Part XXIII – Nurse Cohen’s Part
“Are you feeling better now, Mr. Tone?” the voice on an intercom says.
“No. Where’s Dr. Smith?”
“Dr. Smith has… other responsibilities. He has asked me to handle your care. My name is Doctor Jones. I’ll be back later to check on your progress.”
“Progress would be letting me the fuck out of here!” Rock shouts, wriggling in his restraint jacket.
“Did you know about Dr. Smith?”
“Yeah,” Nurse Cohen answers. “Creepy; he died watching Mr. Tone’s nightmares.”
“Weird,” the other nurse says.
“The look on his face when we found him… horrifying. Like something had scared him to death.”
“Do you think a dream could really scare someone to death?”
“I wouldn’t know,” Nurse Cohen lies to the other nurse, fearing she might sound crazy if she told the truth. The truth that what Nurse Cohen saw on the screen in the monitor room, the mere seconds of twilight terror she could bear to witness, have invaded her own dreams. She has slept little, and that restless the past two nights. She cannot banish the dark vision of those horrible shadow-lurkers, dancing their otherworldly dance to a terrible, alien statue. She cannot, no matter how she tries, forget the face of Rock Tone as those shadow-lurkers danced their cursed dance around that twilight statue he was bound to. The terror in his eyes was like nothing she could ever have imagined.
Later that evening, as she lay in bed drinking hooch and smoking Syneshtia Flower, she thinks of Rock Tone again.
‘I’d go crazy, too, if I had nightmares like his. I’m sure we’ll help him.’ She turns off her light, and out of the corner of her eye, she thinks she sees a shadowy figure slither itself behind her dresser. ‘I at least hope we can do something for me. I’m starting to lose it.’ She closes her eyes, exhausted, but dreading the twilight dreamscape awaiting her, and fearing the shadow-lurkers that will certainly invade her dreams again this night.