Born on New Year’s Day, Nash Luca is an interesting fellow. A psychiatrist, he lives just outside Boulder, Colorado with his wife Jessica. They are a happily married couple living a lovely life in their solar powered home, tending their garden, and collecting rain water in barrels. Their love for the environment shows in everything they do, and in every decision they make.
But Nash harbors a dark secret.
Jessica is blissfully unaware of her husband’s doings, and has no idea he has just received a birthday card that will change the course of his life.
Nash assured himself he had made the right decision.
His thoughts returned to the card. Getting up from the chair, he retrieved the card from the pocket of his coat. Holding it in his hand, he picked up his cell phone with the other and pressed Jessica’s name to dial. The call rang through to her voicemail.
“Hey babe, it’s me. I found a card when I was unpacking your backpack last night and forgot to ask you about it. I’m going to open it since I imagine it’s for my birthday, just wanted to let you know. Love ya babe, see you tonight.” Nash pressed end to stop recording and complete the call. Making his way through the unmemorable card, he came to the small folded note inside its matching envelope. Puzzled by the message, Nash read it out loud, hoping the sound of his own voice would make sense of it, and stop it from falling out of his shaking hands.
As he finished reading, Agatha buzzed him from her desk in the lobby. Nash picked up his office phone, wondering if she’d hear the tremor in his voice.
“Yes?” Was all he dared say.
“Sorry to bother you Doctor,” Agatha apologized, “but Mr. Bradley is on the other line with a question about the medication you gave him.”
“Go ahead.” Keep your answers simple, Nash told himself.
“He wants to double check that he should start taking both medications tonight.” Agatha passed along the patient’s quandary.
Nash was silent, unsure how to answer now. A few minutes ago he wouldn’t have hesitated and his answer would have been yes, the sooner the better. Now he wasn’t so sure. This wasn’t the first time he’d taken fate into his own hands, and it wasn’t the first time he was faced with a patient who’s psychosis was as dangerous as Ed’s. This wasn’t the first time he’d handed out the blister pack of pills in his desk drawer and not the first time he’d done it without indecision.
This wasn’t the first time at all.