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Dead or Alive

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Jon, dying of Cancer, enters a world of Dreams, wakes up 30 years younger, no more sickness, falls in love with his Schizoid friend, Sandy, and is confronted with the Undertaker, his Shadows, a Crypt.

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I just celebrated my 72nd Birthday, living on this Planet, spending most of my retired time, considering my bathroom mirror, watching the changes come about on my face, my body, even my glazing eyes.

I always believed that there was some pill, or medicine or creams that I could use to turn back time and steal another 20 or 30 years as a younger and more vibrant man. But, with all my research, I found nothing to give me my youth, I once had.

The only solace was how I looked and lived inside my private dreams, which made me feel young, strong, and powerful once more. If only I could make my dreams come alive in real time, then I could reverse time, reverse aging and live a new life, different from the wheel chair I live in now, every day of my life.

Then, my dreams opened a door for me to enter. I was walking down a street filled with cars, busses and people pushing their way to a location only they knew of. My dream reflected a solitary door, that all older persons walking, entered. Watching closely, within minutes, those that entered this door, returned from the same door, younger, happy and rejuvenated.

In my dream, that kept repeating itself, I tried and tried to enter this door, but for me, it was always locked. I even tried to pass through the door with another person, only to be stopped at the entrance. There was a man, a large man, with a muscular body, broad shoulders, and somewhere in the range of 30 to 35 years old, stopping me. The more I tried to pass through this magical door, the angrier this man became.

“Do you want to enter?” The Door man asked me.

“I think so,” I responded,” but I can’t seem to get past you. Why is that?” I asked the Door Man flippantly.

“You ask me why? Look at yourself, in your world of wheel chairs and pity. Why do you think you should be allowed to pass through to the other side? What exists through this door is only for those who wish dreams to come true. Their dreams to actually come true.”

“I want to be young again.” I said.

“What does that mean, young again?” The door man smirked. “You are old, and withered, and within a few years, gone to a grave with your name on it. That is how your life will end, and that is where people will see you and remember you.”

I woke up from my dream, more frustrated than before. Why does life play these dirty tricks on older people when they get old and of no use to anyone? I wheeled my chair back into the bathroom to look at myself in the mirror, once more.

The Gray, white hair on my beard hadn’t changed, the bags under my eyes were growing larger, my skin was wrinkling in every direction and it was getting harder to breathe. I gritted my teeth, my browning teeth, not wanting to smile again, for any reason, showing people that I am continually aging, day after miserable day.

My 4 Children are all grown up, living in different locations from one another. My Ex-wife has remarried, yes, to a younger man. The last time my children spoke to me, was at the funeral of my Brother. They looked at me closely, not talking to me, and wondering when I will succumb to the grave too.

All my assets were lost in the great recession of 2008 and following. I now live on my Social Security, which is a pittance of what I lost during the crash. But I am surviving and counting every day that passes as one lost day in my life, never to return.

Time to wake up in the morning, not even hungry to eat, and looking forward to the night to come and take me on a journey to a younger me, a happier me, and no more sickness. “God, give me another chance to relive my life in your glory. Let it become so, my Heavenly Father,” I cried, begging God to restore my youth, just one more chance to live my life as I always wanted.

I left my bathroom mirror, and wheeled my chair back to the bedroom, ready to sleep the tears away of my disintegrating body. Sleep came slowly, as congestion had entered my life some years ago, and caused me great stress to breath.

When I began the process of dreaming once more, I looked for the door that others had been entering. My wheel chair, in this new dream, became broken, unable to move the wheels forward or backward. I could now see the Door, but I would have to leave the wheel chair and crawl to this door of dreams, hopefully to pass through, to the other side, and become young and healthy once again, just like the others who passed through.

The Door Man saw me coming towards him. Shaking his head, he told me how pathetic I was, and crawling would not help me enter the door. “Get up on your feet, if you want to pass through,” The Door Man demanded.

I struggled to rise, to become upright just long enough to satisfy the Door Man, and let me pass through. Unsteady on my numb legs and feet, I came crashing down to the ground, my face smashing on the pavement, just inches from the Door. The Door Man shook his head in disgust and turned his back on me.

“Let me help you up,” an elderly woman spoke to me, while I was lying on the ground, in front of the Door. She must have been 80, maybe 90 years old, but still walking. She reached down to help me up, off the walkway I fell on.

I looked up into her face, and frowned, asking her to please help me. “Can you walk without your wheelchair?” She asked me.

“I can try, if you can help me just enough to pass through this door.” I begged her.

“Wait,” The Door Man yelled at us. “You cannot pass through this door with the help of someone else. You must pass through the door, on your own two feet.”

The old woman helping me, told me to try and get to my feet. She told me not to give up. Then I watched her pass through the door, past the Door Man leaving me alone again on the sidewalk. Within minutes, she returned, younger, beautiful, happy.

“Madam, is that you?” I asked her. “Yes,” She smiled, humming a soft melody I could hear, as she walked away from me, blocks from the door. The Door Man had entered the building, leaving me flat on my face, on the ground. Silence came once more to me, along with the morning dew.

By the time, I woke up, entering my wheel chair with a cup of coffee in hand, the day had started without me. Night time was my solace, waiting for slumber land to overtake my congestion, and the one dream to return, giving me one more chance to enter the door and find the cure to old age. To become young again, healthy again, free from diseases and broken body parts.

Upon looking at my wheel chair, I noticed one of the wheels was twisted, broken. That part of my Dream last night had become real. My wheel chair was broken, but how? Honestly, I was a bit excited that a part of my dream had proven to be real. The what part, really didn’t matter, the reality part did.

This had to be a sign, something to help me stay positive, believing that my reoccurring dream was, possibly, real. My broken wheelchair was the proof. I could hardly wait to go to bed this night and see what was next to follow. The door was closer now, I could feel it.

It took forever for the night to fall, and sleep to succumb my mind. Finally, the reoccurring dream came and with it, the sight of the door, I needed to walk through. This time, no more excuses. I will walk in my Dream, to the door, past the Door Man, and enter the building that the Old lady entered, who gave me courage to continue.

In my real world, my wheel chair was broken, leaving me no options but to walk through the door. The Door Man was starring directly at me, as he let others pass through. “You going to try again, cripple?” he said harshly. Where is your wheel chair?”

In my dream, I am again, lying on the ground, in front of the Door. “Give me a hand, will you?” I asked the Door Man.

“On your own,” He frowned, “like I told you before.”

“All right, I will walk through your door, on my own.” I said.

I struggled to rise to my feet with the help of a walker. My legs were folding beneath my body, wobbling, painful and weak. Yet, with the walkers help, I made it to my feet, and shuffled towards the Door. This Dream, like the one last night, may again, be filled with some realities.

The closer I shuffled towards the door, the Door Man called me a looser, a failure, a no hope person filled with the dreams of an easy way out. The more he chided me, the angrier I got and continued to the door. “Get out of my way.” I told the Door Man. “I deserve to pass through, now.”

“Give me your password.” The Door Man scolded me.

“What password are you talking about?” I said arguably.

“You need a password to make this dream real, and to pass through this door.” The Door Man told me.

“This dream is real?” I asked.

“You know the answer to that question.” He frowned. “Give me your password or leave this place. Tonight, will be your last chance to enter the door and fulfill your desires.”

“I don’t have a password.” I said, fearing that I will never be able to enter the Door.

“Everyone has a password,” The Door Man frowned. “Think, think and you will find it, hidden deep inside your mind.”

“I’m thinking, but I cannot find a password that I have ever known of before. Please help me, I cannot stand here much longer as the pain is excruciating.”

“I am sorry for your pain, but It is time to lock the door, and for me go home.” The Door Man frowned.

“Please help me, give me a hint.” I begged him.

“I have already given you more advice than I am supposed to do.” He said, turning to the door with a large key in his hand.

The Door man locked the door, and left for his home. I looked at the door, my last and first hope for youth and perfect health, noticing that the key to the door was not removed, by the Door Man.

I approached the door, key in hand, and began to turn the key to the left, then the right. The lock didn’t move in either direction. I removed the key, putting it in my pocket, and let the mist of dreams end for this night.

In the morning, birds singing outside the window to my bedroom, I searched my pants for the key I took from the door in my dream, hoping the key would become real, like my broken wheel chair. The key was nowhere to be found.

Throughout the day, I was occupied on the key, my dream, and the door. The password needed by me was a mystery, and I didn’t know where to start looking on that level. The Door Man said that last night’s dream, to pass through the door, was ending. I needed to find the key and the password to return tonight, and hope for the best.

I had spent the day looking, into my mirror, watching the frown lines in my forehead grow deeper, my ears growing larger and my throat filled with separating folds of skin. It seemed I was aging faster than, before, after finding a door way, to returning youth.

I pondered what password I had suppressed in my mind, and if the key to the door was somewhere in my house. The night was coming fast, and I had little time to solve the two issues that could give me my youth back.

I was at the point of giving up the search, and heading to bed. It was much later this night for me than usual. I finally gave up the search for the key and password, headed to the bathroom to complete my duties, then off to slumber land. Hopefully, this night, my dream, will answer the questions I have regarding the DOOR KEY AND THE PASSWORD.

The congestion came to my body, breathing impossible, and sleep difficult at best. I kept repeating in my mind, “find the key, get the password.” Finally, I fell asleep, disturbed, not finding the two items that could get me past the Door Man, and through the Door.

I found myself standing in front of the door, but the Door Man was nowhere to be found. I still had my walker, and moved to the door, looking for the key. On the ground was the golden key, lying solo, waiting to be picked up by me.

I bent down, grabbed the key, inserted it into the lock and took a deep breath before I tried turning the key. But what about the password. I still needed the password.

Bending down, slightly to relax my unusable legs, I rested before turning the key. There was no reason to wait, so, I turned the key to the right and the lock gave way. The door was now unlocked, and ready to open. Password or not, I was determined to pass through the door, and return, back outside just as the old lady had done, some 50 years younger.

Maybe the password was just a prank by the Door Man to make my life miserable. I’m ready to go, to pass through. It is my time to reap the blessings of youth and health. I suffered for 30 years with bone marrow disease, leaving my bones brittle and easy to break. In a few seconds, the past 30 years will be a blur and I will be 40 years old and healthy.

The password was still a thorn in my side, but so what, it’s just a dream, right? Walking down the street, towards the Door, was the Door Man. He saw me turning the key and unlocking the door. “Whatever you do, don’t pass through without giving me the password, or you will never wake up from your dream.” The Door Man frowned. “Don’t pass through.”

My God, if I passed through the door, I guess he meant I would die in my sleep. Maybe that wouldn’t be so bad, with the continued pain, breathing problems and bone disease and more. I had an option to go forward or continue searching for the password.

The Door Man was now in control of the Door again, and the key was back inside his pocket. I had no choice but to search for the password and try again, later, much to my dismay.

The third day had come with the morning dew, caressing the pedals of my Roses, and Easter Lilies. I rolled out of bed, grabbed my walker, and proceeded to the kitchen to make my morning coffee and read the times. I was still on a path to find this mysterious password the Door Man told me I needed to pass through this magical door of rejuvenation.

The password on my computer was 1,2,3,4. Simple and surely not what this Door Man was hoping to hear from me. I thought of how many times I spoke to God, to save me from this body I am occupying. Then, the words filled me with hope. Save me, save me were the words I used when I spoke to God. Save me had to be the password. I had difficulty waiting for the night, to arrive and with it, my eternal rest, or a new beginning.

For the first time in the past three days, I believed that I would pass through the Door, past the Door Man who filled me with negative responses, and emerge a new man. Younger, free of pain, and a second chance to live my life. Tonight, was my freedom from loneliness, a broken body, and fear of death.

I had the password in my night shirt, breast pocket, ready to hand it over to the Door Man, when he asked me for it. SAVE ME, OH LORD, SAVE ME. Sleep brought my Dream, once more. I was ready, nothing left but to walk through the door after giving the Door Man, my password.

My dream had changed. There was an electrical storm that was attacking the City. I could barely see through the heavy rain. I kept looking for the Door Man, hoping he was working this night. I thought that things would be simple. Give the password to the Door Man, and walk through the door way into a new, rejuvenated life, free of the misery I suffered for the past 30 years. The Door Man and the Door were gone.

Through the lightning strikes, heavy rainfall, and obscured vision, I finally found my way to the location of the Door. Many people were in a line, waiting to enter the Door, but the Door Man had not come to show them the way. The person in front of the line of elderly persons, including myself, was trying to explain that the door has moved to another location. Everyone needed to wait for the Door Man to arrive and tell them, us, where to go.

Another night lost in this dream world I was getting used too. I stood silently, in the rain, wind and cold, with my walker and my password. Where ever the new location of the Door had moved too, I was ready to continue, ready to take the Door Man’s directions. This night will be my salvation, and I am ready to be saved.

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