The boy in the car looked at him as if he knew him, and he felt like he did... Jimmy had a fairly plain lifestyle. He was 27 years old and still lived with his mother, Caroline. Caroline was generationally wealthy and widowed. He tried to stay out of her way, for fear of waking the demon inside of her. She was a wretched old woman, and she deserved to be alone. She was awful. Jimmy didn’t have to work, so he didn’t. He was out running a few errands for her wretchedness, when that car passed him going toward town. When he locked eyes with that boy in the backseat, he felt something strange in the pit of his stomach, and the feeling grew as the car got closer...but just when he thought he may figure it out, the car accelerated and sped away. He stood now, perfectly still on the corner of Fuller and Main, puzzled and paralyzed. About a minute passed, it occurred to him that he probably looked a bit silly there, so he shook it off and continued on home.Carter had it all, most thought. He was six foot five, with a body builder frame, deep green eyes and the smile of a movie star. He was always cheerful and loved helping people. The coach of his daughters' softball team, a steady volunteer at the school, head of the neighborhood committee and a very attentive and thoughtful husband. The neighborhood was filled with swooning housewives and single newbies trying to get a word in with him at the grocery store. He would answer their questions briefly, then without any lingering moments he would be on his way to whatever errand he was in the middle of. As if he didn’t even notice them being so smitten on him. His wife, Allie, was five foot two and had long curly brown hair and amazing big beautiful brown eyes. She always wore dresses with matching shoes. Incredibly helpful to anyone in need, she could often be found spending her time in homeless camps handing out drinks or at the library with someone who needed help operating the computer for this task or that. The two of them together was almost unbelievable. No one wanted to see them when they were together, it was so darn cute it almost made you sick. But, there was another side of them that only their children ever saw. Carter had memory problems and would have chunks of time that he could not account for. Allie could not understand and just assumed that Carter was in fact cheating. They would go for days without talking-but out of the house they played as if nothing could possibly be wrong. And they played it well, no one even thought there could ever be a storm brewing behind the scenes, until that summer night at the town barbecue cook-off...
Jimmie dismissed the weird car and the child without another thought the minute he crossed the street that afternoon. After dinner that evening, he went to his room (where he spent most of his time) and continued his game of Wizards and Dragons, with his online friends. Jimmie had all kind of friends online, it was the in person kind that he struggled with. Socially awkward didn't begin to describe it. He would nervously fidget with anything he could get his hands on. Oftentimes knocking over the pitcher of drinks or tripping over an invisible obstruction during introductions. His computer was the only place that he really could be himself. Where he laughed and interacted with ease. And the only place he ever got excited to arrive at. He had only been playing for ten minutes when she started yelling his name.
“ Jimmie, come now”
“Jimmie, don’t make mother wait”
“ JIIIIMMIE, I SAID COME HERE RIGHT NOW!” Frustrated and irritable, he threw down his controller and put on his house slippers. Rolling his eyes, thinking ‘what she could possibly have to be upset with me over now’, he grumpily started to stroll down the foyer on the way to his mother. When he got to her room, surprisingly, she was wearing a smile and her voice was calm and sweet. She stated that she had a surprise for him tonight, and told him to go get dressed in his church clothes. She had set him up on a date, and it couldn’t have been more perfect. The lady was the daughter of the bank manager, Mr. Taylor. A woman in her early thirties yet still very attractive and young looking. Her name was Alyssa, and he wondered if she had been paid or tricked into this whole thing. She certainly wasn’t the type to voluntarily go out with the likes of him. But, despite all of his apprehension, he followed mother's orders and quickly went to his room to prepare. Once there, he said aloud to his pet rat-" well, this should be a hell of a shitshow!! ”
Donald the rat just turned and ran the incline to his hammock. Never even looking back.
Jimmie and the chauffeur Jeffery headed out about forty minutes later to pick up Alyssa for their dinner reservations that were pre-arranged by Caroline. When they got to her house, Jeffery opened the limo door and Jimmie stepped out, as he walked toward the door, someone yelled“ four” and right then he felt the sting of a disk across his forehead. He fell down on the walkway and stayed down for a few seconds. Dizzy and stunned, he warily tried to regain his composer to stand up. As he stood upright, he had a flash of himself as someone completely different, someone confident and proud. He saw himself walking up the walkway with roses in his hand and he felt a little twinge of anxiety when he reached the door, all of a sudden the vision was gone, and it was just him standing here looking like a complete goofball. Embarrassed, he hurried toward the door, where Allyssa was waiting for him by the door. Holding out his arm, she shyly put her arm in his as they headed toward the limo, where Jeffery stood in his tux, holding open the door for them.
In a nearby town, Carter was having an episode, as Allie mockingly called it. She could tell when he wasn’t ‘home’, she said he had a certain look in his eyes. And she avoided him at all costs. He wasn’t gonna remember anyhow, she would say to only her closest friends.“ So I use that time to get online and play my game or shop on Amazon because I don’t get any time to myself when he is himself. He’s so damn clingy and need s to know everything I’m doing, so he can do the same thing. It’s beyond annoying. I feel so smothered. I’m almost glad when he has an episode, except that he wants e to recall all the details for him. Like I’m supposed to sit there and take notes or something. "
The arranged date went shockingly well. They made plans to meet again soon. Jimmie hadn’t felt much like himself that night, and in fact didn’t much feel like himself until the next morning, right before breakfast. So it wasn’t that bizarre when he forgot about the date that he and Alyssa had planned. He began to get a lightheaded feeling every time his mother started to call his name. Visions of a whole different life, only he was living in it. He pondered about if he should tell anyone, and ultimately decided against it, he just wanted to keep having the visions and if anyone knew they would probably try to fix them for him. The visions were the only time he felt real good. He felt confident and important. He longed for the visions more and more-they made him feel whole.
Carter knew his marriage was rocky and as much as he wanted to fix it, mostly he wanted to know what had happened during his episodes. He couldn’t take it anymore and had broken down and gone to see a therapist. Oblivious as to exactly how many lives would be affected, he relaxed as the therapist began counting down from twenty, ready for the hypnotist to give him the answers he longed for.“ 20, 19, 18, when I get to one you will be completely relaxed and in one of your episodes, but still able to talk to me 17, 16.."