the door it opened and a large muscular man stood in the doorway. He was wearing a suit and dress pants with black loafers.

They looked like a twig and a giant sequoia tree standing next to each other. Also, the man seemed to be one of those non-talkative types. As he was being waved in he had a chance to look around inside. The very first thing he noticed was the odd paintings on the wall. Three perfectly straight photos lined up beside each other. The most intriguing thing was the actual paintings themselves. One of a meadow, peaceful in every way, the sun was shining and the grass was green. Everything seemed normal in that one. But the next was nothing close to normal. It was a house, a house on fire in the middle of the same meadow as the picture before. In the small light in the hallway he could have sworn the house he saw had taken the form of a face. He looked away after a little while studying it. The more he looked at it the more he saw it.

The third picture, well there was a sight to see. It had an air that almost made it seem familiar to him. It was a picture of the inside of a house. He didn’t know if this was the same house as in the earlier picture, but to him this hardly mattered. For what he saw almost made him leave the house immediately. It was a picture of people, people who were obviously dying in the house. They looked as if they were ill or sick, but anyone could tell that what ailed them was not a disease or a parasite. From the faces of those ill fated people he could tell they wanted to leave. No, not wanted, but needed to leave. As if once they exited the house, they would feel better and be able to live their lives again. But, he knew, he knew in the pit of his stomach, that they wouldn’t be able to leave. He knew that even if they left they would die. They would be hunted down by those who put them there and left them to die in the first place. What ailed them was death. By the look on their faces death would come soon, they didn’t stand a chance.

He looked away fast. He couldn’t stand to look it at for much longer. He had business to attend to and the sooner it was done with the better. He soon became aware that the father was standing in the next doorway that leaded into the kitchen. The man looked as if his shock and emotional pain was amusing to him. Then the man turned and walked into the kitchen where his wife stood waiting. The wife was a slender lady, she held herself as if she was the Queen of England.

He sat down at the kitchen table and opened the briefcase he was carrying. Inside he held forms containing information that needed to be completed. He also took out a notepad and pencil to take notes. The father and wife sat down across from him and motioned for him to begin. He talked swiftly but surely. He had them fill out the required forms while conversing with the couple. He then waited for their response, for neither of them had spoken a word since he had been there. They didn’t have any questions. So he asked questions about the boy. How had his childhood been so far? When did he first get these weird feelings that he now talks about? Did they ignore him? Why would they raise a child with the paintings he had seen in the household? All the questions were answered swiftly and sternly by the father.

As he stood to leave he realized with a sick thought the child that had been raised by these two adults. It sent shivers down his spine as he walked out the kitchen doorway into the hallway. He glanced at the picture one last time, receiving another chill. This time the chill went through his entire body. He walked faster as he passed them. Not wanting to see them anymore than he had to. As he stepped back into his small car he realized something even worse then what he had known before. He realized how dangerous this boy was and what the boy was capable of doing.

This thought kept him thinking during the drive to the restaurant. As he walked into the brightly colored room his mood improved slightly, just slightly. He ordered with a scowl on his face as he realized that it was a seafood restaurant. He hated seafood. But it would have to do as he was supposed to meet his patient again in an hour’s time. His food arrived ten minutes after he ordered it. It was crispy and very good. He was surprised that the cooks did such a great job.

He arrived at his office in a much better mood then before. He couldn’t find a parking space though. He had to park along the outside of the street and he knew he was going to get a ticket. But he also knew that he could probably afford hundreds of tickets. The walk to his office was still long, but not as long as it would have been. Just before he reached the front door, he remembered that in all of his haste and worry, he had forgotten that his phone was off. So he turned it on and waited to see if he had any messages. He had only one voice mail. It was from the mental institute his client was living at. A secretary had left a message for him. It said, “Hello doctor this is Fiona. We had to send your client over early as he has been acting strange lately. We sent another guard over just in case. Have a good day doctor, sorry if this was an inconvenience. “ He sighed. Well, he thought, time to get this over with. He took the elevator up in silence. When he arrived to his floor he found his secretary absent. In her place he found an “out to lunch” sign. It seems she’s always “out to lunch” these days he thought. He found his office door slightly ajar. He took a peek inside. Seeing nothing but darkness he opened it. The door creaked at his push. He swiftly found the light switch and flipped it on. Nothing. He tried it again. Still nothing. He sighed and moved forward. Before he took his fourth step he tripped. He fell and let out a short, “UF!” Cursing under his breath he felt around for the thing that tripped him. He felt a piece of cloth and he started to push it in slowly. He made contact with something that felt like flesh. He felt around a little more, finding out what this object really was. A leg, but not just a leg, but an entire body! He felt the chest and made contact with a badge. Just below the badge was a deep gash. The gash was still wet, but no longer bled. So if the bodyguards were dead, assuming the other one was of course, then what happened to and where is the boy? He thought of this too late, sadly, and the door slammed shut. Slowly he stood up. He made a move towards the door but was paralyzed with fear and confusion when he heard raspy, yet controlled, breaths. Then the boy spoke.

“They all thought I was crazy,” he said. “They had no idea how crazy did they? But you, you knew. You know what I really am, and you’re afraid. What are you afraid of doctor? That I’m going to kill you? Why is death so scary? If you have done good with your life, then what do you have to fear? Have you led a good life doctor?”

But the doctor was paralyzed with fear. He couldn’t talk, let alone move. He knew what the boy was capable of. He looked around moving his head slowly and examining the area thoroughly. He saw a silhouette near the window. He knew instantly that it was the boy. The boy repositioned the blinds so that he could be seen. His face was hard and showed the results of a hard life. But his eyes, his eyes reminded the doctor of the eyes of a dead man. They showed no compassion and no anger.

“You seem tense doctor,” he said tauntingly. “Can I do anything to help you? A back massage maybe?”

The boy moved back, into the cover of the shadows instantly disappearing from sight. The sounds of his cruel laughing echoed eerily throughout the office. The doctor stepped back uncertainly and tripped over another body. The boy laughed his terrible cruel and taunting laugh.

“Well doctor,” he said, “It seems I now have the opportunity to figure out your brain, and I intend to do so very soon.”

The doctor quickly stood and made a run for the door. The door was locked. He could not escape; he could not do anything to prevent his demise. He walked carefully and slowly to the window aware of the invisible pair of eyes watching his every step. So full of intelligence, it was hard to believe they could belong to something so evil and terrible. He finally came to the blinds. He tore them down to allow more light to come into the room. It worked, but too late did he realize that the boy was nowhere to be found in the room. He looked around the room searching frantically for him. Still, he could not see him. But then a bloodthirsty cry erupted from behind him. He turned to his attacker. The boy, with knife in hand, stabbed wildly at him desperate for his revenge for the torturing questions he had endured by this man.

The last thing the doctor saw was something he had hoped he would never have to see in his lifetime. The arc of the boy’s knife hit him straight on the top of his head, an instant death. Now the doctor was on his way either to paradise or to the ever burning fires of h*ll. For half a second he reflected on his life. Realizing what he had done, he knew where he was going. So, now the winner of the Psychiatrist of the Year award and a Harvard graduate lies dead in his office. He could never have imagined that his life would end like this. Yet, here it is, the end.



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This article has 30 comments. Post your own!

SunshineDancer said...
Oct. 7, 2011 at 11:02 am:
Looking forward to the sequel. This author has talent to be a future script writer. I felt like I was in the story experiencing each and every event.
 
Deedls replied...
Oct. 7, 2011 at 11:51 am :
Love this story!!!
 
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F. Bergthorson said...
Oct. 7, 2011 at 10:50 am:
Very exciting!  I love the ending.
 
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Stew said...
Oct. 7, 2011 at 10:14 am:
Great use of language and engaging story.
 
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KJackson said...
Oct. 7, 2011 at 9:32 am:
Gripping! I see a young Dean Koontz here!
 
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PowerSerge said...
Oct. 7, 2011 at 9:14 am:
A cool and thrilling short story.  There is some talent here.
 
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Andrea said...
Oct. 7, 2011 at 9:12 am:
Wow, what an interesting story, the more you read the more you want to continue.
 
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john77 said...
Oct. 7, 2011 at 8:50 am:
Great Story!  It kept me as the reader engaged in wanting to know what the twist would be.  The beginning reminded me of Edgar Allen Poe's "The Raven".  Good job!
 
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ReadingHood said...
Oct. 7, 2011 at 8:36 am:
Enjoyed the story! Looking forward to more from this author.
 
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RossiRules said...
Oct. 7, 2011 at 8:32 am:
Wow, great story.  I true thriller.
 
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dovden said...
Oct. 7, 2011 at 8:31 am:
Great premise for a story.  Entertaining!
 
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