Here is the first real chapter of Isolation. I really appreciate the comments on the synopsis and intro and I will definitely work on them some more. The chapters should make a bit more sense from now on.
I roll onto my side only to feel a sharp pain that jolts me from my sleep. I sit up and look around only to realize that I am not home.
“Where am I?” I ask myself. I look around the tiny room and notice that the walls are painted brown, but the paint is peeling in the corners causing it to reveal a bluish color at the top. I look down at the bed that I am sitting on. It’s not much of a bed at all. Just a rusting metal frame and a thin mattress placed over it. The door of the room is metal with a tiny barred area close to my eye level, and there is a small sink right next to where the door is with a small mirror above it. A chair sits next to the bed with a few folded blankets on it and there is a small desk in the corner just under a barred and washed glass window. I look back to the door and see that someone is looking in the room at me. I quickly get up and walk over.
“Hey. Do you know where I am?”I ask the man. He just continues to stare at me until footsteps start echoing down the hallway. I can feel myself start to panic because of the sound. “No, wait! Tell me where I am!” I scream after the man, but he just disappears. I slowly slide down the door as the echoing footsteps come closer. Sobs wrack my body as I cry out loud for someone to give me answers when suddenly, a loud knock sounds on the door causing my ears to buzz.
“Shut up, kid.” A man tells me. I slowly pull myself off the ground and look through the bars at another set of eyes staring at me.
“Can you tell me where I am?” I ask my voice thick from screaming and crying. He just looks at me with sad eyes before walking away. After that I growl and kick the door which was a bad idea because it’s metal and now my foot hurts very bad. I decide to just sit on my cot and wait for someone to come and give me the answers that I want. The answer comes not even five minutes later with another loud knock on my door. I jump up from the bed and make my way to the door as the lock clicks and it slowly creaks open. The guard on the other side has his face set in stone as he motions for me to walk ahead of him out of my room.
“It’s time to meet with the doctor.” He tells me shortly before we start walking down the long hallway that seems to have a lot of other hallways stemming from it. I notice that a few of the parts that I thought were hallways were actually rooms and they all look exactly the same. I look completely around the hall and even turn around to get a view of the darker end of the hall which was a bad idea because the guard grabbed a hold of my arm and whirled me back around to walk forward. I caught a glimpse of another person before he turned me around, someone was grinning at me from the shadows. I shake my head and focus on learning more about this place that I am in. We reach one of the bigger hallways and I find a huge common room with a table and chair, perfect for reading, two ratty couches, a TV, and barred, but not washed glass windows probably with a good view for drawing. There’s a bear sitting on one of the couches and it looks so lonely like it need someone to play with it. We walk past a little window and I look inside to see a little office with medical supplies and a whole medicine chest inside. Medicine?
“Am I in a hospital?” I ask the guard. He pulls me to a stop and scans a small plastic card. The door in front of us makes a loud metallic buzzing sound before slowly opening into another hallway.
“You could say that.” He answers while guiding me out into the hallway and quickly turning me down another hallway to the left and then quite a few more hallways, so many that I can’t remember all of the directions. We finally stop at a door with a faded nameplate on it. The guard steps forward and knocks, then steps back to wait. About a minute later a very disheveled looking man answers the door looking around for who had knocked. Once his eyes land on me and the guard he smiles and opens the door all the way.
“Thank you, Darius. I will call you when he is ready to go back.” He dismisses the guard and ushers me into his office. “Please, come in. Don’t mind the mess, I haven’t had a lot of time to tidy up.” He tells me. I settle myself at the edge of the ratty chair in front of his desk and start looking around, everything seems to go along with the theme of a run down hospital except the shiny gold nameplate that sits perfectly in the middle of his desk. It reads ‘Dr. Callahan’. Doctor?
“Excuse me. Could you please tell me where I am?” I ask him. He continues to rifle through all of his papers and folders, completely ignores my question. This does not make me happy, but I don’t say anything more.
“Ah ha!” He yells as he pulls out a folder and slams it down on his desk in triumph. He sets himself down in his cushioned desk chair and then looks at me. “Now, what is your name?” He asks. I think for a moment.
“Xavier.” I tell him. He nods and writes my name really big at the top of the paper. “Don’t you need more space to take notes?” I ask. He looks at me in question and then down at his paper and laughs a bit.
“Ah. It’s fine. I have a whole legal pad here where I can take all of the notes I need. Hopefully we won’t have to go past the first two pages before you’re out of here.” He tells me. I nod a bit confused. “Now, let’s talk about you. How have you been feeling recently?” He asks me.
“I’ve been feeling fine.” I answer him. He nods and doesn’t write anything down. I guess that’s not the answer he was looking for.
“Okay. do you know where you are?” He asks me. I shake my head no. He nods with a grim look on his face. “You’re at the Greenborough Asylum.” He tells me. My mind starts reeling, an asylum? There’s no way my parents would have brought me here. “Xavier? Are you okay?” He asks. I look up at him with a glare on my face.
“Do I look okay to you? How could anyone be okay after hearing that they’ve been put in an asylum?” I ask. The doctor quickly takes down notes before answering my questions.
“I know that it’s a lot to handle, but do you remember anything before you woke up here?” He questions me. I look up at him again through tear filled eyes. I sniffle and rub the tears away trying to remember what happened before I woke up here.
“I ran an errand for my parents. They sent me into town to buy some milk, then I came back home only half an hour later. I don’t understand why I’m here. My parents wouldn’t have put me in here.” I tell the doctor. He nods and takes down more notes. He turns away from me and starts digging through another pile of papers until he finds one and puts it on the desk. He opens it and starts reading the notes on the page.
“It says here that your father brought you in complaining that you were having psychotic episodes and that you threatened to kill him. Do you remember any of these things?” He questions me. I feel my eyes widen.
“No. I would never do anything like that. I’ve never even gotten mad at my parents before.” I tell him. He nods and takes down a few notes. He closes the folder that he had taken out and leans back in his chair.
“You’re sure that you’ve never had any violent tendencies or even thoughts of killing anyone?” He questions me. I nod furiously.
“Yes, I’m positive.” I tell him. He nods and looks thoughtful for a moment.
“If you ever started to feel mad, what would you do?” He asks.
“Well, I would go out to the fields and paint so that I could be alone or I would lock myself up in my room with a book. Something to keep me isolated until I wasn’t feeling negative emotions anymore.” I tell him. He nods and sits up to write down some notes.
“Would you like if we gave you some of those things in the ward? You wouldn’t be able to keep them in your room for safety reasons, but we could give you a sketchbook and some pencils and maybe an easel and canvases with some paint. We already have a bookshelf with a pretty good selection of novels in there. You are going to have to share some of the things if we get more patients, is that okay with you?” He asks me. I smile and nod.
“Yes, sir. I don’t have any problems with sharing.” I tell him. He smiles and looks down at his notes and then back at me.
“Well, it looks like that’s it for today. I will get those things moved into the hall by the end of this week.” He tells me. Then, he pulls out a little wood box and pulls off the lid to reveal a metal stick.
“What’s that?” I ask him. He smiles at me again.
“It’s just a metronome. It will help you to relax. You can go back to the ward and sleep for the rest of the day and then you can explore the common room and maybe even go for rec tomorrow, if the weather isn’t bad.” He tells me. I nod and relax a bit as he unclicks the metal stick and starts it starts swinging back and forth. It starts beeping with every swing and I can’t help but follow the little mirror back and forth as I feel my eyes starting to get droopy. I look in the mirror one last time and see the same man standing there grinning at me as darkness takes over.