Mark Gagnon lay in his bed for years.
Stricken with an unknown illness at 8 years of age, Mark knew little of the outside world. Most of what his knowledge was garnered from books and those who came to visit.
As he grew older, Mark became mentally restless, constantly seeking ways to be entertained or to enhance his knowledge.
By the age of 14, he spoke all of the Romance languages and several Slavic tongues as well.
By 18, his mother hired a Chinese woman, who in turn taught Mark both Mandarin and Cantonese.
In 1920, an uncle purchased a radio, and brought the world into Mark’s bedroom. Initially, Mark received some transmissions from Boston, but as the days and months progressed, he stated that he could hear other noises, other voices.
By 1921, Mark refused to remove his headphones. He listened constantly, often writing down what he heard.
Despite requests from his family, Mark never revealed what he wrote, telling his family that they were better off not knowing.
The few times his mother peered at the journals, she was utterly confused. Each entry was written in multiple foreign languages, often within the same sentence.
Only Mark knew what he wrote, and refused to share.
In January of 1922, Mark no longer slept, and he rarely ate. He grew haggard and thin as he lay in his bed, no longer writing. He refused all food and drink.
On January 30th, Dr. Ethan Dayes visited Mark in his room, behind closed doors, and when he emerged, his face bore a shocked and terrified expression. Behind him, Mark lay in the bed while his journals burned in the fireplace.
When Mark’s parents asked what they should do about their son, Dr. Dayes’ response was plain and direct.
“Let him die,” the man said hoarsely, “he has heard too much.”
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