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  • Writer's pictureNicole Jorge

The Third Eye

The girl's parents met him at the door, wringing their hands nervously. Matilde's eyes were swollen and red as though she'd been weeping. Jose stepped forward to greet the priest at once.

"Thank you, Father, for coming so quickly – she's right this way."

"Has anyone else seen her?"

"No, father, not a soul – besides her aunt that is. She was here when it happened."

The house was dark and quiet within. Father Eusebio could hear the aunt in the kitchen with the little ones, keeping them entertained. Matilde and Jose escorted him to the girl's room near the back of the house. The door was painted pink, a sign outside proclaiming it "Elena's Room." Matilde opened it without knocking.

"Elena, m'ija? You have a visitor! Father Eusebio is here to see you."

The girl was sitting on her bed in her pajamas, legs crossed. A book rested on her knees. She had been reading from it when Matilde called out to her and she looked up as Father Eusebio stepped into the room. He inhaled sharply at once.

"We've never seen anything like it – we've heard stories, of course, but we didn't – is there anything you can do, father?" Matilde asked, desperately. On the bed, Elena blinked. The third eye in the middle of her forehead responded a bit slower than the others. Father Eusebio approached the bed. Elena looked up at him somberly – she couldn't have been more than eight years old, but she appeared entirely undisturbed by the unusual circumstances.

"Hello, Elena. I am Father Eusebio. How are you today?"

"I know."

"Excuse me?"

"You're Father Rogelio Eusebio. I know. I saw.”

Elena pointed to the third eye. Matilde made a sound as though she might faint, and Elena sighed in answer.

Father Eusebio grabbed a small white chair from beside the tea table and sat down in it. "The eye told you that, Elena? My name? And what else does it tell you?"

"That you're from la Iglesia Santa Rosa. That my parents called you. Aaaaand…you were born in the Dominican Republic?"

Father Eusebio chuckled. "Yes, I am," he confirmed. He lifted his black leather bag. "Your parents are worried about you, Elena. May I have a look at your eye? It will be quick, I promise. It won't hurt. If you're worried - "

Elena rolled her eyes. This time the one in the middle moved with the other two in a single fluid motion. "I'm not. Go ahead," she said, shrugging and setting her book aside. Father Eusebio moved his chair closer to the bed now and opened his bag. Matilde and Jose hovered near the doorway as he drew out his implements: ruler, pen flashlight, magnifying glass, etc. and arranged them on the nightstand. Elena sat quietly through all of it while any other child her age might be squirming.

Of course, she was no longer "any other child her age." Father Eusebio knew this even before he began his examination. But he dutifully performed his duties, writing out his findings on the forms the Investigatorial Department provided for such circumstances. He was sealing his findings when Jose drew nearer.

"Father? Our daughter – isn't there anything you can do? She isn't herself anymore. If anyone were to see her like this….”

Father Eusebio sighed. This was the part of his job he hated the most. He suspected Elena knew as much from the way she hid her smile. The priest rose from his seat and turned to the trembling parents. "Now, listen," he explained, slowly, carefully. "I realize this is a hard time for you. Your daughter has undergone a great change. It isn't unheard of, though it certainly isn't common. But I must tell you…this change she has gone through is irreversible."

Matilde whimpered and went ashen. Jose's jaw trembled. "You are – certain? But our daughter – our Elena – this isn't our daughter!"

Elena picked up her book again, unperturbed. Why should she be? She was above the concerns of ordinary beings now. Father Eusebio packed away his tools.

"Oh, she's your Elena all right. Just…different. It's a true Third Eye, not a parasitic growth as I'd feared. It doesn't hurt to be certain of these things. Don't worry – you'll get used to the change. As for school and such, she has no need for it anymore. The Third Eye will acquire any knowledge she may need for her. You're better off finding her somewhere to put her gift to use now. Television perhaps…Third Eyes are quite popular on the talk show circuit. Or if you don't want her so far from home, perhaps the local Psychic Hotline?"

"But this – this eye! It won't go away? What can she see with it? What should we do?" Matilde stammered.

Father Eusebio repressed the urge to groan as he walked past the astonished couple in the doorway. "She can see what her other eyes can see, and then some. You'll have to take some care with it while it's in its early stages. She should be careful not to get any soap or shampoo into it while she bathes. Keep it clean and free of infection. I'll come by again next week to check on its progress. Matilde, Jose, don't worry about it. I'll look up any other Third Eye families in the area – it might do you some good to speak to others who have been in the same situation."

"Others?" Jose asked, feebly.

Father Eusebio paused to nod at the aunt peering out of the kitchen. "Yes, others. I must go now…I need to file this paper work as soon as possible. You'll be hearing from me soon. Have a good day,"

Matilde and Jose were still looking panicked as Father Eusebio stepped out into the morning sunlight and down the drive. He would have liked to stay and explain things better to them but…well, it wasn't as though Elena couldn't do so herself. Father Eusebio climbed into his car and shut the door behind him. He drew his pocket notebook out of his dark slacks and flipped open to today's date. What was next? Ah, a Third Ear in San Diego. Third Ear? Now, that was unusual….

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