“There was a candle that my grandmother would always light each night in October. It would be sitting on the top shelf above her empty fireplace. When I must have been, I think, four at the time, I remember reaching for that unlit candle one night. My grandmother would always read a thick, black leather-bound book before lighting that candle. I remember hearing her walking into the room with that black-leathered book, her thumb stuck between a couple pages to keep her place, muttering some words under her breath. She walked through the doorway to see me stretching my little grasping fingers toward the candle. I didn’t understand it then, but, when I heard the book drop from her hands and heard her horrified gasp, I stopped reaching for the candle. She sputtered something about the devil, and….”
“And what, Stevens?” Dr. Phillips urged in a placid tone as he scribbled down words onto his notepad. A large breath filled my lungs before slowly exhaling through my open mouth. The images of that night came back to me like a slow, cumbersome wave rolling its way toward the shore.
“...and...and she closes the book and grabs my thin wrist reaching for the candle. She…” I paused for a moment, closing my eyes. “...She hurriedly pulls me off the antiqued chair I used to help me reach the candle.” I stop and reopened my eyes to look at the nearly balding Dr. Phillips. His scribbling on the notepad ceased. The wrinkles around his grey eyes crinkled as he gave me a small twitch of a smile to urge me on. Another large breath sucked itself into my lungs and pushed its way out through my mouth. My eyelids fluttered as the words flow out. “As she dragged me off the chair away from the candle, she said ‘Macaria to be forgotten.’”
“Macaria to be forgotten?” Dr. Phillips inquired, crinkling his eyes. “Yes,” I nodded, focusing my attention on the twitch of a frown that barely registered on his aged face, “my grandmother said ‘Macaria to be forgotten.’” Dr. Phillips stood up from his red-cushioned, wooden stool, and placed his notepad and pen onto it. “Macaria, hmmm,” he mumbled, limping toward his desk piled with a chaos of papers pulled from different notepads, maps and books. I sat up from the beaten forest green couch. “Is something wrong, Dr. Phillips?” my voice finished, an octave higher than normal. My left knee drummed up and down.