Grants Pass, Oregon, United States
When you dream, you fly. You fly to places you can escape to, places out of reach in the human world. Reality becomes a blur as you unleash who you really are. The sensations you thought impossible burst through you like a balloon, ready, waiting to take you away, to pull you farther and farther into your desires with no hope of ever returning. With no hope of ever being subdued by selfish and relentless thoughts. You become the shadows of your dream. You become the trees, the mountains, rivers, plains. You become the hope you’ve always longed for. And for the first time in your life, you become whole.
And there she is, smiling at you, making your entire confused world light up in a matter of moments. And she walks towards you, taking your hand lightly in hers; and dreams have no limits, desire becomes an instinct. Your heart escapes into the rushing air, your soul turning to stone as you steal a kiss. Freedom licks at your lips, inviting you in to taste emotions you could never dream of. You think of love: the love in books, the love in fairy tales or the Internet, and you know, you just know, that it doesn’t even compare to this. Love isn’t known until it’s experienced. Like every other emotion, you think.
But then she moves away, and something terrible happens. Her eyes become dark slits, unrecognizable to the ones you fell in love with. Her hair becomes blacker as she raises her eyes to the sky. The wondrous moon that you barely paid attention to becomes blackened with clouds as she raises her hands to the sky. Terror fills your every bone as she looks at you and releases a laugh only demons are capable of making. And horror-struck as you are, you realize she has become the demon. She has become the demon of your nightmares. She has become you. And she smiles as she happily destroys you.
The candles around the bed burned intensely; more intense then they had been the last few years. The air around the room grew dark, shielding the posters of bands and actors as it rattled the books and the micilanous objects floating around the room. The windows jangled in their closed quarters as the bed shakes with the presence of a nightmare. The curtains act as a screen, hiding the room from the terror on the bed, but the fear never fades. It never dies, only increasing as the shaking bed increases. Groans can be heard, but no witnesses are around. Yells become distant as the air grows denser, blocking out anything that would give the torture away. No, no one will be able to hear him. No one will be able to witness this feat.
The flames in the candles increase in capacity as they tip over the edge, readying to set the entire room ablaze if the need should arise. No, the wind is prepared. Forming little tornadoes, it cushions any attempt to ruin the plan. No, he must learn. He has to learn.
She is urgent. She pushes the wind farther into the flames, threatening to blow them out, threatening but never succeeding. And all the while, he tosses and he turns as his dreams of beauty turn to Hellish nightmares only to remind him that he has a duty—a duty he cannot escape. And neither the Upper Power, nor the Lower Power will let him forget.
For that is why she is there. A messenger between both worlds, her duty is to secure him. Her duty is to rid him of the desire to destroy and show him the light, the light that will both save him and cure him.
But he is stubborn. He will not relent. He cannot repent. The Lower Power is winning and everyone knows it.
So, be it. This is War. And it has begun.
But the flames blow out suddenly. She has lost the power. She forgot to listen to the voice as she gazed at him, immediately taken by how perfect his features are. She freezes and stares. And he opens his eyes, locking her in a gaze that slows her heart and turns her soul into stone. No, she can’t harm him. She will not harm him.
She backs away fearfully, and he stares at her in confusion. This is a dream, she pleads to him as his eyes flicker around the room, taking everything in within half a second. Realization dawns on him; but by the time he looks back at her, she is gone, and he left confused; his candles blowing smoke in his face; the wind dormant for the time being; the posters and books unmoving upon his walls; the objects clattering still around his cluttered room.
But the voices still persist. The War has just begun, and all his dreams become a reality he wasn’t prepared for. For when you dream, you dream only of the good things, only the pleasant things that keep your heart going. But when they crash into reality, they become images of sinister quality. They become nightmares, dreams you never can be prepared for.
Because in this world only one thing is certain: when there is good, there has to be evil, and when the balance shifts and shatters, the world dies. And no one can save it.
A few seconds goes by, and he stays completely still, trying in vain to figure out what his befuddled brain took as a dream. But it was no dream, he thought, his heart sinking. What I envisioned was real. But try as he might, nothing could resurface the events. He could only sit there, sweat pouring down his face, in utter confusion forgetting every moment what he desperately tried to remember. Some things, he found himself thinking abstractly, you just aren’t meant to remember.
A shuffling outside of his door distracted his thoughts, and he was immediately up out of bed, taking a hold of his knife that he conveniently placed under his mattress every night, his eyes wide, alert; his heart racing, cold blood flooding through him. The shuffling grew louder in a matter of seconds, and for a brief moment, he thought it was all over. He thought his time had come when he had escaped it barely so many years ago. The shuffling stopped right outside of his door, and his breath decided to take a hiatus from his body, leaving him gasping for what was clearly not in his lungs. His heart had already gotten the message long ago, and was promptly stopping. His grip on the handle of the knife tightened as he prepared himself for the event he had been dreaming and hoping for twelve years. But even as he prepared himself, he knew he could never be ready. These kinds of things you can never be ready for. You can never be ready for death.
He felt the door opening before he heard it, and in that one brief moment of pure and utter fear, his mind stopping completely so the only thing he was conscious of was his hand on his knife, he saw what little life had presented him flashed before his eyes:
His mind lingered a little on that last word, and for a moment, his mind drifted back, back to the time when his fate was sealed, no matter what happened to him now.
The storm lasted for how long, I didn’t know. The only thing I was vaguely aware of were the straps cutting deeply into my body, refusing to let any breath out, refusing even to let my mind make sense of this. Laughter at my expense sounded around the perimeter, and I could tell from the way the wind soared around us that we were in some kind of open place. Where, I couldn’t even fathom. But I couldn’t worry about that; I knew one thing for certain: I had to get out. My unusually sharp instincts were telling me to run for my life, but what they didn’t get was that I couldn’t even move, let alone run. The laughter around me grew, and I began to get frustrated. Where the hell am I?! I finally screamed in my head. The laughter abruptly stopped, and for a minute, I thought it had all been a dream—a nightmare that I would wake up from, shaking and sweating, only to face the nightmare of the day. But then, just as I let my guard down for a fraction of a second, and hope began to filter through, a small whisper, almost a hiss, sounded through the chaos that was my brain and confirmed my worst fears: this was no dream, no nightmare.
“You have been chosen.” They spoke, and my entire body chilled. I gulped as I looked around in desperation, only to find that darkness protected my captors from my eyes.
I waited. The only thing I could really do.
“I sense fear and frustration in your soul, but I sense something else as well: I sense curiousity and longing. It is not us you fear, but the unknown. Your life has been full of predictions, and now you worry as you are tossed into a darker world, a real world.” The voice surprised me: it was not malice, but simple curiousity and wonder that laced it. Whoever, whatever, this thing was, the human capabilities fascinated it to such extremes as to be close to obsession. And that, despite everything, made me smile, if only a hint of one.
“Ah.” The voice began again, sounded slightly confused, causing my smile to deepen. “You smile. Why? Do you sense my curiosity? Like you, I am a very curious being. But you are right, I am not human. Far from it actually. But what I am is of no importance now. Humans are interesting creatures, but I will not bore you with those details either. I am here simply to present ot you a task. I hope you are up for it.”
I again waited, intrigued.
“You and a few others like you will partake in an experiment of mine. No need to describe how it’s done of course, but I will work with the laws of nature to give you certain—gifts—that separate you from the humans. Granted, you and the other chosens are already alienated, so this shouldn’t be much greater of a task.”
I found words. “What task, exactly?” To my surprise, my voice was level and even. Strangley, the fear that had consumed me was all but gone, filled with intrigue and marvel at this being’s fixation of human beings.
The voice laughed a cool, pleasant laugh. It had found a friend in me, someone it can trust. “The task I want to give you is to be apart of my team. This team, one day, will be called upon to join me in War. The Great War.”
Confusion settled over me, but I did not speak.
“This war will grant me a higher position in my society, I guess you can say. But I cannot do this alone. I will need you and the others’ help.”
I found my voice again. “What are we going to do.”
Another even, pleasant laugh. “You are going to destroy the world.”
And I was suddenly plunged into complete darkness, the voice’s laugh my only comfort as it cackled on my way down into the abyss.
The sound of the door opening brought me away from my thoughts, and I stood there, befuddled and frightened as two figures came cautiously into the room. Relief spread over me, but the uneasiness from the memory stayed, even as I stared at the boyish faces of my twelve-year old twin brothers. Shaking it off, I placed the knife on the nightstand and went to sit on the edge of my bed, head in my hands, trying to pull my mind back together.
“Hello?” The youngest, Jason, asked softly, no doubt worried that he had just given me a heart attack. I looked up, met his eyes, and smiled lightly, if only to convince him otherwise. It worked. He grinned as he turned to his brother, Tyler, who looked less than convinced.
“Wwhat’s wrong?” He asked bluntly, and I had to chuckle a little at that. Tyler, the blunt one in the family, taking over Damien. The thought stopped my heart for a second. Sadness washed over me as I stared at him, mesmorized by how much he looked like him. The words caught in my mouth. I wanted to reach up, to touch him, to somehow feel Damien in him; but I couldn’t, because somewhere deep down inside of me, I knew that Damien was gone forever. And nothing I could do would change that. My fingers twitched at my side as I bowed my head.
“Nothing.” I finally responded in a husky voice, trying to hide tears I knew would come if I let my mind linger any longer. I cleared my voice. “I just had a bad dream, that’s all. You know how I am with my dreams. It will take just a second.”
Jason flashed me one of his brilliant grins that would melt even a stone’s heart as he jumped up next to me. “Dad’s out again!” He declared brightly, and I grinned, realizing the reason for their visit. I looked at Tyler as he too flashed a grin, although his was less attractive.
“That means you are safe to go to school.” He said as he, too, went to sit next to me.
The word school had an odd ring to it, and I found myself wondering back to that night seven years ago. Right then, I didn’t realize the connection, but I knew somehow that I would very soon. I knew somehow that school then on would be very different.
But just how different and why I was not prepared for.
Interests: Writing, reading, anything that amuses me
Published writer: No