Yeah that’s right; explaining the security doors procedures had not been covered in her induction. We hadn’t even left this wing since our day of introduction.
Thinking’s a bit muddy. An Adderall hit would be nasty on top of Methadone but, what the hell. Back to the kitchen for a fumble through neat soldiers standing to attention. There they are; three should do.
Kristine crowds me, keen to press her advantage.
“Hold your horses, I’m trying to get straight.”
“By taking more pills? That’s not how it’s done, Sam.”
“That depends on if you want me alert or strung out.”
That shuts her up. Fingers dig into hips to show a patience wearing thin. I hold up my hands, surrendering with mockery. The chemicals would do their job while I placate her.
I float off to search out a set of keys.
Crossed arms and nervously licked lips greet my return with a jingling cluster held out. An unwillingness to take them annoys me.
“You want these or not? If something happens out there you might want to get back in without searching my body first!”
The words are ridden by alarming visuals of that certain something happening. It’s bloody and violent.
She watches me closely.
I’m enlightened with empathy. Plain feelings cross her honest face.
“A prisoner of fate is the girl who chooses too late. You’re afraid of the loose nut behind the wheel. I see through you. I see inside you.”
I belatedly realise I’m escalating a confrontation that may root a desire to flee.
“You don't make any sense when you’re high. How can I talk with you like this?”
“Take the keys. Master your destiny.”
She quietens, definitely afraid of what will spring back if I snap but unwilling to let up the pressure. What was that called? Strength of conviction, upright moral fibre?
She should be scared. Erratic behaviour, cycling from elation to despair, an explosion of lights that bloom and fade. Even I’m afraid.
Sudden misery settles leadenly. Speed laced blood revs a brain made for cruising. The packets these drugs come in should have a warning about combining them.
Oh yeah, I think they do.
A sequence plays behind eyes screened in silver. If she leaves, I’ll die alone. Having the possibility of hand holding and gentle goodbye tears as an option, I am gripped by selfishness.
“Don’t leave, Krissie. You can have a life here. I’ll treat you like a Princess. A Princess who does housework.”
Pleadingly, I trail off. A song plays in my head and I whistle the tune, ‘If you leave me, can I come too.’
I tone down the urgency that carries my voice too high.
“I locked you in here. That was wrong and stupid. I’m not coping very well at the moment. Please, take the keys.”
I shove them at her again. They shiver slightly when she grips the bundle in a small fist. She feels their power.
“You sure are a loose unit, Sam. But we’re in this together and I’m not going to leave unless you give me good reason to.”
Tears threaten. I must have gotten something in my eye.