“What do you see?” I asked the shrink, just like he’d ask me with all those damned Rorschach tests in his cold clinic rooms.
I held up my art, my handiwork. The creativity of it thrills me just to think of it. How clever, I flatter myself, to make these versions of the world I inhabit and turn it back on him now. Learn what this unlocks in his dark little fevered mind.
Because it will be dark, I’m sure. All those hours sitting in his chair, talking to people like me, pretending he’s different. Pretending he’s trying to help, to heal, when really he’s just a little pervert onlooker wanting to live vicariously in all our much braver, freer minds.
I hold up the sheet with the first blood spatter pattern from my last kill. I can see him processing what this is, and what it means.
“Yes Richard,” I say. “This is blood and I have killed, so I guess that shows how good your therapy is. But no matter, what I want to know is what goes on in your head. What you see in the patterns. Just tell me the first thing that comes into your head.”
He struggles in his bonds. He peers at the sheet I’m holding up to him. I guess the light is a bit dark in this abandoned warehouse I’ve re-purposed for my therapy room. I turn the little lamp on the table near him more fully on to the paper so he can see more clearly. I don’t want anything stopping the truth of these revelations.
“Let me go Gary. We can make sure no-one knows about this. I can help you with what this all means.”
“But what does this mean?” I ask again, patient, holding the sheet closer to him. “What do you see?”
He actually recoils. So squeamish. No wonder he has to dive into minds like mine. He doesn’t have the balls for what people like me do. He’d probably faint or throw up or piss himself at a kill site. Look, even now, the blood on the paper – even though it’s congealed and days old – it actually scares him.
Like it’s his blood. Well, that could be arranged, if he doesn’t cooperate.
He tries to stop shaking and looks at the sheet more fully for the first time. I think he’s realised the best thing to do is play along.
“Um..I..see…an eagle swopping in the sky.”
“Oh?” I say, looking at the page myself. “Interesting. How very predatory of you Richard. And this one?”
I hold up another, and then another. He responds, his voice weaker with each.
“A man with a knife approaching someone….a child running from a car….the angel of death.”
“Wow Rich, we are stuck on a theme. Why do you suppose that is? I might do a thesis on the impact of immediate circumstances and the impressions from such art work. What do you think? Would that make me a doctor, like you?”
I stand up, taking the syringe from my pocket, holding it up to him.
“This will make you sleepy I think, make you calm down, then we can try again. See if a calmer Rich sees something different next time.”
“My god Gary..that blood..please..you need help..”
He struggles as I hold his head, baring his neck for me to administer the medicine.
“Shh, shh,” I tell him, almost kindly,. “It will hurt less if you struggle. Just a little sting, nothing more. In a little while, we can begin again.”
Who ever knew psychiatry could be such fun?
(c) Helen M Valentina 2019