Chapter 2 - Session 1: "Cold, Hard Bitch"

The world was passing her by… the cars, the hundreds of shitty houses on the residential streets, the kids playing… It seemed surreal. She wasn't a part of that world anymore, she thought to herself. She was… on the outside looking in.

Tracy sighed and looked over to her mom. She was driving towards the Doctor's office. "Do I really have to do this?"

Her mom looked over to her. She'd been really quiet since they fought last. It was sort of weird, and nice, to have the quiet; though she wasn't sure if leaving her with her thoughts in her own head was such a good thing. "Yeah," her mom interrupted her thought. "You have to do this. You have no other choice, Trace."

Yeah, she did, she thought to herself. She could sit up and step right out of this car and walk back home. She didn't have to do this, she didn't have to do shit. Then why was she going, again? Shut up, she argued with herself.

Tracy turned her head to look out the window. It was a sunny, warm day. Yeah, what a great day to go see a nut doctor. She closed her eyes. How long would it be before they got there? Long enough for a nap? She hadn't really slept last--."Trace," her mom called, turning the key to the ignition. The car flattened a little bit, settling into it's comfy, little parking space. "We're here."

She opened her eyes and sat up, looking over to the building. There weren't many cars here. Ha, she laughed to herself. She thought there'd be a lot more crazy people there. It was sort of funny that she was one of them, now. Would she need a club membership? Ha!

"Come on," her mom said, opening the door and stepping out of the car. "Get out, Trace. We're going to be late if you--""Shut up," Tracy barked at her, opening the door to get out. "Don't fucking bitch so much." She slammed the car door as she started walking towards the building.

They walked in and Tracy sat down as her mother went to the receptionists desk. It smelled funny in here. Maybe someone hadn't taken a shower? She looked around to the couple people sitting in the less than comfortable chairs. Eghck, she thought to herself. Do I look like that? She noticed the table; there were tons of magazine's on it, newspapers, television guides. She picked up one of the magazines - 'Psychology Today.' Oh yeah, she thought to herself. A magazine made by crazy people, FOR crazy people! This is why you're crazy, this is how to fix it. Yeah, whatever, she tossed it back to the table.

There were some weird paintings on the wall too. Didn't even look like anything, just… lines and splotches of paint. Sort of looked like a bad acid trip… Heh, acid, she thought. Her mom wandered over and sat next to her with a long sigh. She didn't say one word to her. Was she going to go back there with her? She hoped not. She didn't need two people bitching at her, telling her what she's done wrong in this 'out-of-control' life of hers.

Tracy yawned. She couldn't believe she was actually doing this. She felt no real need, but she knew if she didn't, her mother would be nagging about it till the end of time. She hated her mother for this, as well as a number of other things. She was constantly adding things to that list, and this was just another thing to include. Couldn't she just sleep? Ugh, she wished.

It felt like forever, but the receptionist finally called her name. Tracy stood, her mom didn't follow, and was lead into one of the rooms. She was expecting to have those really strange couches in there, you know, the ones you see in the movies all the time with people laying down on them, confessing their sins to lighten their souls. To her surprise, there was just two regular chairs. She shrugged and took the more comfortable looking of the two. Lesser of two evils, she supposed.

Minutes later, a woman walked in. Tracy kept her seat, cocking a brow at the 'doctor.' This woman was tall and pale, freckles covering half of her face. Her eyes were soft and green, bright even in this crappy-ass lighting. Her hair was a bright, fiery red and pulled back into a pony-tail. She offered her hand. "Tracy?"

Trace looked down to her hand and back to her face. She didn't move.

The woman just smiled shortly and sat down in the other chair, picking up a notebook and a pen. There was an awkward silence but she broke it. "Well, Tracy," she continued, writing something down on the yellow paper. "..My name is Dr. Valerie Williamson… You can call me Val." What the hell was I gonna call you? Tracy thought.

"Nice to meet you, Val." She sighed. Not. It was NOT nice to meet you, Val. Go the FUCK away.

'Val' smiled and nodded. "Well, you're mother told me you had some problems recently. Do you want to tell me about that?"

Tracy rolled her eyes. There was another awkward silence. She sucked on her teeth, running her tongue over them. She didn't want to talk, she didn't want to express her feelings, she didn't want to do anything really other than sleep, but that wasn't one of her options.

"Well," Val said. "Are you going to talk to me? I know this might be a little intimidating and frightening, but--"

"Intimidating?" Tracy growled. Did she actually fucking say that? "Frightening? Who and the hell said I was scared?" Her leg started to twitch.

Val noticed it right away. She looked back to Tracy's eyes. "…I didn't say that you were afraid; I said that this experience could be frightening… For other people, of course." She nodded. "Can't we talk at least?" No. "Can you tell me what you're favorite foods are?" No. "…Or what about your favorite kind of music?"

Tracy sighed as she sat up. "Let's see… My favorite food is pizza." She nodded. "My favorite music is anything that doesn't come out of your mouth." She said.

Val's eyes narrowed. "Be specific, Tracy. What's your favorite bands?""I don't fucking know," she shot back. "Anything that comes on the radio. Whatever I can dance to…" She started to twist her hair around her finger, staring off into a blank space."Oh," Val continued to write. "So you like to dance?""Yeah," Tracy shrugged. "I like to dance, though it's better when I'm high." Val's eyes widened. "I'm fucking with you. God damn…" She sat up.

The shrink forced a smile and sighed. "Do I make you uncomfortable, Tracy?"

"No."

"Is there a reason you don't want to talk to me? Even about normal things?" Val's brow raised, making weird patterns in her forehead. Tracy stared at it for a little while but then something broke her thoughts.

She looked to Val's eyes. "Yeah, there is actually." Val stiffened up, waiting for her explanation. "First of all, you don't know me so how and the fuck can you tell me what to do and how to do it? If you don't know me, how and the hell are you going to help me? You sit there, all high and mighty, and judge people on their thoughts and their 'not-so-normal' hobbies and shit.. You sit there and say, 'Oh yes, and how the fuck does that feel? How the FUCK do you think it makes me feel?" She yelled. "You can ask a thousand damn questions, but you'll NEVER know who I really am. You'll never know what I think and why I do what I do, or act the way I act. I don't need any fucking shrink to tell me what I did was wrong, because I knew it was wrong but it was the best damn time of my life! I don't need you to tell me what I need to do to change my life to make it better because I already know. I don't need you to tell me--"

"Then if you know how to make yourself feel better in a healthier way, or if you know how to chance your life to make it better, then why didn't you?" Val interrupted.

"Because… Because I… I…" Tracy countered.

"I'm here to try to get to know you. I'm here to try to help you with the things you can't help yourself with. You cut yourself because you didn't know what else to do with yourself; you cut because you thought it was the only way you could feel something real, whether it be pleasure or pain. You just wanted to feel something, or perhaps feel nothing at all. You wanted control, you craved it. And you got it, didn't you?"

Tracy said nothing. She just looked away from her.

"I'm not like the ones you've heard about on t.v. or what you've seen in movies. I'm different, and it's probably one of the reasons you're mother brought you here to see me instead of to someone else."

"And what reason is that?" Tracy asked sharply.

"Because," Val paused. "She knew that if I couldn't get through to you, no one could. I'm here to try to get to know you, but I can't unless you let me. Right now, all I see, all I'm getting to know is a cold, hard bitch… and I don't think that's who you really are… Is it Tracy?" Tracy still said nothing. Val continued. "I'm not just 'some shrink' from the phone book. I can be your friend, if you let me. I've been through some of the things you've experienced, first hand, and that's why it's easy for me to relate to people that have issues they can't deal with themselves because I used to be one of them. Do you hear me, Tracy?" She leaned forward. "I used to be like you."

It was silent again. Tracy didn't know what to say.

Valerie gave a smile. "I'll see you the same time on Thursday, okay?"

Tracy stood and shrugged. "Yeah, guess so." She walked passed Val, out towards the waiting room where her mother was waiting patiently. How dare she make her come here? She turned around to see Val looking straight at her. Why did she feel different now? Even… just a little bit. No, she thought to herself. Don't let it happen. Don't put yourself in that crazy corner, she told herself.

Tracy's turned away nonchalantly. It was time to leave.