Father Paul chuckled again, ruffling the doctor’s hair.
“You always said you wanted to be a deacon.”
The doctor shot a harsh glance at the pastor, and swiftly changed the subject.
“We came for your help, Father.”
“Ah, for the unconcious boy?”
“Yes, but there’s more to our visit.”
“Is there now?” the pastor spoke in a semi-serious tone.
Nathaniel was watching them talk, but hadn’t really heard what they’d been saying, for his thoughts were still wrapped around the dream he’d had and what he’d seen in the bowl of holy water. He perked up at the doctor’s next words, however.
“He’s come for a confession.”
Nathaniel caught the doctor’s eyes.
“It’ll make you feel better, trust me.”
Nathaniel looked down and felt his insides twist. Something inside him wanted desperately to run and never look back at the church or the doctor, but he was comforted by a voice inside of him.
It’s ok, Nathaniel… I’m right here…
He smiled at the sweet sound of Mother Mary’s voice.
Nathaniel followed Paul into a smaller room, leaving the doctor in the chapel. The pastor disappeared behind a small wooden wall which separated him and Nathaniel. There was a small padded platform at the base of the wall, which was apparently used for kneeling.
“Kneel” said Paul.
Nathaniel did as he was told, and knelt before the wooden wall. It helped that he could not see the pastor, for he feared his scrutinizing eyes. His heart was pounding for a reason he did not know; he frowned at the strange feeling, which was answered by a light It’s ok, Nathaniel… inside of him. He smiled, and all of the sudden felt as though he had a countless number of thoughts to express. Too many words bit at his lips to escape his mouth, and before the pastor could say “Tell me your sins, brother”, he was spilling over.
“I’ve betrayed God in so many ways.. I never listen to Him, and I damage this body that He gave me.. I never tried looking for Him.. and until now, I thought He was the one who abandoned me...”