Waking

She hovered between sleep and waking for a few moments, her mind still dancing with colours and bizarre images between her slow blinks. They dissipate, though, when her eyes finally open fully. And even if she tried, she could not remember what they were. Only shivers and an odd feeling of displacement testified to their strangeness.

Now her eyes were half lidded, taking in the edge of her pillow and the wall. The sun was trying valiantly to illuminate her room, but the blinds guarded the darkness firmly, allowing only the odd line to creep through their shields.

She curled tighter, adjusting the blanket around her shoulders. The air dusted like snowflakes across her cheeks and she sighed, blinking languidly again.

There seemed to be no way to leave the blanket’s warm embrace for the morning’s crisp bite. No, she reached out to press her alarm. Her skin prickled and she quickly withdrew the limb back into the safety of her blanket. Not yet. Perhaps in a few minutes.

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And Then I Dreamed: Hellhounds

They’re chasing after her, those red-eyed hellhounds in skins of man. She darts away, barely ahead. Her eyes are wide, her breaths released in sobs. Her long hair is taunting as it narrowly escapes the hungered reaches of her pursuers.

I cannot lie still and do nothing.

The hunters are gaining. Their eyes are gleaming. Tongues slide across bloodied teeth. They whip their horses with cruel strokes, cutting into skin, and red droplets are trampled under death dealing hooves.

Squeals are drawn from the worn steeds. Whites show as eyes roll and froth drips from chained mouths.

My heart clenches at the thought of their success. To see her fall, her red life trampled and bleeding into the ground, the notion alone makes me feel sick.

I reach out my hand, and her eyes meet mine. They’re wild, untamed. For a moment the glowing orbs rebel, until hungry cries behind her relieve her of choice. She changes direction, eyes locked with mine, and I, too, begin my journey forward.

But she is not the only one who has spotted me. The hunters renew their efforts. Now they hunt not one, but two prey.

A spike of fear runs me through. But the mere thought of them succeeding burns away the hesitation that threatened my limbs.

I can feel the tremors of the deadly hooves hitting the ground, approaching; the pounding drums that herald death.

Desperation fuels us, and finally we clasp hands. A relieved sob caresses my lips. I wrap my arms around her, and we fall to the ground. Above us the hunters triumph, horses rearing, hooves flailing, readying to execute the final note of the hunters’ drums.

But when the beat sounds, we are no longer there. For up we have flown, past the reaching hands, past the drumming hooves.

Shadowy in form, we race for the sky. Arms like wings we flap, fighting to go higher, higher. And then we begin to fall, and desperation once again claws at my heart. This wasn’t right. We had to go up. We had to. And so we rise, up and up, so light, ‘till the scene below feels like naught but a mere dream.

—-

I often have these adventure dreams where I’m on a quest to save someone. I’m not quite sure why. I guess I fancy myself a hero. Ha.