The Addicted Natural Ch. 01


"Are you okay?" I asked softly.

"Oh, yes!" she responded immediately. "I always feel wonderful when I wake up from a trance. I feel great!" She smiled broadly at me, then seemed to remember something and looked around nervously. "Is he ... gone?"

"Yes, he's gone."

She seemed to consider this for a moment. "Good."

We sat, saying nothing, for a long sixty seconds. I wanted to tell her that I'd listen to her, try to understand her, protect her, but I couldn't think of a way to begin. Finally, the ticking of the mantle clock drove her to speak.

"Fred, I want to tell you what happened to me today. I want you to understand about ... him; what he did to me. I NEED to tell you." Her voice fell to a whisper. "Please?"

I sat, considering this. Was she going to tell me some fabricated "memory?" Was this something she really wanted, or something he had planned all along? In the silence, she cast her eyes down toward the floor. "Please?" she whispered again. A tear slid down her cheek.

"Of course," I said, a little too loudly. I forced myself to calm down. "Of course, I'd like to listen to you." I stood. "Would you like something to drink?"

This seemed to confuse her. "Um ...."

"I was just making some tea before you came," I explained lamely. "I'd like to finish up and have a cup. Will you join me?"

"Um, sure."

"I'll just be a few minutes. Be right back."

I turned and went swiftly into the kitchen, filled and turned on the kettle, clattered a couple cups a bit, and snuck into the spare bedroom. There, set up in a closet, was an old reel-to-reel tape recorder. Set on its slowest speed, and with a full standard reel (available only on a few specialty internet web sites, now), I can record eight hours of conversation through the hidden microphone in the living room. I had used only three hour's worth in my previous interview. Lots of tape left. I hit the record button, closed the closet door, and went back into the kitchen to finish the tea. I'm not really sure what motivated me to do this. I think that in the back of my mind I intended to use the tape to convince her to press charges against the guy. For whatever reason, I now have a recording of the conversation that followed.

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