Tricks of the Mind

"I thought I saw something last night."

The doctor looked up from his notepad at the young man seated cross legged on the thin mattress. "What did you see?"

The man raked his long fingers through his thin graying hair and sighed in frustration. "I don't really know, Doc. I only caught a glimpse, but I think it might have been another one of Them."

The doctor frowned, giving the man a look of polite exasperation. "Could you describe this one?"

"Black, extremely tall, with mangy fur, claws, and eyes the color of blood. It smiled, and its teeth were long and sharp as razors. I did what you told me to do last time, but even after I had reached a hundred and opened my eyes it was still there. Only...it was closer, and I smelled something rotten." The man shuddered. "I nearly threw up,the smell was so bad."

The doctor nodded absently, scribbling in his notebook. "Yes, I see. And did this one speak to you?"

"No, it just smiled, and sniffed the air. Doc, you gotta do something. I haven't had a good night's sleep since I came to this place! You gotta give me something!"

"We have tried sedating you, and nothing seems to work. You must realize that this creature is in your mind. He is not real. Once you accept that, then the next phase of your therapy can...what is that vile smell? What is going...NO! NO! NO Plea..."

"Doc! Doc, what happened! Doc!"

The man collapsed on the cot, sobbing. This was the fifth doctor in as many months. Maybe someday, the monster inside him would be satisfied.