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The straps are too tight on my wrists. My ankles are trapped by wraps and wraps of metal. I squirm and try and get out with no success. That’s when he walks in. The man in the white coat. My eyes dart towards him and scan his body. He’s going to hurt me again, I just know it.
“Good morning, Ms. Kappen. How are you today?”
I don’t answer. He knows how I feel. He knows exactly how I feel. Trapped. Trapped in this hell hole they call a “safe-haven” for people like me. People with mental illnesses.
“Harrison, please read off the chart for me.”
Harrison is some stupid little nurse. He looks like he’s 12-years-old. He has no idea what’s he’s doing.
“Veronica Kappen. 25. Came in with severe hallucinations.”
“Diagnosis?” asked the doctor.
My heart beats as he reads the rest of my chart. I never take my eyes off of the doctor. The evil man who fries my brain. The man who causes me pain.
He looks over at Harrison and nods. I know what that means. They’re getting that machine again. The machine that sends shock waves through my body. The machine that is killing every single last bit of my brain cells.
"Now listen, Ms. Kappen, we’re not going to give me a problem like we did last time, right?”
Last time this happened I scratched him. Now he has a patch over his eye. That’s why they tie me up like some animal. I was just trying to protect myself.
I snarled at him and he backed away nervously.
Harrison then comes in wheeling the machine. The cart squeaks as it rolls across the dirty tile floor. The doctor then grabs the mouth guard from off the cart. I wonder how many mouths that has been in. I wonder how many people he’s ruined with this machine.
“Okay, Ms. Kappen, open wide,” he says, moving the guard closer to my mouth. I move my head as fast as I can, dodging his dark and hairy hands.
I thrash my head back and forth. He’s growing angry, I can tell. His eyes are bulging out of his head. He has this one vein that pops out of his neck when he’s angry. If only my hands were free.
“Harrison, hold her head straight.”
Harrison came close to me and I bit him. He pulls his hand back and holds it, his face withering in pain. The doctor looks at me with anger in his eyes. He throws the guard down onto my bed and slaps me across the face. I gasp loudly from the impact, making the mistake of opening my mouth. He takes his chance and shoves the guard into my mouth, making me gag.
“Harrison, turn it to 10.”
“10, sir? Isn’t that a bit extreme?” Harrison says, placing his hand on the dial.
“Do it!” the doctor yells at him.
I watch as Harrison’s slim fingers turn the dial and then the pain hit. My body is aching. My eyes roll into the back of my head as I scream.
“Do it again!” the doctor yells.
The pain comes rushing back, my body trashing, my fingers and toes curling into balls.
Tears are rolling down my eyes. My mouth is filling with saliva. My stomach churns as the pain races through my veins, my nerves, every part of my body.
Once he takes the guard out I throw up all over him. My body can’t take the pain anymore. I breathe heavily, trying to relax my body. I know that’s not going to help. My brain feels like it’s going to seep out of my ears. Harrison is standing in the corner, shaken up. Clearly, he’s never seen it before. He’s lucky he doesn’t have to feel it.
I hear the cart squeaking and then the door closing. I lay so still. After a few minutes pass, I heard the person in the room next to me screaming. She’s getting the same thing. I sit there, tears cascading down my face, my body still aching in pain. I scream at the top of my lungs.
I scream until I can’t anymore. I scream until all I see is black.