When the Bow Breaks…

"Sometimes, I-I'll wake up in a sweat, screaming at the top of my lungs. The worst part is my dad isn't home to comfort me." She looked over at me, rubbing her temple. "I don't know, Dr. Kingsley, I thought I was doing better but I guess not."

I wrote down every word she spoke, just like I have for the year with Melissa. "You are doing better. These nightmares are something you have to learn to cope with, and then they'll go away." She smiled at me, but only for a second. "And call me, Steven, like before." I jotted down some final notes of our section. I've had to help her overcome those nightmares many times before, but now they seem to be resurfacing worse than before.

"Tell me about one of those nights, where you wake up screaming." I tried to sound as sincere as possible. She just looked at me with those empty brown eyes. Taking a deep breath, she finally opened up a little more.

"I'm in my room, sleeping, and then I hear something, or sometimes see something but I'm not sure what. I'll get up from my bed, out my door, looking into a mirror where I'm about ten years old again. I follow whatever it is that I see or hear in my dreams to the outside of my house and then…"

She paused for a moment.

"Yes? What happens next?" I urged her to go on.

"I go outside of my house, and into the front driveway, where I see…my mother. She doesn't do anything at first, just stands there with plain look. Once, she even came down to me and gave me a kiss on the forehead. I didn't understand, and sometimes I still feel I don't understand why she would…crap. I'm sorry." Melissa started to cry, and I handed her a box of tissues.

"I think that's enough for today." I let her go home, with the box of tissues.

I can't believe I actually cried, who does that in therapy anymore? Dr. Kingsley, sorry Steven, always says tears are nothing more than a new way to show strength. I on the other hand think that's BS.

I get home, only to discover my dad a sleep on the couch. Total shocker, not… He does work late hours though at the hospital. Being a male nurse will do that to you sometimes. My hands were a little shaking, probably from all the crying I did.

When I enter the kitchen to put some warm water on my hands and face I see a brown bag with a bottle inside it. Still, now I have to close my eyes and tell myself its nothing more than a bottle of wine. Dad likes to keep a bottle handy just in case we have important company over, like we did last week. His boss drank a good portion of that stuff.

Breathe, just breathe Melissa. I've been having these nightmares since I could remember. Ever since mom died, things haven't been the same. Nothing ever is when you lose someone your close to, especially if they gave you life. I washed my face, and hands with the warm water, and headed to my room only to collapse on my bed.

Waking up the next morning, I took my shower and headed into the kitchen for a simple breakfast. Dad was in the other room watching the news, I could hear it. This report was giving me the creeps:

Lindsey Madison was last seen wearing a pink top with a yellow flower, and blue jeans. Again her age 7 years old, name Lindsey Madison. If you have any leads please contact the local authorities.

We are living in one screwed up world, were some pedophile is doing god knows what to a little girl because he probably didn't get laid at his prom dance. It's sickening to me.

The day went by fast at school, well sort of, we had a major English test for a book that no one read. Other than that it was quick. I couldn't stop thinking about that girl I had heard about on the news this morning. It made me sick all day that something like that could happen so close to home, but then again twisted things are something I've seen before.

Five O'clock, time to drive to Dr. Kingsley's office building, maybe I'll have a breakthrough of some sort.

Melissa walked into my office, and almost immediately fell back on the couch in front of my desk. "Rough day?" I quickly darted at her. She bit her lip and replied, "Sort of, have a lot on my mind."

She rolled her eyes at me when I said that's why she's in here in the first place. "So how did you sleep last night? Were there anymore of those dreams?" Melissa twittled her thumbs then looked up at me. "No dreams, just a harsh remind of my mother when I got home. Dad had bought a new bottle of wine, and left in the bag as well as in plain sight."

Hopefully, we'll explore some more about that fear of bottles in bags, and maybe the connection to the nightmares.

"It just reminded me of that night. I remember it so clearly now, since I've thought of it. I don't want to remember it but maybe it's just something to get rid of all those other bad dreams."

She paused for a moment.

"I think I need to move on from that moment in time, I was ten, and watched my mother kill herself."

I stopped her there. She was doing what I had hope she would do and started opening up to me even more. I knew about her mother, about the drinking and the death. It was all over the news.

"It's a hard thing to lose a parent; it's even harder to watch them go. Not to mention the way your mother decided to move on." I tried not to sound harsh, but somehow I don't think it would have sound good either way.

"Dr. King, Steven, I had been thinking about something I had heard on the news today. I have you heard anything about a Lindsey Madison?" She looked at me with almost a worried look on her face.

"Yes"

"Did you hear she's from around here? She even went to my elementary school."

"I did hear that she was taken, or maybe ran away, but that's all. Why do you ask?"

Her nose began to bleed a little; I gave her more tissues to use. Tis time not for tears, but for her nose. She finally replied with "No reason, I was just curious."

She started to complain about her head hurting, and that her sides were throbbing. I offered to give her a ride to the hospital but she assured me it was just cramps.