Visions Of Irony
Some afflictions would be better not to exist. In the case of interplanetary parasites, many people show signs of futuristic visions. This “so-called” affliction is cause for concern to all governments of planet Earth.
Those who are infected with a parasite don’t have many options. The only viable course of action to eliminate them is at a government establishment. Most people die from the procedure, leaving many to hide the fact they are experiencing visions.
Cherise never determined how the parasite entered her body, but she refuses to let anyone know. Her visions show a time when Earth is home to more than humans, mammals, reptiles, and birds. Colonies of advanced life forms from other planets live in harmony with the creatures of Earth. In her visions, it seems the governments of Earth lost their control over the population. People learned how to heal themselves with knowledge of new technology. Farmers are growing more food than ever before, leading to the decline of famine and starvation.
Cherise can’t understand why federal officials are trying to silence these visions. Are they trying to keep us desperate and needy—always looking for a handout or wanting to be rescued? On the other hand, Cherise grew tired of the visions. They caused severe headaches and consumed her. She wanted freedom from the parasitic scourge.
“I’m not going to some facility to die,” she mumbled. “There must be another alternative.”
Using a secure browser on her computer, she searched the internet for hints and clues. After several hours, she read an advertisement about a safe house for those with her menacing problem. It didn’t offer much information, but it did provide a phone number. She had found the only other option. She called with hesitation.
“Hello,” said a voice on the other end of the phone.
“Um, hi. I stumbled upon your ad. Can you tell me where you are located? I need your help.”
“Are you having visions?”
Cherise paused for a moment. Is this a trick to find out who is hiding their futuristic insights?
“Don’t panic; we aren’t the government. We are only trying to help people who want to understand what they are going through.”
Stunned, Cherise wondered how they knew what she was thinking. Shrugging it off as a coincidence, she said, “Yes. I have had visions for a couple of weeks now.”
“Go to your local Rally’s Food Mart and ask for Ramsey. The person at the counter will give you an envelope with our location. That’s all I can tell you over the phone. Inside you’ll also find a small pamphlet explaining what we do to help you.”
“Oh. Okay. Thank you so much.”
After hanging up, Cherise felt her inner voice compelling her not to go. She ignored the voice, knowing that sometimes she overthinks.
Cherise packed a small bag and walked to the Rally’s on the corner. She asked for Ramsey. The man behind the counter stared at her for a moment and then handed her an envelope.
“Are you sure you want to risk going somewhere before investigating what you’re getting into?”
“What do you mean?”
He shook his head and grunted. “Read the leaflet. Do you know what they mean by extract?”
Cherise shrugged her shoulders. “Anything has to be better than risking death at the facilities.”
“Are you sure about that?” The man walked away to help another customer.
As Cherise left, the man yelled, “You know the place is a science lab, right?”
She didn’t turn to look at him. She opened up the envelope. Inside it was a card with the address and the pamphlet. The details provided on the flyer explained how they could use equipment to remove the visions, freeing the afflicted from them forever. So what if it’s a science lab. If they can get rid of the images permanently, then I’m all for it.
Cherise made her way to the bus terminal and booked a trip to Tennessee, where the place was. She did find it odd that they omitted a photo of the place she was going.
When she finally made it to Tennessee, she took a taxi to the index card’s directions. The cab driver seemed reluctant to take her.
“Ma’am, are you sure this is the place you want to go?”
“Yes, I’m sure.” Cherise heard that little voice again telling her to stop and think about what she was about to do. Nevertheless, she was already there and silenced the voice once again.
As she walked up the path to the building, an uncomfortable feeling came over her. This is creepy. With the building finally within sight, she could hardly believe her eyes. An old rustic two-story house stood surrounded by trees—a single light glowed on the porch. This can’t be the place.
She knocked on the door. The door opened and on the other side stood a woman in a white coat.
“Come on in,” she said. Her smile seemed forced.
“I didn’t think I was at the right place.”
“Well, we need to keep ourselves concealed. I’m sure you realize that the government is trying to locate organizations like us.”
“Yes. They have eyes everywhere.” Cherise realized she never told anyone where she was. In a sudden epiphany, she understood that nobody could save her if she had made a wrong decision coming here.
The woman led her down a hallway and into a great circular room. There she saw nearly twenty or more people laying in recliner-like chairs with machines attached to their heads.
“What is this?”
“This is how we will help you. We extract your visions.”
“How long will it take? Some of these people look like they’ve been here a long time.”
“It varies. Don’t worry; no harm comes to anyone. Remember, we are here to help you, and in return, you help us understand more about the visions. We’re still trying to determine why and how the parasite creates such vivid images to their hosts. Let me take your bag. We’ll set up a room for you. For now, let’s get you in the chair and start the process.
“Can’t I settle in first?” It occurred to Cherise that the house couldn’t yield enough rooms for all the current patients. Something didn’t seem right.
“We prefer to get started first. That way, we can alleviate any discomfort from the visions.”
Cherise leaned back in the chair while the woman put the device on her head. It was only a few minutes later, and Cherise was utterly unaware of her surroundings.
Another woman walked into the room. “Isn’t it ironic that the very thing that makes people distrust the government brings them full circle back to us?”
“What do you mean?”
“Surveillance. People think they are in an organization hidden from the government. So, they come to us not realizing we are the government under the guise of an inconspicuous organization.”
“Ah, yes. Prey on their fear of prying eyes.”
Both women left the room laughing. One of the women shouted, “Sleep tight, guinea pigs.”
Featured Image by ArtTower courtesy of Pixabay.