The Nightmare

Your eyes are darting beneath your closed eye lids. Your breath shutters fast from your slightly parted lips. A sweat begins to rise from your tensing body. You are entering, a nightmare.

In your mind, a world begins to develop. Weak and formless, like a frothy black sea, it gradually stills into a vision. A darkness tugs at the edge of your vision, but you feel every moment passing as if it were the first and last you would ever conceive.

Inside this realm something hovers just out of sight. A nameless horror, a movement of pale skin just out of sight. A sound like a rasp from behind, or above? You cast about, but all you can perceive is a labyrinth of darkness.

It is cold, a fowl wind chills through hazy corridors as you press forward. You reach to pull your cloak tighter but find that your skin is bare. Save for a raggedy loincloth which hangs about your waist. But it is not this which widens your eyes. It is the paleness of your skin, shrunken and scabbed. It tightens to your bones, your arms are thin as blades, your fingers are like spindly spiders legs.

You move further on, gradually the vague darkness forms into a cobbled brick floor, smoothed down from an endless passing. The floor stretches forward, and suddenly you are aware of walls around you. In the distance you think you can make it out some indefinite light, but it is less of a shine and more like a bruise of color in this black world.

You press forward, feeling the chilling air grow somehow colder. You stare ahead, and the light takes form, gradually it shapes into something. You rack your mind as the formless shape undulates, spinning, whirring, twisting, and contorting. At last it stops and forms a door, and now you see that you are running, your feet slapping against the cold ground. Your breath is ragged, your legs are so thin you can hardly pull yourself forward.

You feel something like a thousand searing teeth bite the sole of your foot. Looking down you see inch long spikes poking into the air, some of them dripping red blood back down onto your impaled feet. You scream but find your voice is a rasping choke.

Ahead the door beckons, a simple wooden door, framed in an arch of heavy masoned stone. To its right a wooden lamppost, and dangling from it is a purple light. The floor of spikes thrusts forward toward it but tapers off only meters away, as if the ground were a waterfall emptying into the black gap between you and the door. Slowly the door shrinks back, the entire corridor elongates, stretching forward. You pull your feet from the spikes and step awkwardly between them, pressing forward despite the sharp edges biting your heels.

You thrust your hand forward, as if to catch the door’s handle and open it, even as it speeds away, gradually becoming a speck in the distance. As you scream in terror and frustration you suddenly find your hand closing around something slightly warm.

It is the door handle, and you are at the door. And now you can see a window, just off the the side, connected by wooden planks to a house. A house, a wooden house, in the middle of a dark wood. You hear something from behind the door, a cracking like a fire. Gradually you turn the handle.

The door swings open. Pale hands grip tightly around your neck, your reach up frailly as if to stop but the hands pressing inward with a force that makes the bones in jaw crunch. Your eyes, wide and feral, fret wildly before locking onto your attacker.

The face of a woman, black wiry hair framing her white face. She smiles with yellow pointed teeth, her eyes are a sickly green color, insanely small. He cheeks rise in a terrible sneer as her head cocks playfully to the side, and the hands close around your windpipe. You hear a deafening crunch.

And then nothing.

You wake. Slight relief passes through you as your hand reaches out to push you up from the ground. You feel cold brick against your hand. You look about. A corridor stretches forward. In the distance, a light.

The Nightmare

Selden Antiquated_Lift