Watercolor is a swim in the metaphysics of life… a mirror of one’s own character. Let it be unpredictable and colorful.
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The clock on the wall ticks away the seconds. The hour with Dr.Rodgold came and went almost instantly. I guess I expected that, thats the way its been all month. It’s my last month here at the Ronwin Center For Troubled Boys. No matter what the name said, we all knew what this place was, an insane asylum. Not the kind with torture rooms behind every other metal door, where blood and sweat stains decorate the grey, cracking, concrete floor, or with guards and their vicious dogs standing watch at every corner, or where it seems like the sun never shines and grass never grows… But still not far from. The sun shines, but its too lonely, guards aren’t everywhere but if you’ve been here long enough you’ll develop the constant panic and anxiety one gets when being followed, even if deep down you know you’re not. There are no torture rooms, as far as I’ve seen. But on occasion I see men in red uniforms scrambling into a seemingly empty room and a few hours later I can catch the nauseatingly strong scent of ammonia and other ridiculously powerful cleansers. Then the next morning after the scene, there would be cupcakes, a “Boy of the week” poster and a brief announcement celebrating “The release of another beautiful soul into the shining world”, all put together to distract the other boys from attempting to figure out if the boy was dead or was truly release. In the grand scheme of things I guess it was irrelevant whether or not he was dead, its not like any of us were really that close to one another. Upon arriving to our quaint little asylum, you’re assigned a number, and thats what everyone but your doctor knows you as. Its not against the rules to have friends, it just seems odd to call out something like “Hey 00166!” in the middle of the hall or lunch room. People do it of course, but only the ones who are 100% sure they’ll be stuck here for the rest of their lives. “Lucas…Lucas!”, Dr.Rodgold was snapping in my direction and calling my name. “Oh…sorry doctor, just got lost in my thoughts again”. His eyes scanned my face for a long time, “Anything you’d like to talk about?” I tapped my foot once, then remembering I was in the office of a trained professional I shook my head. “Uh… no sir, just a wandering thought. Nothing to really fuss about”. We sat in a ponderous silence till the final minutes of the session were over. He stood first, then myself, we shook hands and I walked out. The hallway looked almost holy, sterile white walls with blinding sunlight piercing through the well polished bars on the windows. I made my way down to the meal hall, my black rubber shoes squeaking with every other step. The roaring sound of people in the hall hit me first, followed by the stale stench of week old soup mixed with the wondrous smell of fresh bread. I trudged in, got a tray, loaded it, and went to my usual table in the corner and began to eat.
The next few weeks went a lot like this, weekly sessions with Dr.Rodgold, the loud meal hall, and all the faces that were familiarly unrecognizable. Every day was simply me going through the motions. But during me last week, things seemed different, people noticed me less. No one even glances at me in the halls, the staff paid less attention to my day to day activities. Even my last talk with Dr.Rodgold seemed weird. He was the one acting distant… Every other thing I said was followed by a very elegant “Huh?..What?..Excuse me?..”. Admittedly it was quite annoying, but I could hold my tongue.
That Friday, March 15 2020, was my last day. I got my trunk, which upon arrival I had to leave in a secure room due to its “dangerous nature”, and started packing my belongings. As I was packing, I dropped my snowglobe, the only outside object I truly cared about. It smashed into pieces on contact, glass, liquid, and glitter coated the floor. The base rolled under the bed, so naturally I kneeled down and wiggled under it so I could reach. Then all of a sudden I felt an electric shock at the base of my spine and in an instant I was paralyzed. Around me I could make out shadows, and distinctive red sneakers and pants. They lifted me, carried me off into a large black room, one to my knowledge never existed, and injected something into my arm. I guess I’ve got my answer to the inmate’s long unanswered question. And like that, I was gone.
*Original Story By Me
I lay on my twin bed, in my fuzzy ducky pajamas, shifting uncomfortably while I try to get a good view of outside from the window just above my dresser. I’m unable to sleep for the third night… “Why haven’t my friends arrived yet? I’ve done everything right..haven’t I?” I quickly go over a mental checklist in my head, inside out pajamas, check, spun in 10 circles right before I slipped into bed, check, and drank hot cocoa with my dinner, the final check. “So why haven’t they come?” All at once it hits me, and I sit up frantically. “Could they have forgotten me?! But..how could they? They’ve come every year, at the same time, to this very house, since I was born.” I take deep breaths trying to figure out a reasonable explanation for why they might be late. “They must have just gotten lost.” I stack my pillows in a different way, in hopes they would prop me up enough to lay comfortably and give me the ability to watch outside for any signs of my friends. I lay back down, just to find out my attempt with the pillows had failed. The wind pounds against my window pane, making the old wood around it creek and groan. “Shut up…” I mutter in spite toward the wind, “Don’t tease me with hopes that you’d brought my friends with you”. Almost in retaliation the wind picks up speed and bursts open the window, sending an awful draft around the room. I furiously kick off my warm blankets and venture off to the other side of the room to close the rattling window panes. As I stand on my little stool, staring out the window I just shut, I close my eyes and slowly count to ten. I open them, almost positive I caught a glimpse of my friends, but it was really just a few strands of my blonde, white curly hair. “Oh well… Maybe my big brother was right, maybe they won’t come this year”, I blink away what I feel might just be a swell of tears, hop off my stool and leave my room to make my way to the kitchen. The cups clank together, making that “dinging” sound that reminds you of a holiday dinner, where all your friends and family share a meal together, and make some lame, heard-it-before kind of speech above everyone else’s conversations, but still manages to make you smile. I fill my glass halfway, chug it down, and burp weakly into the darkness of the kitchen, which seems to be growing around me. “Pure light ancient white hear the silence feel the night, the fire is so delightful and there really is no place to go so let it snow let it snow let it snow” I carefully recite the words into the dark, hoping my friends might just hear and realize they’re not going the right way. I steal a glance through the window in our dining room, hopeful, but still only a half hearted action. Then… I see it… The first of my friends, tapping against the glass, asking me to come outside and play. “I’ll be right out!” I say in a sort of yelling whisper. I charge upstairs and throw on socks and my robe and I race back down, scared they’d disappear before I got a chance to even say hello. The deadbolt clanks open, the doorknob creaks, and I rush outside. I skip and prance all around our front lawn, greeting every single one of my friends. “Hello Peter. How are you Jane. Oh Luke you’re looking well.” Deep down I know that I’ve named them time and time again, always something different, but I guess thats okay, because every year they seem to change. The ground crunches and crackles under my feet while I run around and play. Time passes by, I’m not sure how much, maybe an hour, maybe two, or maybe even just fifteen minutes. The absolute joy of my friends being here was too overwhelming for me to keep track, or to even care. All I know is that there was enough time for the deadly draft to reach up to my families rooms, because soon enough my mom, dad and brother were all standing on the porch. “James! James! You get back in here or you’ll catch a cold or worse!” my mother calls out to me, pleadingly but still stern. “Hunter, James has no shoes or coat and it’s almost 15 degrees. Go and get him!”. My dad steps down from the porch and goes over to me and kneels “See James, I told you they would come. You should listen to your old man more often” he chuckles softly and rustles my hair, “but you still should have put on the proper clothes to come out here, and definitely should have told me or your mom you were gonna come out and play”. He stands and picks me up, “Lets get you inside. We’ll get you nice and warm before you come back out here. Deal?” I nod slowly and put my hand out to catch a few flakes in my hand. “I’ll be back everyone, don’t go anywhere”. My family goes inside, and as my dad turns around to close the door, I give a final wave outside. “See you later everybody.”
*Original Story By Me