A Musical Revenge.
The following curious case was related to me by an alcoholic who had at that moment just decided to give up drinking.
"I was staying in my country house, where I escaped from my wife's scolding. I felt dreadfully after having been drinking hard for a week and resolved to stop. I could not go on like that. The family was wrecked, the job lost, he heart was beginning to fail. I looked at myself in the mirror and felt utterly wretched. It should be stopped.
That morning I felt giddy. The hands trembled, yet the head was clear. 'I won't submit to drinking, I'll stand it!' - told I to myself and remembered a neighbour of mine, a church-goer, who once advised me: when in low spirits, keep repeating short prayers like 'Lord, have mercy', or 'Lord, save me', and so on. Though I had never been to church, I had never denied God either.
I began to pray. In five or ten minutes I felt so much better that I could take a spade and clear the porch of snow. On coming back into the house I was stunned to see a terrible scene. On the table, just under the picture of my late parents, there was a nasty shaggy thing sitting, taller than an ordinary man and covered with brown fur all over. The legs ended in hoofs and the long tail was hanging from one side of the table. I rubbed my eyes and pinched myself. The loathsome creature stayed. It was sitting on my table and staring at me cheeky and smirk. For fear I clean forgot about prayer.
- Wow! are you sure you drink no more? - he began without opening his mouth (his voice was heard somewhere inside by head).
I could just listen and tremble with fear.
- Well, pack it in! Take a small one, it'll do you good! You'll feel your feet.
- Not for the world. That's all, - answered I.
A sudden pain seized my head. I had never suffered anything like that before.
- Does it hurt? Take a small one and it'll be over.
I shook my head.
- Don't be a fool. I'll show you!
I felt as if my head was being seized by a red-hot hoop. I heavily sank on a chair and groaned.
- I'm not asking too much. Just a small one, and you are free. Or...
I nearly soared up from another fit of terrible pain. I shut my eyes and put my head into my hands. It was really unbearable. It seemed that my skull was going to split. Then, all of a sudden, a salutary thought flashed with a perfect distinction in my Next page-to-switched-off mind and I cried out collecting my withering strength: 'My Lord, Jesus Christ, help me!'
My eyes are shut, but I feel that something is on in the room. The pain lingers away. I venture to open my eyes: the table is free. My torturer has gone...
Yet it was not all for that day. As soon as my head touched the pillow there started an inconceivable music. What a music! It's indescribable! I reckon Beethoven would have envied. If I only knew the notation and put all this on paper, I could have become a world-famous composer. Yet I'm not sure I would. Somehow it was only too clear who was playing all that music in my poor head. And I wouldn't have anything in common with that shaggy blackguard. No, I wouldn't have made a composer".
There is no denying all this may be easily called an "abstinent syndrome" but to diagnose is not to explain.