Thursday, December 28, 2006

It has to start somewhere

O'Toole struggled with his captors. He was a strong man, at least 6ft to look at and solid. But three to one meant event if he were the strongest of men he could not struggle free. One on each arm and a third was holding down his legs. They forced him into a large stainless steel chair, a full body number with armrests and a step for his feet. Above the step, at ankle height, was some strapping, which was now being linked across his ankles. O'Toole couldn't see how. Further up his legs, some more strapping, across his shins. Across his chest and across his wrists. And now his head, almost wrenched off his shoulders in the fight to keep it still, with O'Toole flailing it from side to side, eyes flaming.
No one was holding O'Tooles mouth still though, and he bellowed his protestations of innocence. He screamed for justice, but justice wasn't listening. In her place came the calm movements of a male doctor prepping a needle and making for a vein in his left arm. As he felt it piercing his skin he let forth with a guttural roar of indignation, to which no one, least of all Justice, listened.
O'Toole quickly slipped into unconsciousness. Still now.
One of the men who had wrestled him into the chair picked up a pair of electric hair clippers and began giving O'Toole a new style.



Hannah guided the car up the familiar curving and tree lined drive of Evermore Mansion. It was a Tuesday. Tuesdays at Evermore were art and craft day. Hannah was the teacher, though to say teacher was misleading. More so, Hannah spent a great deal of the morning wondering if her charges remembered any of what she showed them. Each week it was the same.
"Gavin, so you remember how we did it last week?"shed ask.
"Yes"
"So how about you try and do it like that?"
"Yes"
"Gavin?"
"Yes"
"The grass outside is purple"
"Yes"
"Gavin?"
"Yes"
"Never mind"
"Yes"
At some point earlier on Hannah had reached to conclusion that she was nothing more than a glorified baby sitter wielding a glue stick. And once she accepted this, art and craft at Evermore had become less of a struggle for all involved.
With Valentines approaching, today they were going to make cards. Hannah would be happy if by lunch just one resident had stopped making kissing noises and had managed to glue the pre-cut love heart to the pre-cut cardboard.

No Scissors.

It was Rule Number 2.
Rule Number 1 was No Hot Glue Gun.
Number 3 was No Pipecleaners.

Hannah had found Rule Number 3 perplexing for a short while. After all, it was Rule Number 3 and came before Rule Number 4, which was No Toilet Rolls. After her appointment, she had left it a couple of weeks before she had asked Nancy, the ward nurse, about it.
"Why No Pipecleaners, Nancy?"
"Tapika"
"Oh?"
"Tapika tried cleaning her pipes with them"
"Oh?"
"You know, her pipes" said Nancy, gesturing to what resided under her own skirt.
"Oh!"
"Yes. One got stuck. No pipecleaners"
"No. Ok. No pipecleaners"
And Nancy had smiled and winked at her and it was the first inkling Hannah had of what she had really gotten herself in for.
But what was she to expect? This is what happened when you failed your mid terms. If she'd wanted to be a real teacher, she should have tried harder instead of letting it slip away. She'd been foolish to think it would turn out otherwise. Though 'Romanticism' had appeared as a flaw in her pre-school psych test after all.
At least she was employed. It's all her father could offer up during any given argument with her mother regarding Hannah's perceived failures and successes.
Mother "She threw it all away with that....boy"
Father "At least she has a job"
Mother "Is that what you call it? To think we wasted all that money"
Father "Rita, please"
Mother "I could have gone to Paris"
Father "You can still go to Paris"
Mother"It's not the same. I'm old now"
Father "You're not old Rita. You're 42"
Mother "I'm old!"
Father "Rita"
Mother "Ernst!"

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