The Last _______ on Earth (Part 2)
“Now that the world has ended, how does that make you feel?”
The Last Therapist on Earth sat in a plush armchair, waited for his patient on the couch to respond.
Lonely, I guess, the patient said.
The Therapist jotted a quick note, then consulted his chart for the session. “Now let’s try a bit of free association. Please say the first response that comes into your mind. Don’t censor yourself. Ready?”
“All right: Home.”
No leg to stand on.
“Okay, I see where this is going.” The Last Therapist on Earth jotted a few more notes on his legal pad. “Let’s try another approach. I’m going to show you some inkblot pictures, and I want you to say what the image reminds you of. Again, tell me first thing that comes into your head.”
He passed the first card to the patient on the couch. This was the image that patients usually described as a butterfly.
It’s a mushroom cloud.
“All right. Hand that one back. Here’s another.” This was the one that people usually described as an animal hide.
A human face. Then, getting more specific: A face that’s been peeled off a person’s head.
The Last Therapist on Earth next passed the image that once supposedly helped determine if a patient was homosexual.
It looks like a skull.
The fourth card was an inkblot that patients usually interpreted as a depiction of intimacy.
Oh, God, take this one away! They’re killing each other!
“Try a few deep breaths,” the Therapist said, stopping the activity. “Unfortunately, we’re at the end of the hour.”
The Last Therapist on Earth collected his inkblots, made some final notes on his legal pad. “We haven’t made much progress,” he said to the empty couch, “but I’m hopeful we’ll have a breakthrough at our next session.”