"Hello, Ethan. It's good to see you awake. How are you feeling?" Ethan simply shrugged. "Do you feel up to talking about what happened?" Unable to look the shrink, or anyone for that matter, in the eyes he turned his head away from the shrink.
"You may not want to talk about it now, but you're going to have to talk about it sooner or later, preferably sooner."
"Why?" He whispered.
"It's eating you up inside.Your family is worried about you. They want their brother back. The brother you used to be."
"Why not, Ethan?"
There was no response so the shrink decided to rely on his training and keen observational skills. "Ethan," he said gently. "Let go of your shame and guilt. You don't need to own that. What happened to you was not your fault."
"Yeah it was."
Laying a compassionate hand on Ethan's shoulder the shrink said, "Did you ask them to have sex with you?" When Ethan shook his head he pressed on. "Did you ask them to drug you?" Again, Ethan shook his head. "So how is any of what happened to you your fault?"
"I didn't have to drink the drink. Actually, I didn't need to go there at all."
"Why did you?"
"It was Patrick's and my second anniversary."
"So you decided to offer yourself to him and his friends so they could gang-rape you?"
Ethan shot him and inscrutable look. "No. That's something I would never do. I couldn't. I'm a monogamous person."
"So then why did you? Why didn't you say no?"
Caught off guard by the question, Ethan could only stare at the shrink for a few minutes. "I-I-I couldn't. I was drugged."
“Exactly. You went to your boyfriend's apartment to help celebrate the anniversary of your relationship. You had no idea what he had planned. HE decided to drug you with rohypnol. HE decided to allow his friends to rape you. Let me ask you this. If you had known what Patrick had planned for you, would you have gone to his apartment?"
"He was very adamant that we celebrate our anniversary at his apartment. If I had known what he planned, there’s no way in hell I would have gone. I didn’t think anything of it. When he made up his mind about something, there’s no way to get him to change it."
"So how can any of this be your fault?"
“I don’t know. I feel like it is.”
“Why do you think that is?” Ethan shrugged. “Could it be that you loved and trusted Patrick?”
“And maybe you feel like you gave him some kind of signal that you would go along with whatever he planned, especially since it was his anniversary?”
“I must have. Why else would he have done what he did?”
“I’ve read your file and I’ve talked with your family. And yes, I’ve seen the video.” Ethan flinched at this. “If it hadn’t been absolutely necessary, I wouldn’t have.” It may surprise you to know that none of your family liked Patrick. They didn’t trust him, and rightfully so. Let me ask you this, did he ever abuse you in any way, physically, mentally or emotionally, besides what happened at the anniversary party?”
Ethan mulled this over for a few minutes. With a surprised look on his face he said, “He always used to make fun of me because of my job. One time he snuck up on me, pushed me down on the bed, handcuffed my arms and legs to the bed posts and fucked me hard. I was scared and it hurt like hell. I hated every minute of it. When he finished and freed me I told him to never do that again.
“He told me that he loved every minute of it and couldn’t wait to do it again. This was after the anniversary party, which I honestly couldn’t remember.”
“Did you do or say anything that would lead him to believe you wanted to be treated that way?”
“No. From the very beginning I told him no bondage or rough stuff. To me, that’s not making love. That’s using someone to get their rocks off.”
“Rocks off?” the psychologist asked, raising his eyebrows.
“Sorry. I’m always being told to lay off the archaic sayings ‘cause nobody understands them. Getting your rocks off means to have an orgasm.”
“I see. Interesting expression. Well, I think that will be all for today. I’ll give you some time to think things over, and I’ll be back to see you in a couple of days.”
Alicia, Troy, Chris and Jordan swooped into Ethan’s room bearing food and drink. “I wondered why I didn’t get a food tray. I asked the nurse and she said she’d look into it.”
With a shit-eating grin on her face, Alicia told him that they asked the nurse to cancel his dinner tray. “We wanted to eat dinner with you, and we didn’t want you to have to eat horrible hospital food. We brought a bunch of your favorite dishes. Let’s dig in.” A couple of the patient care technicians brought in a couple extra bedside tables and chairs on the condition that they got to sample one of the deserts.
With a surprised expression on his face, Ethan took in the veritable smorgasbord of food. “I can’t believe y’all did this. If I eat all this stuff I’ll leave here weighing five-hundred pounds.”
Jordan snorted. “Not very likely. If I know you, as soon as you’re out of here you’ll hit the pool at the fitness center.”
Ethan smiled at this, the first genuine one they’d seen since being admitted to the hospital. “I had a dream last night.”
Troy interrupted, “It’s good to have dreams.”
“Well this was a good one. I dreamed Patrick and friends were all sent to prison, where there was about fifty huge inmates all stroking their dicks waiting for them. They were all gang-raped.”
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