“How do you feel?” asks James.

“Crazy.” It’s the truth, and it’s all I can say.

“You’re not crazy,” Alex reassures me, “Anyone can get overwhelmed.”

“It’s not just that,” the truth presses on me, it rages like an animal behind bars, “I see things. I hear things. I think it’s paranoia, or something.” I feel myself disconnect from the emotion, I begin to explain with cold, clinical observation.

“What do you mean?” James probes with a curiosity that seems to lack judgement.

I laugh lightly, “Well, I see this bear,” a couple tears collect on my eye lashes, “I don’t always see it. Sometimes I just hear it, or sense it, but no one else does.”

“Like the day in the woods?” James seems sympathetic.

“Yeah, like the day in the woods . . . and today, when you found me in the barn.” I look at Alex, but she seems startled.

“You mean hallucinations?” Alex tries to be gentle.

I shrug.

James turns on her suddenly, “Just because nobody else sees it, doesn’t mean it’s not there.”

“You’re not helping James,” Her voice is almost a low growl.

“And neither does making assumptions without evidence. There are a lot of things we don’t understand, yet.”

I cover my ears.

“Would you two shut up,” Erik says, “this isn’t about you.”

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