Tuesday, October 19, 2010
Dream 1, Part 3
I’m in a pool of black water, there no movement in my body, not even breath. The waters moving now, something’s here with me, I still cannot see anything, just black. Something wriggles past my arm, I try to flinch, but nothing happens. Agony ripples across me, whatever it is, is chewing through my neck. Before my eyes open Otis’s face swims up before me.
There’s sun on my face, and hear Otis whistling a familiar tune, but again I cannot place it. I see a tray of food rattling slightly next to the chemistry set. I devour it instantly, and before I know it, I’m through the plastic door, buckling myself in. How do I miss all that?
“So how went the night? Did I miss anything exciting?”
“Nothing much, Night-Crawlers don’t make appearances on the freeways, they don’t like the openness of it, we think. Or they just don’t like the cars.” I can tell he’s being truthful, ‘cause I can see the disappointment in his eyes.
Were farther into the city now, I can see tumbled sky scrapers and burn suburbs everywhere. The devastation is humbling. I remember what Otis said to me last night, “the Night-Crawlers didn’t do this to us. We did.” I decide not to pursue the matter, seeing that were suddenly swinging off the freeway and down onto a highway.
Immediately I feel something lurch inside of me, “What are you doing?”
“We have to leave the freeway to get to the Stockade; it’s only about ten miles east, towards the mountains. We should get there just before nightfall.”
“What if we don’t make it by then?” The lurching in me is now squirming.
“We have to, otherwise we’re locked out for the night, and we don’t want to be on the other side of their defenses when darkness falls.” There’s more implied to that statement than I can guess at, but the lurching inside me has defined itself as clear uneasiness. Like when someone who watches you the entire time as you’re walking by them, you can just feel their eyes burning into the back of your head.
“Do you feel that?”
Otis looks at me again from the corner of his eye, “Feel what?”
“I dunno, like were being watched.”
I can see Otis grip the steering wheel tighter, his knuckles are turning blotchy.
Time passes, I don’t bother to count, I’m too engrossed with the dead world around me. Feeling incomplete and uneasy at the same time makes me jumpy. Every shadow seems to be a threat. I can’t target what part of me is missing, but the uneasiness is coming from all sides, almost like a prickly blanket. We better get to this “Stockade” soon.
The sun continues to sink lower in the sky, the mountains grow larger and larger, seems like the fangs of a long dead behemoth. I can see their beginning to turn golden pink from the sun. I turn to Otis, he hasn’t whistled a sling note since I awoke, he’s sweating pretty badly.
“Do you need me to get you something to drink?” I automatically unbuckle myself, and twist to get off the seat.
“No that’s okay; I’ve got my water bottle here.” I shrug and head back towards the sink. Otis calls over his shoulder, “fill free to drink out of the water cooler, cups are in the cupboard above the sink. Sure enough, they’re there and I’m tipping back refreshingly cool water.
The bus sways this way and that as I make my way back, I hold the cup close and deposit myself onto my bench, buckling myself. I think it’s time to find out a little more about myself, “Otis, where did you said you’d found me?”
“I found you inside an old barn.”
“Yeah, you and about fifty other people, except, well. . .” The sentence hangs in the air for a minute.
I prod, “Except. . .”
“Except everyone one else had been mutilated in one way or another. You just had a gash on your head.” Otis turns up a wide avenue, there are stills houses standing here, some cars, burned of course, still parked in driveways.
“You had no wallet, no I.D., nothing. I’m sorry kid, I don’t know your name, who you are or where you came from. All I knew was that the sun was setting fast and I needed to get you into the bus as soon as I could.”
“Oh.” My voice feels small in my head. Even more that thing that I’m missing is weighing in on my mind. I think the feeling of being watched as turned into more of being followed. I look to the sky, and see the mountains afire with light.
“Almost there, apparently the Stockade is an old University, we’re only two main streets away, take a left then the second right.” It’s a bit too much info for me; my mind begins to over load. I feel my neck growing weaker, and my chin hits my chest. I am growing more tired, more than I should feel. I sense the bus slowing down, and stopping.
We shouldn’t be there already. I feel someone dragging me. I feel myself fall into my bed, but I fall past it into sleep.