How much time has passed since that chat with the doctor?
I’m still on the bed in the hospital wing of the Prison now, Doctor Stern has just left without so much as a look at me, leaving my share of methadone on the small table. I’ve been talked through by another doctor, who, after telling me that the trial will expect me clean, managed to get my consent, so I’m now on the way to recovering.
I’ve been thinking about this. I’ve already mentioned that I get really bad on a low, and technically, when I’m low, I’m clean. To be honest, I’m more trouble when I’m low and clean, also, I think things over a lot more. And I’m far more miserable and unfriendly.
That’s me all the time without heroin. And if they want me to live without it, well, I don’t think I really want to.
The reason I love my drugs is because when I’m on them, time stops. Whatever was bothering me before – fights with friends, arrests, money problems – it all goes away. Also, I’ve been taking them for ages, because my mother takes them. I know why I have to be clean for the trial, but I don’t want to recover. I reckon they’ll let me have a bit before I go on the electric chair.
The truth is, I can’t actually remember fighting with Nancy. I can’t remember if that story’s true or if I dreamed it up afterwards when I was in front of the police.
I don’t want to think about Nancy, about the murder, or even before that. I never want to think about it. I don’t want the self-blame, the crippling guilt, and the merciless, tortuous misery…
Enough long words! I’m going to take my methadone.
I sit up, take the little tray, drink the disgusting green goo and collapse dramatically on my bed.
My body goes a bit numb and I feel slightly better. If this was heroin, I think distantly, I’d have the most amazing high to look forward to, like the excitement that builds up as the rollercoaster goes up the really steep track, like doing all the best things in life all at once, and then some, like nothing, absolutely nothing, that you’ve ever known. I can’t explain it.
But methadone, well, it’s sort of like…exercising loads and feeling kind of great afterwards, maybe a bit better, I don’t know, I don’t really like exercise, or methadone for that matter. Or like getting high on life, or taking yourself for a shopping spree if you’re a girl or all the other boring things people like to do with their time. I’m still bothered by the guy in the next cell on magic mushrooms or whatever and the walking past of doctors going about their business.
I can’t feel any of my body now. I can’t feel much mental pain either. Hey, maybe everything is all right after all. There isn’t a lot I can do about my situation, might as well think positive. I feel all warm now too, and I’m not even under the covers. And sleepy…very sleepy. At once the mattress doesn’t seem quite so uncomfortable and I’m almost able to roll on my side and curl up a little. I close my eyes. I yawn again, glad that there’s nobody to tell me to put my hand over my mouth.
A fun thing me and Nancy used to do when we were high was try to cough, because on opiates, you kind of can’t. I’m all alone now, but I try it anyway. Obviously I can’t, and it’s a weird feeling. But it isn’t the same without Nancy.
I am in debt to the methadone for not feeling depressed at this point.
I stay on my side, and put my head on an elbow. I’m not even bothered by the fact that when I wake up the hair on the side of my head will be flattened. I take the pillow and put one arm round it. Yeah, I know, but even high I do still kind of miss her next to me. The pillow is flat and cold and smells kind of milky, and is a poor substitute. The sound of my own breathing begins to lull me to sleep. I haven’t felt this kind of ambivalence since I last fought with Johnny or McLaren.
I remember Johnny, the leader of our band. Opinionated little git. If things didn’t go exactly according to his plan he’d wreak chaos. He hated Nancy too, but then I think everyone did, except for me. Damn it. I hate Johnny, he was bossy and he was rude, and he was always picking on the fact that I couldn’t play bass, when I never said a word against his awful singing.
I hug the pillow tighter. We’ll see who’ll sell the most records after this trial and it won’t be him. I’m the only one of the Sex Pistols left, anyway, I was always more famous than them. They just didn’t have any bottle.