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“The walls are closing in on me,” I screamed out loud.

“No, they are not,” he calmed me down.

The terror didn’t obviously leave my eyes. I couldn’t be sure if he was lying or telling me the truth. I grabbed his navy shirt and held on. He pacified me. I loved looking into his eyes. His presence was comforting. I felt a spark of hope when he lied to me, like when he told me the walls weren’t drawing near.

I woke up every night wrecked with nightmares of my impending death between the walls. Once I even dreamt that the walls closed in and I suffocated to death. He promised me that wouldn’t happen. But that never made the dreams stop. Fortunately, he stayed by my side. Unfortunately, he slept badly every night I did.

As I shut my eyes, his grip on my hand loosened. He went to call the doctor. He thought I didn’t hear him but I heard his worried voice in the distance. Shortly after, the doctor came to drug my paranoia away. He sat by my head and held my hand. He hummed a tune as I fell asleep. This was our destructive pattern. I lost control over my mind; he brought me stability. I wondered what was in it for him.

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