Vision Care

Responding to Reena’s prompt # 147 ” a colorless world”. https://reinventionsreena.wordpress.com/2020/08/06/reenas-exploration-challenge-147/

Things generally happen in three’s, as Marty was soon to find out.

The first thing that happened was Marty lost his job. He didn’t necessarily care about the job but he did care about the loss of income. Employment Insurance barely covered his rent and he still had to eat, pay his telephone bill and finance all the mundane activities needed to survive in this currency driven world. As time went on, pounding the streets looking for work, he became increasingly depressed as life lost all meaning and color. Then the headaches started, his eyes hurt and his vision became increasingly unstable.

The second thing that happened was Marty’s visit to the optician. After careful examination, questioning and serious looks the optician broke the new that Marty had advanced glaucoma. There was severe pressure build up in the eye causing damage to the optic nerve. His eyes would continue to deteriorate, starting with color blindness and leading to complete blindness within a couple of years. Too much damage had been caused for any effective cure and he would have to learn to live with his failing eyesight. Marty’s depression deepened and the words of John Milton came unbidden to his mind ” Doth God exact day labor, light denied”. How am I ever going to find work and survive if I’m blind.

The third thing that happened was Marty discovering the ad in the Daily Chronicle. ” FalconVision Pharmaceutical. is looking for people with severe eye disease to assist them in a new experimental treatment. A fee of $1,000 will be paid for a one month trial”. Nothing ventured, nothing gained thought Marty as he ripped out the ad and stuffed it in his pocket. As he was leaving the apartment his phone rang. It was his sister reminding him not to forget her birthday party the following month. During their conversation he opened up about his eye troubles, but hoped that he would find a resolution with FalconVision Pharmaceutical. He added he would buy her an extra nice birthday present with his fee. She laughed, wished him luck, with an added reminder not to forget her birthday party.

Marty entered the lab of FalconVision Pharmaceutical, along with 30 candidates and waited patiently while the lab assistant poured colorless liquid drops into the eyes of the participants. When it was Marty’s turn the assistant failed to extract any liquid from the vial and turned enquiringly to Doctor Silver. The doctor smiled at Marty, ” we wouldn’t think of depriving you of the opportunity for a cure. I believe I have some eye drops in my office”. Dr. Silver proceeded to his office, located a small vial, hesitated and reached for another vial containing essential oils from the eye cones of a falcon. He combined both vials, strode back to the lab and administered the larger dose to Marty.

Marty exited the building into strong sun light and closed his eyes against the glare. A minute later, recovering, he opened his eyes to discover people walking naked along the sidewalk. He stared open mouthed at the passers by and they in turn gave him inquiring looks. He continued the forty minute walk to his apartment, starting to feel a little hysterical as he was now surrounded by skeletons. He shuddered, rushed into his apartment and threw himself on his bed.

He must have fallen asleep for he awoke to see the moon three foot from his face and reached out to touch it. His vision soon jumped beyond the moon and raced into space exploring the wonders of the galaxy. He left the Milky Way exploring distant stars, his mind trying to absorb the majesty and beauty of the multiverses. He was left in breathless wonder as he continued to explore the infinity of space, it just went on and on without end.

Marty’s sister rang the doorbell three times without answer, she reached for her key and entered the apartment, calling out, ” Marty I’ll never forgive you for missing my party or for the birthday present you promised”. She found him lifeless, his shrunken body lying on the bed, his eye sockets replaced by two empty black holes. The coroners verdict was death by starvation.

Three years later, Marty’s sister and her lawyers celebrated with an extravagant supper and champagne as they discussed the $150 million settlement with FalconVision Pharmaceutical. With a tear in her eye she raised a glass of champagne to Marty and thanked him for her belated birthday present.

Published by lensdailydiary

Born Stepney, London, England. Emigrated to Canada. Married, two children, six grandchildren. Retired. Conservative and cultural catholic. LOVE soccer. Tottenham Hotspur. Read historical and fantasy fiction..

26 thoughts on “Vision Care

    1. Thanks, Gary. But what a glorious death. Death has never frightened me, I am more interested in the manner of my death. I would count myself lucky if I could go out like Marty, wrapped in some glorious dream, and never waking.

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    1. Thanks, JadeLi. I was actually watching a YouTube video where people were inserting various gadgets into their body, It’s supposed to be trendy. One up and coming director of documentaries had lost his eye through an accident and had a go camera specially made to fit into his eye socket.

      Liked by 1 person

  1. It’s quite a steampunk illustration. But the bite of the story is more impressive. Marty has a better experience at the end than otherwise looked possible. And his sister benefited. It’s hard to gauge the cost of mortality against a cosmic experience, and yet I suppose this is what speculative fiction affords.

    An incisive story, Len! Happy to have read it.

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