Thursday, October 04, 2012


Scene involves Alicia Stewart (later Alicia Lys) and Gil Stephens -- both working on news stories about a psychiatric center's downsizing -- and William "Bill" Barnes, head of the psych center board of visitors, a downsizing opponent.

They exited the elevator and walked down a hall, dimly lit, to a door labeled “9.” Barnes opened it, led them inside, and spoke with two male attendants who appeared to cast clinical looks at his two guests. They introduced themselves.
“This way, please,” the shorter attendant said. “We’re in art therapy right now. They do have visitors occasionally during this period, but I ask that you be reserved and polite. Respectful.”
 Inside a bright spacious room, Stewart and Stephens stood in the background as several men looked at them initially. Three began to chatter and walk slowly in different directions, others stood stationary, and another ambled over to Stewart and gestured to her to follow him to a large pastel that displayed a swirl of orange, yellow and red, with a black profiled figure in the center that glanced sidelong at the viewer. An attendant nodded it was okay.
“This is my mind and my emotions,” the man said, pointing to the swirl of colors. “And this in the center is the Devil. He wants to turn all these colors black. He wants to do that in all of us. Did you know that?”
“It’s a powerful drawing,” Stewart said.
“You’re evading the question,” the man said. He shook his head, looked at the taller attendant, and walked to a corner of the room, sat down and smiled.
“You know that it’s true,” he called to her. “He’s insidious and full of disguises. Look around. What disguise is he wearing now?”

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