The NoteMature

I awoke with a start, trying desperately to brush the snow off, wipe the blood away, instinctively clutching my side where I had slammed into the headstone at full speed. But this was not the graveyard. There was no blood, no snow, no dark sky. Simply whiteness, sterility. The fluorescent lights stung my eyes, and I rolled to my side, groaning.

“Did you have a nice sleep, Emma?” a inquisitive but tired male voice. “You put up quite a fight yesterday. You must be exhausted.”

What’s going on?

My mind was reeling. Suddenly, the images rose forth, playing across my vision like a collection of still frame photographs. I sighed. My body was weak, and I gazed over helplessly at the doctor across the room. He slumped in his chair, surveying me through his thick eyeglasses with large, bauble-like eyes, clipboard in hand.

“What did you see that startled you, Emma?” he prompted.

I stared at him blankly.

“You don’t have to speak. Don’t worry, I know all about you. Here.” I detected a slight undertone of disappointment in his monotone voice as he passed me a blank sheet of yellow loose-leaf and a red crayon, for a pencil was far too dangerous to give to a patient. I stared at the paper, struggling to remember. The boy in the window, his almost friendly smile, soaked in rain and gesturing to his wrist. Nine.

And I began to write.

Whether the doctor was surprised to see me respond in such a way or not, he did not show any change in expression. He did, however, began scribbling notes on the clipboard, occasionally looking up to see my progress. When I was finished, I handed him the note. The words were plain, direct, simple:

Who is Nine?

"That doesn't make any sense to me, Emma."

But his voice was quavering ever so slightly, and I noticed his round, wide, bauble-like eyes grow even wider as he read the note. There was a brief pause, during which he picked up his clipboard again and began scribbling furiously. With a final stroke of his pen, he turned his attention back to me.

“I think we’re finished for today.”

The End

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