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Bad dream

Another odd dream... this one disturbing.

I was on the floor of an apartment of some sort, and couldn't seem to remember who I was, or how I'd gotten there. I could barely move at a crawl, and I heard laughter from the next room. I crawled carefully to the corner to peer around it, and could see a couple - a man and a woman - dancing and laughing. I felt an urge, a strong urge to hide, and so I began crawling away, back out of sight. But it was too late - the girl came around the corner and noticed me, and became angry. 'Dan' - that was the boy's name, apparently - had finally stopped talking about me and was paying attention to her, how dare I try to interfere? I asked her who she was, and she stormed off, as if affronted by my very existence. I noticed a laptop nearby in its case, and briefly the thought of stealing it occurred to me, but I was in no condition to do so, or to comprehend how and why the thought had come to mind. Instead, I crawled to the bedroom, and from there into the closet, hiding myself amongst the clothing and wishing to disappear.

I didn't, but time did. It was later, and I was still very weak, but at least I could walk. The girl was gone now, and all that was left was the boy. I asked him what was going on, and when he spotted me he flew into a rage and began to beat me. I was confused and terrified and struggling, crying, asking who I was and what I'd done to deserve this. He was so angry at me... hitting me over and over... until I managed to push him backwards to the floor. I'm not sure how the knife got there, but suddenly he stopped fighting, and paused to pull the knife from his back. He looked shocked for a moment, then disgusted at himself, looked at me, and then drove the knife into his own heart.

I think I need to take sleeping pills.

I don't remember all of this dream - I'm pretty sure the transitions are where I woke up and fell asleep again - but here's the parts I remember.

We were staying in one of those large trailer homes -- one that had a Chinese restaurant a short distance away. It was the middle of the night, and my friend and I had walked to the Chinese restaurant to get something to eat and an extra large drink. The counterperson was in a hurry to get us out, because they were holding a religious ceremony shortly and were closing the restaurant to do so. So we got our food, and we left, and we began the long walk back to the trailer, when my friend abruptly realized that she'd left something behind. I was stuck bringing the rest of the food back, while she headed on back to find whatever it was she'd lost. Later, a little concerned (and tired of walking) I took my car and drove back up the path to find her. I never did find her - or the restaurant. All I found were her flipflops.

The next morning, the rest of us were chatting in the living room of the trailer home, when suddenly there was a loud creak, and the trailer tilted sharply to the right. We started shouting irately and banging on the windows -- as it turned out, someone was picking up our trailer home with a crane. We were very annoyed by this - both because we were still inside and because we'd paid for another full day. When the trailer was set down again, there was a loud argument, and this guy - a muscular fellow in a gray shirt - started to push people around. I was so outraged that I grabbed him and hauled him bodily down to the police station, where I tried to find a cop that would take my report, while he blithely and patiently waited for an opportunity to get away. He got one, too -- for some reason I felt the urge to check the computer in the police station, and he slipped off while I was deleting a spam mail. I realized my mistake and chased back out after him, but he was long gone.

We were making our way out to this rustic town in the middle of nowhere. I could remember the story behind it -- how several years ago, this gentleman had nearly been hanged by this corrupt man who ruled the town with an iron fist, and who had prided himself on... honestly, I can't quite remember what it was he did, but it was some bizarre combination of rope and target practice. Probably lassoing cows or something odd like that, but I didn't see most of it. I remember seeing (through a forced camera angle) this noose confronting the former expert -- and then the camera pulled back, revealing that the noose shape was actually the shape of the trophy being given out for that particular contest. What a jerk. The gentleman had apparently been training someone else for the role -- but was convinced by a companion to take his title back, and get a bit of revenge on the person who'd caused his suffering. And then a big fight broke out. I don't remember much of it -- I just remember seeing someone emerge from a shack at the edge of the contest grounds, and heading over that way to investigate. I remember finding a key on a short segment of cloth loop and plastic clip, a black and red key with 'Stanley' prominently embossed on it (the key brand, not the owner); and I remember seeing the big bad guy - or maybe just one of his biggest and baddest lieutenants, a swarthy, fairly fat guy with a thick beard and mustache, tromping out to see what was going on. For some reason, I decided that the best approach to the problem was to grapple his chest with my legs and bite into his left arm. Oddly, it seemed to work -- he didn't do anything immediately to intervene in the fight, and he seemed more amused by my presence than angry enough to dislodge me, even when I punched him in the face a few times. He did eventually seem like he was planning on bashing my skull in against one of the tables, but I don't remember what happened next - except that for some reason, that damned trophy looked a lot like a safety pin after the hero was done bending it.

The next portion of my dream was in another one of those pre-fabricated trailer things, except that this one was apparently outfitted to be a sort of two-classroom school . I know this most clearly because apparently, I was a teacher there, and someone had destroyed all of the papers there -- an angry student, perhaps? -- and sprayed the classrooms with multiple two and three-liters of soda (grape, lemon-lime, and generic Dr. Pepper). It was a real mess, and I did my best to clean things up (and preserve as much of the remaining soda as possible. What? I like Dr. Pepper.)

My dream was getting more abstract at that point, because the next part I remember involved a large underground basement, with a plexiglass floor over a display area below. Below me were the bodies of hundreds of men and women in various states of repose and undress, motionless, seemingly lifeless. The person next to me was talking about this being a model of every one of the victims of... the rest escapes me, because as I was watching, with a curious sort of horror, the figures began to move. Many of them seemed familiar somehow, like I should know who they were or at least recall having seen them before, but I couldn't quite put my finger on how or where. I remember looking closely at one pair - a shirtless gentleman biting into the throat of a woman with a very low-cut, practically medieval dress. As she was bit, she stared up at me with a look of happiness and revelation, and as the man withdrew, blood began to flow from the bitemarks in her neck, and she smiled a fangy smile. And then I woke up.

I had another strange dream...

We were on some sort of class trip -- not a vacation, exactly, because some of our teachers were there. We were told about the trip at an assembly; there were a couple of the jocks there, and some guy named Tim who was joking about Indian lore, and I don't really remember much about the assembly itself, because I woke up briefly, but when I fell asleep again, we were on our way to the destination in a caravan of vans. I wonder if that's where the word came from? Probably not. I'm still not awake all the way yet.

Anyhow, I don't remember exactly why we were going wherever we were, but it was awfully hot there. Terribly hot - I was sweating like crazy, and everything seemed to take so much effort. Nobody else seemed to notice, though. We were in several hotel rooms in this quaint-looking hotel that reminded me of the time we went to Mexico -- it didn't quite look like any hotel I'd seen before, but it looked like it had been styled after hotels I had seen, or vice versa, if that makes any sense. I don't remember who I was rooming with -- I think I was rooming with a teacher, a vaguely Oriental woman with dark eyes and a sheaf of paperwork under the passenger side seat, and a girl who was trying to tell me something, only I could never focus long enough to hear what it was. It was just too hot...

We left our hotel rooms to visit some people (friends?) who were staying in a hotel nearby -- everyone else was having fun, but I felt hot and sick still. I really felt like I needed to take a shower, but it was so hard to peel off my clothes that I just passed out partway through it. I woke up still mostly dressed in the living room (to someone's annoyed comment that I'd been in the bathroom for much of the day), made another abortive attempt to wrap a towel around me and get undressed, and headed into the bathroom, only to notice that someone was already in the bathtub, looking at me and grinning. I decided I didn't really want to take a shower after all, and hurried out before anything could happen.

The entire day had passed, and me without remembering most of it beyond the oppressive heat, and feeling sweaty all over. A woman passed by us, and I couldn't help thinking 'Is that Liza Minelli'? She certainly looked the part, and that's the name that came to mind when I saw her, although I can't imagine why she'd've possibly wanted to see us, and I'm sure I didn't make much of an impression as a guest. I wonder what she was doing there? There was a mess in her hotel room - toys scattered about, and a peculiar card on the floor amongst the toys, covered in strange designs, that I instinctively pocketed. I don't know why - maybe in my dreams I'm a kleptomaniac, because it suddenly seemed like something I had to have, right now. There was a boy there who I thought I recognized, a freshman, messing around with Lego parts on the floor, and I settled down with him to help clean it up so that we could get back to our own hotels...

And we were on the road again, traveling. Tim was talking about this crazy Indian guy who wore a headdress that looked uncannily like an enlarged version of the sandals he wore -- he might have been doing that earlier, and I just forgot about it until now. We came to a stop at a hotel ... I was sure we were going to be at our hotel, but when I looked outside, we were actually past the treeline near a hotel that didn't look quite familiar. I think I might have passed out for a moment, because when I woke up, I was in this room, and others were leaving it. The room seemed to tilt slightly as people exited it, and I hurriedly attempted to exit myself. There were lots of books on the shelves, I remember, and oddly enough, a collection of tapes in one bookshelf - all black-boxed tapes with 'Rick R.' in silver on the front. There was more written on them in pen, but I was in a hurry to leave and I was feeling too dizzy to stop and take a closer look; and the room was rocking harder, to the amusement of some of the students we were travelling with.

When I exited, I discovered we weren't near our hotel at all -- we were exiting a large trailer, and this peculiar old man dressed in green, with an elongated headdress that really did sort of resemble a sandal, was leading everyone onwards, to a collection of army green tripod-shaped tents. He was saying something, but I couldn't hear what he was saying...

And then I woke up again, and I thought I'd better write this dream down before it gets away from me. I don't know what we were doing, really. I'm sure it was some sort of history or archaeology trip, but I didn't recognize any history teachers I know. And I still feel hot and sick... I think those eggs really didn't agree with me.

(Katie) Bad dreams...

I had a strange dream last night.

I dreamt that there was this stone building out in the woods where people went to study magic - elegant and new, and much like our high school, yet mysterious at the same time -- and that a male student had gone missing a year ago.

There was a teacher there who was very charming -- I was going there as a student, apparently -- and he was friendly towards me. His cat found me when I was attempting to sneak through the woods late at night.

There was a book that the missing student had owned. I don't remember how I got it -- from his locker, perhaps -- but I remember thinking that the year on it was unusual, 1999. I don't remember why I thought it was unusual at the time, or why it still bothers me.

I dreamed I was going shopping with my mother, and the teacher was there, along with his wife... a strange girl who looked very young for her age. The teacher explained that she was immortal, but she needed a new face -- and then the girl, who seemed incapable of thinking on her own, suddenly took a knife to her cheek and began to slice it open, around the entirety of her head, to peel her face off. I tried to stop her from hurting herself, but I was pushed away, and she continued to cut herself open as easily as if she were peeling an orange.

I dreamed that I collapsed to the floor - in panic, in fear, maybe in paralysis - knocking peanut butter and jelly containers over as I fell.

I dreamed that I crawled away to escape. My mother didn't.

I dreamed that I was fleeing through the woods, and that he was looking for me, because he wanted another girl to be his forever.

Then the alarm woke me up.
The simplest way to get a reaction from a girl? Ask her if she'd rather do something, or do it naked. Heh heh heh. Though some people react well to the golden rivet...

Characters...

Antonio ---

You know, I am so sick of moralists. Why the hell do they have to travel in packs? Because they know they annoy people, that's why. I finally got myself a group - well, okay, Sasha was our leader - and things were going okay. We even had a moving buffet to eat off of... sort of. Then everything started to go wrong. Sasha started picking a pattern - pretty elf boys. Fritz started to impregnate people - which totally ruined them for dinner. Gregory... well, Gregory never really did anything wrong. He was pretty good for a troll. And Sasha's zombies, well, they were just zombies. But still... so Sasha and Fritz went out again to pick up dinner -- and apparently, they find a couple of people, but Fritz has to go and chew on one of them, and mess 'em up, and nearly gets them both caught. So Sasha and Fritz come back, with one lousy elf. One lousy elf boy. Well, we start up the fires, and Sasha and I have our usual argument - because, well, I can't exactly eat a desouled person unless it's real fast - the thrill goes out of the blood. So we finally agree, as usual... she drains the soul, I get the blood, the rest goes in the stew pot. Fine. Then a bunch of people show up, and chop the heck out of Gregory while he's tending the fire - and from there, well, everything's a mess. Sasha gets shot several times, collapses - and vanishes after this tiger thing gouges out her throat. Fritz flees, and the zombies get splattered... and, well, that leaves me. Odds are, these people are going to figure out there's no way to help me, and seek to 'release me from my burden' with something painful... I think I should probably get away before that happens. At least I managed to get a fresh meal for once...

Hortense ---

I wish I was more understanding. I had thought that Lysander and Grace wanted me gone, because... well, they wanted me to date this Ophelia person... and told her that I wanted to date her. ... eh, it's confusing. So I went to find a new place to live. I didn't get far, though... I decided I wanted to sit amongst the tarns at the Tarn Sanctuary in Alshira, and that's where they found me. I wonder if being human is worth feeling...

Kruu ---

My name is Kruu, the nuitar, and I am now the companion of Ophelia Mortellis. All those of the light beware... of my power to consume oatmeal cookies.

Neii ---

My new companions, Ansel and Julian, are nice - they're performers! But I think they spend most of their time doing tongue acrobatics.

Zane ---

Nef got exactly what he wanted... to be able to fly, to look pretty, and to be changing with his moods... I think that's a very lovely, wonderful thing. I wonder if he will be happy with it?

Mekista's note (if read.)

Kimble...

I've been meaning to tell you this in person, but for some reason, never quite had the chance. I've been meaning to tell you several times, I think...

While I must admit that I have some trepidation on the subject of sexual encounters, and this does cloud my judgment, I have come to realize that sex is not the only thing that has been missing so far from our relationship. And while you are an excellent kisser, and probably an excellent lover, sex is simply not my top priority in a relationship.

What is most important to me is compassion and companionship. When you are near, you make me feel like you are genuinely interested in me as a person... but then, nothing follows that feeling. We sit, we eat, we drink, we chitchat breezily... but not about anything truly important. We have had discussions on incredibly boring matters of devices that provide structural sheeting for tunnels... but never really discussed what a sunrise looks like.

You give many pretty gifts, and say many pretty things...

But when I think about our relationship, I remember... pretty gifts, and pretty words... but no substance. I remember putting on a dress for an anniversary ball, knowing that you'd just returned home, and wanting to dance with you... but you were never there. I stood there alone... quietly mocked, and flirted with by Bri. That sums up most of my end of the relationship, I think...

I used to like the thought that you were so interested in me, you drew beautiful pictures of me... and if some were less than decent, I supposed that it just meant that you were interested in me as more than just a friend. But... when I think about it, you expect me to be like those pictures... sealed within the spray shell you put atop them, frozen for your perusal and that of others. I sometimes think I can live like that -- frozen, without motion, to live only when looked upon, and remain idle otherwise...

But I am not completely frigid and frozen. I may not lust for gropings and fondlings and passionate kisses... although they are nice, they do not rule the world, much as some of the other crewmen might think so. But I can feel alone... and although the occasional flurry of kisses raises my heart for an evening, it sinks lower and lower each night I foolishly prepare myself to smile and greet you, only to find out that again, you aren't there...

Perhaps I am unworthy of love, for I cannot fully comprehend it... or perhaps I simply cannot grasp the magnitude of the way you are... or perhaps, I am simply not meant to be your love. Whatever it is, Kimble... I cannot continue destroying myself this way. Even my friends think I am mad for simply having continued with this farcical life so long, for believing...

I am sure that you will find love, or lust, or something in life... and I am unsure that I will. But it doesn't matter anymore... I am sure that you will attempt to woo and convince me (while claiming that you're unworthy of my affections) the next time we meet, or seek vengeance, or attempt to kill yourself, or simply shrug and go on with life... so be it. It won't matter, Kimble... I can't go working myself up, then letting myself down again, and again, and again.

Goodbye, Kimble... may we meet again, and someday, perhaps, maybe we can speak as friends... or fight as enemies. I don't know.

-- Mekista Tinkerfingers

Notes to Self:

Shawna ---

1. Find more boring people to interact with, or become more publicly weird.

2. Send information disk to Angel Wing for records; find out more about the culture. Lucensia appears to be the name of their city... but are there more? Who the hell is Shinari, and did a catfight between her and someone named Nitari cause the annihilation of two worlds full of life? (That'd beat the Eioan record of one entire planet.)

3. At some point, convince Mekista to wear a strongly alcohol-based perfume, and watch the fun.

Mekista ---

1. Finally let out all the deflated moments of rage. Kimble just can't stay still!

2. Make sure that I can still teleport to the ship, so if the crew does go completely insane, I can grab May and run before everyone starts chainsaw fighting.

3. Forgot -- need to ask Novan if Ministress (what a title!) of Functionals can survey the ship itself. Personally, I feel a bit edgy letting people I just met today handle the hardware. Yes, I know, "I'm sure Kimble said that too."

4. Make sure Will's alright. And doesn't go homicidal instead of suicidal. Barring that, see note 2.

5. Remember to bring a mana gun next trip.

6. Remember to check its charge before leaving the ship.

7. Remember to shoot Kimble to test it. If he wakes up, it works. If not, charge it and test again.

8. Remember to avoid local alcoholic beverages. Strawberry mead for a reason, darnit.

Hortense ---

Sleep seems to be essential to humans. I'm not sure I need to sleep, but I suppose I should attempt it at least once. The concept is rather strange, though... "I am going to voluntarily lose consciousness, unable to move, act, or sense my environment, for several hours."

Remember not to let other people eat my berries. I think they're poisonous to humans.

Zane ---

Remind Nef to wash off makeup.

Chris ---

If Dad ever is holding a lipstick tube, and asks me to come over, run. Immediately.

Oswald ---

Nef is a f'cking girl with male reproductive organs. That's why he enjoyed being a female tarn.

Aus, the mun ---

Do murder mystery stuff.
Pick up brain.
Prepare for armageddon.
Mun ---

Ye gods. I need to work on more adventure stuff... heh, then again, I have an inch-thick pile of ARC notes in my clipboard that need transcribing too.

Tanya ---

Terry is so sweet, and kind. It's too bad his employers in Avel'Nikash are so terribly mean. I guess that people who work for other people have to take what they can get, in all walks of life. Still... he is not created for a master, he should not be treated in such a way. We went out this evening to see an elven singing choir, and a leupak singer... the music was so beautiful, I started to cry for some reason in the middle of it. I'm not sure why... I don't understand it. Terry didn't notice, I hope... he would've thought I was upset, I'm sure.

Alex Legarro ---

Hey, hey. Out of reclusion and into action... well, almost. We were just checking into the Black Rose Inn and enjoying a nice supper when we heard a report of a crypt problem - but it didn't seem like the three people really concerned with the problem were going to have much problems (a pyrokineticist and two angels should reasonably be able to blast an average crypt's denizens, after all), so we returned to the inn after seeing them safely through the threshold. All Things Dead and Rotting sounds like Gareth's idea of a child's playpen - we're going to have a look at it tomorrow.

Ari ---

I would just like all of you to know zhat zhe winged elves are just as bouncy in bed as in the common room. Heh heh heh.

Daron ---

I don't wanna be a cook at the inn and socialize and stuff... but Shidi and Arc say I need to, or else I'll turn into a completely dependent something or other... -=sniff=-

Mekista ---

For the record...

Yes, Finn's sort of cute. In a 'jaunty, usually watching your arse' sort of manner. He's like an elven Kimble. The only thing he really has going for him is repeated presence. Which, granted, is a factor I must account for, but... ah, well. I suppose it's stupid of me to be swayed by things... well... I suppose I'll make this simple, and just list all of the potentials, as Novan would put them... Now if only Novan would get it through his skull.

Kimble:
Good: Interested, intelligent, excellent artist, very generous.
Bad: Frequently missing, mostly thinks of sex, incredibly boring when involved in a technical conversation, poisoned by alcohol, drunk on citrus.

Finn:
Good: Similar species, amusing, friendly, tends to be about frequently.
Bad: Mostly thinks of sex, constant flirt, hard to talk to without ending up in a conversation about his chance of getting me naked.

Mayhem:
Good: Excellent friend, same species, matching sense of humor.
Bad: Not a lesbian, not single, not interested, not looking. Get it, you perverts?

Will:
Good: Quiet, sweet, friendly.
Bad: Clingy, depressive, self-esteem that makes Nef look strong-willed.

... you know, I think I should just not date anyone, and simply engage in solo sex for the rest of my life. It would certainly make things easier. It doesn't help that everyone from mortals to muns is interested in influencing matters... even Destiny seems to have it in for me.

Shawna ---

You know... aside from the fact that our new passenger thinks this outfit makes me look like an exotic dancer (where on Nexus did -that- come from?) this has been a rather enjoyable trip. Talk about getting away from it all - it's hard to get much farther.

Mirri ---

I think I owe Nef an apology. I'm not sure, but I may have attempted to severely injure him while I was, ah, not myself. Camille is very happy now that my thinking is clear, and I'm not confusing her for my owner or anything. That in itself was rather bizarre... memories overlapping and making one large muddle puddle. Supposedly, my brain has healed, but I still have difficulty forming a telepathic thought... it will just take more time, I suppose. I am glad, however, that my spear was returned... though none of my other equipment ever turned up again, it can be easily replaced. That spear, however, is a very important gift to me... I'm not sure who brought it back, though. I must have been asleep when it was returned.

Omar ---

You know... ti's funny to watch a prissy little noble boy gut a worm and go fishing. It's even funnier to watch him talk about splitting a person's skull in half and splattering her brains everywhere. And y'know - Malta's one hell of a girl. And I'm not saying that just because of what we did in the restaurant restroom, either.

Freddy ---

Belinda is such a lovely, kind, sweet girl - she's staying at my place now. It's not much, I know, but we're happy. It's such a wonderful thing to be happy... deciding to put up with the inane fuzzy pink man was the best bad decision I ever made.
Mirri / Tasha --

If only things would become more clear
Than the jumble that is troubling
Me, I don't know which I am,
Or if I'm someone else...

Franco --

Ahhh, honeymoon vacations rock.

... what? They do.

Smedley --

It's so quiet around here... even with the other pets.





I almost miss them.

Shawna --

I wonder sometimes... am I nothing more than a tool of death and pain? Sometimes I can do great things... why is it that I cannot be happy as well? Rico hates my world, my life... and in some ways, I frighten him, as in some ways, I frighten or upset everyone. Perhaps I am not paranoid... perhaps I am slightly mad. I don't know anymore.

Zane --

Nefi is so sweet... now if he'd just learn to keep a better eye on his friends and creatures. We get new house lurkers so frequently, I can't remember their names... so I just smile and try my best. I had a strange dream last night, of a man that looked like Harry, only sort of sickly... and he was talking to this other person, only when he blinked, for a second it seemed like his eyes looked lizardly... and then they were back to normal. They were talking about fishing, of all things... perhaps I should make fish for dinner tonight.

Joshua --

I want to be a bard when I grow up. But first I'm gonna learn to read.