Mohit Goyal

Life's Perfection

"Mr. Williams? Mr. Williams, wake up. This is not kindergarten, if you wish to sleep during my class then by all means do it in the hallway and leave the rest of us to complete the test where as you will be taking a zero, good day Mr. Williams". Man that is one of the things I hate about going to a school that's meant for rich kids. I mean sure my family is rich and all, but these schools are way too serious usually. I come from a rich family, my name is Sam Williams, well my full name is Samuel Williams, but most people call me Sam. Like any other rich family, my father is always way too busy to pay attention to my studies, my mom is always on my case saying, "Look at your brother; he is a successful young man, why can't you be more like him?", My brother Jake, he and my dad are always on the phone to each other talking business, or something along those lines. My brother and I are pretty good with one another; I mean we don't fight over simple stuff or anything. My school, well the most teachers there are very up tight, they very much like to hear their own voice when giving lectures. Teachers over here are some very malicious and some very considerate. Although school still sucks, no matter how much I try to please my parents with good marks, they only seem to rub it off with an expressionless look at me that says these are ok marks. To my parents only my brother is good enough for them.

Monday afternoon my friends and I were hanging out at this great restaurant called "Sicilia", the chef was a great cook, and always gave a discount to us. After wards my friends always headed towards a mall, usually the gaming shop. I know teenagers from a very high status family don't usually do this kind of stuff; well I'm sick of being just some rich kid who would get respect through power and money. I want to get respect through my actions and what I do for others. Midnight, my parents usually expect me back and if I missed dinner, they would leave a plate of cold food out saying, "If you want warm food, be on time!", I never really understood them for that. One day after school, Terry, one of my very good friends were just hanging out when he suddenly brought up this strange topic.

"Hi Sam, I met these two high school kids, like normal high school kids, not rich or anything, so when I walked by they notice and said What you staring at? I told them nothing, and I saw this pipe in their hands"

"Hi man you talking about drugs?"

"Well what if they are? I mean it's not like I'm forcing it on you".

"You know Terry you should stay out of stuff like that, that stuff messes up your life, I thought you learnt something like that from Mr. Jalaves class today".

"Okay dude look here all I'm saying is whether you want to go and check these two dudes out or not?"

"My answer is a definite no!"

Later that night I thought about what Terry said, and I guess a curiosity sort of arose in me. The next day, I went over to Terry's place, we were just talking about school when I brought back that subject back up again, "Terry, maybe I might just check it out, that thing you told me about, but from a safe distance".

"Serious?" he asked in surprise.

"Yea", I said.

"Alright dude, safe distance, deal!"

As the week went slowly, nothing much happened but when the weekend came, I felt a sudden feel of danger. I knew myself that going to these high school kids with Terry was dangerous, but I wanted to see it myself and fill my curiosity I suppose. As we walked to the spot Terry had spotted those two kids, we saw two shadowy figures from a distance. Two kids bent down onto the ground, with a white powder on the ground and pipes in their hands. I knew this was way too intense, I nudged Terry and said, "Dude, let's go before they spot us", but Terry was way too busy looking at those two kids. Terry looked at me and said, "Let's get closer"; I looked at him in surprise not noticing the possibility that we could get involved in all this if we aren't too careful. I nudged him again giving him a signal to get out of here, but he went on ahead without noticing me, while I turned and started to walk away. I wanted to look back, but I couldn't. As I walked, I heard footsteps, as if they were running. I turned to find Terry being chased by those two kids, with knives in their hands; I made a break for it. Terry and I managed to escape; we had taken a turn into an ally that leads to the back of our favorite game shop.

When we were about to enter the game shop the two boys suddenly appeared in front of us with their knives and said, "What do you want from us? Why were you watching us?".

I said, "We didn't see anything, please let us go", the other one turned and said, "I see you are a rich uptight kid from those families living in the Ever Stones area". Terry looked at me in worry and fear, I looked at him with the same expression and then one of the kids said, "How much money do you have on you?" ,I responded saying, "I only have fifty, same with my friend here". Those two kids looked at us and said, "Fine give us the fifties and get out of here!", We gave them the fifties and then ran from that area as fast as we could. That night during dinner I didn't talk at all and asked if I could be excused earlier, then I called Terry up, talking to him about what happened today, hoping nothing like this ever happens again. Most rich people live in a life full of perfections in Ever Stone, but today was not a perfect day of what supposedly is supposed to be a perfect life. Throughout the night I thought about what happened and my curiosity grew of what it would be like to be in a separate world. A separate world, a world which you can call your own, people said you go to places when you take drugs. I didn't know what places, and in one part of my heart I didn't want to find out while other, I did.

Next morning, I called up Terry again asking him to come with me again, but he didn't answer and hung up. So I decided to go alone, carrying a bill of twenties in my pocket. When I went back to that spot I saw those two kids hanging out there again, I went up to them and they suddenly jumped up in surprise with their knives out. I looked at them as one of them said, "What are you doing back here? I thought we told you to never come back!".

"You did", I said.

"Then why are you back here, well either way too bad because money isn't going to save your life", I looked at them both in fear and when I opened my mouth and started to speak the kids both leaped on top of me. I pleaded to be freed, they kept pushing on me harder and harder, and then I finally told them, "I came to see what is so really great about all that stuff you snort, or inject?", Then they both looked at each other and finally let go off me. They looked at me and said, "Its two hundred dollars per gram", I told them, "All I'm carrying is a hundred", and they both looked at me with greedy intent and said, "Fine, here take it". I asked them, "What's this?" and they said looking at me, "It's the stuff you came for".

"How do I take it in?" ,I asked.

"Just use the damn needle, and remember none of this happened, understood?"

"Yeah, I got it". They both started to run away from me, when I got home I hid all of it in my secret room. After school on Monday I told Terry what happened and he was surprised that I managed to make it out of their alive, we went over to my house and I showed him the thing. Terry in surprise and shock said looking at me "Are you actually going to use it?"

"Why not, I bought it"

"Still dude, I mean these are drugs we're talking about!"

"Not so loud, my mom is at home"

"Oh yeah sorry"

I couldn't bring myself to do it at the time, I couldn't bring myself to inject something which I didn't even know what it could do. Still my curiosity roams deep within me, and it grows every day as time passes. When I come home, I would go into my secret room and stare at that needle filled with that liquid which meant an escape for me into a better world. A better world which I created, my own world. I picked it up and looked at it, yet once again I could not bring myself to do it. That night, Terry and me decided to hang out at the "Sicilia" restaurant again, as I walked in I already saw Terry seated eating a plate of burritos. I ordered some fries and we were locked in a stare of wonder with each other, him trying to figure me out and me doing the same thing to him. I finally spoke saying, "I can't seem to do it man".

"Do what?", he asked.

"You know, take it in"

"See it isn't that easy, you got have some real guts to do that"

"Come on I got guts, it's just that I'm a little scared man, scared of what might happen if I take it in"

"Well we all are scared of what we don't know about", he stated.

"Yeah well this is different, what I'm scared of is what will happen to me when I take that stuff in, what will happen to the world around me and how will it change?"

"Man, don't ask me, ask those two kids you bought it off from". Once school was over for the day I decided to go back up to that spot which started all of this, I went up to those two kids, one of them backed off for their own security, the other said, "Back for more?", I responded saying, "How can you take that stuff in like it doesn't matter to you?", They both looked at each other and then looked back at me saying, "It isn't that hard, just take the damn needle and poke it into one of you vessels".

"Easy for you to say"

"Come on man, you here to buy or what? If not then leave us and get out of here"

"Fine", saying that I left.

My life was filled with a big conundrum now, a life of fear and escape into your own world or a life of perfection. I decided to get this all out of my mind by finishing this English assignment I had been putting off for weeks, which was due tomorrow. Along the way as I was writing I grew tired and sleepy, but somehow I managed to finish that assignment. As soon as I put the last letter down on it, suddenly the thought of my conundrum came back. I looked up at the watch, midnight, and knew my parents would be asleep. So I decided to sneak out, taking those things with me to the spot of those two teenagers. I saw those two there bent down on the ground again smoking something, I was scared to go but I did, when I reached them one got up looking at my hands. The other one said, "Dude no returns".

I told them, "Do it, I want you to inject this stuff into me", the other one looked in suspicion, whether I was up to something or not. The one on the ground finally got up and said, "Alright, your decision man", as he took the needle and told me to remove my sleeves, I felt frightened. As that needle grew closer, I could feel my heart beat growing louder and louder, and as the needle penetrated my skin, I could hear my heart beat at its loudest. My breathing started to get heavier, the other one said, "You alright man?" I waved him off with a nod, and said, "Yeah, whatever dudes just keep going", the drugs had finally started to take effect, I felt drowsiness, sense of lightness and as if all the responsibilities of this world had been lifted off of my shoulders. The one guy said, "There it's done".

I said, "Thanks…", as I staggered back home quietly I could feel the drugs taking some serious effects on me. I couldn't even walk straight or even think properly. It was done now, no going back, and a secret I may have to bear with me for a long time against my parents, my friends and my best friend "Terry".

I found myself awake right in front of my house, I guess I must have passed out. Passed out into my own little world, a world filled with no worries and a world to escape to. When I got up I felt a bit of drowsiness, hunger and sadness. I didn't know why I was so sad, but I just was. I walked in seeing my dad ready to leave as he gave me a glance of disappointment, probably because I was out all night. When I walked in the kitchen my mom was sitting in one of the chairs and looked up at me asking in worry, "Where have you been all night, and why do you look so tired?".

I told her, "I was just hanging out with a couple of friends, I guess when I came back I unknowingly started sleeping right in front of the house". She looked at me and said, "Fine, your breakfast, I packed it for you, now don't be late for school".

"Alright, I won't", I walked over to the bus stand to find Terry there waiting. Usually Terry is the last one to arrive for the bus; he turned to me saying, "How come you weren't picking up the phone last night? I must have called you about five times".

"Oh sorry, I guess I was out"

"Out where?" ,he asked.

"Promise not to tell any living soul?"

"Sure". I explained all that happened and he looked at me in surprise and a little bit of in disgust. Terry said, "Dude, are you serious? You actually took it in, you actually used the drugs".

"Yeah, and you wouldn't believe how great it felt", I said with somewhat of a selfish pride.

"You need to get off it before it does anything serious to your body man"

"What do you mean?" ,I questioned.

"You know make you impaired or something"

"Impaired? Whatever man". Throughout the whole day I kept thinking what a great feeling it was, to have that stuff in me. Then I got a curiosity, which I knew could lead me, even deeper into trouble. As school was over for the day, Terry and I met up, I told him "Terry lets go there again".

"Go where?" ,he asked.

"You know, those two kids"

"No way man, you're going in way too deep into this"

"Come on, all this is just a relaxation tool", I said.

"Yeah a tool which does serious things to your body and not in a good way", I looked at Terry in sudden anger, I didn't even know why I was angry but I just looked at him like that, Terry backed away a bit saying "Man you okay? I think it's taking it withdrawal effects".

"Don't tell me what it's doing! I know what it does, it helps me relax and that's all there is to it!"

"Relax Sam, relax, I think you should get some serious help man", he had said calmly.

"Piss off!", I walked away home thinking along the way why would I have a fight with my own best friend, I mean he didn't do anything wrong or at least I think he didn't.

That night I didn't seem to have any hunger, the only thing I could think about as I lay in my warm bed was about drugs and how I can get more of it. So I decided I would go see those two kids again. The next day my need for drugs increased as I must have been off them for a week now. I walked in my parent's room finding no one there and started to search through my mother's purse, and I found a couple of two hundreds. I took them without her knowledge, and walked back to those two kids, they stood up saying, "Back for more I see".

"How did you know?", I asked.

"You're carrying money in your hand"

"Give me two shots"

"That's going to be four hundred, think you can afford it?", they said in a greedy tone.

"I got the four hundred, now hand them over!"

"Wow calm down dude, chill"

"Don't tell me to chill, now just give me the stuff, I need it really bad"

"Alright here you go"

"Now piss off!", I had said in a sudden anger.

"Hey watch it, we're the suppliers, you're the buyer, we can easily stop giving this stuff to you if we wanted to"

"Whatever man, just go away!", I don't know why I started to have sudden mood changes. As soon as I got home I couldn't hold back the need and injected that stuff into me, it felt good, real good. It was as if I was in my own little world filled with wondrous things and happy thoughts. I guess I was high, as people would say, I suddenly felt the urge to start moving around as I was filled with energy. Hours passed and it slowly started to wear off, I was tired and had spent the whole night awake. The next day in school, I couldn't keep awake for any of the classes, so I got sent to the office and the Principal said, "Sam do the sleeping at home, not in my school!", I just waved him off with a nod saying, "Yes sir…", When I got home, I went straight to bed, saying nothing to my mom as she asked whether I was really alright or not. I slept through rest of the day feeling some sort of guilt growing in me by each minute I try to sleep in peace.

Weekend finally came and Terry and I had made plans to hang out. We were at the Sicilia restaurant again, talking about school. Terry started talking about this one assignment saying "Man this is a real drag, write a thirteen hundred word essay on some guy named Adam Smith".

"Who?", I questioned.

"Dude, Adam Smith, the western economist, social studies"

"Oh, I guess I haven't been able to pay much attention in class lately"

"You're still on that stuff aren't you?", he suddenly said with a disappointing tone.

"What's that got to do with any of this?"

"Sam I've told you before that stuff messes with your head and your body, screws up your IQ"

"Don't talk like them"

"Who's them?", he asked.

"Those good for nothing drug experts, they don't know anything, and they don't know what it feels like to escape into your own little world, a world of no worries"

"Well they do know when you come back from that world you feel messed up"

"Just leave it man" I said in trying to direct our conversation to some other subject.

"Come on Sam, this is getting serious, you're already too deep into this and now you're getting deeper?", now he said with a deep worry.

"Just mind your own business; this is my life, nothing to do with you!"

"Alright fine, but it's your own body you have to worry about man"

"I said just leave it!" as I said in a sudden anger.

"Fine…", I left the restaurant after that little argument; I couldn't seem to reason with others any longer, the only thing to mind that came were anger and the constant need for those drugs. Sunday afternoon I spent by myself locked up in my own room in my own thoughts, thoughts of what Terry was saying yesterday in the restaurant and whether it was true or not. I was about to lie down in my bed when suddenly I heard a knock from the door and a voice behind it saying, "Sam? It's time for your doctor's annual checkup appointment, come on you've got to get going now if you want to make it there on time".

"Fine, I'm going, I'm going", I walked out as the sun was still shining with its warmth, I decided to ride my bike there. When I got there I got to the desk asking the main nurse, "Um…Excuse me but I have a doctor's appointment for my annual checkup".

"Name?" she asked.

"Samuel Williams" I responded.

"Here we are, Mr. Williams, Dr. Sanders will be with you in about five minutes"

"Alright, thanks"

"If you would care to sit in the waiting area, right over there"

"Ok", five minutes seemed to go by very slowly for me, soon my name came up as the nurse called me saying, "Right this way to this office Mr. Williams".

"Mr. Williams?" a mysterious voice asked.

"Yeah…"

"My name is Dr. Sanders; I see you are here for your yearly checkup"

"Yeah"

"No need to be nervous Mr. Williams, I am quite sure you have been doing this for sixteen years", he tried reassuring me.

"I am not nervous, I guess I am just a little impatient right now, I have something to do after this, something very important…"

"Well then I guess we better get started". An hour went by and I was still in my check up. The doctor finally came in with my reports from the X-Ray room saying, "Alright, we only need one more test from you", I looked as if this was never going to end and then he looked at me saying as he was laughing, "Don't worry, this test only requires five minutes of your time, the blood test".

"Alright, after this I am free to go?" I asked.

"Yes". Room 125, the blood testing room, I stepped in only finding one nurse. She looked up at me with a smile waving me to a chair; she walked over and said, "Mr. Williams?".

"Yea", I responded.

"Hi I'm Cateline Sanders, I'm sure you have already met my husband"

"You mean Patrick Sanders? Yeah"

"So you are here due to your yearly check up right?", she asked.

"Yes"

"Alright, I will need you to pull up your sleeve and stay calm when I inject the needle" needle I thought, reminded me of those drugs. Now my thirst for them came back, after a few minutes she looked up at me saying "Ok we are all done".

"Thanks…", I said as I was getting out of the chair.

"No problem". I walked out of the hospital walking over to my bike and through the mid way of the walk; I started to sweat even though the weather was perfect. Now it even increased, uncontrollably. I started riding my bike back home when I saw those two kids again. I stopped by them, now they didn't seem too jumpy whenever they saw me. One of them asked "What, back for more?" "Nah, already got one at home" "So why are you here?" "You guys want to get a pizza?" they looked at each other and said "Fine, but don't be going off and tripping out like you did last time" "Oh, sorry about that" As we walked off I started to think, man what was I doing here with these two drug dealers, I started to feel as if they were my friends now and Terry would just be a distant memory to me now.

We went to the Pizza Hut and then to the gamers arcade. It felt awesome hanging out with these guys. When it was nearly midnight we started to part ways as one of the kids said, "Hey dude, you are alright, tell you what from now on you get a discount".

"Discount on what?", I said curiously.

"The drugs of course"

"Oh, cool"

"Alright see you later Sam", they said walking off.

"Ya, see you guys later". When those two were out of my sight I thought, is this what I really wanted? To go even further deeper into this and is this what I desired or was it because some invisible force was driving me to it? I wondered as I rode my bike home. Next morning I thought what it would be like to skip a whole school day? I guess I got this idea from those two kids, as they always skip school. I decided to skip school, thinking it should be fun. I went back to those two kids, my new friends and said, "You guys want to go back to that gaming shop?", one of them responded saying, "Sure, I am game", the other one then looked and said, "Sure why not, but aren't you supposed to be at school or something?".

"Nah, it can wait, thought I would get the feeling how it is like to skip"

"Cool". We went over to the gaming shop and spent nearly half a day their just looking at games and playing them. As soon as I got home nearly eight in the night, my mom and dad were sitting near the phone with confused, angry and disappointed looks. I went up to them asking, "What's wrong?", they responded saying, "We got a call from your school today, they said that you weren't there for any of the classes at all and neither there was any message left on the absence line", As I started to speak my mother looked at me giving me the hint, "Don't talk at all right now". My father looked at the ceiling deep in thought and finally said, "Samuel, what is going on with you?", I responded saying, "What do you mean?".

"I mean that you have been coming home late now days, you are usually in a saddened mood and now this matter of skipping your classes" he said in a demanding tone.

"I just haven't been able to get proper sleep"

"Well then maybe you should stop coming home late", With that final statement made by my father I was sent to my room for the whole night. I knew how much guilt I bore upon my shoulders now, I looked at myself in the mirror and a tear came dripping down from my eye.

The next day at school I was called down to the office. The Principal looked at me in disappointment as if I was his son who had done something really unbearable to just ignore. The Principal looked at me through the top of his glasses and finally said, "Samuel, this is not the kind of behavior we expect from our students", I kept nodding to everything he said as he went on saying, "Samuel, this is highly unusual for you to skip a whole day of school let alone a single class", He looked at me for a response but I thought better not open my mouth, better to be safe than sorry. The Principal went on saying, "Samuel, we consider such matters very seriously here, do you understand?", I responded saying, "Yes sir" He began again, though this time with a very high tone, "Samuel, don't let this happen again, our school will not tolerate and if by any chance it does happen again then I will personally see to it that the school board deals with it", I looked at him speechlessly and then said, "Sir, what is so wrong about me skipping, I mean it is my decision".

"Yes, but it makes my school look bad, and there is no place here for people who are below my school standards, is that clear Mr. Williams? If this happens again I will make sure you never get admission in any other schools related to our board". I now looked at him in sudden anger saying, "You know what, screw your school and screw your board".

"Excuse me young man?", he said in sudden surprise.

"That's right, I said screw your school, it's just a school full of spoiled rich kids"

"Such behavior as I've already warned you about is not acceptable here!", he said in a very high tone.

"Well I'm not part of this school any longer!"

"Well I will make sure that you are expelled from this school and you know what would happen to your family's respect, they would be ashamed and their respect would be abashed"

"Whatever, screw you, you can't do anything" I said in a selfish tone.

"Young man I am sure your parents have taught you better"

"Like I care"

"This is highly unacceptable, out of my office and out of my school!", now his tone was at its highest as he pointed out the door.

"Fine whatever, like I ever needed this place anyways", I walked out of the main office to find Terry staring at me in worry. I just ignored him and started to walk down the hallway which led to the exit doors.

Terry appeared behind me as I was walking outside and said, "Dude, why did you do that?".

"Do what?", I said trying to ignore him.

"You know, start disputing against the principle?"

"That man, he doesn't know a thing"

"This is serious man"

"Well it's my business; you should stay out of this". Terry stepped in front of me in an act of dominance and finally he said, "I can't any longer, not when I was involved from the start".

"Well I guess it's your fault to then, you gave me this idea", I said in a blaming tone.

"Fine even if it is my fault then what, would that help you get better? It would only make you worse, I have already told you before, you need help and that's just what you are going to get", I suddenly looked at Terry feeling a sudden feeling of hatred. I looked at him and said, "What did you do Terry?".

"You need help and that's what I exactly did", I responded saying again, "What did you do?".

"That's not that important, as long as you get better whether you like it or not". This time in anger I said, "Dammit! What did you do Terry?", Now Terry looked at me emotionless saying, "I have been telling your brother about what has been happening with you and he told me he would finally step in if things get way too serious", I looked at Terry speechless, while in the back of my head I thought, "Betrayer, you betrayed me, my own best friend".

When I got home I saw my father's car parked at the front gate. As I stepped into the house I could hear crying, I looked in the direction the crying was coming from and saw my mother sitting in the chair with her hands up to her eyes crying unstoppably as my father was trying to calm her down. Then my father looked up at me in a form of hatred and I felt overwhelmed with emotions. Emotions which I could not keep contained behind my eyes any longer. I ran up stairs to my room locking the door, throwing the back pack on the bed and locking myself in the bathroom. I sat down in one corner with my knees up against my head and my arms surrounding them, as I started crying, thoughts started to flow in my mind of wonder and who I was really? I stood up staring myself in the mirror with tears flowing down my cheeks. I wondered to myself, "Who am I really? Was I just a normal kid like everyone else on drugs? Was my life perfect?". Then dark thoughts came to mind as I expressed them speaking slowly, "As I twirl in this dark world in which I call my friend now, I find disturbing sometimes sweet little wondrous things jumping out at me…Calling to me deeper and deeper to a world which plants the seeds of poison in me, the seeds of need, hatred and desire. The desire for drugs, those seeds grow as I walk taking every step through this dark world. A world which may eventually consume me whole if I reach the end of it, it may consume me whole with death". Six hours went by, six hours of misery, dark thoughts of sadness and despair. When I finally stepped out wiping away my tears I looked at my room door, still locked. I walked over to my secret room; I knew no matter how much I would have tried to lay off it, I couldn't. I prepared the needle and slowly, very slowly took it in, feeling the flow of liquid going within me. I soon felt much better, very energetic and happy. I started jumping and running around in my own room but then soon lay on the ground staring at my fingers. I could feel something crawling, crawling up my middle finger. I could see its head looking at me and I spoke to myself in question, "Bugs?". I got up and stared at my room filled with bugs. Bugs were everywhere even on my bed, I was freaking out, one minute there were none the next there were and millions of them. I felt my head spinning, feeling heavy as if the gravity was pulling me down more and more by the second. As I fell to the floor, closing my eyes very slowly, I wondered, "Where did these bugs come from?", I just lay there with only one thought in mind, and how I can get more of this drug?.

When I walked down stairs, my parents were nowhere to be seen. I walked outside for some fresh air and at about three in the afternoon a car pulled up by my house. I walked over to the door asking, "Can I help you?", then the driver got out saying, "No, I need to help you". I saw it was my brother, I asked him, "How much did Terry tell you?",He responded in a worry look saying, "Everything, well enough to make me worry about you".

"Ignore him; he doesn't know what he is talking about"

"Is that how you treat your best friend? Sam I just got a call from mom and dad saying that you just got expelled from school and you keep saying nothing is wrong", his tone soon became demanding of answers.

"Well nothing is wrong, I am fine in my own little world"

"Your world? These drugs have messed you up pretty good"

"So now you are against me just like Terry is!"

"Sam! No one is against you! We are all just trying to help you", as he now tried to reassure me with such thoughts, I could only think of them to be lies as I had seen Terry's betrayal with my own eyes.

"Well I don't need your help, I can manage"

"What will you do when you get your doctor's report"

"What do you mean?", now I had a sudden shock as I asked.

"They took a blood test, they will know"

"What?"

"Blood test never lies about these things Sam, our parents will know what has been happening with you, why not just come to the "New Hope" rehab center now rather than regretting it later"

"I won't regret it, I know what I'm doing!"

"Sure you do, just like you know you are messing up your life", now he said in a tone which sounded like it was deprived of hope.

"And how would you know?"

"I wouldn't know how good it feels to be on drugs but I do know this, once you are too deep, for some people it can never end and the only way it ends is when death comes to them". Perfect life, I thought to myself what a lie, life can never be perfect for anyone. That night my parents didn't return, and I was all alone in this huge mansion, which I felt loneliness in. As I sat at the kitchen table just looking at the ceiling endlessly as the phone suddenly started to ring. I walked up to it picking it up, "Hello?".

"Hello am I speaking to Samuel Williams?"

"Yeah", I said.

"Hi Sam it's me Cateline"

"Oh yeah hi, what can I do for you?"

"We found some irregularities with your blood test, I mean the blood sample", this was it, did they find out? Is this where it all ends; is this the part where they tell me that the irregularities that they most likely suspect are drugs?, "What sort of irregularities?".

"Oh, we would like to discuss this with you in the hospital", she said.

"Alright"

"Are you able to come tomorrow morning?"

"Yeah, sure I can make it" "Alright see you then". I hung up the phone, thinking this may just be the end of the line for me.

Next day at the hospital, I was guided to a testing room where I met two nurses. They said that they needed to administer a few tests before my meeting with Dr. Sanders. These tests were to confirm my ability to comprehend things. One of the nurses put a helmet over my head, which monitored brain activity and as well covered my eyes for the tests. The very first test was a hearing test. In which I heard a sound from the keyboard and then they gave me the keyboard filled with many sounds and I had to find that one on it as it kept going and going. The very first one sounded like a cow's moo, I pressed button after button, getting them wrong, thinking in my mind that what does this mean? That if I get them wrong, would this prove anything. I think after my ten tries I got it. The nurses responded in saying, "Very good Sam, now to the next test, in this test we will test your sense of touch, we will give you two object and you are to tell us whether they are the same or not".

"Alright", one of them brought out a box full of object and asked me to put the helmet back on. They handed me the two objects, I felt my way around them, as my fingers went along the surface trying to touch every detailed part to see whether they were the same or not. As I was so unsure only one thing came to mind, "Um…Um…", a feeling of confusion. Twenty minutes went by on that test; one of the nurses removed the helmet from my head and said, "I think Dr. Sanders is ready to see you now".

"Alright, thanks", saying that I went towards his office. As I reached out for the door knob my heart started to beat faster and faster, only wondering what was waiting for me behind this simple barrier, behind this door. I opened it finding Dr. Sanders sitting in his chair reviewing some files. He looked up at me and said, "Ah, Sam come on in".

"What is this all about?", I asked.

"I wanted to go over your blood tests", he said with some concern showing on his face.

"Is something wrong with them?"

"Well I don't think so might just be a medical error but just to make sure I called you in"

"Alright so what does it say"

"Your blood tests show some irregularities", he said with now a more serious and concerned face.

"Irregularities?", I questioned.

"Yes, I guess what I am trying to say is that you blood tests show that either you had been on drugs in your previous years or that you are on them"

"What?"

"Yes I know it is a little hard to believe, so I called you in to schedule another blood test appointment. What times are you free?"

"Any time is fine", I responded in saying.

"Alright, how about next week Wednesday afternoon?"

"Sure that works"

"Alright then I guess we will see you on Wednesday afternoon". As I reached for the door a voice behind from me said, "You certainly look more depressed today than you were before", I turned to find Cateline, and I responded saying, "Excuse me?".

"Last week you were a little cheery, but this week you seem depressed"

"Right…" ,After saying that I walked away, back in my room deep in strange yet wondrous thoughts, thoughts that might disturb others or may bring comfort to them. Lying down on my bed thinking "What can that helmet see, would it be able to see deep down inside me, deep into my head or into my heart, well I sure hope it can because I can't seem to see myself clearly any longer".

The next morning, I was tired and felt even more depressed. I decided to go out for some fresh morning air. I found Terry looking at me, he was waiting there to think of saying something before coming here. I asked him, "What are you doing here?".

"Well I thought maybe you would like to hang out after school?", he asked.

"I have got other plans; shouldn't you be going to school or something?"

"Yeah", saying that Terry walked off without looking back. Taking the public bus to the two people who I called my friends now, I thought, what was I really doing? I mean hanging out with those types of people. When my stop came, I got off seeing those two there again. I walked up to them saying, "Hi guys".

"Yo", one of them responded, the other one got up saying, "Something wrong? You know if something is ever wrong with us we always…".

"…smoke some drugs, I know I know", I said.

"So why do you look so depressed dude?"

"I don't know, I just am"

"Strange response but whatever your life man"

"Yea, my life", I responded in a lonely tone.

"Dude let's get something to eat, I'm hungry", I looked at both of them as they looked at me saying, "You're paying man", I responded saying, "Me? Why me?".

"Because we're almost like broke", they stated.

"What did you do with all the money I gave you when I bought those drugs from you?"

"We spent it on buying some for our customers and ourselves"

"Come on, I paid for the last one to"

"Hey you want to hang out with us or not?"

"Fine", saying that we walked off to Pizza Hut. Later that afternoon I was just roaming the streets of Ever Stones, wondering, "What will happen to me if I were to be caught or found out taking these drugs? Will I be forced to go to New Hope rehab center? Though I wondered if death will come to consume me first. Too many questions lie in my mind to which I bear no answers as I seek them endlessly". I decided enough fresh air for today, but before I go home I would pay those two kids a visit again. When I got to them I got right away to what I was there for as one of them said, "What no Hi's?".

"Dude just give me another shot"

"Alright a hundred"

"Hundred? I thought it was two hundred", I asked in sudden surprise.

"Hi man, you have been paying for almost everything for us lately so we decided to drop the prices for you and you alone"

"Thanks", I handed them the hundred as they handed me the package. I hid it under my sweater, walking off back to home.

Slowly, carefully and precisely injecting it into me. Getting that good feeling, feeling it rush into me. Felt good, as I moaned in great pleasure though that pleasure was soon to end. I felt my skin rising as if something was crawling within me, eating me from the inside. I freaked out thinking "Beetle"; I looked around all over my body. Then I spotted a raised spot moving, I freaked out taking the scissors and started stabbing at the spot as the beetle kept moving from one spot to another. I followed it stabbing at every point it went to, soon I could feel it working its way up my arm, trying to get to my head. I couldn't let it, as soon as it reached my shoulder I stabbed it there feeling it dying and it's screeching of death. I looked down at my arm bleeding, losing blood by the second. Feeling dizzy from the loss of blood I fell to the floor as I kept bleeding. As darkness came surrounding me as I laid on the floor, I walked through a pleasant dream. A dream which soon turned into a nightmare, a nightmare of bugs. Beetles crawling everywhere in the dark world which I roamed in, beetles surrounding me and coming closer to me as I back away. Backing away in fear, in hatred of such things to even exist. I start running back through the path as the beetles now fly towards me. I keep running towards a light I see which I assumed to be an exit. I ran though as I keep running the exit seems to be getting further and further away. Then I hear the noise of my death, as the beetles come from every direction blocking my only exit as well. "They sense it, my fear…", as I said under my breath. Now they leaped at me on top of me as I kept screaming no one to come and help me. I could feel the beetles tearing my skin apart, getting inside of me tearing me apart from the inside. So many, the feeling of my organs being ripped apart as if they were a piece of paper, as the beetles worked their way up my body now I could feel them coming up my throat and I threw up unstoppably. Things moving in my vomit, the beetles were still alive and some of them reached to my eyes. As they started eating unstoppably, sudden sting of pain came as I started screaming, "Please stop! No more! I don't want to feel this anymore!", with those last words the beetles took their final bite to put me to rest as they bite my brain. Everything was a sudden darkness in my own heart. The shock, the pain ending in a sudden moment yet I wake up screaming at the top of my voice. I wake up only to find my room's floor all red, by the loss of my blood. In order to hid my injuries and pain I bandaged myself up and wore a thick sweater so no one could suspect anything.

Next morning, I walk downstairs finding my parents on the phone. My mom looked up at me expressionless while my dad stared at me in hatred, in hatred of me. Then they both looked away from me as I walked outside to go get some fresh air. "Life's perfection…", I spoke quietly thinking what a mess ones life can become. My life, was it really perfect before? I mean I had good grades, I had good friends and a school to go to at least, but now I have nothing but drugs and misery. Now I even question whether I really am in control of myself any longer or not, are those drugs the things which control me now? All I want to do is just take those drugs in, escape this reality into the one I make. I stared up at the sky thinking why is the world like this? Why did we create it to be such, why did we create it to be only filled with corruption? I see corruption in everyone in some form or another. This corruption which forces me to believe in some of the world's biggest lies and this same corruption which makes me think drugs are my relievers, my salvation. My heart is corrupted and was corrupted the moment I was born. My heart was corrupted enough to believe in fake media and blinded me to the truth. The truth of living a happy life, maybe a happy life is what is meant to be a perfect life but now I can't seem to see it any longer, I can't seem to see my happy life any longer. Though are drugs really ruining my life? Or is it just the media? It could be me who is just blinded to everything. In bed I lie every night in grief, as I cry myself to sleep. Should someone deserve such injustice, such grief and misery? I don't think so, then why is it happening to me? My world is upside down now. Even gravity can't seem to bring my world the way back it was, everything is useless, even life to me now is useless. Even as I speak in wonder I see things in distortion. I see things in a new perspective and not the best one either. Pain rushes through my head each day as I try to think about other things other than drugs. Some days all I want to do is just lie in my bed and wait for another day of my life to go by. A day which will bring me closer to death, death which may bring more grief upon me or finally set me free of all my grief and misery bringing me peace to me alone while to others many strange things might come upon them such as the pain of loss or nothing may come upon them at all.

Wednesday came and I was preparing to go down to the hospital. Just before I started riding to the hospital I saw a main headline in the newspaper, stating "Two high school kids dead". I started reading further and it mentioned because of an overdose. I hurried to the spot where those two guys were, the spot where it all began. I stared from a distance and I saw them lying on the ground facing the sky, pipes in their hands and drugs on the ground. I couldn't hold back my emotions, I started crying thinking why did this happen? Could this happen to me? I don't want this to happen to me. As I grieved my wrist watch rang, indicating my appointment time. I was late but managed to make just in enough time to get in to see the doctor. When I walked in, Dr. Sanders greeted me, "Hi Sam, just go over to the next room and they should set you up for the blood test", then Cateline walked in, nodding at Dr. Sanders's comment. I went in there and came out very quickly. I was told to go to the second floor to meet with both Dr. Sanders and Cateline. I took the elevator to the second floor thinking well it's over, all of it, my whole life is over. The truth will now be out. I walked into the office seeing both Dr. Sanders and Cateline present. Dr. Sanders pointed towards a chair; I sat down as they were shuffling the papers to organize them in order. Then Dr. Sanders began speaking, "Sam, are you on any sort of medication?".

"No", I answered.

"Then I think it is quite clear"

"What do you mean?", I questioned.

"In the reports it says here you have been taking the liquid form of heroin"

"What?"

"Sam, you have been taking drugs knowingly, yet when they affect you one of the effects is weak memory", he tried explaining precisely.

"So what are you saying?"

"What I'm trying to say is that you need help Sam", now to me the world seemed even darker. Emotions seemed to flow through me once again in which I could not hold them back. One part of my heart wanted to laugh and smile, while the other just cry. As emotions exchanged with one another my mind started to go dark. Cateline interrupted saying, "Sam, your brother's name is Jake Williams right?".

"Yeah", I answered unknowingly as tears rolled down my cheeks. "And his cell number is nine zero two-five six seven nine?"

"Yeah…but what are you going to do?" I asked in sudden panic.

"Call him and tell him about what happened here today"

"You can't!"

"Sam, you need help"

"You're all just screwing with me, messing with my life. You all think I'm just some puppet in your little game don't you?", now I spoke in a sudden outburst.

"No Sam, calm down", I couldn't hold back the things I was saying. Cateline picked up the phone on the table and started calling my brother, "Hello Jake Williams?", I could hear their conversation clearly, and in deep down inside I feared of what might happen next. Now all I felt was that even death betrayed me. My two friends gone, I'm stuck in a situation in which there is no escaping for me and my thirst for drugs still there. I overheard nearly everything my brother and Cateline discussed. As she said, "Jake, I think we may need you to come and pick up Sam".

"Is he alright?", my brother asked.

"Yes but it's the reports we are worried about"

"You know?" he said in a disappointing and a worry tone.

"Yeah, looks like Sam is in deep, can you come and get him?"

"Yeah I'll be there in about five minutes"

"Thank you, I'm sure he will appreciate it when the time is right". Five minutes of sadness, my brother's car finally pulled up as he got out taking hold of me and walking me towards his car. I was in shock and felt a sudden chill and terrified. As we were driving along the way I couldn't stop shaking as I looked at my brother when he was trying to explain what could happen once I get out. As he said, "Don't worry Sam, you're going to be alright. I'm taking you to New Hope; they will take good care of you and help you get through this all. And you'll just have to go through it all somehow and when you get out of that place you can start again, a brand new life, a new beginning". As the car pulled up beside the New Hope recovery center entrance, my brother got out wrapping me in a warm cloth yet I still could not stop shaking. As we entered and reached the main desk, my brother took care of the formalities and I only stood there shaking like a dead weight to someone. As the nurse started to come around the desk to take a look at me I collapsed on the floor from my weakness. My weakness of not being able to resist the desire for drugs, the nurse called in two other staff members to take me away to my rehab room.

Two weeks into rehab, I threw up a couple of times. The people here say it is because of the withdrawal effects of the drugs. I couldn't stand it being here, I sweated a lot, and I saw things, strange things. Other patients also got together to have group therapy sessions. I would occasionally join them; all we talked about was death and how much better it would have been if it would have gotten to us first rather than this endless nightmare. One would always start of by saying, "Death, consumes us all", while the rest of us would continue expressing our own thoughts such as, "The need for death to come to us is more powerful than the need for us to live", I would only listen as each one of them expressed their thoughts. Occasionally I would contribute as well as see hallucinations. Today I saw the coffee maker shaking and moving on its own and when I told the other about it they laughed and said no that wasn't the coffee maker that moved it was the cup, I told the staff members about it and they would say no it's nothing to worry about. We all had assigned jobs at New Hope, mine was floor moping. Every day in the morning and afternoon I would go around the building mopping the floor. One afternoon I was doing my usual rounds and one of the staff members came up saying, "Hey good news Sam, I think I managed to get you transferred into one of our exercise farms".

"What…d..o I..have..to..d..o?", my speaking abilities had been limited with the withdrawal of the drug. Next morning I was told to take a New Hope van, which will drop me off at the proper location. As I got out of the van I could smell the fresh air; it smelled like the air of freedom which I hadn't breathed in two years.

The staff members there got me started on work right away. My job there was simple, spraying the plants with a liquid fertilizer. Over time the job became more and more simple to me. The living facilities were alright, nothing great. I was told that I wasn't allowed to see anyone outside of this farm facility, all they could explain it by is saying that they were, "Closed Operations". Morning comes, we got our breakfast fed in one place. Then we are given all the equipment we need and put to work. I was on my twentieth row of crops when I noticed something strange. I bent down on my knees to take a closer look, finding a strange looking flower. I read about these flowers, looking at them a sudden flicker of brain cells came on as I remembered the name ,"Op..i..um", Opium I thought. Suddenly a shadowy figure came in my view, they said ,"Sam, this is not resting time you've got to get back to work" ,I responded in saying ,"Wh..y are yo..u g..rowin…g opi..um?".

"What?" the shadowy figure said.

"I sa..w opiu..m", I responded saying.

"No you didn't, now back to work Sam"

"I saw"

"Back to work Sam", as I watched the staff member walk away the only thing I could think of was those two kids and how it all began with them. I looked back down at the flower saying, "I saw death rise from the ground on which we all walk on. I saw death being freed when this one little flower is picked up from the ground", I bent down, taking one flower, "A gift for my two friends who now live in a world of total darkness on the ground staring up at the sky with pipes in their hands and poisoned hearts. A gift to those who may have suffered because of this traumatic experience, a gift to me". With that I stuffed the flower in my chest pocket and went on working endlessly. As I still remain in this camp in which I get my freedom yet still feel trapped in a world of guilt, I continue working without any thought to the future. I keep working with only thoughts to the present and wondering who was I really? And before all this began, was my life a perfect one? As I seek these answers, I live my life now meaninglessly. Just moving forward and forward…

A tribute to one of many Philip K. Dick's works "A Scanner Darkly".

And to a long lost friend who now lies in the dark world of drugs.