Jess was a bit worried what might come out even if he did try to say anything. He had been told to rest and so kept quiet as a preferred option.
“Thing is you might find this a bit hard to believe, but it’s time you understood what’s happened.” Suddenly the man who had been accompanying him rushed into the garden and quickly and forcefully interrupted, “Just hold on there General, the boy’s just come home. Please give him sometime to recover he hasn’t even managed to speak yet.” Jess felt pleased he had kept silent. Also he was beginning to have some feelings about this guy. He didn’t know what they were apart from some sort of recognition.
Then clickety-clack clikety-clack he was looking out the window of the train again: he numbly looked at the rain pummeling the window and flashes of light. All the sounds fighting with each other to be heard. What’s real what’s not What’s real what’s not. It all felt like a film and he was the star, the protagonist but this time was it a daydream. All filmed in the first person; a camera in his head, edited and presented in his consciousness, his senses being taken beyond what was normally expected of them.
Maybe he essentially was always himself; it was just that everything around him kept changing; he felt at ease when he shouldn’t. This was a recurring theme of the day and the previous night. Why is it, when faced with really difficult situations a person who is normally nervous, poor at sleeping, introvert and usually alone; why calm??? The rain got louder as he rested his head against the window and the train vibrated. He drifted away again
“Jess, Jess are you okay? I told the General it was too soon.” as that man spoke Jess felt himself being gently lifted into a bed. Now this bed brought back some feelings that were attached to feeling safe and being at home. A recognition in his heart; so this is home, is it? He looked around the room from his pillow and saw posters of baseball stars scattered, some of them signed, about the wall. The room continued the Spanish theme and was really wonderfully comfortable and luxurious.
As he laid in the bed he saw a story unfold in his mind; images again like a show reel from his favourite movie, his movie. He was standing amongst a load of excited kids in the middle of a stadium; they all had sporting kits on with some girls jumping about with fluffy balls and short skirts with slits down the side. Everyone seemed to have a painted tan and the sun was shining. Then he was brought back into the room as he heard shouting outside the door of the room
“Why are you so bloody impatient Gerald, it needs time for fucks sake” by now Jess recognised the voice of his his friend. “Look Gary, we still don’t know who or even what we are dealing with, this might not be Jess now and we need to figure that out as soon as possible, it’s a matter of urgency.” Jess now knew the names of the two men he had encountered.
Gary?? More feelings emerged, more recognition. His smell, his hearing his touch: as he became aware of them he realised this was too real to be a dream.
It was all too real to be a dream, but then again the brain is a powerful tool. It is said that generally human beings only use a fraction of its potential. Jess was certain sure that his must be on full bore, burning rubber, firing on all cylinders, at the least pretty lively to be able to present this reality. Of course a lot of the things he was familiar with or could conjure up, and also he knew that if he woke up and waited, the absurdity of the whole story would soon become apparent. He listened as the two men outside his bedroom door were still talking about him.
“He’s alive Gerald and that is the most important factor at the moment. He needs rest at least for a short while. If he does come back, our Jess that is, we just can’t say what he has witnessed, what trauma. I want to be there for him. Two weeks ago he was gone.” Gary was audibly emotional and Jess felt the power of what he had just said.
However, all joking apart, what the hell did they mean. Suddenly another nurse appeared and started to do some checks on Jess; he knew these ones, quite standard stuff, check pulse, blood pressure and temperature.
When she finished and went through one of the other doors Jess sat up and caught himself in a mirror; yes mmm young painted on tan dark hair; the shock was a reason to break the self imposed curfew. He let out an involuntary gasp and then realised that his voice had not broken yet. The door burst open and there was Gary; Jess quickly shrunk into the bed. He was now officially freaked out.
“ Jess, hang in their kid. Look do you remember me yet. You should do I’ve looked after you since Mum and Dad died five years ago. I’m your big brother Gary.” Gary stared into Jess’s somewhat hesitant eyes.
“ This is a dream isn’t it?” Jess finally said in a falling falsetto and definitely with an American lilt. “ Not exactly, but it’s complicated. Like I said its important not to rush kid, it is serious and real tricky.” Gary looked like he didn’t really want to say anymore. Jess had worked out that he genuinely cared for him. He really found it strange that a dream could be intense like this. Not exactly, Gary had said, implying that it is a sort of dream.