Prompt Day #62: Some theories of the psychic “third eye” (or “mind’s eye”) suggest that humans once had a third eye in the center of their foreheads, which, over thousands of evolutionary years, has been absorbed by the brain from disuse, but still remains somehow present and active in our minds. What could retrigger the third eye in contemporary times? Describe the return of the third eye. Or the man who thinks he has to stop them from returning.
I had fun with this one. I liked the idea of the third eye re-evolving based on a popular de-evolving diet. It was a fun idea for me. I hope you like it. Also, I wanted to give a shout out to Mr. Edgar Allan Poe, I ended the story with one of his commonly used phrases (which evolved over time as well.)
Eye See You
“Julie, can you come here a sec” Dr. Manor called out over the intercom. Perusing his schedule, he thought they receptionist might be playing a joke on him
“Yes, Doctor?” She said, knocking lightly on the door as she answered.
“What is this on my schedule? Six patients with forehead tumors? Two yesterday and six today, really?” He questioned.
“I know, it’s crazy but that seems to be the only thing anyone is calling about lately, do you think it’s some weird virus or,” she lowered her voice “bioterrorism?”
“I don’t know, I thought you were joking around with me but if not, it is unusual” He said. His hand found the frenulum on his upper lip and he squeezed until it folded in on itself. Julie knew this tic well. He was perplexed, and that was not a common thing for Dr. Manor. He was a neurosurgeon, a brain surgeon, and he was brilliant. The fact that he’d never seen anything like this was unsettling. Finally, he looked back up at her and continued; “There must be connection, we just have to find it. Plus, once we have pathology results that should help.”
By the end of the day, he’d made a list of all the things the patients had in common, which didn’t amount to much; different sexes, ages, and weights. Some were smokers, some were not. Some were very healthy and some had recent heart attacks, strokes or autoimmune disorders. The only thing he’d found was they all had recently changed their diets. Every one of them was eating the paleo diet. They proudly explained how they no longer purchased anything that wasn’t organic. They were all eating pesticide-free, hormone-free, and unprocessed foods. How would that cause a tumor? He didn’t know. There had to be something else, he was missing something.
He pulled up the CT images on his computer. The tumor had eaten through the frontal bone, it appeared complex, meaning there were various tissues making up the tumor. There were fluid-filled compartments, more solid components and there appeared to be an extension of the tumor invading deep into the brain. He wasn’t sure how he would remove it, and he couldn’t promise the patient that they would come out of surgery the same person who went in. Yet, they all wanted surgery. Tomorrow morning, he had three scheduled.
“Knife” Dr. Manor held out his hand. The surgical tech handed it to him and he made the initial cut. Dissecting the skin back off the mass, he gasped. The tech jumped and dropped the suction. Peeling back the skin off what he’d thought would be a cancerous mass; he found an eye staring back at him. It rolled around, taking in the operating suite. The pupil dilated and constricted as it focused. It turned back towards the doctor and stared at him for a long time. It appeared to be functioning properly. The Anesthesiologist, who had been testing the patient’s level of consciousness, assured the room the patient was deep under anesthesia. Yet, there was the eye, staring out, looking deep into the souls of everyone in the room. Dr. Manor decided it best to stop the procedure so that more testing could be done with the patient awake.
The two remaining patients were given the option of waiting until further tests could be done or proceeding to see if they too were actually harboring a third eye beneath their skin. Dr. Manor made it clear that he would not proceed any further should their tumors prove to be just that. They both fearfully begged to proceed and the good doctor obliged, only to discover the exact same thing. All three eyes had silver-blue irises. All three rolled around their sockets, pupils accommodating. Each patient was sent to recovery with a surgical patch over their new optical accessory.
The following morning, Dr. Manor began his rounds with his first surgical patient from the day before. Ms. Porter was a 34 year old obese woman with a medical history of type II diabetes. She’d begun the paleo diet three months before she noticed the lump gradually protruding more and more from her forehead.
“Hello, Ms. Porter, how are we feeling today?” Dr. Manor asked with a chipperness he certainly did not feel. She looked up at him with her two hazel eyes and squinted.
“Dr. Manor? Is that you? I’m feeling fine, it’s just my vision seems a little blurry today. I can’t seem to focus. Yesterday, the nurse said it was the anesthesia and that it would be better today, but it isn’t any different.” She said.
“Hmm.” Dr. Manor replied. He reached out and lifted the patch off her eye. “How’s that? Does that help at all?” He asked her watching the ice blue eye take in its surroundings.
“In fact, it does.” She answered in a clear, monotonous voice that was nothing like her usual nasally drawl. “I can clearly see that you did not sleep well last night. You don’t like not knowing the answer, do you, Dr. Manor? You also don’t like to follow conventional rules, like marital fidelity. You like to fuck who you want whenever you want, don’t you Edward? And you know why women fuck you? It’s not for your looks, is it? I think you know that, don’t you? They do it for the opportunity to get knocked up by your very wealthy sperm. But why does your wife put up with it? Do you ever wonder? You’re not that stupid, are you, Dr. Manor, to believe she doesn’t know? She could divorce you for it and live happily on the alimony for the rest of her life.”
“That’s enough” Dr. Manor cut her off. “You are clearly still affected by the anesthesia, I’ll see you again tomorrow when you are feeling better.”
“I’ll be waiting for you, Edward.” She said.
He stepped out of the room, taking a moment to compose himself before heading to the next room. Everything she’d said was true. How she knew it was the question. Had his wife put her up to it? One of the nurses he’d spurned over the years, there were many after all. He shook it off and walked into the next room. Mr. Jeffrey Janson, 13 years old, healthy as a horse who started with terrible frontal migraines last year, and then just about a month ago noticed a lump appearing in the center of his forehead. He’d been on the paleo diet for a year. His mother had read several articles on the effects of preservatives and pesticides on headaches and put the whole family on it.
“Hey there, Champ! How are we feeling today?” He put his hand on Jeffrey’s mother’s shoulder and squeezed. He’d been putting the moves on her since they’d met in his office. Already, he’d put what Ms. Porter had said out of his mind. Jeffrey looked up at him with sleepy eyes.
“Ok, I guess. I have a lot of pressure feeling in my head, under the bandage. Can we take it off?” He asked.
“Yep, I’d like to have a look, so let’s see what we got here.” Dr. Manor said. He lifted the bandage off the third eye. It immediately turned up to him and stared. It’s pupil constricting, filling the void with its silver-colored iris.
“Do not touch my mother again, you lascivious fool. You are so obsessed with getting your cock sucked that you can’t even see that your little wifey is plotting to have you killed. You are worth far more to her dead than alive. Did you know that, Eddie?” Jeffrey asked sounding as if he had completed puberty in the last thirty seconds.
“Jeff!” His mother cried. “Apologize to the doctor. You did not mean that.” She looked at Dr. Manor “I’m so sorry, he doesn’t know what he’s saying.”
“Oh, it’s fine. Anesthesia does funny things to people.” The doctor said, shaken but trying to keep his control. How did they all know these things?
“Mother, please. You want me to be nice to him because he is the only man in the last ten years to show you any attention. Dad is too busy gambling away my college fund and telling you he’s working late to notice your hair color or spray tan.” Jeffrey said to his mother who had started tearing up before he’d finished.
“Jeff, I think we need to put this patch back for another day or so.” Dr. Manor put the patch back up over the boy’s eye. He motioned to Jeff’s mother to step out into the hall with him. She nodded, wiping the tears from her eyes. “Jeffrey is the second patient I’ve examined of the three surgeries from yesterday. Both he and my first patient seem to be having the same reaction. Both’s personalities seem to be affected by this. I can’t determine if the eye is even functioning normally because they are so verbally abusive. I’m concerned that allowing it to remain intact may cause lasting adverse effects on his personality. While I can’t promise what would happen to him if we attempt removal…”
“Just do it. He can’t be this way. That’s not my little boy talking.” His mother interrupted. Dr. Manor nodded.
“Ok, I’ll meet with my team today and we’ll get the surgery scheduled.” He patted her hand and turned to walk away.
“Doctor?” She called out. He stopped. “What if I told you that everything he said about his father and I was true? But there is no way he could have known that. Could that be because of…that extra eye?” She asked.
“Does it make a difference? Would you change your mind about having it removed if it was?” He asked her. She stared at him for a moment and then shook her head.
“No. I want that thing out of his head” She said resolutely and turned back to her son’s room.
He found the same situation in Mr. Novalinski’s room. The man told him that Manor’s wife had hired a hit man to make his death look like an accident. That it would happen soon. That Manor’s days of philandering were numbered. Manor walked out of the room without even responding to the man’s comments.
He canceled his morning clinic and called family meetings for his three patients. They all agreed that their loved ones could not go on (telling all their secrets) like this and no matter what the risk; the evil eye tumors had to be removed. After lunch with Julie, his full time receptionist with part time benefits, he spent the afternoon meeting with the five remaining tumor patients to discuss his recent findings and new recommendations for surgery. He also saw three more forehead masses referred from their primary care doctors. So far all patients had the new paleo diet in common. Julie had a theory that since the paleo diet was a regression back to our very early days, the tumor was just a regression back to the time we had a third eye. That was when he’d gotten up off the futon in his office and got dressed. He told her they were finished and asked her to leave. He did not have time for her new age nonsense. Besides, she was getting old and her tits were getting saggy. He’d have to hire a new receptionist soon.
Ed Manor called his wife at home before he left for the day, told her to chill some wine. Then, thinking of the things he’d been told earlier that day, he told her he loved her, that he’d like to plan a weekend away with her soon and asked her to think about where she’d like to go.
“Oh, good. I’ve been thinking about getting away too. I have some ideas.” She said and then “Drive safe.” He hung up without saying another word. He had no real feelings left for her, but if what Jeffrey and the Porter woman had said was true, he needed to do some pretending for a while, at least until the private investigator he’d hired this afternoon had enough information to get rid of her for good and for much cheaper than he’d ever expected. By the time he got to the car, he was feeling so much better about everything. He had a plan. The eyes were coming out on Friday, and his private eye would be taking their place.
There would only be a few more days like this so he put the top down on the car before pulled out of the hospital lot and cranked up the radio. He let the wind blow his worries away. Flooring the accelerator pedal, he watched the speedometer climb. One arm hung on the door and the other off the wheel. He leaned back and belted out some CCR. He almost didn’t see the damn eighteen wheeler pull out in front of him. He slammed on the brakes and sat up straighter, but nothing happened. He hit the brakes again and again but the car continued on at well over 80 mph. He had time for one last thought before hitting the truck broadside: She had them cut the brakes. He didn’t need a third eye to know that. The car imploded on contact and the Great, Philandering Dr. Edward Manor, brain surgeon of the highly evolved was no more.