Apr 18 – Dr. Maddox’s office had been empty for several days and most of the walls had been removed. They would be using two barges to hold the asylum’s furniture and belongings, and another was on its way filled with new equipment. Neither Arnold nor Dr. Maddox knew what had made the old man call for the renovations, but it was one of the only things he had handled in the two weeks he’d been there till he went off saying he’d be back when they were done.
Arnold kept watch on the other side of the canal near the bridge, far away from all the debries created by the walls. That was where Dr. Maddox found him when it was time for their weekly meeting.
Obviously they couldn’t use the facility and the cat didn’t want to leave that crew entirely unsupervised, so he requested that it be held on Saturday or Sunday for that week…when the crew working on the facility would be off. Dr. Maddox agreed it would be better for her as well, and asked him where he would like to meet.
“Anywhere that isn’t in public and there’s no chance of anyone hearing us.”
Amused, she made several suggestions over the next few minutes and finally they settled on the airship that they were currently living in. While this was going on neither of them had noticed that the bell tower had begun to angle itself oddly. Arnold turned just in time to see it begin to lurch forward and he could barely hear someone yell ‘TIMBER!’
There was a mad scramble on the barge below and near the entrance as the front entrance to the asylum went crashing down…crushing the barge.
Arnold’s entire body twitched for awhile after that, but Dr. Maddox laughed…after she found out no one had been seriously hurt. The men who had been thrown or jumped into the canals were rushed to the hospital all the same.
Apr 22 – Ordinarily Arnold did not mind staying in the airship…but it felt too open for what they were going to talk about. The asylum made Arnold feel uncomfortable to say the least, there was iron in the walls and the window bars were made of it…which was why he was keeping a distance now that it was exposed. It didn’t help that the new design only called for even more, .
Still that was contained in the walls and he never had to physically come in contact with it. Besides, it had given Arnold a sense of security, because he knew nobody could hear him through the walls. No one had ever been able to hear the patient who had screamed all the time about horses. Well, about Helio really.
Here on the airship he felt more open and free…but he felt much less secure that no one would hear him.
The doctor brought his attention back to her, berating him, “You crossed out several passages!” She held up his journal to him accusingly and indicated several lines.
The cat shrugged, “You only said not to rip any pages out, not that I couldn’t omit anything. Besides, I did that while I was writing them, before you told me to bring you the thing.”
She set his journal to the side, upset, “I’ll get it back to you tomorrow night then.” Arnold knew that she wouldn’t have treated any of her other patients this way, or made it an assignment to see anyone’s journal, but that was half the reason he wasn’t cooperating with the homework. After finally getting comfortable she informed him that she wanted to tell him what she had found out about the rose petals.
“Before you tell me what the others said,” Arnold interupted. “Can you humor me for a moment and tell me what it means in dream therapy?”
Dr. Maddox nodded, “It depends on interpretation and the individual. If you were someone else describing that situation I would say the rose petals might symbolize blood. The act of coughing it up would be preying upon a fear of wasting diseases. The crowd laughing at your suffering is common in dreams and usually stems from a fear of rejection, mockery, or large groups.”
Arnold thought about that for a few moments silently, debating in his head if it held any merit, but eventually Dr. Maddox said, “However, I’ve found out that it’s possible the rose petals were a sign that an enchantment had been placed upon you, or rather that they had been trying to place one on you and it failed.” The Dr. leaned forward and did nothing to hide her concern. “They also told me that some fae are known to kill those that have escaped from them. We need to know if they may be coming here.”
Arnold paused for a moment, and then shook his head softly, “No.”
“We need you to be sure about this. You’re not just saying that because you don’t want to believe they’re real?”
“They won’t come.” Arnold looked her in the eye and said clearly, “I’ll tell you about what happened later…but that matter was settled.” He looked outside the window at the yellowish clouds of New Babbage. He didn’t think those particular fae would survive long here. The smog, wards, enforcers, and the people themselves would see to that. He wouldn’t be surprised if defoliant itself would be enough.
The doctor seemed relieved, “If that’s the case, then I’ll tell everyone we shouldn’t need to worry…more than usual.” She placed an odd emphasis on that and then leaned forward. “Now, what happened after you got away?”
“Since that was the first place I’d found with people of any kind, I tried to search around there when I felt ready. I found only a few more empty realms before I encountered life in some fashion again.”