I groaned. “Someone should have had him institutionalised.”
“So your solution is to lock him away forever. What purpose does he serve, when all he does is sit in a padded cell, wasting tax payer dollars?”
“A better purpose than he does now,” I snapped.
“In that case, why not just kill him?” the old man asked. “Clearly he has no purpose.”
I rolled over onto my back again. Somehow, this old guy had involved me in a conversation that I didn’t want to be a part of. I was tired and sore, so I replied, “They should kill him.”
“They?” the old man sighed, sounding dark and forlorn. “Why not you?”
I turned my head to look at him, but he was gone. A small smile played on my face. I could finally relax.
That night I slept like a log, even though it took me a while to get there. The memory of that knife slicing into me and slashing through my bones was still fresh in my mind. I held the sheets to my chest, as the foreign, strangeness of the room enveloped me. The darkness built boxes around my bed. The air was stiff, and stale. My eyes took some time to close and I took a deep breath, telling myself that it was all in my head. I could hear voices talking through the walls, which were promptly interrupted by the loud shushing of impatient nurses, patrolling on the night shift. Somewhere down the hall, a woman was crying a long, mournful cry as a man, probably her husband, tried to comfort her. Then, once she had stopped and left, the world around my bed disappeared. The void closed in around me and sleep took me away.
That night, I didn’t dream.