He couldn't tell whether he was asleep or not: he could see something, but, as far as he knew, it could have easily been a dream. Mountains, sky. Epic landscape.
He waited until his limbs were completely numb, and then he tried to get up, rightly predicting that feeling of little metal bugs crawling on your body you get when the blood in your veins starts to circulate again.
Thomas ignored the dizziness as he arose from the bed, picked from the floor the fallen book that had once been on his eyes, and walked towards the kitchen.
His mother was there, sitting at the table, reading. Her position ( he could see her profile against the white of the kitchen's walls) reminded him of some 19th century British painting.
She didn't raise her head from her novel, so he walked to the fridge and took a bottle of water. He was pretty sure there were just his mum and him in the kitchen. And yet, he could suddenly hear other voices, many, loud voices that spoke at the same time, mixing up, not letting him hear what each of them was trying to say.
He could hear them as if they were coming from all around him ,and from inside him too. There were voices in his ears, in his stomach and in his eyes. They got louder and louder, like an angry crowd.
'What year are we in, boy?'
It was actually 2007. Thomas's eye-lids opened to reveal the face of a yellow dressed young man. He could also see the face of his mother in a somehow blurry background.
' What is your name?' the yellow man asked him
' Thomas' he answered. - What is this? Is this a joke or what? -
' What happened?' asked Thomas, confused.
' Nothing to worry about. You fainted and were unconscious for a few minutes. We'll now take you to the hospital to make sure everything is fine.'
- Jesus... - thought Thomas.
Another similar man emerged from nowhere. He, together with the other, grabbed the boy's body and positioned it on a stretcher.
Thomas observed the scene from somewhere outside, and slightly above, his body.
The journey on the ambulance was a long attempt not to throw up.
In the hospital, Thomas was asked by a middle-aged nurse to lie on a bed.
She, all smiles, measured his blood pressure and heart beat.
Touching his hip bones from over the jumper she shook her head slightly and said: ' Too thin'.
Thomas thought he felt fine, much better in fact.
They informed him he had had a mild epileptic attack, and asked him to describe what he had felt.
He remembered the voices very well, but was somehow unable to talk about them. He perhaps secretly thought there wasn't a scientific explanation for them. They could have been dead people's voices, or Satan or aliens or something like that.
He was pleased enough to realize that the doctors weren't quite sure how to explain what had happened to him. They were obviously attempting to give answers, but none of them seemed convincing, not even to them.
Thomas left the hospital feeling tired, but somehow extraordinarily relaxed. It was as if that episode had helped him to release an overload of tension.
And then, of course, he was excited at the idea of telling his friend the following day.
He thought it felt good to know he was a little bit mad.