Chapter 1

The Towers

Room 319

Patient: Peterson, Aubrey (77012E)

Date of Birth: 10/31/1992

Date of Admittance: 11/05/2000

Condition: Suffers from sever hallucinations and delusional fantasies of a place called Halloween Town.

Notes: No progress

Patient: Williams, Sandra (78360Y)

Date of Birth: November 25, 1988

Date of Admittance: 03/07/1996

Condition: Schizophrenic cutter. Under severe emotional stress, reverts to 'Sandra' personality, who feels no pain and cuts not only self, but anything within reach. Has developed bulimia over past several years.

Notes: No progress

Leon Jacobs looked over his new assignment sheet. "Heh, lucky you." One of his coworkers, Shawn Grouse, chuckled. "You're still stuck with craziest in this place." He patted Leon's shoulder and walked off.

Leon looked at the sheet again. Working in an asylum meant that all the patients were crazy. He hadn't even heard of these two, so how bad could they be?

xXx

I woke up to see a pair of emerald eyes staring at me. "Sandy, get off me."

The girl climbed off my stomach. "You didn't wake up. I thought you'd missed it."

"I was busy." I muttered, sitting up. Sandy Williams had been my roommate since I had been taken to The Towers five days after my eighth birthday. She was very skinny; her bones showed through her deep tan skin everywhere, and her gown hung on her like a tablecloth. Black hair fell to her butt, thin, stringy, and lifeless. Pale scars crisscrossed the bottom of her arms. At sixteen, she was four years older than me, it'd be three in a few months, and the closest thing to a caring mother I'd had in the five-and-a-half years I've been here.

"Making goo-goo eyes at your boyfriend?" She asked with a disproving tone.

I rolled my eyes. "Sandy, Lock isn't my boyfriend. And no, I was helping Sally pick some Witch Hazel. She was out."

"Oh. That's okay then." She sat down on her bed. "We've got a new doctor."

I looked up. "So we finally scared off Anderson then?"

She smiled. "He's two rooms down." I laughed. She took on a more serious tone. "But I don't think we can get rid of this one. He's very good. He's the one who fixed Candace."

"Candy? He fixed Candy?" Candace Jones was a suicidal pyromaniac who'd set herself on fire and tried to hang herself after she'd slit her wrists open. You think that would've killed her, but no. The flames burned up the rope and set off the fire alarm. The rope snapped, the fire was put out by the sprinklers, and the paramedics got there in time to save her from the blood loss. Then, she got sent here. Lucky her. She'd been released two months ago.

Sandy nodded again. I smirked. "Well, he can't fix something that's not broken. Neither of us is broken, so we're simply not fixable."

The doors opened and our nurse, Juliet, walked in. She was always bright and happy; she definitely shouldn't have been working here. "Breakfast girls." She set the trays on the swiveling tables attached to our beds. I stared at mine like I expected it to jump up and bite me. Which, knowing this place and its food, it very well might. "I know you don't like eating, Aubrey, but try today, okay?"

I grunted. She just sighed and walked out. I watched as Sandy scarfed down her food at a sickening rate, and then finished off whatever I hadn't eaten. How she managed to do that and stay skin and bones amazed me. Seconds later, she ran to the bathroom, and I could hear her puke. Right, that's how.

xXx

Leon knocked on the door of room 319. "It's open." A voice from inside called.

He opened the door to see a pair of girls sitting on one of the regulation beds in the room. "You're a lot more polite than Dr. Anderson was." One said.

"You must be Sandra." He smiled warmly.

Her face grew icy. "It's Sandy."

He nodded. "I see. I apologize, Sandy. So that must be Aubrey, right?" He gestured to the other girl, who was hunched over, concentrating on something.

"She won't say anything until she's done." Sandy told him, her eyes on the other girl's face.

"Done? With what?" He walked to Aubrey's side to her working on a drawing that seemed to be of a skeleton and a rag doll. "I see. Do you mind if I sit down?"

Sandy shrugged. "You're the one in charge." Leon pulled a chair over and sat down, examining the girls. Sandy was very tall and lanky, even sitting down. She was probably near his height, which was 6'2", but barely had more meat on her than the skeleton in the drawing. Her face was hollow, but her emerald eyes burned with strong emotion. Her skin was dark tan and her hair was ebony black and hung around her like a veil. He guessed she was part Mexican.

Aubrey was quite the opposite. She was skinny, though nowhere near the twig-like state of skinny Sandy was. Her hair was short and messy, as well as an interesting shade of silvery blonde. Her skin was, he thought, barely a shade a way from becoming translucent.

She put the pencil down suddenly and looked up at him with startling reddish-pink eyes. 'She's albino. That explains it.' He thought to himself.

"Doctor, I'm sure you didn't come here simply to chat with us, so what is it you want?" Her voice held a slight tone of authority, as though she was saying, 'crazy or not, I'm still better than you'.

He smiled nonetheless. "Actually, I came to tell you that both of you are to come to mandatory sessions with me every day from now on."

Neither looked pleased. "For how long?" Sandy demanded angrily.

"Until we make some progress." He smiled again and left the room.

xXx

Sandy jumped off my bed in rage and began pacing the floor. "Just who the hell does he think he is! 'Mandatory sessions'. Oh please!"

I added a few more shadows beneath Sally's left eye. "Watch it, Sandy. We don't need you snapping again. You punched out two orderlies got stuck in solitary for a week last time."

"Yeah, I know. But come on!"

I set the book down on my knees and looked up at her. "I don't like it either, but we don't have a choice."

Sandy pouted. And she was supposed to be the mature one? "But Aubrey-!"

I shook my head. "I'll talk to Jack tonight, okay? We'll get rid of him, just like we got rid of the last two. Until then, we'll go to the sessions." I picked the book back up and went back to my drawing.

There were a few minutes of silence. "Aubrey?"

"Hmm?" I darkened a few of the pinstripes on Jack's coat.

"Will you... will you take me to Halloween Town sometime?"

I looked up, a bit startled by her sudden request. "I- I don't know if I can, Sandy. I mean, I hardly know how I get myself there."

She leant towards me a bit. "But if you could... if you found a way?"

I sighed. "If I find a way, Sandy, then I'll take you to Halloween Town."

She smiled happily. "Promise?"

"I promise you. Now, let me get back to my drawing. I need to get it finished."

--

SC: And that's the end of that. I'd really like some reviews for this, so go down there and hit that little button. It won't bite you, I promise.

Ja ne!

SpontaneousCombustion