Jane sat in the Psychiatrist's office and listened as he prattled on about different personalities. Dr Largos had no idea what he was talking about, she was Jane, there was nobody else living inside her head. How dare he suggest such an utterly crazy thing. Did that kind of thing even exist. Pshaw, she wished the session would end so she could return to her beloved job as 'waitperson', serving drinks at the club. Jane really enjoyed mixing all the lovely types of drinks and cocktails, she even has one named after herself. "Jane the Lovely". The fellows really enjoyed the taste of her special mix.
The doctor was still explaining her condition as she zoned in and out of her thoughts:
"Dissociative identity disorder, is characterized by the presence of at least two distinct and relatively enduring personality states, accompanied by memory gaps more severe than could be explained by ordinary forgetfulness. The personality states alternately show in a person's behavior, however, presentations of the disorder vary.
Early childhood trauma, typically before the age of ~10 years, can place someone at risk of developing dissociative identity disorder. Across diverse geographic regions, 90% of individuals diagnosed with dissociative identity disorder report experiencing multiple forms of childhood abuse, such as rape, violence, neglect or severe bullying. Other traumatic childhood experiences that have been reported include painful medical or surgical procedures, war, terrorism, attachment disturbance, natural disaster, cult, and occult abuse, loss of a loved one or loved ones, human trafficking, and dysfunctional family dynamics.
There is no medication to treat DID directly. Medications can be used for comorbid (simultaneous diseases or medical conditions present in a patient) disorders or targeted symptom relief, for example antidepressants or treatments to improve sleep. However, treatment generally involves supportive care and psychotherapy. The condition usually persists without treatment".
Jane stood up to leave as the doctor stopped speaking. She headed for the door. Suddenly she stiffened, turned around and stared at Doctor Largos.
"Doc, are we going to speak of science today". Her voice had changed to that of a man's, deep and a bit guttural.
Doctor Largos too, stiffened slightly, this one he had to be wary of. He glanced at the door, his assistant Sasha was just on the other side with an emergency button for the police.
"Is this Stephen"? He enquired warily.
"Of course it's Stephen doc, who else would I be"?
"What happened to Jane, she was just leaving, our session is almost over".
"We have time doc, fifteen minutes by the clock, let's talk science".
Stephen knew of Jane, yet Jane was unaware of Stephen. His was a strong and dominant character, keeping Jane submerged beneath his subconsciousness.
"All right Stephen, what shall we speak about today. You won't mind if I record the session, will you"?
"Not at all Doc Largos. At least it will serve for posterity". This ego of Stephen's was why the doctor was especially careful with this personality. He turned the recorder on and shifted subtly in his chair.
Stephen sat down, smiled smugly and began speaking:
"Who are we doc? What are we? Where and when are we? In the grand scheme of existence? His face changed as he wrinkled his brow.
What part do our bodies of sinew, water and blood play in the grand make-up of everything...Anything?
Are we necessary? This ever expanding thing, the universe, though infinite, is not constant. Although the observable universe is constant, extending 46 billion light years from us in every direction.
The universe is all of space and time, planets, stars, galaxies, and all other forms of matter and energy.
The Big Bang, the prevailing cosmological description of the development of the universe. Space and time emerged together, yet we bask in vacuum fluctuations, in virtual particles, briefly coming in and out of existence.
13.77 billion years old, constantly expanding, made up of dark energy and dark matter. The world is ever changing, evolving with our thoughts and emotions on a never-ending roller coaster of needs, desires, wants, and urges a need for validation of our existence.
Journeys, destinations, beginning, ending, restarting, recharging, reinventing our tiny, microscopic bodies of bone and blood. Dark energy, a cosmological constant.
The speed of light in a vacuum, the strength of the gravitational force between two masses, and Planck’s constant. Fundamental parameters that never change.
Einstein's added parameters and equations, ever changing. Such vastness and never-ending marvels of time and space.
Yet in our miniscule form, and with monumental imaginations, we thwart the premise of 'us versus the world'. And manage to win every single day. Until of dust we were and unto dust we must return, finally triumphs over our earthly forms, and we arise anew and begin again. For we will ever rise from the ashes, like the phoenix.
Renewed and reincarnated, to do this life spiel all over again"! Stephen jumped to his feet and started pacing frantically.
The doctor marveled at the complete 360 degrees change in intelligence between the two personalities.
Stephen stopped midstride, turned around slowly and started crying. "Where am I". A child's voice asked through snot and tears.
"Jenny, you are with me, Doctor Largos, don't be afraid". Relaxing visibly, the doctor stood up, took the child's hand and led her back to the couch.
"Where is my mommy, I want my mommy"! Jenny looked around the office, saw the two flowering potted plants, their yellow and purple buds inviting and calming, she saw the paintings of happy children and smiling adults on the wall. She stopped sniffling and stared at the children.
"Just relax and tell me how you feel Jenny. lie back now and relax". He returned to his seat.
"Mommy says for me to run, run real fast, cause daddy is drunk again, and he has the gun". Jenny almost whispered the last part.
"Are you running Jenny. You have to run and hide, listen to your mommy, run Jenny, run really fast"! Jenny kicked her feet as if she were really running away from the violence.
She suddenly sat up straight. The sounds of the gunshots echoed inside her head. She turned around, returned to peek in the window and saw the blood spattered all over the wall. Jenny ran for a very long time. They eventually found her in the woods, cold, trembling and completely traumatized. She had been eight years old. It took five years to get her to speak again.
Doctor Lagos had heard it all before, but until she accepted it all, Jane was locked inside with Jenny and Stephen. Stephen was the dominant and dangerous aspect of the three personalities. One never knew when he would become violent, his behavior had been escalating of late. The doctor was now contemplating sending Jane for further treatment in an institution.
"Close your eyes now Jenny. I will count to ten and you will relax and be ok. You know that you can trust me, right. I am Doctor Largos". The child smiled.
"Oh, of course doctor, you are always so kind to me". She smiled.
"1-2-3-4-5-6-7-8-9-10, relax now Jenny". She took a deep breath.
"Doctor, what am I still doing here, I need to go get ready for work now, see you again on Wednesday". Jane got up hurriedly, waved to the doctor and walked out the door.
Doctor Largos sat for a few minutes, then walked to the window. He looked up at the blueness of the sky, then at the starkness of the built-up section compared to the green lushness of the park in the distance. Glancing down, he could have sworn that he saw Jane returning to the entrance of the building he now stood in, but the person was hurrying, as if they had forgotten something. Was it Jane or Stephen, he felt a bit of trepidation, but quickly shook it off.
Doctor Largos stepped outside to discuss the possibility of a few months in the institution for Jane with his assistant. Jane had been his last patient for the day.
He failed to notice the shadow of the form which crept up towards the corner by the wall. He never knew that Stephen always returned after every session to hear his final instructions to his assistant Sasha. She was always very pleasant and nice.
Stephen heard every word about the plan to lock him away. He tiptoed away and hid himself in an unoccupied office, everyone else had already left. Here he had a great fight between the three personalities. He refused to let Jane out, and Jenny kept sniffling, it was all he could do to keep her quiet.
But he had overlooked one minor detail, the distinctive perfume which Jane wore. It lingered by Dr Gregson's door. Aqua Allegoria, $118.oo an ounce, but Jane sacrificed for her passion, even though she could barely afford it.
Dr Largos returned to his office, quietly called the police and explained the situation, he feared for his life. Sasha had already left, so he locked his office door.
There was a soft rustle behind him, he turned to see Jane, or Stephen, it couldn't be Jenny, coming slowly towards him. Over her shoulder, looking comfortable, as if somehow it belonged there, was a wicked looking axe, the edges glinting like stars in the darkening room.
Damn Doctor Gregson and his pride in hunting. Damned axe was in his display case in his office, he had no idea how Stephen got it from the locked case without breaking the glass, which he would have been bound to hear.
He stumbled backwards and fell over a chair, the personality drew closer, it had to be Stephen. He knew that his life hung in the balance, what was he to do.....?
................................................ To be continued.
Here is part 2
Rick Christopher's challenge
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