“It tugs at me, you know, this way and that, until I move to its beat. A magnetic pull, alive and peppy and energetic. Like a wife, it orders me, sometimes. Oh, it does. And other times, it is like a mistress, seducing me with its tempting grasp. Both is hard to ignore, to disregard. If I don’t relinquish, it will squeeze me out, until last drop and then I will be no more. Yes, I know, I am getting half way towards the mark of insanity, but… It is beautiful, this insanity.”
The doctor stares at me, wordless. I have a tendency to make people inarticulate. It’s all part of the game, I suppose.
His white coat is so unobtrusive, his steep nose so ordinary. Just another man, trying to get into my mind, the mind that even I can’t get into… Oh bother! I smirk.
“Ms. Nitha… I would say you’re too knotted with your profession. It is dangerous, this addiction, any addiction.”
Like I don’t know that.
“But doctor, this one, this enslavement is inevitable. I must be suffered, such is the fate ordained. Like a colorful jellybeans put in front of a diabetic, it tempts me, to teeter forward and to extirpate everything that stands in the way, my way, our way. You should understand, doctor, I have no leash upon it. The leash is in its hand, its enticing hand.” I sigh. I am already tired of explaining myself, over and over again.
He stares again, a long time. Scratches his bald head and clears his throat. The sign of nervousness. Humans are fascinating creatures… They — he — is one of the reason I am so addicted.
“Ms. Nitha, let me put it this way… Any vices can be abolished, if you just give it a try… You-”
I wave a hand, “Oh, an alcoholic can give up alcohol if he eschew from where it is. But mine, my addiction, it is in the head, doctor. I can run, far and wide, to nihilism, and it will still march along with me. I am the music, and it, it is my violinist. I am the vagrant, and it is my navigation system. We are bound together, intricately interwoven. One must not come away without breaking the other.”
He takes a long breath. “Ms. Nitha, this fascination is rather far-fetched, I understand. Even an alcoholic, a drug addict put forth the same theory about why he can’t escape. It is nature, human nature. But… Anything can be stopped.”
“You don’t understand, about how it works. As I sit there, I can conceive a thousand way to murder, and slip through even the tightest of fingers. I don’t put any effort in to thinking the scenario. It just comes, a rabid dog, attacking, until I lose to it.”
Beads of sweat, like little pearls appear in his forehead. He twitches, his eyes widens and dilates. Fear is a very constraining emotion, fear tends to overrule common sense, I know, and now, this man fears me.
“…It is like a storm, doctor, hurrying in, a hurricane so intense not even the great wall of China can bar it. It only goes away once it is satiated, its hunger must be fed. It is a glut, and it eats, and eats, off me…”
He laughs, a nervous ring. His finger creeps towards the phone.
This enslavement is inevitable. I must be suffered, such is the fate ordained. Like a colorful jellybeans put in front of a diabetic, it tempts me, to teeter forward and to extirpate everything that stands in the way. I have no leash upon it. The leash is in its hand…
“I can call your wife, doctor, and explain the crease in your white shirt. You must have been tallied with your accountant, or must have partied with your receptionist… It’s not personal to me, doctor, just a game I play. Your curtain has raised… Your wife barges in ready for her revenge, and finds you slashed, blood spilling out of your gut. She calls the police, and your affairé is discussed. She, the first suspect. They call me, of course, I was the last you see. But then they’ll see my face… How can I be the killer. It is all so easy doctor. Am I insane?”
He pushes the chair back, stands up, waves a frantic hand. “No, you can go, Ms. Nitha.”
“Do I need to book my second appointment?”
“No, you are not insane, you needn’t come again.” Ever, he doesn’t say.
“Thank you doctor. I am pleased you understand. But, like I said, this insanity is beautiful.” I sashay out.
Walking inside the bookstore, I pause in front of the hilltops of books. Good and bad, oh how I love ’em all.
‘Hey, it’s Nitha Light, the horror/ mystery writer.’ One whispers, pointing me. Many whispers follow, as I pull out a Sylvia Path and Ravi Subramanian.
My phone rings. My Editor flashes in the screen. I answer with a smile. I know why she is calling me now.
“Nitha, why is Karthi, the patient, the perpetrator, and not Leesa, like you originally said. The psychiatrist’s wife found out his extra-marital affair, and kills him according to police. But Leesa didn’t, and Karthi did. And Karthi escaped. All so……con-” She pauses.
“Because I can…” I laugh, “because I CAN.”