Considering my current position as a waiting room, it was truly astounding how little patience my occupants possessed. After spending a considerable portion of time within my walls, I imagined my perseverance would rub off on them. But no, instead of allowing the natural course of life to bring forth the answers they so desperately sought after, they set out on an impossible intellectual journey to discover concepts of which they had no knowledge of whatsoever.
In an attempt to recreate their surroundings into a more conducive arrangement, those few who crossed to the other side drew their chairs together in a tight ring and began their rather unconventional session.
“Welcome, Ladies, Gentlemen, extraterrestrials, and fellow assassins." Madman bowed dramatically to his guests. "Mark your calendars, for this is our first official A.A. meeting inside the Waiting Room.”
Why the insane man perpetually made an obnoxious show of himself on a daily- no, hourly basis was perplexing. I understand he could hardly be blamed for his inadequate mental health. However, it was not unreasonable to ask for a little decorum.
"A.A. meeting?" Jordyn asked, suddenly looking self-conscious, "Silas told me this gathering was about the exam rooms."
“That’s just what Mad’s calling it,” her friend said.
“Why? This has nothing to do with alcohol. Trust me, I would have remembered.”
“Alcohol, drugs, there is no difference really, if you think about it,” Mad objected, “both involve blackouts and mind addling substances.”
“We have no proof of being drugged,” Jordyn pointed out, “and surely there is a more plausible explanation for our missing memories?”
"That is true, and I’m perfectly willing to explore the possibility of hypnosis.”
“Or magic. See, I can do stupid too.”
“Now that is an actual alternative. Thank you for your contribution, Miss. Mariotto.”
“I was being sarcastic.”
“Not me. Do you not comprehend the severity of this discussion?”
“Shall we get on with the actual meeting before another member is called back again?” The Editor interrupted, impatiently tapping her pen on an outstretched notebook.
Willing to put their argument to bed, for the time being, Mad slid onto his yellowed chair and allowed room for the others to take the floor.
“It’s aliens,” Andy voted.
“Do you see any little green men hanging around?” Jerome Miller asked, “because I haven’t.”
“They are blue.” The M.E. looked outraged at the amateur assumption.
“With that line of thought, witches seem to be the more likely possibly,” Jonny Raz countered.
“Or demons.” Father Tomas flicked the butt of his cigarette. “This is the reason Judas tells me to always carry Holy Water. I should have listened to him.”
“You are all idiots,” Eddie informed them from the comfort of his wheelchair.
“I’m sticking with Jordyn’s theory,” Sam said, blatantly ignoring the cripple.
“Back on point.” The Editor turned to Sun Cho. “You were the first one to be called; what do you remember?”
“Nothing concrete, but I think the Dove had something to do with it. And you. And Jimmy. And coffee. And food. Speaking of food, I’m starving, aren’t they ever going to feed us?”
“Sun, you’re trailing.”
"I refuse to participate in this ludicrous nonsense," Gabriel crossed his arms resolutely, "it is perfectly clear this is all a dream."
The malnourished mute sitting next to the apparent dreamer squirmed in his seat, glaring stoically at his guardian.
“Don’t suppose you have anything to say,” Mad asked the boy.
“Tactless.” His wife elbowed him in the ribs.
The familiar creak of the desperately scratched door sent a thrill of unholy dread through the hearts of every occupant. The nurse, still donning her blue scrubs and clipboard, took in the meeting with a critical eye.
“Well, what is this?” she asked, her light voice sending shivers down their spines. “I sincerely hope you aren’t trying to remember the exam rooms. The Doctor will not be pleased.”