Chapter 12:


School For The Mediums

I don’t think I could ever imagine the idea of a licensed, trained, and very famous individual who is called a doctor, wearing a full blown out clown suit---cakey face of makeup included.

“Hara Hadiza?” A calm composed voice speaks.

Crazy, how I don’t need to imagine anything these days. Not when reality is getting more and more wrecked by the day.

Dr. Satori takes a seat across from me. Her seat is just like mines, made of sewn together bits of childhood plushies. But she looks more comfortable than me.

It took me a few moments of sliding, moving, and adjusting before I could even find a position that is remotely comfortable on cushion of doll heads and stuffed animals.

Yet, Dr. Satori? It only took her a second before she sat down and fit right into place with this strange ‘landscape’ called an office. It’s more like a zoo. A zoo of moving, bright, colorful artifacts most of them trinket toys and models of trains, cars, and---.

--Cucko! Cucko! Cucko!

The loud, boisterous, annoying huge grandfather clock that spits out a wooden mechanical bird every few minutes. It’s more intrusive and more annoying than the voice---Could you imagine dying on the toilet? I hate that was me.

Or maybe they’re all equally annoying.

With an inward sigh, I rub my forehead. “…Sighs.”

“Oh, sorry about the clock,” she says. “That’s my Cuckoo Bird 1926 edition pendulum clock.” She looks over to the large humongous floor clock in the corner of the room with a proud smile. “It was a collector’s edition. Handmade in London. Hard to find.”

“Okay.” I glance at the clock and back to her. I have no idea what I’m supposed to do with that information besides blink at her.

“I do so adore that clock.” She smiles, and when she does her white chalky make crinkles on the corners of her lips.

I almost shiver.

If she was going for friendly clown, she was the farthest thing from it. Her face paint was all white with black circles around the eyes and red around her lips. Her outfit was a large oversized black and white striped pants and shirt with red puff balls down the center. She finished the thing off with red neck frills and a large pointy cone hat.

Creepy. That’s the only word to describe it.

“Oh, and I also adore that.” She points to medium sized coffee table pressed against the window side. On it, there’s some blue plastic rectangular microwave. “That is a Kenner’s Original 1964 Edition American Easy bake oven. One of the last few that was ever made in production.” She has another wide smiled and bright-eyed look. “The microwave oven bit doesn’t exactly work anymore, but the timer does. So, I find it’s best function is a lunch timer.”

“Um…are you Dr. Satori?” I ask.

I’m realizing now I assumed she was the doctor, but the more she speaks the more I’m convinced---and maybe hoping, is that she be anyone other.

“Why yes, I am Dr. Rina Satori. But in here I am Dr. Madeupaname.”

“Excuse me?”

“Dr. Madeupaname.”

“Dr. Made up a…what?” It takes everything I have to stare at the woman with a straight face.

“Dr. Madeupaname,” she confirms for the third time, and with that I’m convinced that the doctor dressed up in a full clown regalia is serious.

“…Dr. Madeupaname.” I blink a few times.

The name sounds wrong and feels wrong on my tongue.

“That’s correct.” She nods, and the little bells on her cone hat jingle. “Now, how about you?”

“I’m Hara Hadiza.”

“That’s incorrect.”

“My name is incorrect?” My mouth gapes a little. I feel just as confused when I first saw her in the spooky clown suit.

She clicks her ballpoint pen and prepares her notebook. “Twinkle? Starlight? Magictothelimit? Silly as bunny? Oh!” She sets her notebook and pen in her lap to clasp her hands together. “How about Missus Fluffykins?” She stares expectingly at me as if I’m supposed to be just as excited as her.

A knot is forming between my brows.

What is wrong with this lady?

“You don’t seem pleased with that name. How about Professor Fluffykins?”

I stare wide eyed. “What are these names?”

“Names for you. In here, we only use fun nicknames. It just spices things up.”


“So? You name?”

My answer is obvious. “Hara Hadiza.”

“How about miss daisy or Miss cup?”

No thanks.”

“Then, Dizzy Diza?”

“Excuse me but I don’t quite understand what’s going on. You are the psychologist, right?”

“Psychologist by hobby, researcher by profession.” She leans into her teddy bear seat.

“What?” Her words make no sense to me.


She wiggles her head. “You know what type of clown archetype I am dressed as?”

“Clown what?”

“What type of clown I am?” She says, again with that straight and calm face as if anything she’s doing is normal.

“No. No I don’t.”

She peers at me lightly smiling. “Pierrot.”

I hate you. I hate all of you who are live.

I briefly squeeze my eyes together, ignoring the in and out traffic of the voices.

“Pee-ə-roh. That’s how it’s pronounced,” Dr. Satori continues, her eyes glued on me. “They originated in the late 17th century. They often dressed in outfits like this.” She stopped to tug at her shirt. “Which was unlike other clowns who choose bright, fun, and poppy outfits to amuse others. Pierrots were different. They would only wear mostly black and white with ghostly painted features. Why do you think that, Dizzy Diza?”

I cringe at the sound of that name. “Please don’t call me Dizzy Diza, and I have absolutely no idea what you’re talking about.”

“Hm.” She peers sharply at me. “So perhaps, Dizzy Diva?”

Is this a therapy session? Or is this an hour with another mentally unwell person?

Disturbed but unable to go anywhere, I give her a blank stare.


Immediately I recoil, the sound of a loud blaring trumpet sound almost knocks me out of my seat.

“Did you just blow a horn at me?” Shook, I looked to Dr. Satori who was proudly holding onto some small red clown horn.

“Yes.” She smiles. “You keep looking to the doors and spacing out. I needed to gather your attention.”

“By blowing a horn at me?” I narrow my eyes to slits.

“Yes. Now, Dizzy Diza I’d like you to introduce yourself. I am Dr. Madeupaname and I am psychologist who appreciates collecting some of the wonderful artifacts you see right now in my office.” She does a raised arm browse of her office junk. “Now, who are you, Dizzy Diza? Or Dizzy Diva?” Her head is tilted to side as she patiently stares me down.

What sort of doctor is this woman? Somebody had to lie about the world reckoned psychologist part.

“Oh, and don’t forget to tell me what you like to do?” She presses. “You know, besides breaking world records. 3 minutes was quite amazing.”

I looked back to the doors.

“A lot of people consider that a miracle. The fact that you died and came back from the dead.”

I glanced at Dr. Satori. She’s impossibly hard to take seriously when dressed up in this outfit. But somehow, I think she knows that already.

I keep quiet as she continues. “I must admit, I only accepted to meet you out of curiosity. I don’t often take teens as patients---unless they present conditions that are especially unique.”

I keep ignoring her as she continues speaking.

“Although the word unique in itself, is a bit complex. What it does it mean to be unique? It’s much too subjective, isn’t it?” Her eyes never leave me. “I consider you unique, but I’m sure in your current state, you must not consider yourself that. You may consider yourself something other…strange…abnormal---crazy even.”

I take an inward breath but the air feels much too tight and suffocating to breathe.

“But I’m getting off track. Let’s talk small talk. I want know who you are, Dizzy Diza. You must have things you like, things you dislike?”

Toto was my pet turtle. I really miss him. But he couldn’t come with me. Turtles don’t get cancer like humans do.

Things I dislike? That’s not hard to pinpoint.

I can feel Dr. Satori watching me, but I still keep my lips shut.

“You are reluctant to speak. No worries. Then I will simply list things I currently know about you. We’ll see which one is correct, yes?”


She clicks her pen and prepares her notebook. “You do art. You’re quite wonderful at it.” She flips through some pages of her notes. “But your art is abstract. Few understand it well. Not to mention it didn’t exactly compare to some of the works your sister did.”

My chest stings at just the mention.

“I’ve seen some of your sister’s works in city’s hall,” she says, reading with a calm and steady tone. “I understand she won quite a few awards for her array of talents and skills. It is also my understanding that your family appears to be very successful and talented.”

My heart skips a beat as I lock my fists together.

“Your father works with NASA and your mother is Michelin Star chef, while your sister, Hara Aoko, was really one of the brightest and best I’ve ever seen for someone around your age. As for you? All that’s notable is that you survived a fire your sister died in, and managed to survive once again after your heart stopped for 3 minutes. Am I correct so far?” She stops to look me directly in the eyes.

With a taught and tight grimace, I struggle for words. “…I don’t want to talk about this.”

“My apologizes, is this sensitive topic? Your family status, your sister’s death, and how you fit into this?”

I swallow but my mouth feels like gravel and sandpaper. “Not really. She passed away some time ago, and so everyone moved on. Dad went back to work. Mom stopped doing cooking stuff to take care of me. I went back to school. We moved into a new house. And that was that.”

“That was that?” She looks back down to her notes. “But it says you had a bit of an episode after your sister’s funeral. You tried---.”

“---I don’t like talking about this,” I quickly interrupt.

My fists are gripped so tight I can feel the pressure of my nails tearing into my palms.

For a moment Dr. Satori just stares at me, so I just stare at her.

I just didn’t want to die alone, you know?

With a wince, I rub my head. Ignore the voices. Just ignore.

“So?” Dr. Satori goes back to interrogating me. “Your mother said that you said you’ve been hearing voices?”

“Excuse me?” My mouth drops a little.

“That’s what she told me and that’s what’s in my notes.” She smiles.

Notes? She has a whole essay written about it sounds like.

I fold my arms over my chest. This meeting could not go any more uncomfortable and any worse. The last thing I’m doing is making my situation worse. “No, I’m not hearing voices.”

“No? But your mom says you’re seeing and hearing things that are making you act strange. Is that not what you’re here for?”


“No?” She raises a brow.

“No.” I confirm again with a defensive shake of my head.

“Then there is nothing wrong with you?”


Cucko! Cucko! Cucko!

Suddenly there’s a noise in my head so loud that makes me jump in my seat. “Just shut up already!” I can’t help but to snap.

“Shut up who?” Dr. Satori is peering at me.

Oh.” That wasn’t a voice in my head and I wasn’t supposed to say that out loud.

I hate when I lose track of what noises are outside and which ones are coming from inside.

I swallow. “…It’s nothing.”

“On your way in, you said something similar. You are sure there is nothing bothering you?”

My heart starts to hammer as I fold my hands in my lap. “I don’t know.”

“You don’t know what?” she questions me, still drilling her eyes.

I turn my gaze to my feet. “I don’t know.”

“You know Dizzy Diza, that for as long as humankind has existed there has always been people who have claimed to hear and see things. Some claimed that they could hear voices of the dead, things from another world, and hear voices of gods or see angels and other creatures. Back then they were called shamans, medium, communicators, and so many other things.” She stands up. “Fascinating. It’s got to make someone wonder. If we lived in a different time, would we even be here today?”


We both turn our heads to the source. That blue microwave oven, I’ve just learned is called an Easy bake.

“Ah!” Dr. Satori lets out a little yelp of joy. “I believe that’s my lunch break.”

I blink a few times, still just as confused as when I first entered. What is she suggesting by saying that? I want to ask, but do I even want to know?

She walks over to the oven, cracking it open with a smile. “I believe this session is over, Dizzy Diza.” She glanced back to me. “We’ll be in touch.”

We’ll be in touch? That’s the last thing I want to do after talking to this lady.

It’s a bit of a struggle to get to my feet, considering I’ve been sitting on plush seat made of dolls and toys.

Huff.” I stretch my shoulders out a little and quickly head to the doors.

This was by far the weirdest, strangest, and least helpful Doctor session I’ve ever had, and I think the best course of action to forget this ever happened once I step out those doors.

“It’s the secret of silence.”

I’ve only got one foot out and one hand on the doorknob when I hear Dr. Satori.

“What?” I turn back to look at her.

“The Pierrot. It’s often thought that it represented the secret of silence with the melody of death. It is the ferryman to the lake of the those living not dead.” She gives me a smile. “Do you understand what I am saying?”

I give her a puzzled stare.

She turns her back to me. “Then maybe soon you will.” 

Shahi John
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