The Bells and Chimes of New Beginnings

My eyes begin the familiar shift from being weightless revolving doors to a more heavy and secure doorway for a garage. In seconds, the muscles holding them up become too weak and fatigued and lets them slip away. My body grows lighter and lighter with the soothing drops of rain pelting the Earth with gradual force. Until, it stays at a steady rhythmic volume, then the reverberating chime of a bell echoes in pulsation before it dies down, awaiting another tap of a bell that brings a color with every disparate pitch. The sounds flow through the headphones bound and snug around the crown of my head. I could listen to the sound of rain and storms forever and would never resent it. Though, it’s not what lulls me to my scheduled catnap. It’s the slow, monotonous voice of Centerpointe™️—a guided meditation we’re required to listen to, once work is over; my sanctuary after hard ranch labor.

As I lean back against the wall with my legs spread out across the floor, I fade away. However, the something is happening around me. It’s different, not like every other day. I can sense a new, overwhelming presence that feels… toxic. I gently raise my eye to a sliver where I can get an idea of what’s going on around me while it looks as though I’m sleeping. There’s two people I’ve never seen before whispering to each other by the front door. A kid who looks like he could be in his early 20s and a woman who could be his mother. Or aunt?

The skinny guy has a frail, ghost-like look, and reminds me of Aladdin from the Disney cartoon, until the flash image of Uncle Jesse from that show in the 90s appears. I can’t think of the name of the show, nor the name of the actor. I sit for a moment to let my brain wake up and when it does; it reminds me we are getting a new guy today.

Full House! That’s the show.

From a few quick glances around the room, everyone else seems to have fallen victim to the heavily sedating effects Centerpointe™️. It’s an hour-long CD we listen to with nostalgic portable CD players and giant headphones that cup your encompasses each ear with its squishy padding. We do this because MP3 files don’t pick up the unheard sounds made to bring about certain emotions. The same goes for the gigantic headphones, in order to be fully surrounded by the content. Falling asleep, however, defeats the purpose of the guided meditation, but staying awake is next to impossible with the gentle sounds rubbing your inner ears after a long day of work.

Victor walks into the picture which sends a wave of relief through the room. It must have came from the new guy and what looked like his mom? They’d been standing there, confused and looking around for a minute until Vick came out of hiding to bring them back into the office.

When they’re in the next room, the area where they stood, particularly the new guy who looked 20, maybe 21, became brighter. I didn’t notice it merely peering out of a thin slit, but he has what I can only describe as a dark cloud, following him. The older lady who I can now sense as being a mother figure to him, had a little more color surrounding her but not much. Gray was the dominant color around her, which is likely from worrying about her son. That is understandable considering this kid was void of any color besides a heavy black.

Now, you’re likely thinking one of two things: One, that I’m full of shit, making up colors to match the mood I guess they’re in, or two, I can see these colors they mean nothing because nobody else can see or feel them—this house deep in the Washington wilderness is a psyche ward.

Both are wrong. Here at Spirit Ranch, they teach a more holistic, eastern way of living without drugs. In just a month I’ve learned how to see auras and the energy vibrations coming off of people. They also trained in both Reiki I and II. Reiki is the eastern healing practice of transferring and clearing energy from the body.

I’ve been living here for almost two months now, along with four other guys. I will not worry about telling you their names because you wouldn’t remember, anyway. Just know that we’re from all over the country, are between the ages 21 and 28, and I am the oldest. Oh, we are also all drug addicts. Heroin addicts. This place isn’t only for junkies though, even though it looks that way.

It’s really for young adults who can’t or have a hard time transitioning into adulthood, so there are certain responsibilities we have to take care of, such as paying fake bills once a week and stuff. I’d explain it all but my CD ended, meaning it’s time. My favorite time. Cigarette time.

On the porch outside where we keep all of our shoes, I slip on my house shoes while through a murky window someone had neglected to clean, I can see bodies ambling. All of them will join me out at the smoke pit since all of us are dirty, dirty smokers.

“Yo, Lucas, wait up!” A voice shouts at me to slow down. Not happening.


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