“Ms. Thirdday, we have an emergency referral from Dr. North.”
The door burst open and a tall man with CEO hair charged in waving Denise’s stapler.
“I don’t want to hurt anyone, but I must have help. I won’t make it another day.”
The man strode to the couch, never looking at Patricia seated at her desk. Patricia waited. He sat.
“When I look at a person I see … very specific things in their future.” He shuddered. “Very personal things.”
“Like their death?”
“No.” He wrung his hands. “I see them … making a deposit in the 401K.”
“You fear they will be destitute in their old age?”
“No. They are …. voting for President,” he said quietly.
Patricia’s mouth tightened.”Is this a joke?”
The man was rocking back and forth now. “No. No. I see them … I see them … evacuate the tunnel.”
“At least now we are getting to something alarming.”
He was looking wildly around the room at everything except her.
“They’re drowning the kittens,” he whispered.
“Nasty little creatures.”
He jumped to his feet. “I see people going number two!” He sat back down and put his head in his hands. His hair never moved. “At first it would be just a flash, but now it is all I see when I look at someone, no matter how long, like its on repeat.”
Patricia let the man sob. Then: “I do not believe you.”
The man gaped up at her. The moment he looked at her he covered his mouth and nose with both hands, eyes bulging. Patricia raised an eyebrow.
“Or maybe I do.” She reached for her stainless steel thermos and poured what looked like milk into a cup. Steam wafted off the surface. She took a small packet from her pocket, poured the contents into the liquid, and took the cup to the man. He drank it without a word.
When the man woke he was strapped into a dentists chair. He was upright and his head was immobilized. In front of him was the open door of a small bathroom. Patricia approached and applied clips to his eyelids so that he could not close his eyes.
“Wait, what are you doing?”
Patricia walked into the bathroom and lifted the lid of the toilet.
“No, no, for the love of god don’t! What is wrong with you?” Soon it dissolved into screams and blubbering.
Patricia, back at her desk, pushed a button on her intercom. Denise entered. She walked to the dentist chair where the man was unconscious and brushed damp hair from his forehead.
“Will he be cured?”
“Of course. Charge him triple.”
“If you have trouble with him you are on your own. I’m late for book club.”
Patricia Thirdday, Problem Solver, whistled as she left.