It’s been three years, and she’s doing better.

The doctors tell me they might have been wrong about her. The dreams are gone and she sleeps peacefully. In the mornings, she wakes up early, eats, and smiles at everyone. They say she shares stories with the nurses about a happy childhood in the farmland: waking up at dawn to feed the chickens and work the plow. At night, she sleeps the earliest, making sure to take her pills and leave her book outside before the rooms are locked.

I feign a smile until I’ve left the Center and I’m back in the car. It is then that I break down. Tears stream down from my face as I remember the farm. Yes, there was a farm. We were in the farm, me and her. We were there when the skies got dark and the evil people came in. They took our Mommy and our Daddy, and made us work.

In the morning, they whipped us when we wouldn’t wake up before the sunrise to feed the chickens. At night, things got worse. She got lucky when the hippies passed by for food and they took her away from me.

I still go home to those fuckers, but they don’t know where she is. I’d rather keep it that way. I love my sister too much to let her go back to them and die.

There are screams once more in Thebault Center. The hippie girl in 504 is having nightmares again. They find powder under her bed after they’ve taken her to isolation room six.

She won’t be getting out anytime soon.


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