1| ocean shadows
It wasn’t the first time that I had this nightmare. But recently, it was beginning to feel more real... seeming to linger on for hours after I awoke. Scattered visions pressing down on my memories, like an unsolvable puzzle. I could never shake it, no matter how hard I’d try.
My dream-self looked around at the surroundings. The ceiling rippled like an ocean above me. As a wave passed, it let small warm drops of salty water slowly part from it’s whole and descend. I watched as the drops made their way down in slow-motion, landing gracefully on the silvery marble floor beneath my bare feet. They never made a splashing sound when connecting with the marble. The drops kept their perfect shapes while dotting the floor like small beads of glass.
The silvery marble floor looked marvelous as it gleamed under the ripple’s reflection from above. In this light, my bare feet looked pale and fair. If I looked at them long enough, my feet even looked slightly translucent in the dim blue-grey light.
When I gazed ahead, shadowed figures materialized directly in front of me, about ten feet away. The shadowed figures were tall and dark, with dark mist pouring out from their long, crooked-looking fingers. They were faceless. Even so, I knew they were staring directly at me... just watching.
I could feel it; I could feel their haunting presence.
Just the sight of the obscurity made my heart pound hard against my chest. Hot sweat began to bead on my forehead from the eerie view.
I didn’t know someone could feel such things in a dream.
This was usually the time when I awoke from my recurring nightmare.
But not this time.
This time, I wasn’t so lucky.
The beads of water droplets on the ground suddenly began to roll like marbles. They rolled in unison towards the shadowed figures, forming a circle as they continued to revolve in unison.
One of the shadowed figures whispered in a low, deadly tone, which was dangled in hundreds of whispers. A puff of white mist escaped from the shadow once it spoke. I watched as the puff went passed me, forcing a hard shiver to go down my spine, leaving goosebumps all over.
I strained to pick a word from the chaos of deadly whispers. Once, I thought I caught one word in particular... but every time I had a hold of it, it seemed to slip through my mind.
“Who are you?” I asked it, shaking terribly.
More haunted whispers and slurs came from the shadow.
It’s just a dream... it’s just a really bad dream... wake up...
The shadow moved to a side then, revealing a large oval picture with a dark opal-looking frame floating in the air. Had the beads of water created this?
The shadow made a motion with it’s long, crooked fingers, as if telling the canvas where to go. The picture obeyed, and glided gracefully in front of me, the shadow’s dark and cold mist surrounding it.
My eyes searched the canvas for something---anything. But it was blank. There wasn’t anything to see.
The shadow made a frustrated motion with it’s dangerous fingers, sending myself straight up like I was nothing more than a flip of a coin.
I screamed fearfully as my body picked up speed and made a hard, warm connection with the ocean ceiling, waking me from the frightful dream.