It was dark, and he felt a cold dampness on his forehead. He felt the pain in his head and heard the bombs going off, a rhythmic barrage of cannon fire. Again he felt the cold dampness on his forehead. Was it getting lighter? Was the sun rising in the window? The pain in his head was getting a little less and the cannons were slowing down. Cannons? No, that was not right. It sounds like a heartbeat, slowing down but very steady.
Dripping, he could hear water dripping, and again, felt the cold dampness on his forehead. It seemed he could hear something else now, a voice. A soft voice from his past, brought up from memories long buried, but not in his dreams. It must be in his dreams because the voice had silenced. He tried to focus on that voice that should not have been, the voice from his dreams.
The pain seemed to be getting less, as he felt the cold dampness leave his forehead once more and heard the dripping again. This time the voice was saying a name. How long had he dreamed of that voice calling that name, his name? Eight years? Ten? He did not remember. He just had to keep the memory of that dream alive within him for a few more minutes.
“Jim, Jim, Wake up”, said the voice. Wake up? The dream would be lost the moment he obeyed that sweet sounding plea. Then again, the dream was lost long ago. He starts to open his eyes. Pain, stabbing pain shoots through his brown eyes as the light hits them. He squeezes his eyelids shut once more.
He hears the dripping sound again and feels the cold dampness return to his forehead. He hears what sounds like a relieved sigh. This time he feels the soft pressure of a hand pressing the cold damp cloth against his forehead. A hand then strokes his sandy brown hair gently. Who was this that was treating him with such gentle care? What had happened to him in the first place?
He remembered going to the store to get some milk, and talking a little with Lou, the cashier. When he came out of the store, he walked towards home. He remembered hearing the squeal of tires and the smell of something sweet, then darkness. He remembered nothing more until he heard the voice of his dreams calling his name.
He senses that the light has been dimmed, so he tries to open his eyes slowly. The light, though still bright, is more bearable now. He looks at the hand dabbing a washcloth to his forehead. He then looks into the face staring at him with so much concern and relief that he feels she will cry at any moment. As he stares at her he feels that he has been sucked back into the impossible dream.
“Lynn? Lynn Montgomery? How can you be here? You’re dead.” the words tumble out of his mouth. He had read about the plane crash and how the girl of his dreams had gone up in flames. Yet, here she was, looking at him with those big green eyes and strawberry blonde hair framing a heart-shaped cream-colored face, with a furrowed brow instead of that contagious smile that had haunted his dreams for so many nights over the years.
“Thank God. You are finally awake!” Lynn said in a rush of emotion. Tears are standing in her eyes as she looks at him. The smile on her face was one of pure joy. It was touching enough that his heart just wanted to soar. He had to take a moment to look around, to see where he was, anything but look at her raw emotion which was pure enough to break his heart.
He was lying on a bed with a stand next to it. It appeared to be the centerpiece of a small studio apartment. There were no windows, however. There was a small table against one wall with two chairs. A bookcase filled with books next to it. The other wall contained the kitchen area, small but serviceable with a stove, refrigerator and sink.
“Can I have a drink of water?” he asks her, as the sight of the sink makes him realize how thirsty he is.
“Of course!” Lynn replies, jumping up to get it for him. As she walks over to the sink, she half turns to look back at him as if she were going to ask him something. When she sees his look, she stops looking puzzled. He is staring at her with a look of shock on his face, almost like he had seen a ghost or something. Her confusion increases as the next instant she sees him trying to look at anything but her.
“What’s wrong, Jim? Why are you looking at me like that?” she asks him. She goes back over and sits beside him again. He can tell that she does not even know why he is shocked, but still he can’t look at her. How could he? He glances over at her again, and quickly looks away again.
“You’re Naked!!!!!!” He finally blurts out. He had dreamed of seeing her like this so many times while they were growing up, but now he could not look at her. He heard something very strange, sweet but strange. She was laughing. Softly at first, it built into giggles, then into a full laughter. He doesn’t understand what she is finding so funny but he waits for the laughter to subside.
After seeing his shocked look, and then how he wouldn’t look at her, she couldn’t help but laugh. Her laughter did do one thing, at least he was looking at her again. “So are you,” she says once she can breathe again. Then she collapses onto the bed beside him in giggles once more.