"So that's it?"
She opened her eyes as the voice reached her ears, and found herself at the bottom of a deep pit.
"Who's there?" She asked.
"Just me." The voice replied.
"What do you want?"
"I want you to answer my question."
"Yes," she said. "That's it."
"Why?" The voice asked.
"Why is that it?"
"Because I'm tired."
"You want to quit because you're tired?" The voice persisted. "Why?"
"Why do you care?!" She screamed.
"Why shouldn't I?"
She put her hands over her ears and tried to fight back tears. Then she stopped fighting and let them flow freely.
"Just leave me alone." She begged.
"I can't do that." The voice told her. "I have questions that need answers, and I'm not leaving until I get them. Besides, why would you want to be left alone like this? Look at yourself."
And suddenly, she was in front of a mirror. She saw her skin covered in scars and bruises. Her hair matted and tangled. Her clothes torn and full of holes. She saw her blood stains. Her teary, red eyes. Her hands and bare feet covered in mud. She looked feral. Terrified. Her stomach hurt, and her head was pounding. Again, she tried to cover her ears, but the voice continued loud and clear.
"You need rest. A shower. Food. But you don't need to quit."
Lowering her hands, she pressed her forehead against the mirror.
"Why do you care?" She asked again. "No one else ever cared about me. Why do you?"
"Because I know what you want..." The voice replied. "...And what you need. But you seem convinced that you're done when really, you're just down."
Suddenly, the mirror vanished and water started flowing into the pit. In a matter of seconds, it was up to her ankles while her feet stayed stuck in the mud.
"What are you doing?" She asked fearfully.
This time, there was no answer from the voice.
The water reached her knees. Then her waist.
"Wait!" She screamed. "No!"
Still no answer.
The water rose above her stomach, past her breasts, and up to her chin. She held her head up as high as she could and took a deep breath as the water completely covered her. She struggled feebly to free her feet from the mud, but couldn't. All too soon, her breath left her lungs and the voice's last words rang in her ears.
"You seem convinced that you're done when really, you're just down."
Kimberly opened her mouth to scream, but vomit came out instead. Clutching her stomach, she rolled off her bed and onto the floor, shaking and wheezing. Suddenly, the lights in the room came on. With a weak cry, she closed her eyes and tried to hid underneath the bed. Strong hands pulled her off the floor and sat her down.
"Kimberly," a voice said calmly "I need you to open your eyes."
"No," Kimberly whimpered as she shook her head. "No, no, no, no, no, no, no."
"Kimberly," the same voice continued "You need to calm down, open your eyes, and look at me."
Struggling to steady her breathing, Kimberly shivered and opened her eyes.
She was in her room at the rehab center. Two orderlies were standing nearby, and one more was at the door beside the light switch. Dr. Lincoln was standing in front of her with her arms by her side. Kimberly looked from her to the orderlies and then back to her.
"I'm not done." She whispered.
"You're what?" Dr. Lincoln asked.
"You...your question...yesterday's session..." Kimberly said.
"I'm not done," Kimberly repeated, louder this time. "I'm down, but I'm not done."
"I'm glad to hear that from you," Dr. Lincoln replied. "But it's entirely too late for a celebration right now. We're going to get you cleaned up, get you back in bed, and we'll move forward in the morning."
Later, after she was back in her office, Dr. Lincoln pulled Kimberly's file from her cabinet and made a new notation.
Nightmare Session: potential success