Kathryn Lubahn, “The Forgetting.”

The Forgetting

© Gerry Gomez

© Gerry Gomez

by Kathryn Lubahn

Dr. Leyen looked into my eyes. She knelt before me with her fingers grasping my arms. I was three and a half. She said, “I must tell you something. It’s very important. We have only a moment.” I stared back into her eyes seeing fear and sadness swimming to the surface in her. I felt her tension seep into me. I struggled against her fear.

“You know that all the other little girls have graduated from the nursery here. You are the last one. Soon Dr. Lieberman will come and take you to a special room.”

I didn’t like that. A change in the routine was never good. It usually meant experiments and experiments usually meant pain. I felt uneasy because she never expressed this much fear before. I could feel it coming out of her like clouds that smelled sweetly sick. It had an ugly yellow color. The air between us was murky like lake water. I didn’t like things that were unclean. It poured through her crisp white lab coat onto me. I wanted to rub it off but I was afraid to move.

“Today is a special day. Today you graduate.” she said shifting her weight back on her heels. I could tell she was lying about something. There was something she didn’t want me to know. It wasn’t safe here in the laboratories to not know things. I could see her constructing an evasion of the whole truth in her mind.

“You know that you and the other little girls who were here are very, very special. You are different from other girls. We made you very carefully and with things most girls in the outer world don’t have. You have special abilities. You are very privileged,” she said.

Her fingertips pressed more firmly into my skin. “This last test is dangerous and so you must do exactly what you are told. If you stay relaxed, all will be fine.”

“Are you going to be there with me?” I asked.

“No, I am not authorized. I don’t have the clearance,” she said. I felt her tremble slightly. This was not normal.

I stared at the linoleum squares of gray between us. My breath slivered out in frozen small clouds of uncertainty. “What are they going to do to me?” I asked. I wanted to run outside into the courtyard where I played with the other Evas until they had gone away. I wanted to sit in the tree even if it was snowing outside.

“They are going to put a part of you asleep and that part will wake up many years from now.” she said.

I felt her mind and touched her thoughts. Images tinged with guilt and fear raced around me. Retreating further into my tiny cage of a body, I said quietly, “You are going to break me in half.” I wondered what I would do, asleep for many years. What was the point of this experiment? I always had to figure out the reason. Logic would help me succeed and I needed to succeed because if I failed they would do bad things to me.

She looked down knowing that she could not hide the truth from me. “Yes but it is necessary in order to go to your new home,” she said.

“Why? Why do I have to be broken to travel?” I had never been outside the compound of the laboratories. I only had a little sense of the world out there. It was the place where she went to sleep and see other people who didn’t live here. All the big people went outside. Oh yes, I had seen the garden courtyards with plants and pools and grass but not where the doctors went. “Am I going to the place you go to? I asked.

“Not the same place, but a family like mine,” she said.

“Why can’t I go where you go?” I asked.

“Because those are the rules. I would love to take you home with me. But I cannot be one of your handlers. I am an observer now,” she said. Her voice tugged at her like a rope.

“Why do I have to go to this new place? What will these strangers be like? I asked.
She began to sing me a song very softly.

Tocha slafês sliumo / uueinon sar lazzês.
sleep speedily leave off crying
Triuua uuerit kraftlicho / themo uuolfa uurgianthemo.
forcefully / fends off the murdering wolf
slafês unz za morgane / manes trût sunilo.
May you sleep until morning / dear man’s son
Ostârâ stellit chinde / honak egir suozziu.
for the child leaves / honey and sweet eggs
Hera prichit chinde / pluomun plobun rotun.
for the child breaks / flowers blue and red
Zanfana sentit morgane / ueiziu scaf kleiniu,
on the morrow sends / white little sheep
unta Einouga, herra hurt! / horska aska harta.
and One-Eye, herra hurt, swift, hard spears.”

I realized she was saying goodbye to me. The big people often went away and never came back, but now she was telling me I was going away and never coming back. We had never run a simulation for this. I used to hear the big people whispering about the ones who never came back. This didn’t sound good. “Will I ever see you again?” I asked. “How will I know how to get back to the institute?” I know the name of where we live, the Institute of Genetic Advancement, and I know it is in New York. Maybe if I ask someone out there they will bring me back. But they don’t want me back or they wouldn’t be throwing me away. I must have failed at something important. Only failures got thrown away.

“No, my Engelchen. I will not be able to reach you. But you will be able to reach me. I will always be inside your mind,” she said.

“Will it be in the broken part of me?” I asked.

“Yes, you must place me in a very secret part of you,” she said.

“I don’t want to be broken. I have seen broken things. It is not good. I don’t want to be a broken doll. They get thrown away,” I said

“You won’t be thrown away. You just won’t remember me or this place. The doctors will give you new memories. You will have a brother from here,” she said

“Will they break him too? Will he not remember?” I asked.

“Yes, but you will have a sense of home with him. He will feel somehow familiar,” she said.

I looked into her face wondering how I could save my memory of her. I took a picture of her in my mind and ran down a path in my memories where I stored everything I didn’t want the bad doctors to touch. They were stupid and didn’t know where to look. They always looked inside me in the same places. I only put things I didn’t care about where they could reach it.

“Here, here they come. Now be brave and use your mind for yourself. Give me a kiss my little wunderkind.” She kissed me on my forehead and released me from her hands. Straightening up, she smoothed her lab coat.

I turned to face Dr. Lieberman. His shadow engulfed me blocking out the florescent light, leaving me in the ice of my fear. He was the worst of them. All of us were afraid of him. He used to talk of somewhere far away, somewhere called Germany. I hope they are not sending me to Germany. He came forward still turning papers on his clipboard. “And this is the 13th Eve?”

“Yes doctor.”

“Come”

I stepped forward.

“Come”

I began to walk trying to think of a way not to go with him. There were no windows in this part of the compound. Everything was lit by the awful long lights that buzzed like flies. Our footsteps followed us like echoes of memories that I was going to lose. I had always hated and feared him. We all did. Touching his mind was more than cold, it was dead. There were no feelings, no colors inside him. He was empty like a glass. But an empty glass is normal. He didn’t feel normal inside. People aren’t supposed to be empty. Even the machines had insides that carried color. Most of the doctors here had some color inside. Often they were very faint like watercolors. Most of the colors were muddy. Only a few had nice colors. We learned quickly to avoid the ones with ugly colors. And their colors often changed.

But now, I was on my own. I figured out that they broke the other Eves before they sent them away. I was afraid they would cut me open like they did the monkeys. Their howls would bounce along the corridors. I knew there was pain when they broke the monkeys. Why would anyone want us after they broke us? They threw the broken monkeys in the fire in the garbage room. I wondered if they threw some of the Eva girls there. I had seen images of some of the girls who broke. Some had blood coming out of their eyes and mouths. I saw this in the memories of Dr. Leyen’s mind. They were colored a terrible vomit-green.

Doctor Lieberman had transparent memories that were hard to read. The only vivid ones were of people, so many people screaming. We came to a door where he placed his eye against a small computer. Light flashed and the door hissed open. This was a room I had never been in.

“Please, sit up on this chair. We have a procedure to be done. Now hold very still and let us buckle you in.” An orderly snapped restraints around my arms. None of them saw us as people like them. He treated me like a monkey or a machine or a monkey-machine. Another doctor walked in and looked at the charts. This was Doctor Erbach. He performed the biological experiments. This would not be good.

“This is the last one?” he asked

“Ja,” Dr. Lieberman said.

“How many did we lose?

“Three. The one with the Aries moon hemorrhaged out, the one with the Scorpio moon went psychotic…we had to put her down, and the one with the Aquarius moon threw herself against the door and died of a concussion,” Dr. Lieberman said .

“Interesting. And this one? She has a Pisces moon?” asked Dr. Erbach.

“Ja, she has the greatest empathy talent and is very telepathic. She has visions of the future and we can’t be sure if we can control her,” Dr. Lieberman said. “She must go to a handler that has the power to break her will.”

I listened to them trying to see what they were going to do and how to protect myself. Terror ran as glaciers down my legs and arms. I welcomed the numbness spreading within me.

“What family will she be placed with?” Dr. Erbach asked.

“Retired naval officer, Duke University, behavioral psych; mother, biochem. They also have a son placed with them. They have all been given implanted memories but the father has an awareness of his job as a handler. I will be overseeing them,” Dr. Lieberman said

“Which program is being implanted in them?” Dr. Erbach asked.

“The Florida program. A whole educational system has been put in place with gifted children. There are thirty children from our program, the rest are just gifted military kids,” Dr. Liberman said. “We anticipate a 20% survival rate.”
“I am administering the LSD and a peyote serum intravenously to induce terror and psychosis. In forty minutes we can begin the splitting of her personality. Place the earphones on her and begin the binaural beats. Epinephrine will induce fight or flight and overload to her adrenals. The split will occur when she abandons part of her consciousness to save herself. We will administer Aprobarbital in one hour in order to begin the hypnotic suggestions and place the trigger codes. This will determine which parts of her personality will remain on the surface and which parts will be subconscious and unconscious. The Halcyon will block all memories of her life here. We will then reintroduce Aprobarbital to implant the new false memories. We will implant a terrifying experience so that she won’t try to remember anything before the age of four. This should take about five hours. Finally, we will put her in an induced coma with Pentothal. This will allow her mind to integrate the restructuring of her neural pathways,” Dr. Erbach said.

“Pisces rules drugs. It will be very interesting to see if this will help her or destroy her,” Dr. Lieberman said. “She could be lost in a permanent psychosis.”

I watched them as long as I could. His face began to turn into a monster. His skin deepened into a dark crimson. His eyes, once so empty, filled with a ravenous lust for destruction. I was afraid he would eat me. The truth revealed itself even as I found myself convulsing. There was true evil in this world. I had to turn away from him. I could not fight what he was doing to me. If I did, I would go mad. But I knew there was a place he could not find.

Drifting down into an ocean, I listened, without any understanding, from a distance as they talked about bandwidths of consciousness. They were too cowardly to venture out beyond the world of their perceptions. But my matrix of magnetite crystals in my brain had formed galaxies of neurons that went beyond the few dimensions they could perceive. After all, they couldn’t even hear the sound of dog whistles. They were blinded by their own science. I had to count on that and run to a place they could not imagine. Folding who I was into a tiny space, I took all my memories with me. They could not destroy me there, and I would work from the inside out to rebuild myself once they were gone. I felt the storm of terror raging far above me as I calmly dove deeper than the whales. I slowed my energy down below them.

I joined my mind with the leviathans in the ocean. These people were hurting them also. They had sound machines that were destroying their minds. I had to dive deeper. Finally I reached a place of silence. Well, almost silence. I had a friend none of them could see. He had been with me since birth.

He held out his hand and said, “Come little mother, let me help you hide.”

Bio
Kathryn Lubahn is a continuing student in business at SBCC with a BA in English from Stetson University and Multimedia and Professional Creative Writing Certificates from SBCC. She, an astrologer and writer, is currently developing an Astrological Feng Shui Blog for her family business—Islands of Infinity Feng Shui Fine Arts.

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