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The raindrops tapped rhythmically on the window as I stared out at the courtyard. It seemed so dreary and cold outside. Flowers and trees wilted and everything seemed to take on a gray coloured quality. The willow tree next to the lake seemed to be the only lively thing in the courtyard. It seemed to belong there next to the lake, in the rain. I wanted to be out there. I longed to be outside standing in the rain. I wished to stand there and let the water wash away all sin and black oozing evil. The world needed to be out there. They needed to be cleansed of their sins. The world is far too full of imperfect and sinful creatures. Maybe God should bring about an acid rain, which should do the trick.
“Lunaria?” a small voice said from behind me.
“Yes?” I said without turning to face the voice.
“It is time for your appointment with Dr. Rusakov.”
“Alright,” I said as I stood from my perch on the window sill. I turned to the young woman with the small voice. She had a petite body with a small face and thin arms and legs. She had a small heart- shaped face with small blue almond eyes, small nose, thin lips, and thin manicured eyebrows. Her dark brown hair was in a high ponytail and tied with a bright red ribbon. It was such a pretty ribbon.
She seemed fearful of me as I approached her. She was so young and beautiful. I ignored the nagging thought in my head about her. She was young just like the others were. But I refused to consider the pleasure and continued my walk down the hall to Dr. Rusakov’s office.
The walls and floors were white. The doors and window frames were white. The lights were white. The absence of colour and decoration brought a migraine upon me with painful velocity. I nearly doubled over and screamed in pain in the middle of the hallway. I shook myself mentally and regained my composure. I stood up straight again and continued to walk at a leisurely pace. Dr. Rusakov knew I took my time in doing things. He knew it was my way or no way.
As of today, Monday, December 24, 2012, I have been in this place for a year. The “situation” is the reason I was put here. It had happened so fast. People had gotten hurt. Those people still haunt my dreams every so often. Red became my favourite colour that day. But Dr. Rusakov says that he can fix my thoughts and allow me the chance to finally live without the memory of the “situation”.
“Hello Lunaria,” a tall, thin old man with soft white hair, glasses, and wrinkles etched into his rounded face. He smiled warmly but I didn’t return the familiar gesture.
“Did you sleep well last night?” he asked warmly.
“No,” I said tightly.
“Please have a seat,” he said motioning to an empty chair.
“No thank you,” I replied.
“Would you like some water?”
“No thank you.”
“Would you like something to eat?”
“No thank you.”
“Have you had any problems with any of the other patients lately?”
“No but the staff in the lunch room seem to be quite fond of feeding mushy slop.”
“I will have a discussion with them later.”
“Look, let’s just get this over with. I have a bingo game to get to with Monica.”
“Oh what’s the prize?”
“Vodka and rum,” I whispered winking at him.
“Well you seem to be doing quite well.”
“I get a buzz at least once a week so of course I am quite well.”
“Maybe you should join therapy for your drinking.”
“There is only one form of therapy Dr. Rusakov,” I walked over to the door, “by drinking with friends rather than in the dismal silence you make me endure.”
“We are not finished Lunaria,” Dr. Rusakov said.
I turned and faced him, “I am going to go and win me some vodka and rum.”
As I walked down the hall I heard him yell after me. I held my head high and continued to walk through the bleak halls. I was determined to get as far away as I could from that man. He made me feel uncomfortable. He put my nerves on edge with every visit. His mere presence gave me goose bumps. I didn’t quite understand it. The other patients seemed to have amazing faith in him and his treatments but I didn’t trust him as far as I could throw him, which wasn’t far at all.
I sat in my colourless room on the small sill of my window. I took a sip of my vanilla and raspberry juice box. It was the perfect prize for winning a game of bingo. It was a sweet prize after the conversation with Dr. Rusakov. I pulled my knees tighter to my chest and took another sip of the juice box. Vanilla and raspberry, my favourite.
I glanced out my window again and noticed the sky was clear and blue. The sun was slowly setting below the west wing of the institute. It looked beautiful but ugly at the same time. All of the pastel colours made me sick. It was beautiful in the sense that such a powerful and huge object controlled the way the living creatures on this earth lived. It controlled when they slept, when they woke, when they ate, when they went to work, when they went home, etc.
The memory of the “situation” that put me here in the mental reformation institution came to mind abruptly.
On Saturday, December 24, 2011, I had been walking home from the store. It was freezing cold and the wind nipped at my nose often. Even in the layers of clothes I could feel the ice cold of Digora, Russia. I clutched my new hard back book close to my chest to try and contain the excitement of wanting to read it. I was only a few blocks from home when a group of men in one of the alleys noticed my approach. I don’t remember what I did to provoke their attention but they seemed highly interested in me.
I tried to duck my head down and walk faster but one of them reached out and grabbed my coat. He wrapped his arms around me possessively and laughed at me. I tried to break free of his grasp but I seemed too weak to do so. I tried to scream but he covered my mouth forcefully. They all started laughing and whispering to one another.
“You’re so cute when you struggle sweetheart,” the man whispered in my ear.
I whimpered and tried to break free again. One of the men ripped at my coat. Another had torn off my sweater. Another had torn off my shirt. I tried to fight it. The more they had torn off the less I wanted to fight. I had seen it as a useless attempt. Tears streamed down my face and fear filled every crevice of my body. I didn’t know what else to do.
“Bite him,” a masculine voice said. I was confused. Was it in my head or did one of my attackers say it?
“Don’t play a frightened cat and just bite him,” he said.
I didn’t question the voice. I didn’t have much choice. I bit down on his hand as hard as I could. He screamed in pain as I tasted the metallic taste of blood flood my mouth. His friends stopped laughing completely and stopped their attack on me. The man who held me captive threw me to the ground. I reached my hands out to catch my fall but my face still landed in snow. I scrambled quickly to get up and run. The snow and air was cold against the bare skin of my stomach and chest. I tried to run but I was tackled by one of the other men.
I squirmed under his weight but he was too heavy for me. I beat on his chest relentlessly. He reached up and backhanded me. My face stung from the force of the blow.
“You’re stronger and smarter than this. Get up and fight back,” the voice said.
“Easy for you to say,” I thought back.
I thought quickly for a way to fight back but nothing came to mind. I tried to hit him back but he pinned my arms to the ground. I was out of options and now I was going to be raped by these drunk and burly men. All I wanted to do was buy the book that I had been saving up for and then go home to read it with a nice cup of coffee. Instead I got myself in a huge mess that I couldn’t get myself out of.
“Let me take over then,” the voice demanded.
Without argument I retreated back into the safety of my mind. I blocked out most of what had happened and protecting my own self from the violent and hideous acts I was sure was being committed by my bare hands. I saw different images of blood spraying, bones breaking, bodies lying mangled and lifeless, crimson red blood painting the innocent white snow. It had been stained with the blood of my enemies. The sound of sirens in the background. I slowly came back to the surface, to the crime before me. All six of my attackers lay around me lifeless and pale as the snow upon which they had lain.
“I took care of them for you,” the voice said.
I didn’t say anything back. I was too speechless and horrified to do so. Red and blue lights flickered in front of me and on the walls, the snow, and the bodies . . . the entire scene. Strangely the scene was beautiful. Their cold, pale figures and snow all drenched in red. It was truly a really beautiful scene. The perfect “situation”.
“You’re so cute when you struggle sweetheart,” the burly man’s voice brought me back to reality.
The blank white walls, floor, bedding, etc. were gone. I was back at my home. I was sitting in my bedroom in Digora, Russia. The man from the night of the “situation” stood in front of me menacingly.
“It’s your fault that I’m dead sweetheart,” he said.
“It’s your fault that I ended up in a crazy hospital,” I replied.
He shook his head and chuckled. He slowly faded into wispy smoke and disappeared. After a moment I walked out to my kitchen for something to eat. I saw another one of the men. He was smaller than the other and was kind of handsome aside from the huge gash in his throat.
“You killed me.”
“You tried to rape me,” I replied coldly.
“I didn’t want to.”
“Just like the others didn’t want to, right?”
“I was just there for the cash,” he said.
“That’s pretty desperate.”
“I needed to feed my family.”
“I’m sure there are other ways of that.”
He looked dismayed as he shook his head and disappeared into wispy smoke.
I was pulled back to reality by the sound of a small voice. The young nurse from earlier stood in the doorway of my colourless room. I stared at her till her gaze shifted and she looked away.
“Dr. Rusakov would like to see you Lunaria,” she mumbled.
I got up from my perch on the windowsill and walked towards her. She shuffled away from the door quickly. I paused and looked at her. She was so cute and frail compared to most of the staff. Maybe she was an intern.
“You’re so cute when you struggle sweetheart.”
The thought came to my mind as I looked at her. She was just like me before the “situation”. So innocent and naïve. As if nothing evil in the world could harm her. But unlike her I had been harmed by evil. They were full of that black ooze that needed to be purified by the acid rain.
I tore my eyes from the girl and walked down the hall to Dr. Rusakov’s office. As I opened the door an unpleasant odour flooded my nose. I wrinkled my nose and gave him a look of confusion.
“Oh I see I have your full attention,” he smiled a crooked smile that made the goose bumps appear on my skin.
“What have you concocted now?”
“A special kind of treatment for you Lunaria.”
“Oh I feel so honoured Dr. Rusakov,” I said sarcastically.
He walked over to a door and opened it. He disappeared inside the dark room for a moment before retuning with a chair. The chair was normal but attached to it were wires with needles on the ends of some and some had suction cups on the ends. It looked messy with all of the tangles of wires.
“What does it do?” I asked.
“It corrects your thoughts through shocks in your blood stream and in your brain waves,” he replied.
“If I don’t want to take it then what?”
“Then it would take years of medication to fix your problem whereas this machine can cure you in at least six months.”
“I rather take the medication.”
“But I want to see you get better Lunaria, to be mentally stable and able to return to your life before the “situation”.”
“You promised that I could decide what I wanted and what I didn’t want.”
“But I know deep down that this is what you want.”
“If that’s the case I really need to rethink what I want.”
“Just come and sit down in the chair Lunaria.”
“I rather not,” I laughed quietly. I backed up slowly trying to reach the door to run back to my room. But I bumped into a big muscular man who took up the whole doorway.
“Hi,” I laughed nervously and waved, “you are a big one.”
“Mr. Ivashkov, please escort Lunaria to the chair.”
The man nodded and took a step towards me. I asked, “Do you work out often?”
I took a few steps back for every step forward he took. Before too long I was falling back into the chair in which I tried to avoid. Dr. Rusakov strapped me into the chair. I strained against the bondage to try and free myself but it was useless. Just like the “situation”.
“I can take care of them,” the voice said.
“Will you kill all of them?” I asked
“Only those that try to kill us.”
I retreated back inside myself again, letting the darkness wrap around me. I caught only certain images. Breaking free of the straps, bashing Mr. Ivashkov’s head into the wall, beating Dr. Rusakov with a metal clipboard, throwing a nurse into a wall, strangling another nurse, and beating a patient to a bloody pulp.
The world seemed to come to a complete stop due to a single scream. I small, frail, and feminine scream. The young nurse that visited me earlier sat crouched before as I came out from the solitary darkness. She was screaming and covering her ears. Her eyes were tightly shut and she trembled in fear. I dropped the half broken clipboard and fell to my knees. The girl stopped screaming and looked at me. She was purely terrified of me. I was like a ravenous monster in her eyes.
I looked around me at the mess that I had created. The cold, lifeless, mangled bodies were strewn everywhere. Crimson red painted everything. The walls, the floor, the doors, the white uniforms, and even the pale skin were covered in the beautiful colour. I knew in my gut that I shouldn’t be pleased with myself about this but I was. I felt powerful. I felt like the acid rain. I had cleansed this place of the sinful human beings that tried to treat others by tainting them with their oozing evils. Infecting them and creating more sin.
I stood slowly and walked toward the young woman. She slid further away as I got closer.
“You should just leave and never come back here. Live your life with all of your hopes and dreams. Stay strong and beautiful. Don’t ever come near people that you have seen here. Don’t come near people like me,” I said softly.
She nodded and scrambled up and bolted for the nearest exit. As the door closed behind her I stood and walked to the white phone. I picked up the phone and called 911.
“9. 1. 1. What’s your emergency?” a woman asked on the other side.
“I did it again.”
“What is your name ma’ ma?”
“What is your address Ms. Mohr?”
“The Mental Reformation Institute at 8. 4. 6. Silver lane, Baltimore.”
“What has happened Ms. Mohr?”
I looked around at the bodies. I replied, “There have been eight murders.”
“Emergency personnel will be there soon.”
“Thank you and have a pleasant evening.”
I hung up the phone and took a seat in a chair. I looked inside the drawer and found a handgun. I put the barrel to my head and I was about to pull the trigger when something moved nearby and I saw one of the doctors trying to get up and figure out where he was. He looked up at me. He looked afraid. I pointed the barrel at him and pulled the trigger three times. His body hit the floor with a soft thud. Blood flowed over the white floor.
I stared down at the gun in my hand and said to myself, “Now there have been nine murders.”