Freewill by Chris Lynch

Book: Freewill by Chris Lynch Read Free Book Online
Authors: Chris Lynch
it’s become? It’s that now, kids are, like, coming to my sculpture . . .”
    He holds up a hand, maybe something left over from his traffic cop days back in a helpful uncomplicated part of his career when he used to be able to help people.
    â€œI know. You don’t need to be thinking about this stuff. Go with your grandparents and get fixed up. And take a few days off. Get yourself a nice rest.”
    And, he wants to tell you, this’ll all blow over. He wants to tell you that.
    Don’t you think it is fairly decent of him not to tell you that? Points for this guy.
    â€œThank you,” you say as both of your grandparentsbundle him off and you tuck left-handed into hot cereal gone cold and the morning paper.
    â€¢Â Â â€¢Â Â â€¢
    A lot of doctors for one hand bone. A lot of interviews to be giving, considering until yesterday you had gone an entire life without giving a single one.
    The X ray didn’t show a broken bone. That’s because the X ray barely showed any bone. Too much swelling. You know anyway.
    Splint, instead of cast. Take it off when you need to. Not a bad deal. One splint to hold you together.
    One splint, and a whole lot of medicine.
    And what was with the priest, do you suppose? Will? Suppose they’re expecting you to die from this? That’s what they bring in the priests for, isn’t it? Or is it the other thing? A confession?
    Does either one bring absolution? Think you should ask? Think you should offer?
    Bless me, father, for I am death.
    â€¢Â Â â€¢Â Â â€¢
    You don’t want to take the pills. You don’t. For a while anyway, you don’t. But without them, there are problems. Pain, is a problem. Related sleeplessness, is another problem. You endure.
    You don’t have to, you know. You don’t have to endureany more pain. You don’t have to take the pills. You know this, don’t you? You know this, that the choices are all yours, and that there is no predestined anything to stop you, or to start you, doing anything that does not suit you.
    What suits you ?
    You don’t want to take the pills, and it is good that you don’t want to take the pills. It is admirable that you do not want to take pills.
    But do you want to be admired? Or do you want the pain to stop? And the sound. You could use the peace. Couldn’t you use the peace, Will? Wouldn’t you like this to stop, even for just a while?
    â€œYes, I would like it to stop,” you say. Finally, finally, finally. You say.
    No shame. There is no shame. You take your pills. You take your peace.
    â€¢Â Â â€¢Â Â â€¢
    Are you still sleeping? You are seeing, that much is certain.
    Certainty. It is the opposite of faith, isn’t it? Which would you rather have now?
    Reach out your good hand. Try and touch. Tables and shelves and gnomes and whirligigs of all description. A phantasmic, freakish familiar gallery of your own unintentions.
    â€œI was supposed to be a pilot. This all never should have happened.”
    You are awake, for certain. And you are going to school today. All advice is that you stay exactly where you are, but you will not be taking that advice. Though you will compromise by taking your medications.
    And anyway, you are not going to school per se. You are going to the school, but not to school. This is not a situation you are condemned to live with, just as nothing in this life will be.
    Nothing has to be, Will. It is up to you.
    So you are not going to school to work in wood. You are going to tie up loose ends. You are going to finish unfinished business. You are going to clean out your locker.
    You are not an inmate of Special Programs.
    You are not a woodworker.
    You are a pilot.
    You promise your teary grandmother and steely grandfather that you will be at bocce ball in the afternoon. She is always teary grandmother these days, isn’t she, and he is always steely

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