chapter twenty eight

I don’t remember what time I came home, or who was here when I did. I was dazed. I argued meekly with someone, only I can’t recall who. I don’t even remember changing my clothes and getting into bed. The only thing on my mind was what had happened in Marissa’s apartment after I had accepted her help. The event played over and over in my mind, as if threatening to stay embedded there forever...

“Are you sure about this?

“I think so. Yeah, I am.”

“There’s no going back once its done.”

“I know.”

“Well, alright then. Do you know what you have to do?”

“Yeah, you already told me.”

“You want to do it now, or wait until you get home?”

“Would you mind if I did it now?”

“No, not at all. Let me get it ready.”

I sat in silence as I heard Marissa rummage through cabinets in her kitchen. I tried to pick my brain apart, tried to figure out exactly what I was feeling about this situation, and the decision I had come to. The strange thing was that I found no emotion whatsoever, no sadness, no happiness, no remorse, no guilt, no fear, nothing at all.

“Here it is.” Marissa said, walking back to the living room, holding a tray. She set it down before me, and I caught a glimpse of the tray’s contents: A small wooden stirring spoon, three small plastic containers, a teapot with boiling water and a teacup. I watched as Marissa poured the hot water into the cup and, while her lips moved in a silent chant, placed small amounts of the herbs inside the plastic containers into the water, ultimately stirring her concoction until the water had a golden glow to it.

“My grandmother told me they used this remedy in her village when she was young,” Marissa explained as she stirred. “When...accidents...occured. It wasn’t common to use it, the process had to be done secretly. My Great-Grandmother was the only one in the village who knew how to prepare the remedy. They always came to her, and my Grandmother learned through observation. As I grew older, she passed on her home remedies to me, this being the most recent one.” She paused then, took the spoon out of the cup, and looked me dead in the eyes. “Its done.”

“So...what do I do?” I asked her.

“Just drink it for now. And you can’t eat anything for twelve hours, either.”

She started to hand me the cup, but pulled it away from me as I reached out for it.

“Are you really sure about this?” she asked me again.

“Yes, I am.” I replied.

She handed me the cup then and watched as I brought it to my lips. My mouth hovered over the brim of the cup for a moment as I shot her a nervous glance. She smiled wryly, urging me forward. Hesitantly, I closed my eyes and drank the warm liquid.

‘This is it.’ I thought as I swallowed Marissa’s remedy.

[chapter 27 | chapter index | chapter 29]