I woke up gradually, pushing myself up, my alarm clock unplugged like the night before. It was strange that I would just wake up from a wonderful dream world and be brought into the nightmare of reality, especially considering there was no source. From across the hall into the kitchen, I could hear the gradual beeping of a microwave when it was left alone for thirty seconds after the countdown ended. I thought nothing of it, the microwave beeping in the middle of the night was no strange occurrence, it had been happening for a few nights. I got up a minute later, to go to check it out. I thought it was simply my brother-in-law getting a late night snack, he had insomnia, a common problem for him. He didn't eat much in the day, no matter how much my wife, his girlfriend, and I urged him to. It was a slightly burnt smell, now that I think about it. A descent into madness, I thought of the little issue I wasn't sure if I heard. When I got to the microwave, I opened it to realize that the lights were blown. I put on a rubber glove, as they're resistant to heat, and reached inside. I pulled an object out, and went to look at it.

I woke up. It had been the third time in a row that I had been plagued by this dream. I looked at the clock on the left side, to realize that it was somewhere near 6:56. I rubbed my eyes, and rolled over to try and get some sleep again. I huddled up close to my wife, and rested my eyes against her shoulder, and eventually fell back asleep while the dream continued.

"What the fuck..." were the words uttered when I returned to the dream. The object was on the water-damaged tiles. It was a lucid dream, now. I looked down, to see nothing  but shadows draping over the object. I stepped back, before instinctively looking at the window. The blinds were open, oddly enough- they never were unless it was daylight. Up here, closed drapes meant "do not disturb." And people were very understanding of this one little thing.


Disproportionate head. Kind of like a sufferer of the Progeria disease, it was child-structured, but it was everything a child should not be. It couldn't have been older than seventeen. Its eyes were hollow, not like empty sockets, the eyes were just really set back yet were still staring at me.

"Were you the one who did it?" I had no control at this point. The thing behind the drapes seemed to utter a high-pitched chuckle, reminiscent of one that a child makes, a giggle. Disproportionate head. Kind of like a sufferer of the Progeria disease, it was child-structured, but it was everything a child should not be. It couldn't have been older than seventeen. Its eyes were hollow, not like empty sockets, the eyes were just really set back yet were still staring at me. It tapped on the window with its stiff fingers, barely able to even make the motions to do so.

"Are you okay? Do you need a doctor?"
"... No..."
"What the hell is wrong with you?"

"Ca..ssa..nd..ra..." it struggled to say, though this was nothing bad. Everyone knew my wife by name, why did this suddenly matter? The fact that it was in my dreams, that's why. It was no unusual occurrence, I often dreamed about my wife, but this one didn't have any inclusion of my wife in it. A little bit of subtle references, like dreams are known for, but nothing important.

I woke up abruptly again. My wife was up, presumably. I checked the clock, and read it as 11:45. I realized I was going to be late for work within half an hour- I spent time quickly to get dressed, get readied, kiss my wife's and daughter's forehead and leave. Hours later I returned to work from my eight hour shift. My daughter, Sarah, was already in bed and my wife was getting ready to. It was 7:30, and I expected to be woken up abruptly again.
I fell asleep.


I didn't have a daughter.

It was different this time. It was the same scenario, except I was sleeping and the nimble, broken Progeria-like sufferer was stroking my face, waking me up slowly.
"So soft..."

I react wildly, kicking a leg up onto its chest and throwing it off of me.
"You sick fuck!"
"How am I the sick one...?" it asked, hurt, "I just wanted you to be my friend..."

I felt bad, treating a perfectly normal person this way. The trailer settled in its place a long time ago, but the presence of this... thing seemed unnatural. Ominous, dangerous... depressive.
"I don't know anything about you," I stammered.
"I can tell that's a lie..." It replied, looking at the ground.
"It isn't," I offered my hand to it.
It stared at my hand, before grabbing it and being pulled to its feet. Its thin lips offered a small smile before easily being translated to a wide grin. Sets of human teeth were shown, all yellow and aged. None were pointed except for the four canine teeth.

I woke up there. The dreams were progressive, and they were slowly starting to give me a descent into madness. My wife started complaining when I was at work that there would be a slight tapping noise on three of the eight windows, and that when I was at home and sleeping that I would act unnaturally. I almost never had sleeping issues but this was disturbing to hear. I started to make connections. This creature had to have been someone in my social life that my mind determined dangerous. The day went on normally, go to work, come home, go to bed, dream, wash, rinse, and repeat. It was mildly different this time.

"Hmm... Come home, come home, dear little Joseph..." was the chanting of the creature behind the door, staring through the glass pane as it banged its head against the window gently. At that moment I came home, tidying up my work uniform like usual. Once inside, I barely made any notice of the thing while shouting out,

"Honey! I'm home!"
The creature grabbed me from behind, covering my mouth and pulling me to the ground.
"Shh... Don't let her hear you..." it warned.
I made no resistance. I couldn't even tell if this was reality or not- everything was exactly how it was when I came home yesterday, I remember thinking sleepily. I woke up in the middle of the dream to fall back asleep to be greeted to the creature killing something, I couldn't tell what it was, it was too badly mutilated. I couldn't stop it, for I was tied down and had tape over my mouth.

I woke back up just as I was pulled out the door by the creature. It was a silent afternoon and I barely noticed what happened. I assumed I was sleep walking, but when I looked down at my feet, I realized that I was being dragged. Out to my car. I retaliated, kicking the thing in the leg, before it looked at me and shouted, upset,
"What the hell was that for, Joseph?! You have to take our daughter to school!"

It was at that moment that I realized that my dreams were reality and that my reality was a dream. I didn't have a wife. i didn't have a fancy house. I didn't have a daughter. I didn't have a brother in law. It was only some strange "reality"- all I was was a psychotic mental patient recently out of the asylum. I still had the straitjacket on. There was a knock on my door a couple seconds ago... I'm going to escape out of the back door.


Written byTuggingaRhythm

Part 2: An Attempt of Sanity

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