The White Room - Part V | Pushing the Wave

The White Room

Part V

Story, 24 April 2024
by L.A. Davenport

From the collection No Way Home

The White Room by LA Davenport
The White Room
The room is a white, sparse box, filled with stark, neon light. The clouds outside the window are heavy and grey, sucking out any warmth. 

The door to her room opens and she pulls the towel tight around her body. The man walks in, carrying her notes, looking at the floor. When he looks up, he is surprised to see her standing in front of him.

“Oh, so you’re up. You fell asleep again before I left. Did you dream this time?”

“No, nothing,” she says, shifting uncomfortably on the cold tiles.

He smiles. “Never mind. Maybe next time.” He examines her face and frowns. “Are you all right? You look a little disturbed.”

She swallows. “Am I still the same person, the one who came here all that time ago?”

The man gazes back her blankly, waiting.

She glances at the bathroom and then back at him. “I caught myself in the mirror just now and I didn’t recognise myself. I’m so thin.” She looks down at her body poking through the towel.

He nods. “You are thinner, there’s no doubt about that. But you’re still the same person.” He shifts slightly on his feet. “You know, you were very unhappy when you came to us, but you seem so much calmer now.”

He motions for her to sit down and she perches on the edge of the bed, the sheet still half-thrown over the side and trailing on the floor. He brings in a folding chair and sits down. He sighs and opens her notes. On the front page is her name, date of birth, date of admission and current status. He flicks through a few pages, arriving at a medication sheet.

He looks up. “I’ve been thinking. You seem a little agitated at the moment…I think we might want to increase the dose of one of your drugs.”

She smooths the bedsheet by her bare leg. “If you think it’s necessary, doctor.”

He stares at her, inspecting her face. She avoids his gaze.

“Do you think you might be ready to leave, to go out there again?” He gestures towards the window. “You do know that you can leave at any time you want? Whenever you’re ready.”

She glances at the window and then back at him with fear in her eyes.

“No, I don’t want to leave. Not yet.”
© L.A. Davenport 2017-2024.

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The White Room - Part V | Pushing the Wave