It's a Wonderful Death

Things began to change for Alex after the accident. In a subtle way Alex Knatt had broken their arrangement. He had brought his awful inner life into her home. He had inadvertently threatened the peace by the mere suggestion of his early mortality and a mother's long loneliness. For his mother, this breach of contract had to be remedied.

So by her understanding of the agreement she decided that her son needed to see a psychiatrist. This was a point of contention in Alex's reading of the agreement but there was little he could do to argue the point, for that would entail reviewing the entire foundation of the agreement and he felt his case might not stand up under such an examination. So Alex Knatt just stayed in his room and said nothing. His mother was unimpressed with his silent bargaining tactics; he was silent most of the time anyway. She persisted and soon Alex realized his cause was hopeless.

The only chance he had to return to the normalcy of the life he so detested was to bend on this one point. She held all the cards, money, food, lodging. On top of that he had made the crucial mistake of mentioning the strange dreams. That was her trump card. Three minutes dead was one thing but her son having strange post-traumatic dreams, that was a serious crack in the facade. Alex Knatt had exposed his inner life.

Now there were these damned therapy sessions. They had been going on for months now. Dr. Worthington looked just like a Ken doll to Alex Knatt, a Ken doll married to a Barbie with a litter of little Barbie/Ken's. Dr. Worthington had pictures of his family all over the office. They looked just like the frame family - those families that come pictured in a newly purchased frame. They were all perfect and it made Alex want to spit blood. Every session the doctor's three blond cherubs stared up at Alex from their frame on the table with their village-of-the-damned smiles spread in a rictus riot of happiness. How could one so perfect help one so flawed or rather how could one so flawed ever demean himself enough to accept help from one so perfect?

And here he was again, back on the couch. Back in the museum of the world's most perfect family. His whole life had become a week long ritual of hate for his therapy and therapist. Dr. Worthington's torture tactics were breaking him down. Alex didn't know how much longer he could take all the happy faces and enforced optimism. He hated to admit it but Dr. Worthington's slow badgering method was beginning to produce psychological dividends.

Alex swallowed a sigh and waited for Worthington to start in. He didn't have to wait long.

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