I still remember the exact moment that I found out that magik was real and not just talented con-men pulling the wool over people’s eyes. A very stern man visited me in the local psychiatric hospital to tell me that I wasn’t crazy.
I pieced together things from what he told me and the things that happened to me to land me in the psych ward in the first place. A meteor hit my house. Well, not quite. Technically the meteor hit the twelve foot space between my house and the neighbor’s place. The family next door died, but I lived.
When emergency crews arrived on the scene they found me asleep on my couch. The couch and the space around it were the only things in the house that weren’t demolished. There wasn’t a speck of dust on me. When the fireman woke me up I started screaming. Not from any physical injury, but because there was a giant standing behind him with an axe. Seriously, the dude was fifteen feet tall and wearing untanned furs. Of course none of the rescue people seemed to be able to see him.
All the way to the hospital I saw things that just couldn’t be there. We were followed most of the way by a flight of faeries. One of the medics was surrounded by a bluish aura, while the one driving looked like she had horns and flames surrounding her shoulders.
From the moment I got into the ambulance the electronics started going haywire. The ambulance was backfiring and acting weird and finally broke down in the emergency room entrance.
All the way through the hospital the lights flickered and the machines kept going nuts. The interviews with the nursing staff and the doctors seemed to go on forever, especially as they had to run out of the room to deal with some life support equipment not working. I ended up spending the night in an exam room without lights or working equipment. It took them 36 hours to decide I was loony and lock me up.
Every time I looked out a window I saw something unreal. One room they put me in had a half dozen people in it that only I could see and hear. They were having a rousing conversation about Watergate and where Nixon went wrong.
The nurses tried to put me in a room in the middle of the building, but it was close to the elevators and they stopped working. The nurses got really pissed off when they had to take the stairs and the maintenance crew couldn’t manage to fix them until I got moved.
I finally got a “private” room. They cleared out a maintenance closet at the far end of the wing, installed a lock and rolled a bed and lamp in.
I saw a doctor once a day. He came in when they brought lunch, so I guess around noon, and asked me more questions about what I saw. It always ended with him shaking his head and prescribing some medication or other. Nothing seemed to work to their satisfaction.
With no window and only the nurses rounds to mark the time it was peaceful. I got them to bring me whatever books they had laying around. I read a lot of random medical journals. With minimal visitors and the door usually closed, my life seemed much more normal. I saw less weird stuff and the staff got happier about having me there.
When Barry Dennis walked in my door things got weird again. He was a hair under six feet tall, with salt and pepper hair and a neatly trimmed beard to match, and wearing a doctor’s white coat. He was carrying the clipboard I recognized as having my medical information attached to it. “Are you James Varley?” Having appeared to get what he wanted from it he tossed the clipboard casually on the foot the bed.
I wasn’t sure who he was, but since he acted official I answered. “Yeah, that’s me. Jim ‘crazy man’ Varley.”
“Nice digs kid, what are you in for?” He couldn’t have been more than a year or two older than me, oh and he had a golden aura with little purple and red flecks in it.
“You read the record, I’m crazy, I see stuff; faeries, elves, giants, dead people, auras around people, that kind of thing. Sometimes they talk to me, but I’ve been trying not to talk back to them.”
He looked me over and closed his eyes for a moment before looking me over again with shock, “Holy crap man, no wonder, your third eye is wide open! How long have you been stuck?”
Having no idea what the hell he was talking about at the time didn’t help the look I gave him. “Well, a meteor hit my house, and then all of this other weird stuff started happening. Like the little faerie dude looking in the door just now. Could you close it?”
He shooed the pixie out of the room and closed the door. “So you don’t know?”
“Don’t know what?” Acting clueless is really easy when you actually are. It took about a half hour for him to fill in some blanks for me, starting with an odd mental exercise. He had me relax everything and with my eyes closed try to close them even tighter until I felt a mental snap. When I opened my eyes his aura was gone. He had me run it back and forth a couple of times until he was satisfied that I have a handle on it.
“OK, junior, here’s the long and short of it. You’re a magi. From the sound of what happened to you the destruction of your house by the meteor triggered something that should have happened for you a long time ago. The only reason I even looked into it was that the meteor incident hit the papers complete with the story of the guy who lost his mind afterwards. All magi have this third eye ability to see beyond what normal people see and into the reality of the supernatural. We also have a tendency to draw supernatural beings to us like mosquitoes to a bug zapper.” Barry didn’t pull any punches. We talked for another hour about what had been happening around me and what I could do to get back to something more normal than the Psych ward.
Following his advice wasn’t hard and I found myself released two days later. My sister picked me up, having taken care of the insurance company in my absence, and took me home with her until I could get things taken care of. I no longer had a home. I no longer had a car. I had a job, but didn’t know if I could even return to it. There wasn’t even much left from the insurance settlement after paying the hospital bills.
My house and car were both gone. Nothing is quite as tough as starting from scratch. Thank god for family. My uncle had an old Cadillac that had belonged to my grandfather, big and beautiful in green and chrome with tailfins like a shark. He offered it to me for the cost of the storage bill. Driving the beast was more like steering the Titanic and watching out for icebergs, but it got me around.
Staying with family was nice, though every time I got near anything electronic it went haywire. I was able to watch TV if I sat at the far side of the room, but I couldn’t get anywhere near a computer or a cell phone. This was a pretty big problem. I had been a database developer. Computers had been a huge part of my life, but I had no clue what I was going to do now.
This has been my entry for LJIdol Week 27
, where the topic is completely open...