|Dream For Me
Author: Hamandcheeseisation PM
As easily as she had slipped into unconsciousness, her dream slipped into a nightmare. No. Not again. Please, not again.Rated: Fiction T - English - Suspense/Supernatural - Chapters: 6 - Words: 13,813 - Follows: 1 - Updated: 12-29-12 - Published: 10-27-12 - id: 3069264
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
It was interesting how Anna didn't answer my question. It was also interesting that I had not seen a trace of her parents, except having to wear her dad's clothes. I shrugged it off, though, this pasta was too good. I didn't know how I was able to make pasta taste this good – it was usually bland and dry – but only because I was making it for Dad.
I wondered how he was, as I munched on the pasta. Probably still sitting in front of the television, not caring if I was alive or dead. Probably hoping I was dead.
When I looked up from my meal, I noticed that Anna was looking at me thoughtfully.
"You still never told me why I'm not safe, or how you got a motorbike."
For a moment, I almost thought of telling her everything. I thought better, though.
"You're just not safe. And the motorbike was a present."
"A present? You're one rich kid."
I took another bite and didn't respond. Rich kid? I wish. There were a lot of things I wished for which I couldn't have. There were also a lot of things I regretted extremely, like yesterday.
As the silence continued, I thought about yesterday. I was slightly disappointed – my dramatic entrance was completely ignored. That wasn't the main thing, though.
I should never have taken that black book.
In a way, it was a good thing. In many more ways, it wasn't.
Once I had been able to decipher the spidery handwriting, the book seemed much more sinister than it was before.
The cover wasn't labelled and the only things that marked the first page were a few words – Property of Michael Rivera. I took that to be Anna's father. The second page had even less on it. It was a dedication –
I turned the page and began to read.
It was cold. He shivered in his lab coat, his gloved hands quivering. He couldn't drop this, though. He was so close – so close! – To his goal. The tweezers in his left hand held a strange plant. His right hand held a teaspoon of white crystals. The beaker on the table contained clear plasma which bubbled gently.
He was at a loss. The two last ingredients, capable of either improving humankind, or destroying it.
So many experiments had been done and it was taking its toll on the man. The pupils of his eyes had jagged edges from experimenting on himself. Dark rings circled his eyes, from lack of sleep. His hair jutted up in all directions, looking ruffled and windswept. His coat was torn and tattered and there were burn marks and holes on several places on it.
His lips were dry and cracked and he momentarily licked them, blowing slightly. The plant swayed gently. He swore under his breath.
His eyes watered. Placing the white crystals and the plant down on opposite sides of the table, he hung his head, exhaling loudly. Hanging up the burnt white coat, he sighed and exited the attic once again.
There was silence, for a while.
Soon, footsteps approached the attic again.
Softly, the door swung open, revealing a woman of about thirty. She looked considerably younger than the man, but the crease between her brows and the sad downturn of her eyes showed her situation.
She looked from left to right, chewing on her lip.
She stepped into the room and walked slowly around its perimeter. She trailed her fingers on the desks, her bare feet padding on the floorboards.
She lifted her fingers from the table and, raising her fingers to eye level, she noticed a strange residue on it. Her brows furrowed and she cautiously brought it to her lips, licking it.
It was sweet – sugar.
She looked around the room and seeing a plant, used it to gently brush the sugar crystals off. The plant gave off a rough smell, an odour that she had smelled in her brother's house, the odour which emanated from his cigarettes, the odour which was the reason why she never wanted to see him again.
She dropped the plant, grimacing and sighing, then walked out of the room. The door shut as softly as it was opened.
In the room, a beaker was glowing.
A plant and white crystals were sinking slowly into what used to be clear plasma. A soft light pulsed from the plasma as the plant and white crystals were consumed. The sides of the beaker cracked slowly and the plasma began to seep through the sides.
The door was opening again.
A man with windswept hair, jagged eyes and a tired gait walked through. He turned to see the broken beaker and his eyes widened.
In vain, he ran to the beaker and attempted to gather up the plasma with tweezers. It dripped from the metal. Growling, he threw the tweezers away and reached to scoop the plasma up with his hands.
As soon as the plasma touched his hand, a shock travelled through it. A shout rang out from the attic of that house, before it all was silent.
A small girl and a young woman of about thirty slammed open the door and frowned to see the man smiling eerily at them.
"M-Maria," he had said. His voice was robotic and stuttered. "I-I-I'm fine. Don't w-worry about me."
Plasma started seeping from his pores and slithered over to Maria. She let out a scream when it touched her. Michael was laying onto the floor after collapsing and was looking around the room with disturbed eyes.
The small girl was frozen in fear.
Suddenly, Maria jerked up. "A-A-Anna dear, come to mommy!" She held her arms out and the small girl squealed, hopping backwards and away from her mother.
Maria faltered for a moment.
Then, she lunged.
The little girl fled.
The book didn't have much in it, just a short, jutted scene from Michael's perspective and some notes on something about plasma and dreams. I wasn't very good at science, but I knew basic properties and Michael had written down why it was added to something or other. I didn't even read much of it, I just skimmed through it. I'd have the chance to read it later, anyway.
What I did pick up, though, was some pretty creepy stuff. Things about a mixture, and even more about dreams. What the mixture was for, effects and aftereffects. Which, in fact, were dreams.
Anna was looking at me quizzically from over the table and I smiled weakly at her.
Her brows creased slightly. I smiled wider. She shook her head and I blurted something out before I could think about it.
"Anything weird happen lately? I don't know, dreams or something?"
Her eyes widened slightly. "Well, yeah. I've been having dreams."
My heart thudded in my chest. "Yeah? What about?"
Oh, you know, just the usual plasma-ghost-taking-over-your-body kind of thing.
Sometimes I really didn't trust my brain.
Instead, I decided to say something more ambiguous. "Creepy stuff."
"Yeah. White everywhere and things like that."
"Dream of anyone in particular?" His eyes darkened slightly.
I nodded, but I wouldn't divulge. He'd get it out of me eventually anyway, so there wasn't anything I could do. Besides, how weird would it sound if I said I dreamed of him before I met him? I'd be some kind of maniac, or future-teller.
"All right then."
"Why the sudden interest?"
He shrugged a shoulder. "I don't know. Things have been just strange lately."
It was silent. Of course, things have been strange. But how did he know that I've been dreaming?
It was too late to deny it now. Max was looking at me with worried eyes. All of a sudden, he spoke.
"Hey Anna, do you think I could explore your house?"
I was taken aback.
"I won't pry into anyone's rooms, of course, I just want to explore a little. Be a kid again. You know."
"Actually, I don't. But feel free to walk around, just stay out of my room and I think that's about it." Were there any rooms I needed to warn him about?
"Thanks. See you later, I'm probably going to set up fort in another room or something."
"Sure, sure." I wasn't really paying attention to what he was saying. "I'll clean up the dishes."
"Thanks!" His grin emerged again and he turned away to dash for the staircase.
"Wait, Max." He paused and waited. "Don't you have to go home? Do your parents know you're here?"
"I don't have to go home, no." He shrugged. "Dad doesn't really care and mom's dead."
That was abrupt.
He left the kitchen and soon I heard the creaking of the staircase.
I didn't mean to blurt that out. And now the cycle will start again – she'll ask me about how it happened, then apologise and says that she hopes that it'll get better. Fun.
Each step I took prompted the staircase to creak and groan. It would be hell if you wanted to run away from here.
Suddenly, something jolted through me and I couldn't move. The world turned white and I groaned. Somehow, I thought that this would be worse than when I lost my glasses.
A weirdly transparent man was bounding down the staircase and a white coat billowed out from behind him, covered in burn marks and holes. I reached out to him and my fingers grasped at his arm, slipping through them. A strangely cool gust of air hit me when one of his flailing arms would have smacked me in the face.
A low growling emanated from higher up. I turned my head and, at the top of the staircase, a transparent woman with curly black hair was leaping from another room on the upper floor. As she ran down the staircase, she turned her head and I caught a glimpse of Anna. The same eyes and facial structure.
The irises of her eyes had a jagged edge and she had a crazed look to her.
She continued on chasing the man and they both disappeared through a wall.
Which was rather alarming, yes.
Was I seeing ghosts?
Another person peeked from the side of the staircase. A small transparent girl, with eyes wide and frightened. Her hair had a choppy cut.
She tiptoed down the staircase, holding onto the banisters to help with each step. She bit her lip, looking around, before dashing back up. I followed her.
Small children have the energy that we, older people, don't.
She dashed around from room to room, before stopping in front of what looked like a closet. She looked from left to right again and then opened the door which creaked like everything else in this house. I stepped in when she did, despite the uncomfortably cool feeling around my legs.
There was a staircase in the closet.
It probably didn't even lead to an imaginary fantasy world.
This staircase seemed relatively new, as it didn't really creak as much as everything else did. The little girl went up step by step, clutching at the walls. A sharp turn to the right and I almost stumbled into the wall. There was another right, before a final door.
I opened the door.
As I did, the world distorted and the girl disappeared.
The hinges of the door moaned after not being used for so long.
Inside, the room was surprisingly large. There were several wooden tables arranged around the room, with yellowing papers and several other things scattered on them.
It vaguely resembled one of the science labs at school. Beakers and Bunsen burners were on one table, a sink was tucked discreetly to the side. Chemicals were still bubbling gently in test tubes. Dying plants hung from the ceiling, and a tiny window let in a small amount of light. Ingredients to what would have been a masterpiece, I would've thought, were still all around the room.
The most curious aspect of this entire situation, apart from the fact that Anna had a science laboratory for an attic, was the broken beaker.
In the centre of the room, a beaker was shattered into large pieces of glass and tiny shards. It emanated a dull glow and the rug under it still had an odd stain, as if a liquid had been spilled there and not cleaned up properly. How many years had it been since this room had last been opened?
Avoiding the glass, I walked around the tables and looked for an answer. The spidery handwriting from the book danced across the pages in the room, giving each page a more menacing feature.
Squinting, I tried to decipher the writing as I had done with the book.
'Properties of the Tabernanthe iboga plant:'
Frowning, I tried to continue reading. The writing became smaller and smaller, before becoming mere dots.
I took my glasses off and rubbed my eyes furiously, but it didn't help at all. I'd need a microscope to read half of it.
Sighing, I continued around the room, trying to figure out what else I could find as clues to how long ago this was.
Seriously, didn't a real scientist always date his notes?
Each set of notes had some rather strange sets of properties on them. Some were about various psychedelic plants – the properties of which I had learnt about from my father, of all people.
Other notes had the spidery handwriting scrawled across them so messily that it was impossible for me to read.
I gave up there, and looked around to see if there were other clues.
Suddenly, there was a knocking on the door. The knocking was stuttered, and not constant. Cautiously, I got down on my knees and crawled towards one of the corners of the room. A potted plant was sitting in just the right place and I sat behind it, waiting.
A frantic voice came from the other side of the door. "Max? Max! Where are you?!"
Anna. Anna was outside.
"Max! Please, where are you? People are here, and we have to go!"