Teenager, Chloe Davis, finds herself awake in a hospital after a terrible accident.
| The wretched gusts of the summer winds howling outside the hospital window. The frantic shaking of the clock on my nightstand leave my patience a blazing fire. But the only thing keeping me from leaving this isolated chamber is due to the little hope I have left in humanity. No one told me laying in a hospital bed, hours on end, would be so uneventful. No one told me, in the seventeen years of my life, that I, Chloe Davis, would be breathing in sterile air and living off of hospital food for what feels like the rest of my life. I had only clocked into this hospital a day ago.
I do not recall some of the events that had transpired the night before. Everything had gone by as if in a flash. The sirens of the ambulance trucks roared and the footsteps of the paramedics echoed. The last thing I remember are the voices of my parents, telling me everything is going to be okay, blood everywhere. But that was it. That was all I could remember from last night. I woke up in Abbott Northwestern Hospital in Minnesota the next day, or at least that's where my doctors say I am. I take a look around this hospital room and just feel a sense of dread. The doctors must give little to no care about the interior of their workspace. There are a couple dozen paint chips on the ground, scattered. Even the cleaners neglect some of the small stuff. Why do they even bother to come into work then? I look out my window, and judging by the sun's position in the sky, it looks around noon. They really like to blast the AC in here, don't they? I pull the thin, white sheets up to my neck.
I look up at the ceiling for a while, noticing some of the intricate patterns of colors the painters must have put on it while painting. A sudden knock on the door startles me slightly. An older looking nurse, maybe around her fifties, peers into the room.
"May I come in?" she asks, tapping the frame of the door with her frail fingernails, resulting in a somewhat satisfying sound. I give her a look of approval and she walks right in. Following her, a tall, middle aged man maybe around his forties. He seems like a nice man, like one of those people who can carry on a long conversation. I notice some gray hairs on the sides of his head. Maybe due to a lot of stress. He sits down in a sturdy chair next to my bed, laying his clipboard on his lap.
"Miss Davis, this is Doctor Julian Harwood," Harwood looks over at me and smiles, "He will be doing a series of tests on you, you know, to understand what had happened yesterday. He will also take some time, every day for a week, and ask you a series of questions."
"It's a pleasure to meet you, Miss Davis. Do mind the nurse here, it's her first day on the job," Harwood extends his arm out. I look into his eyes for a while, expressionless. I notice some of the wrinkles and shadows under his eyes. This man must be crazy to have such a beatific expression on his face. But I understand, what good would it do if he were to come off as some type of crazy man? I snap out of my state of absent mindedness, extending my arm out in hesitation, and eventually giving Doctor Harwood a nice, firm handshake.
"The pleasure is mine, Doctor Harwood." I set my hands on the sides of my torso where they were before. Until now, I notice the nurse had left the room. Doctor Harwood picks his clipboard up and starts scribbling something down on his piece of paper. He takes a deep breath in, and then exhales.
"Like the nurse was saying, miss Chloe Davis," Harwood continues to scribble on his paper, "I will be doing little sessions with you for about a week, asking you some questions and also running some tests. Nothing too personal. I wouldn't want one of my patients becoming uncomfortable now would I?" He stops writing and looks up at me. This time with a sincere expression on his face. This gave me a feeling of warmth and reassurance that someday I will get better. He paused for a moment. He then reached his hand into his pocket, taking out what looked like an orange cylinder with a white cap.
"From what the doctors told me, that was a pretty bad accident you were in last night. I am prescribing to you these pain pills to ease off the pain you must be in," He was right, I am in a lot of pain, "You will be taking two of these pills every afternoon before my arrival to ensure the pain will go away completely." He holds out the little cylinder of prescription drugs so I can observe it. He hands me the case and I then uncap the lid and take a look inside to see what the pills look like. They do look very familiar. Are these the ones they made me take last night as well?
"With the state you were in last night, we had to give you pills similar to these with a higher dosage," It was like he was reading my mind, "It was really the only way to get you out of that trauma." I understood completely. He grabs the drugs out of my hands and puts them back into his pocket, he then looks at his watch, "Our session here now is over, but come tomorrow afternoon, I will be in here for our first actual session. I look forward to it, miss Davis," Harwood stands up and puts his clipboard to his side. He turns around and walks out the door, a breeze blowing onto me as he did it. He seems like a nice guy.
I woke up yet again to the buzzing of my clock. I grunt and pull the thin hospital bed sheets up over my head. But then I got annoyed of the alarm and finally stopped it, "I'm up, I'm up. Calm down," I say, annoyed. I look out my window. Rain was drizzling off of the green summer tree leaves. Dark cumulonimbus clouds covered most of the sky. Must have stormed last night. I'm surprised I wasn't up for it. I have always been such a light sleeper. I look on my nightstand, noticing two of the same pills laying on a small, silver tray with a glass of water next to it. I reach over with my left hand and grasp onto the cup of water whilst simultaneously grabbing the two pills with my right hand. I cuff the two small pills in my hand and quickly throw both of them into my mouth. I then down the drugs with the cold glass of water, "Ahh, refreshing," I put the blue glass of water back down onto the silver tray, a knock at the door follows. The knock sounds masculine in a way, a much harder, deeper pounding. Must be Harwood.
"Good afternoon miss Davis, hopefully you had a good night's rest. That was a profoundly irate storm we had last night," Doctor Harwood says as he quickly opens the door and walks in with no forewarning. Sure, come on in. He takes his lab coat off with the name Harwood embroidered on it and puts it on the coat rack next to the door. Harwood then walks over with his same clipboard and paper as yesterday and sits in the same sturdy chair next to my bed, "Now, where were we," Julian quickly scans over the scribbles he drew yesterday, "Ah, there we are. Let us begin our first interview session miss Davis. It will be a simple, short set of questions to get to know you a little better. See? Nothing too bad," what am I getting myself into. He looks at me for a good couple of seconds. I look back at him with a concerned face.
"Is this interview being recorded at all?" I ask. Doctor harwood puts his hands in his pockets and turns them inside out. He looks up at me, a smile stretched across his face.
"I can assure you, miss Davis, our conversation is not being recorded. See? You have nothing to worry about." but can I trust him? I hardly know this guy, "Now, let us continue with this interview," Harwood clicks his pen and starts scribbling down more words on his paper. He breathes in, and then exhales, "That was a scary accident you were in last night. Mind trying to describe it for me the best you can?" I have trouble remembering past events over the last forty-eight hours. I must have gotten hit in the head pretty hard.
"Everything that happened three days ago is a blur for me. There were lights everywhere and my head was pounding. Other than that I-," I just remembered something. Doctor Harwood stops what he is doing.
"You...what?" Harwood asks, putting his pen down on his lap.
"I saw a guy. A tall man, this dark figure standing over me staring into my eyes with an intense look of satisfaction. It was too dark to see who it was, so I hate myself for not paying attention. But by then, I was too unconscious to care. But his eyes, they looked... evil. The only thing I could make of that man were his eyes," I scratch my nose, Doctor Harwood seemed intrigued.
"Well from the doctor's reports there appears to be some multiple blunt force trauma wounds to the head... I see your story checks out. Seems to me that such wounds were inflicted with a long metal rod. " He takes a report out from underneath his pile of notes and shows me them, along with some pictures. I grasp the documents with my hands and scan over them. Jesus, how did I survive this? This is a surprisingly substantial amount of external force this guy used on me.
"Wow," I say, my eyebrows raise a notch and my mouth gapes open.
"You've been through a lot these past couple of days miss Davis," Harwood checks his watch, "Looks to me that I have overstayed my welcome. I am looking forward to tomorrow's session. As far as the testing goes, all is well," Doctor Harwood stands up from his chair, puts his clipboard to his side, and walks over to the coat rack. He then takes his white lab coat from the rack and folds it over his arm, "Until then, miss Davis, I bid you adieu," He closes the door shut and whistles as he walks away. After he left the room, it seemed quieter than usual. I could hear the woodpeckers gnawing on the tree bark from the outside. It was quite peaceful, really.
Minutes have gone by and I have already succumbed to the boredom that befell me. Is there anything else to do in this hospital room than to stare at the wall the whole day? Finally, a knock on the door ends my state of boredom. A nurse, the same woman as yesterday, walks into the room.
"Good afternoon, Chloe," the nurse begins tidying up the room, "that was a rather bitter storm we had last night, wasn't it?" The nurse tries to make small talk with me.
"You could say it was. But I wouldn't know, I was really tired last night. I slept through the whole thing," I rub some of the sweat particles falling down from my face. Man it's hot.
"Is that so?," The nurse asks, fluffing the white pillows at the edge of my bed.
"You know it," I pause for a moment, "Hey, I know I have only been here for a couple of days, but have any of the doctors told you any interesting stories about some of the patients? I've been wondering for a while now," The nurse paused momentarily, her eyes glued to the wall and her teeth hooked on her fingernails.
"There is one story that caught my attention. The doctors around here have been hesitant about going into detail, but there's enough information there to tell the whole thing, vaguely that is," The nurse sits down in the same sturdy chair Julian sits in, "About a week ago, one of the psychiatric patients, they said his name was something like David Hanson, was in the mental health unit and apparently assaulted one of the doctors on night call and escaped out of the hospital," At this point, my eyes were popping out of my head and my mouth is wide open. The nurse continues, "When the police officers arrived, the patient was nowhere to be found and the doctor who was assaulted was gone as well."
"Aren't you worried this guy might come back?"
"The police officers are still on the case. Reports have been saying that the patient didn't take his pills that night either. Must have been what triggered his "Psychotic Episode". But you don't have to worry, more security has been hired to protect this hospital."
"Oh, that's good," great, now I'm terrified. The nurse stands up and heads for the door, "Oh, before you go... Speaking of pills, I'm running out on my pain pills and am in need for a refill," The nurse stops and looks back at me, her left eyebrow raised.
"Pain pills? There was never an order put in by the doctor for pain pills," great, now I'm confused, "Let me run this by with Doctor Harwood. There could be a chance he's giving you the wrong pills," The middle aged woman slowly makes her way out the hospital room door. Then the moment of realization struck.
It can't be. He seems way too, what's the word, professional. But I couldn't know for sure unless I try to get it out of him.
I wake up the next afternoon right before my alarm rings. The weather appears to be more and more unforgiving as the days go on. The sounds of the tree branches banging against the window in front of me become slightly irritating. When will those windows give already. I look at my bedside table and notice the same pain pills I have been taking, the same silver tray they're on , and the same blue cup filled with water that I down the pills with. Not today. I grab the two pills quickly and place them under my pillow and try to down the water as fast as I can. Just in time for Harwood and I's session to begin. Perfect. Harwood knocks on the door and walks in.
"Good afternoon, miss Davis," Doctor Harwood walks over to the same chair with his same clipboard and pen at his side and sits down.
"How are you today Doctor Harwood?" My voice cracked a little. I try my best to cover the lump on the pillow created by the pills from underneath it with my shoulder.
"I am quite sublime this fine afternoon. Too bad it's storming again. Terrible. Just. Terrible," He looks out the window, lost in thought. I need to find the perfect timing, "Let us begin our session, shall we?" I nod my head. Harwood clicks his pen open and begins scribbling down on the same paper he's been writing on for every session we've been in. He takes a deep breath in, and then exhales, "So, Chloe, let's continue where we left off from our last session. You talked about a man, or someone you believe could possibly be the perpetrator that caused you to be in the state that you're in. If you mind giving me some more detail of the man himself, that would be much appreciated. Please, take your time," The corner of his lips rose as he looked at me. I stare into his lifeless eyes, his soul seeming much blacker and empty now that I know his true nature.
Those... eyes. Those condescending eyes, glaring at me, looking exactly like the man's eyes from right before the incident. How have I not noticed those eyes before. Pure. Evil.
"The dark figure standing over me looked strong. Just about your height, maybe a little taller. He grasped a metal pole in his hands, ready to strike," I choke on my words a little. I start to cough, oblivious to the fact that the arm I was coughing into was supposed to be covering the lump the pills had created. I see Harwood looking over at the lump. His face beginning to turn red.
"Chloe?" He asks with a tone of anger, "Show me what is causing that lump there," Oh no. Oh no. Oh no.
"What Lump?" I try to play it off, but my voice deceives me. I sound like a scared little girl.
"Chloe. Show me what's under that pillow," There's nothing I can do, my heart is pounding and sweat is running down my face.
"I can assure you, Doctor Harwood, There's nothing under this pillow," He grabs my wrist, his grip so tight and firm. There's no way I'm getting out of this.
"I knew I noticed that something was different about you today," He grips onto my wrist even tighter, the sweat on my face now running down like a waterfall, "Chloe, Let me ask you something." Oh god no. He's onto me, "Chloe? Did you take your pills today?" I'm paralyzed by fear, the evil of his eyes staring dead at me. He lets go of my wrist and lifts the pillow up, noticing the pills from underneath it. Veins begin to pop out of his forehead.
"I try to be nice, and this is what I get," I hear the voice of a real psycho. He stands up and drops both his clipboard and his pen, the clipboard falling on the floor and the pen landing on my bed. I couldn't speak. I swallowed my words. Harwood kneels down and reaches under the bed. He pulls out something familiar. Jesus. It looks like a beat up IV pole. That must have been what he used on me four days ago, "I ask you to do one simple thing and you go and mess everything up. You're useless now. Time to throw away what isn't needed." Harwood grips tightly to the long metal rod, preparing to batter me with it. But nature was on my side.
Suddenly, the windows finally gave out and the tree branches crash through the glass, distracting Harwood. Gotcha. I quickly grab the pen that was ever so conveniently laying right next to my hand. I take a deep breath in, stab Harwood in the neck as hard as I can with the pen, and then exhale. I hear the pain of his screams as he chokes on his own blood, the thick red liquid oozing out and drizzling down his neck.
"Goodbye, David," He falls to the ground and takes one final breath, and then closes his eyes and falls into an eternal slumber.
The following day, the police arrived at my hospital room, carrying David out in a body bag. They thanked me for getting rid of a wanted psycho and I was discharged from the hospital that day. Fortunately, I regained all my memory of the night I was attacked, more specifically, where. Apparently those pills I was being given blocked me from remembering those specific memories. So I drove past the site where I was attacked that night and I notice something on the side of the road. I park my car, open the door, and head out to see what it was.
I notice a big bag lying on the edge of where the boundary between road and woods started. The bag smelled terrible. I unzipped it and dozens and dozens of flies begin flying out everywhere. I let out a cough. Who would have thought the contents of this bag would leave me in profound astonishment? Within it, a dirty pair of clothes, and underneath those clothes were things like credentials and other things like that.
"This is sadistic," I say, angrily after I lift all the items out of the bag. I'm going to puke.
For the thing that shocked me most in that bag, and something I can never unsee, was the rotting corpse of the real Doctor Julian Harwood.