And all diseases will be gone
I stopped. I stopped when have noticed a picture, totally breaking all conceivable and inconceivable laws of human logic. It wasn't simply strange… it was… somewhat ridiculous… amazing.
For a couple of years already I have been a regular visitor of this establishment, was there on a two-three month basis, I got used to beholding yellow walls with shelled and falling off the plaster, constantly sad faces of its people… used to see queues of older persons all with lowered heads and sad expressions on them, used to observe how some of them not without the help from other colleagues have been forced to wait in longest many-hours queues in order to receive a priceless ticket, granting one the right to learn one's fate – for even they, these people, tried to appear here as seldom as ever possible, tried not to be at all.
I had to come here time and again – my current condition didn't allow me to do anything different. I had to stand in queues among the same brothers-by-misfortune, to listen to silently-cold voices of doctors, ascertaining deterioration of your disease and constantly diligently drawing something on your out-patient card, without troubling themselves with any comments on that subject, though.
I got accustomed to this place, despite all its absurd. I could do no other. I cared no longer of what my doctors would tell me – my own sentence I have known for quite a while already and for a long time have reconciled to it. Different thoughts occupied my mind – I thirsted to know why these men so diligently avoided to look you in the face while reading your diagnosis, leaving you no options of survival – not in this life at least, not during ten incoming years. I was truly curious why they, snow-white like a funeral shroud in this house of grief, only multiplied this grief with their indifferent faces, cold voices…
Was a monthly ascertaining of the absence of any positive changes in my illness really desired by me? Whether I really needed those endless inspections, required by no one, even myself? No. Not for this, I thirsted. I thirsted for words – a kind word of participation and understanding. I desired to hear words of support from them – just to know that some other can share your pain… simply to be aware of that. I wanted to behold a shine of joy – a joy of life – even in someone's eyes, once in many months… But, obviously, I desired too much… too much in this life – and hopes of mine could never come true.
Probably for that particular reason now I have stopped, being amazed at what I have seen. I would, certainly, not able to say anything meaningful first tens of seconds, if some casual passer-by has suddenly decided to inquire why was I standing with my mouth widely opened, hardly incorporating cold winter air. There were no such ones – and that's probably for the better.
That house of grief which I got used to observing for those almost two years, which I knew practically thoroughly, – it was no more both inside and outside. A sad inscription, engraved by dark gray letters “City hospital № 17” was gone, as well as lattices on windows and always-rude security guard, wiggling from constant sleep debt. Instead of an inscription, there was a bright… a signboard of sorts… have no idea how to name it, where new words were imprinted: “Townhouse of healing. We are happy to wish you a good health!” Lattices on windows disappeared as well, and there was a shining light, coming from windows… and when I have habitually risen up by stairs, I was greeted by an elegantly-dressed young man, who said something like “Come in, please. May you be always in good health!” and magnanimously opened me a door.
Shortly after that, I had to come to my senses for at least ten minutes in an entrance hall. And this hall itself changed as well. No more there were decayed walls and tiny cloakroom with eternally snapping and rude woman of thirty-five years. There was a sort of large parquet hall instead – walls changed their color to grass-greenish, and instead of a cloakroom attendant Masha there was a smiling woman of thirty years, who, when I have approached her, also welcomed me, kindly helped to take off my coat, and, having given me a label, once more wished me good health.
To tell the truth, I didn't expect all that. I got so much accustomed to former “yellow house”, and to see it totally changed was truly surprising for me. Even more intriguing were new people – attentive and, I shall not be afraid of this word, really sympathizing.
When I have climbed a new beautiful twisted ladder on a second floor, my eyes surprised me one more time. Narrow, constantly badly lightened corridors and men, crowding in them, were gone, as well as sad-yellow walls and endlessly-long line of doors with diverse and hard-to-understand names of specializations of these doctors – instead there were wide, brightly lighted and spacious corridors with some sort of bluish-white (and, as it seemed to me, as if even a bit shining) shade walls, and there was practically no trace remained from a heap of doors with badly readable names of specialties of these “doctors”, eagerly not expecting you behind them.
Amazed, I was walking forward through this corridor, badly realizing where were my sick feet now dragging me along. I was wandering and overheard some surprisingly beautiful quite melody, being poured on a premise… for an instant it seemed as if I recognize it – it contained familiar tonality, however, I had to admit further that despite was tonality is familiar to me, its rhythm was totally new. Nevertheless, this music was surprisingly beautiful… so astonishing that I was compelled to shed a few tears myself, listening to it. But if only the music… Some unknown aroma penetrated this mystically transformed corridor – it was unusual, as well as the mysterious melody, and pleasant at the same time.
I was slowly moving through the corridor, looking around and never ceasing to be surprised. It seemed that this painfully familiar “City hospital № 17” ceased to be itself anymore and became a… museum of fine arts, at the very least. I say “museum” just because habitual to me former naked walls were now decorated with pictures – ones of our classics… images of love, joy and “simple human happiness”, which all of us have been searching for so desperately.
I… have no idea how to describe you all that, which words to use when talking to you, ones reading those lines of text right now, so that you can understand me… so that I can share with you all that oceanic variety of feelings, which have overflown me at that moment… I felt as if I have finally arrived not into some pitiful and painful hospital, but in the paradise instead… or at least into the expectation room on a threshold to it.
I was traveling down this mysterious corridor and saw no other fellow sufferers… no sign of eternally arguing patients, no smell of spirit filling a premise, there were no visible nurses and medical brothers, pushing their carts by this narrow corridor – there was nothing… normal… habitual, to say so.
When I, at last, have approached the first carved door in this corridor – almost during that very instant of time a doctor opened it and came to me. A doctor… to tell the truth, one could hardly name him a doctor for now. A one habitual to me, anyway. A man of approximately twenty-five years old, dressed in a dark blue dressing gown, smiled to me and said: “Don't hesitate to come in. We are truly glad to see you,” and, having that said, he welcomed me to his office, coming after. Obediently I entered the place.
And when I did that my eyesight has decided to deceive me once more.
There we no traces of walls, covered with advertising of all-brand-new “universal” medicines, neither cots nor couches, no signs of iron medical little tables, already so familiar to me. There were wide carved oak chairs instead, as well as some beautiful (but, unfortunately, unfamiliar to me) pictures, soft carpet floor, once again some pleasant smell (however, it differed from what I have encountered in the corridor), quiet music, flowing in the office's air… there were so much more to behold.
“Come in, sit down, please,” the man told and helped me to sit down on a convenient oak chair. “What troubles you today, sir?”
To be truthful, I was taken aback. Whether he really has no idea what has been bothering me all that time?
“I take it that you are surprised? There is nothing to worry about, it has been like that for quite a while,” he answered in the meantime.
“What exactly has been like that?”
“The house of healing, most certainly. It has been in such a state for a long time.”
“But I was in your hospital yesterday…” I tried to object.
“Yesterday? You did not visit us yesterday. You have not been here for several decades.”
I was astonished. Did… did he know me? And… several decades? I distinctly remembered that was here yesterday and my attending physician ordered me to come back tomorrow… thank God, my memory still served me well enough.
“Do you know who I am?”
“Yes, most certainly,” said the doctor and warmly smiled once more. “You entered this office and your biometric parameters have been analyzed. You were there ten years, two months and three days ago since your last visit.”
“But… that's impossible… I… I don't understand… yesterday… today… a new building… signboard… music… what… what happened?”
“You ask me so many really interesting questions – I see that you are an inquisitive and reasonable interlocutor,” that man told me. “But let's not get ahead of ourselves. So, how did you name it… a hospital? A house of pain, right? But… we have not been using these words for many years already… unless there should be a pain? Both health and cure – that's what should be, and no way for pain and suffering. We bring no suffering, we bring health.”
“And the music…”
“Music? Yes, that's our new melodic rhythm for the last year. World scientists have discovered, that exactly similar tonalities lead to a sincere and nervous relaxation and, as a natural consequence, to improving regenerative processes in the cells of live beings.”
“And a smell… what's a strange smell is that?”
“Nothing more than a recent invention of a new branch in the science which has been called as ‘smell-infology’, as far as I remember. This mix of aromas improves a brain activity and have a relaxing and calming influence on a human organism. Certainly, there are lots of other aromas, serving different purposes, but this particular one suits us best of all.”
“And the pictures on the walls?”
“Oh, mind you, we are not a bombproof shelter of the times of the Last War, right? Such an interface forms a positive spirit in our… in our potentially healthy people, and aids them a lot. After all, you must have certainly heard of the last researches of the United Alliance Of Medics, who have discovered, that our organism is capable to recover by itself from any known in the present moment (and, possibly, any future potential) illness by keeping an appropriate inner positive spirit? So, well, such an interior is used to promote its formation as well. It's that simple.”
“And how… I… I still haven't understood… please tell… tell at last who… are you?”
“You ask too many questions… forgive me, for I cannot answer them all. Our time… time is for an outcome… it's – the most valuable human resource…”
Something suddenly started hammering in my ears so I could hardly distinguish separate words, being spoken by the mysterious… doctor.
“Each one… can… must… himself… desire… be healthy… then everything becomes… possible. Remember that… well.”
“But… tell me… who are you?”
“We… yours… future…” last words finally reached me.
And just a moment later a knock at a door transferred me into the next world.
* * *
“So, woke up finally, Ivan Petrovich?”
“Pavel… Pavel Petrovich,” I whispered, still coming to my senses and silly beholding the decayed yellow walls which have surrounded me, and own iron bed on which I was laying.
“Yeah… sure… who the heck cares. Wonderfully, wonderfully. Just remarkably, you know.”
And having that said a man in a white dressing gown bent over me, looked in the eyes somehow semi-malevolently and smiled.
“Now we are gonna to put you a clyster, Ivan Petrovich, and all your diseases,” and he smiled once more, “they will be surely forever begone…”