So anyways, back to reality. As I was finishing writing my glorious tales of adventure after leaving Pencey, a nurse came into my room to bring me my dinner. There was talk that there would be a new nurse on duty. I expected some old phony, who reeked of perfume and hospital, to show up, but man, was she one good looking babe. She had the appearance of a phony Marilyn Monroe in her mid-twenties. All of a sudden, a brilliant idea hit me. I swear, it really was great.
As she was putting down my dinner tray, I introduced myself and asked her what her name was. She said she went by Eliza, but I’m not sure that’s her real name, since she said it all suspicious.
I charmingly asked her to have a drink with me once I was released.
“ I really can’t; we are under strict prohibitions and are not allowed to fraternize with any of the patients. How old are you, anyways?” she replied.
I am sick of that goddam question, to be honest. Do I look like a lousy baby or something? You would think that being so tall and goddam sophisticated would make people ignore the fact of my age. But it really doesn’t.
“ Does my age really matter in the whole scheme of things?” I asked her suavely, slipping my hand around her wrist. “How about we go dancing instead then?”
“ Well that’s still against the rules here, honey,” she said as she pulled away from my grasp.
“ How about just as a thank you then; a kind gesture among nurse and patient?” Man was I really good at this crap.
“ Okay, I guess that would be alright. When are you released?”
I could tell she wasn’t really into the idea of dancing with a goddam mental patient, but I had other things to worry about.
“ Tonight if everything works well.”
“ Oh, I forgot to bring you your Jell-o. I’ll be right back with it,” Eliza said.
That’s when my great idea all fell in to place. I saw the folder with all of my medical insanity forms in it at the end of the table. I took my chance when I had it and took the release form from the folder. It was great. I didn’t know if she was stupid enough to sign the lousy form. I had to come up with a plan to trick her into signing it. Old Eliza came back in humming a goddam show tune. Of course I couldn’t just leave it out so I shoved the form in the bed.
“ You have a brilliant ear for good music. I swear you sound better than half the stars out there.” Oops, I lied again. My bad.
“ Oh no, I just pick up songs whenever I go to plays and musicals,” she said as she blushed. Man, did she turn red. It wasn’t like I told her seriously or anything.
“ Well, you definitely have the voice to match your beauty.”
You could see the goddam light shine in her eyes, like a corny teenager in love. I saw that I had her wrapped around my goddam finger. Since I had convinced her she’d be famous one day, I asked her for her autograph.
I gave her a paper and the fool hesitantly signed it. Finally, with the concealed release form, my plan was complete. As soon as she left the room, I called D.B. to ask him to meet me outside the place at night. He refused at first, that goddam writer, but I finally convinced him to.
When it got dark, I packed up all my crap and showed my release form to the senseless guard. Then I ran away, as fast as I ever ran, away from that goddam place, and never looked back.
My brother Holden surprisingly called today. Ever since my brother Allie died I feel like he has been distant from the family and me. I talked to my parents the other day and they said he was beginning to improve since he had entered the institution. I noticed an improvement as well.
Since Holden sounded so flustered when he called me I decided to leave my girlfriend at home. Last time she seemed so disturbed by the atmosphere of the hospital.
I drove over as soon as I could. It started to rain. I didn’t want to get my new Jaguar wet, but I decided to go anyways because I felt obligated to be a good older brother. He was already waiting outside for me to show up. I wondered how he was able to get out of the building surrounded by security guards. It reminded me of a jail in some ways. As my brother stood in the rain waiting for me he looked so vulnerable and out of place.
I pulled up and he got into the car. He begged me for a drink, but I knew better than to let my brother drink. I have heard that once he starts, he doesn’t know when to stop. As we drove home I asked what was going on, and why he was out of the mental hospital. He told me the whole story about how he thought he could get better on his own and I really think my parents were right about his improvement. We arrived at my luxurious apartment and we were about to get out of the car when I remembered I had to go to my movie shoot tomorrow. I said he could spend the night at my house but we had to discuss what he would have to do, for me to not take him back to the institution. In truth I was glad he came over and thought it would be an optimistic opportunity. If he shadowed me for a day he would see all the positive experiences he could have, not that I wanted him in the movie industry or anything. Since he had told me about the difference the institution made on him, I let him sleep right when we got back home. He actually looked peaceful and calm as he drifted off to sleep. It reminded me of how he was before Allie died.
The following morning, when I woke up, I noticed that Holden had already awakened. He wanted to come with me to the movie set. I needed to go just in case I had to make any changes to the script. I decided that was okay, just for today, because I figured he needed a break from the negative atmosphere he was always in.
As we were driving, Holden and I talked even more. These past two days we have talked more than we have in the past five years, quite frankly.
When we arrived at the shoot, the director, Spiffy McJones, immediately came and greeted us. Nice guy, Spiffy was. He seemed in a panic and said that they lost one of their main men for the movie. He looked up at my brother, and it looked as if he had just won the lottery.
“ Well, I’m not exactly the type to star in a movie, but I guess I could try it,” Holden replied.
Spiffy looked desperate, and I know my brother usually doesn’t like to disappoint people. He gave in, to my surprise, and started filming the movie. This was a very positive change for him, and I truly believed that it would help Holden become a normal person.
The movie, set in Annapolis and about a young man maturing through the hardships of life, was called “It’s a Miracle.”