Thursday, 5 February 2015

I always wished I had a magic wand... - A piece of creative writing for Salt and Caramel Writer's workshop

I went to sit at my desk and examined my finding. Under the mud the wood was smooth, even polished, but otherwise ordinary.

As I was holding it in my right hand, feeling the weight of it - surprisingly heavy- Blinis came limping towards me, whining softly.

‘What’s up, baby?’

I crouched next to him and looked at his legs and paws . Under one of his feet was a cut that seemed shallow but obviously sore. I was still holding the stick in my hand and as I probed gently at the injured foot the wood started to glow. It grew warm too and, in front of my eyes, Blinis’ wound disappeared!

I had found a magic wand…

The next day, I went to work with the wand in my bag. I did not intend to use it, I just wanted to have it with me.
I crossed the oncology department and entered my office. As usual I went through the files of the patients I was to see that day. The first one was a lady who had no diagnosis yet. I was surprised as I usually saw people who were already undergoing treatment. However this patient had rescheduled her consultant appointment no less than six times and her GP had written a letter to say how concerned he was about her. He thought she was showing signs of acute depression and detailed said signs.

She did turn up for her counselling session with me. She was indeed very distressed and I struggled to get through to her. I was distracted too. I kept glancing at my bag where the wand lay.

It would be easy, so easy, to just make sure that her diagnosis was an all clear. How many times had I wished I could wave a magic wand and solve all my patients' problems?
Suddenly I found myself walking to seize my bag. I took a tissue out of it, handed it to my patient and sat next to her. I rested my left hand on her shoulder while my right hand held the wand inside my bag.

As it had done for Blinis the wood grew warm and I tried to angle my body to hide the opening of the bag so the glow would not show. It stopped. It was done.

I felt so elated! And powerful. 

By then I had completely lost track of what the lady was telling me. I was also getting quite... annoyed with her. Couldn't she feel the magic? As she grew silent I said the words I generally use to close an interview. I realised with a bit of a jolt that we had only been speaking for 10 minutes (as opposed to my usual minimum of 30). Oh well, she would quickly realise that the lump wasn't even there anymore.

I didn't use the wand again.

The next day came. When I went into work there was a cluster of people, a doctor, some nurses, other staff, gathered by the reception desk.

I enquired : 'What's happening?'

'One of our recent patients', answered Claire the receptionist, 'I think you might have seen her yesterday.'

Saying this she showed me the file of the lady I had cured with the wand. She was going to tell me that her lump had suddenly and mysteriously disappeared!

'She killed herself last night...'

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