Everything was wrong. I didn't want to be Thomas Tinsley. He looked like a dope. It took effort not to snatch the driver's license back and toss the whole wallet into the woods.
Into the woods.
That thought brought images, feelings, and sounds. Leaves, no not leaves, the space in between the leaves. Long shadows falling toward me. Embracing me with coldness. The sensation of being dragged. All the while a croaking hum took the place of all other sounds.
A shudder ripped through me.
“No, no, no.” I said, not knowing why.
“Thom?” Veronica asked. She repeated it more firmly, this time not as a question, naming me. “Thom. It's okay.”
That name from her lips reminded me that I was angry at the thought that I was the ugly guy in the picture. The anger was still there living outside the rush of memory fragments. It pulsated red against the black.
“I don't deserve this.” I said.
"I think you need help. More help than I can give. I should get you to a hospital or fifty-one fifty you. Something's really wrong."
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I reread the unfamiliar name slowly. “Thomas Tinsley.” Repeating it three more times, accenting it d…Strangers
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