Doctor Adamson was sitting in his office, reading the file of his next patient. Kirby Leigh, eighteen years of age, from Ohio. Sentenced for a year.
“Doctor Adamson, your next patient is ready for you now,” said his secretary through the loudspeaker.
He sighed. This one was so young. He wondered why he was sentenced. What crime would an 18 year old commit. He sat still for a moment, looking around his office. It was so cold, sterile. The complete opposite of what he wanted his office to be. A warm, friendly place. Filled with pictures of his family. But he didn’t have a family. It conflicted with his job. Well, everything conflicts with his job. He rose from his chair, grabbed the files, and made his way to the examination room.
The examination room. This was the room he hated the most, apart from his office. It was such a plain, ugly room. White walls, white floors. The only interesting thing in the room was the desk, covered in different buttons and knobs. No one but he knew what each one did. He was the only one in the country trained to do this. On the wall in front of him was a large, bulletproof window. Through the window, was another room, just as ugly as the one he was in. However, this new room was different. All it had was a table, and on the table, was Kirby Leigh.
Kirby was fastened down on the table, with a heart rate monitor connected to his finger, something else was stuck to his chest, and a few wires poking into his legs. He also had dozens of tiny pins stuck in his skin, pins that were all connected to a strange machine next to him, a machine that was flashing and beeping and whirring, but Kirby didn’t know what it was. And frankly, he didn’t care. All he knew, and cared about, was the fact that his sentence was finally up, and that after this, he was going home.
Doctor Adamson sat down at the desk, and pulled the microphone up to his mouth.
“So… Kirby, is it?” Doctor Adamson asked as he started up the machines.
“Yes, sir. Kirby Leigh, sir,” Kirby replied.
“Age eighteen? From Ohio?” Dr. Adamson asked.
“Yes, sir,” Kirby responded, moving awkwardly under the straps holding him down.
“Alright Kirby, my name is Doctor Adamson. Do you know why you’re here?” Dr. Adamson inquired, pushing a button that lit up the machinery.
“Uh, yes Doc, I’m here to take the Exit Exam,” Kirby replied.
“Right. Do you know what the Exit Exam is?” Dr. Adamson asked.
“Uhhmm, no,” Kirby replied, a quizzical look in his eyes.
“Well, I have hooked you up to a lie detector, and I will ask you questions about your life, and your behaviour in gaol. If you answer honestly, you may go home,” Dr. Adamson said, flicking a switch that caused a small electrical current to run through Kirby’s body.
“Alright. Why are there pins sticking in me?” Kirby asked nervously.
“Oh, those are just to help monitor your heart rate, nothing to worry about,’ Dr. Adamson said, reassuringly. ‘So, Kirby, tell my why you’re here.”
“Well, a year ago I robbed a gas station,” Kirby said, looking ashamed.
“Why did you do that?”
“Well, I was going through Uni, and I was a bit short on money, and I was planning to propose to my girlfriend, Layla, so I stole the money to buy her an engagement ring,” Kirby explained, a gloomy look in his eyes.
So, thought Doctor Adamson, he wasn’t another trigger-happy teenager running around. This one had a heart.
“And you know that, no matter your motivation, you should never commit a crime?” Dr. Adamson said firmly.
“Yes, sir, I do now. I was just so ashamed at not being able to afford a ring, and I didn’t want anyone else to find out,” Kirby said, looking a bit embarrassed.
“Alright, so what are you studying?” Dr. Adamson asked inquisitively.
“Well, I’m actually studying to become a doctor, like you,” Kirby said, a gleam in his eyes.
“Good luck with that,” Dr. Adamson said sincerely.
“Thank you, Doc.”
“So, when is your sentence up?” Dr. Adamson asked, looking around the table for another button. He found it, and pressed it confidently.
“Tomorrow, Doc,” Kirby replied, moving painfully due to the zap the button, whatever it was, caused.
Oh, if only you knew, thought Doctor Adamson.
“And what are your plans, once you leave?”
“Well, I am going to get straight back into my studies, and get the money I need, the legal way, so I can finally marry Layla,” Kirby replied, a loving look in his eyes.
Kirby Leigh was the youngest boy to take the exit exam with Dr. Adamson. He also had the kindest, purest heart he had ever seen. His eyes started to sting when he said these next words.
“Alright, so now I’m going to fire up the detector, and it will send me the results. This may sting a bit,” Dr. Adamson said sorrowfully.
“That’s okay, as long as I can get out of here,” said Kirby, visibly excited.
A silent tear rolled down Doctor Adamson’s cheek. He lowered his finger, closed his eyes, and hit the button. There was a bright flash of light, then… nothing. He slowly opened his eyes, and looked into the room. Kirby Leigh lay still on the table, his heart no longer beating.
“So, why are we gathered here today?”
“Your honor, we have a new witness in the Kirby Leigh case.”
“Bring him to the stand. What evidence do you bring?”
“Well, your honor, Kirby Leigh didn’t just rob my petrol station. He also murdered my son.”
“Send him to the Exit Exam”