New fic that I've been working on and am determined to finish! Filled with twists and turns just for you! Trust me this is not your average fic.

Sleep, those little slices of death, how I loathe them. - Edgar Allen Poe

Sandman-

Her grey eyes widened in a panic as she helplessly scanned the wooden terrain, searching for anything familiar. A shiver went up her spine and she pulled her thin sweater closer to her body although she wasn't so sure the shiver was from the cold. Despite the ice and snow all around her she got the feeling that it almost never snowed here. The sparse woods felt ethereal and ominous even in the daylight. Her breath came out in hot puffs before her face as the snow crunched beneath her black boots. She was hopelessly lost. She would have gone back the way she came but she didn't know which way that was and the fact that she was slowly freezing to death was apparent. Her hands had lost all feeling and it was all she could do to keep her feet moving, as she couldn't feel them either. A howling sounded somewhere in the distance and she gasped, whirling around in a panic. Silence. Her eyes dart frightfully about as she clutched the front of her sweater in desperation. Her heart thumped hard in her chest until she could hear it ringing in her ears. Breaths coming quickly, until she was gulping down ice cold air.

"Hello?!" Even to her ears her voice sounded foreign and strange. Her throat so scratched and sore that it hurt. The echo bounced around the empty space. Something near growled to her left and she turned only to find her footprints and snow. "Somebody?!" Panic rang out in her high pitched pleading voice. There was only silence. Choking back tears she pressed on against a harsh phantom wind that seemed to spring up out of nowhere. Her eyes widened as she felt more than saw the figure spring up behind her like some great predator. She slowly turned to face him, trying to level her breathing. He had his back turned to her; his thin brown cloak covered his head and trailed down to stop just above the snow. He was bundled heavily against the cold, seemingly wearing multiple layers of rags over rags. His hands were bandaged up in cloth to keep the frost bite out. Like a statue he stayed perfectly still and silent. The new figure did not bring relief or comfort, if anything it made her more afraid. Steps faltering, she approached him with caution.

"Hello?" he didn't answer her. Didn't even twitch. She reached a shaky hand out to touch his shoulder and he whirled around to face her before she made contact. His eyes were gone and his throat had been torn out and hung around his neck in fleshy rags. The two empty sockets bored into her, the blood covering his pale face and neck contrasting deeply against the scenery. Stumbling back in fear and disgust she threw her hands over her mouth to keep from throwing up. His white wind chapped lips moved in a way that was almost reminiscent of a fish gasping for air and his voice was raspy.

"Run. You're next."

Ryan shot up from her bed as her scream tore out of her throat, clutching her arms around herself in desperation. Her skin was cold and clammy to the touch. It's okay. It's okay… it's not real. Sitting in the darkness, she calmed her breathing from deep rasping gulps of air to the normal although slightly elevated inhalations and exhalations before gathering her extremities close to her body. Deep sobs shook her as she fisted her hands in her hair. Damn these nightmares. She hadn't had a decent night's sleep in weeks. Her grades were slipping. Her sanity was slipping. She was so sick of taking all these stupid pills and going through the counseling sessions and tests. Nothing could stop them. Every night she tried to sleep she always woke up the same. Drenched in sweat. Screaming. Feeling secure enough to tip toe out of bed she threw the damp sheets off of her legs and tumbled out of bed. She grabbed onto the edge of her dresser for balance as her legs slumped underneath her. They felt weak under the weight of her body. She grit her teeth, feeling totally disgusted with herself. She hated feeling helpless and weak.

Ryan forced her feet underneath her and stood up. Dawn was slowly peaking through her window casting shadows on everything. Her eyes managed to make out the blaring red 5:15am from her alarm clock. Record. She managed to sleep for 45 minutes more than the night before. Her gaze fell to the image of herself the mirror over her dresser displayed. Her wavy, back length red hair was tangled and stuck out at all angles, sticking to her sweaty skin. Her grey eyes had dark circles lining beneath them. She glared at herself. "You are a mess." She stated before grabbing a brush and yanking it through the knotted chaos her hair had become. She had a session in one hour, class in two and as much as she hated them both it was not in her plans to be late for either one. That was one benefit to not getting enough sleep; she came off as being extremely punctual. She twisted her hair into a messy bun before making her way downstairs. Pausing on the fourth step from the bottom she felt around the wall for the light switch. She never went into any completely dark area. Her dreams left her more than paranoid. Once the lights came on she continued down to the kitchen where the coffee machine had the coffee already percolating and inhaled the rich hazelnut scent. That's what she needed, something to calm her nerves.


Ryan sat smugly on Dr. Amirez' cream colored couch as they gave each other the customary pre-session stare down. She crossed her legs at the ankles, smoothing her dark green pencil straight skirt in her lap. She noticed the good doctor's gaze flit to the thermos of coffee that sat next to her feet on the floor. She wasn't supposed to have any caffeine but she proudly sported the caffeinated nectar earning her a chiding glance. Ryan just smiled politely as the blonde took off her glasses and massaged her temples as if to alleviate a headache.

"So you've stopped taking your prescriptions. Care to tell me why, Miss Parks?" by her tone of voice Ryan could tell she was one of many thorns in her psychiatrist's sides. The feeling was completely mutual. The redhead pursed her lips in slight annoyance before sighing.

"I haven't stopped taking them. The vitamins and the antidepressant I've been taking religiously." Dr. Amirez's brown eyes fixed on her in expectation.

"And the Daitemine?"

"I'm not taking that anymore." She stated nonchalantly. The doctor thumped her clipboard gently against her knee as she lifted an eyebrow at her client.

"Really? I'm pretty sure I didn't tell you to cease taking it, so why have you stopped?" Ryan grit her teeth and unconsciously fisted her hands in her skirt. Daitemine was an experimental sleep aid they put her on that was supposed to put her and keep her in REM sleep so her body could get its needed rest. She'd stopped taking it about a week ago. It worked too damn well for her taste. If there was anything more terrifying than her nightmares it was being trapped in them.

"Because I just don't want to. I don't like taking it." The fact that she sounded like a spoiled little kid wasn't lost on her. Dr. Amirez leaned back in her beige chair and gave her a stern look. That look meant there was a lecture coming on and Ryan hated being lectured. It always made her feel less her twenty two years and more like five.

"Look, Ms. Parks, were trying our best to help you with this issue you're having but we can't help you unless you let us. By not taking all of your medication you are treading on very thin ice-" Ryan averted her gaze and Dr. Amirez switched topics with a sigh.

"How's school coming along? Are you making good marks?" The redhead visibly relaxed at this question. School was a safe topic. School she could talk about. Ryan was in her third year of law school. Ever since her night frights had started up her grades had been slowly slipping down the tube and now she was endanger of losing her scholarship.

"School's the same. My grades are stabilizing. I'm not failing but I'm still not acing anything either." There was the silent scrawling of pen on paper as the psychiatrist jot down something in her legal pad.

"Made any new friends? Any new love interests?"

"No." Ryan's answer was a little too blunt. She never was one for patience when it came to others. She had very few friends and even less romantic interests in her life. She was more determined to occupy her time with more worthwhile things, like school work. Being that she mostly kept to herself she was mostly pegged as being too tightly wound, or a cold stuck up bitch. Dr. Amirez was most concerned. She gave her client an annoyed glance, pen pausing in mid-decent.

"Did you even put forth any effort to associate with your peers?" The muscle in Ryan's jaw flexed as she clamped her jaw shut. Put forth effort? So she was required to lower herself to get people in her class to like her or notice her? It would be a cold day in hell…

"No." she responded truthfully. The doctor put her glasses back on her face and gave her client a pointed glare. It was more than apparent that Ryan wasn't going to do anything to better her situation so she swallowed the rant that was itching at her throat and, yet again, changed the subject.

"Tell me about the nightmares you've had recently." She leaned over and hit the record button on her tape player while Ryan shifted awkwardly in her seat. Talking about her dreams made her feel uncomfortable. She realized how crazy she sounded when she did.

"He was there again." Her voice sounded small even to her. Ever since her nightmares started there was always a common thread between them. The eyeless man- as she had dubbed him. Even though he was a reoccurring factor in her dreams, he never once showed his eyes. She didn't even know what color they were. They were always covered with bandages, a hood, sunglasses or completely gouged out.

"His eyes and throat had been ripped out." She continued with a shudder.

"The under laying brutality in all these episodes disturbs me, Ryan. Did you have some past violent experience?"

"No," her voice bellied her annoyance, "My father was a respected senator. No one touched me. No one did anything violent or obscene in front of me. I grew up normal and healthy- physically, mentally, and emotionally." The psychiatrist ignored the chill in her tone and continued her interrogation.

"Have you ever responded to him?"

"What?" Ryan blinked indignantly while the doctor scribbled down more notes before glancing up at her.

"You know, the man in your nightmares, talk to him. Ask him his name or why he always hides his eyes." Ryan shook her head silently at that.

"Why don't you give it a try? Ask him his name and see what he says. It'll be an exercise of sorts. We can discuss it at your next session." Ryan leaned forward in her seat incredulously.

"That guy, thing- whatever he is, scares the fuck out of me and you want me to talk to him?!" her pointed words did little to hide the panic that underlined them. Dr. Amirez met her gaze with a half smile.

"Yes. The saying 'face your fears and your fears will disappear' isn't just a saying. It actually works and who knows, Ms. Parks, there might not be much to fear after all." The blonde handed Ryan a yellow check out sheet after turning off her tape player.

"Schedule an appointment for next week. By then I expect you to have at least made some effort at making friends at school. You really need to help us out here, Ryan. Things won't get better unless you try." The red head rolled her eyes at that sentiment before standing up and taking the paper from her psychiatrist and starting for the door. She only had twenty minutes to get to class and she still had to beat traffic. "And Ryan," Dr. Amirez stopped her on her way out and they locked gazes, "start taking your Daitamine again. You need it in order to get over these nightmares."


Ryan glared at her reflection in the restroom mirror. Even with the slabs of concealer she'd just put on the now slightly faint circles still stood out blatantly. She made a sound of utter disgust at herself as she stuffed her makeup bag back into her purse. So what if everyone could see the shining trophy of insomnia hanging under her grey eyes? Since when did she start caring what these people thought? Ryan could see right through her so called peers and their false intentions and kind words. To her everyone here was fake. They pretended to be studious. They pretended to have a just cause for studying law. They pretended they wanted to change the world. She hated people who hid what they really were. It was underhanded and wrong. It was cowardly and Ryan had no love of cowards either. The people in her classes pranced around wielding the almighty sword of justice and the sheath of the system like they were the law incarnate if only to get the cash to put the down payment on their new jag. And they had the nerve to get offended if you approached them on it, throwing out all kinds of unstable righteous reasons for their career choice. If you're just in it for the money, be in it for the money and don't be ashamed of it, she thought to herself.

After another look in the mirror she promptly turned on the faucet and began to rinse off all the makeup she had applied. Seeing that the dark circles shone brighter than ever, she dried her face, slung her purse over her shoulder before she walked out of the bathroom. Walking down the hall she pushed her way past its occupants and into her first class.

Quite to her chagrin she wasn't the first to arrive. Pausing from unpacking his bag, Spencer O'Connor lifted his head to gaze at her sharply with his piercing blue eyes. She glared back at him as she made her way to her seat.

"Jesus! What happened to you, Parks?! You look like hell." He swept his gaze over her face, wincing at the circles under her eyes. Gritting her teeth she sat down in her chair and tried her best to ignore him. Spencer was one of those people who, she was sure, lacked the brain to mouth filter most people utilized.

"Thanks for pointing that out." She responded dryly. As if she didn't know she looked like the dead. She was never particularly fond of the dark haired young man. He was intelligent enough and yet he still seemed to hold a vague element of stupidity about him. Lord only knew how he got into this school. He shot her a glare at the insult before seating himself. Ryan's gaze shifted to her empty Starbucks cup in yearning. Four cups of coffee and she still felt like she was going to pass out at any given moment. That's what one got for boycotting sleep, she supposed.

"So what?" Spencer interrupted the comfortable silence that had formed between them, "You get into a fight or something?" She sent him a glare that would cut diamonds. Why was this idiot still talking? Like she would engage in something that lowly? Fighting was so beneath her. Like anyone would challenge her anyway. Not unless they had a death wish.

"No." The curt one syllable word belied her impatience with him and the fact that she wanted him to stop talking. Obviously he didn't catch that hint.

"But you've got those bruises under your eyes. It looks like someone hit-" She whirled around to hit him with another of her murderous glares.

"It's called insomnia, you ass. Look. It. Up." Her hissed words were enough to silence his tongue. They spent the remainder of their pre-class time in an angry silence. Obviously he thought her something of a bitch for so crassly chewing into him. She could care less. The class quickly filled as more and more students arrived and pulled out their legal pads, pens and tape recorders.

Professor Giron strolled into the class room and swung his brown leather briefcase onto his desk. Ryan had to wince at his atrocious outfit. She was never a fashionista by any means but she had a brief idea of color coordination and a sense of professional style. Mr. Giron wouldn't know style if it walked up to him in heels and slit his throat. He adjusted his solid dark blue tie that completely clashed with his red plaid shirt and… brown corduroys?! What the hell was he thinking? Before popping his case open and starting the lesson.

"Who can tell me the basis of the 'Carlill vs. Carbolic Smoke ball Co.' case?" He looked around but the class was silent save for a few coughs here and there.

"Anyone?" he was again exuberantly greeted with silence. Ryan's eyes shifted uncomfortably around the class before she raised her hand and he acknowledged it with a nod.

"Do you honestly expect us to know that? That case went to court in nineteenth century England." He gave her a curious grin, as if he didn't expect her to comment much less know what the hell he was talking about.

"Very good, Miss Parks, and yes this is something you're required to know. All of you… because this was one of the most famous cases on contract formation, which is our next topic of discussion and that leads us to…" He scrawled three words on the whiteboard before turning back to the class. "Offer and Acceptance. Everyone turn to page 113 in your Contract Law text books and let's talk about contract requirements…"

She didn't know if it had been an hour or only a few minutes into his lecture when her head started to droop against her chest and her pen started to slip from her fingers. As much as she fought to she couldn't keep her eyes open…


Even though it was dark this time the wind still held the chill from her pervious dream. Ryan walked the damp streets of an abandoned city, save for the unnerving buzzing of street lights flickering, everything was quiet. Eerily quiet. A shiver went down her spine. She always ended up in places like this. Empty, dead places. In the back of her mind she wondered why she feared them so. 'Because there's no one to hear you scream…' The thought shot through her mind like a bullet and she instinctively rubbed her arms for warmth as she picked up the pace, eyes darting about warily. Her heels clicked abnormally loud on the asphalt and she shuddered at the utter silence. The road ended abruptly and Ryan found herself facing a brick wall. Chained to the center of this wall, with heavy iron chains, was a man's corpse. She inwardly winced at the blue black bruises and deep bites and cuts that littered his pale body. The kill was fresh and the blood that ran from his wounds was in startling contrast to his flesh. Like crimson paint on a fresh white canvas. His only article of clothing was a pair of ripped and clawed black leather pants that covered his lower half. Her grey eyes roamed over his muscled body and chiseled features before she mentally kicked herself for checking out a dead man. Her gaze was pulled up to his face. His chin rested on his chest, light brown hair falling into his eyes, obscuring them from view. Biting her lip nervously, Ryan steeled herself, lifted a shaky hand and pushed his hair away from his eyes. There was a cloth bandage covering them. 'Surprise, surprise.' She thought bitterly as a searing calm overtook her.

The man hadn't moved to grab her or anything like in her pervious nightmares. Maybe he was really dead after all. Or maybe the Daitamine started working spontaneously. Feeling a little braver she moved to remove the bandage only to find that only the whites of his eyes showed. He had no pupil or iris. Ryan clenched the bandage in her fist as she growled in frustration.

"You, sick bastard!" she seethed, glaring at the corpse, "What in the hell is so important that you have to hide your eyes from me, huh? What are you, afraid?" Taking a step back she ran a hand through her loose red waves before shaking her head. "Jesus, Ryan, you're yelling at a dead guy! Have you lost it or what?" She reached down to brush away something that was itching at her thigh only to have her fingers sink deep into soft sand.

"What in…" She looked down to find that her lower half was encased in sand to the mid-thigh. A deep menacing chuckle reverberated through the silence as fear tore through her. Though the sound was omnipresent, it was more focused around the man on the wall.

"Well, well, well. Aren't we bold?" the voice was smooth and full of dark amusement. A shiver went down Ryan's spine and the sand constricted tightly around her legs as panic set in. The corpse's mouth twisted into a sick grin as he started pulling the restricting chains on him out of the wall, freeing himself. Ryan was sucking down fresh air in an attempt to calm herself and her pounding heartbeat as she watched with wide eyes. His bare feet hit the cold ground and he looked down to pin her with his empty white stare, cocking his head to the side. Aware that she couldn't run or force herself to wake up, Ryan glared at the man, trembling in fear and anger. She forced words through her clenched teeth.

"You stay out of my dreams and quit fucking with my head." The man didn't seem threatened in the least. His grin grew wider, showing off his abnormally long and sharpened canines, as he leaned in and inhaled her scent. She couldn't fight the whimper that escaped her throat at having him so close. He smelled of something dark and hot. Spicy.

"You smell so deliciously of fear." He whispered in her ear. Her stomach was twisting in knots as her heart drummed in her chest. She leaned her body away from him and he chuckled. "Stay away from me!" Panic laced her voice making it sound strangled. He reached out and grabbed a fistful of her red hair, none to gently pulling her closer. Ryan went to scream but he smothered the sound with his other hand.

"Come now, I thought you were curious." She struggled against his hold, trying to pry his large hand off her mouth with her smaller ones, to no avail. She viciously sunk her teeth into the flesh of his palm. The bastard actually had the gall to moan in pleasure before sucking in a breath.

"Feisty…I like that." At that Ryan started swinging at him, desperate to get away from this psycho. He only laughed at her attempt before sand rose up to capture her wrists and hold them fast.

"That's a good girl." He cooed while stroking her hair, "don't you want to see?" His grin widened along with Ryan's eyes as his eyeballs rolled forward with a sick squishing and cracking sound. A scream lodged itself in her throat as her stomach turned in her gut. His eyes were green. Unnaturally green, they glowed in the darkness. She could make out the little black striations around his irises that let her know it was his natural eye color. They were beautiful and horrifying at the same time. They were the kind of eyes that gave people nightmares…

That realization hit her like a freight train and she struggled harder against the sand that still held her captive. Her brain had barely processed the fact that he wasn't holding her anymore before she started screaming at him.

"Who the hell are you? You demented fuck! Lemme go!!" Her panic stricken words were lined with sobs as they ran together in a jumbled sentence. He just stood there grinning, like her fear was something humorous. The sand encasing her collapsed and she fell to the ground in a sobbing heap. He stood over her, wounds and bruises healed, staring down at her fallen form like some undead god, green eyes glowing.

"You should run now, Ryan." He growled. She probably would have if her legs didn't feel like jelly beneath her. She doubted she could even stand at this point and the fact that he referred to her by name wasn't lost upon her. She scuttled back a few feet before drawing her breath and looking him dead in his captivating green eyes.

"Who are you?" she posed the question again, trying hard to keep her voice from shaking. His eyes narrowed on her as he scowled. His scowl was somehow even scarier than his grin. His voice was harsh and demanding.

"Why?"

Ryan gave him a cautious look. He seemed slightly intimidated by the fact that she was asking after him. His body was like a predator's, poised and ready to strike.

"If you're going to be popping up in my dreams like this I deserve to at least know your name." He stiffened at that before sneering at her.

"You deserve? I don't owe you shit, human." He spat the word 'human' like it was an insult. Curiosity over riding her fear, Ryan pushed herself to her feet to stand before him. "So it's okay to show me your eyes but I ask for your name and you freak?" She said cautiously, tasting each word. His gaze turned to two green slits as he rounded on her, anger almost tangible as he growled causing her to back away warily.

"You already know my name, right? It's only fair. Look, it doesn't even have to be your real name. I just need something to refer to you as other than 'you demented fuck' or 'sick bastard.'"She said holding her hands in front of her in defense. Ryan swore his green eyes lit in something like amusement but it was gone before she had a chance to analyze it, making her doubt she'd seen it at all. He studied her like she was some strange body part floating in a jar of formaldehyde as he drew nearer. Now that he was under one of the streetlights with her she got a clearer picture of the man before her. His shoulder length hair was a remarkable light brown color that was riddled with blonde and even golden strands. His green eyes were no longer glowing but they still were striking. She doubted there was anything that particular color green in existence. He reacted so suddenly that she jumped. Chuckling low and menacingly, he slowly wound his hand around her neck; the grin splitting his face struck her as nothing less that psychotic.

"Your curiosity will be the death of you, little one. All you need to know about me is that I am your worst nightmare." Ryan's limbs felt like lead as his grip tightened with every word he spoke. Her heart pounded in fear as her breathing shallowed into a slight rasping and an ache began to develop behind her eyes as he pressed their foreheads together, forcing her to look into his glowing green orbs. Her head exploded in pain as her eyelids began to slide closed.



"Mrs. Parks?"

Professor Giron's voice was agitated at best as he shook his redheaded student awake. She was slouched in her chair, her textbook turned to the first page he'd announced at the beginning of class. Her eyes fluttered open to reveal a sea of grey, slowly taking in her surroundings before shooting to a sitting position when her eyes landed on her professor's face inches away from her own.

"Professor…" Ryan wasn't used to being caught off guard and she fumbled for something to say to the man in front of her. He gazed exasperated around the empty classroom before fixing his light brown gaze on her.

"Mrs. Parks I encourage my students to get a decent days rest, just not in my class. You are one of my brightest students, Ryan, and you slept through the entire lesson, which is not like you at all." Embarrassed beyond belief she tried to gather her books with as much dignity as she could muster.

"I'm so sorry Professor Giron. It won't happen again, I promise." He sighed before studying her thoroughly. His intense gaze made her squirm in her seat. He held out for her a sheet of paper, which within the first few sentences she realized was the lesson they'd just discussed with her homework assignments written in scrawling script across the bottom. She took it from him silently.

"You look exhausted. Why don't you take the rest of the day off and get some rest? I'll get someone in administrations to bring your work to you. Just come in refreshed and ready to start class Thursday." Ryan's eyes sparked fire as her temper ignited, a reaction her teacher was apparently not prepared for. He stumbled back as she stood up quickly and glared at him.

"I appreciate your concern, professor but I think I'm going to stay and finish my classes. I didn't go into law to be babied by my teachers." Her voice was stern and unquestionable. Mr. Giron's gaze hardened on her.

"Do you really think that you'd get the gist of all your lessons if you went into them tired and mentally unprepared to learn? You'd fall further behind than you already are. Now I'm not trying to be some high and mighty professor-know-it-all and I'm not trying to baby you, I really care about your future and only want what's best for you…" She flinched at his words knowing what he spoke was the truth and she was being irrational but either way she wasn't going to relent. Stuffing the lone sheet of paper in the front pocket of her saddle bag she glanced at her teacher before exiting the classroom.

"See you Thursday, Mr. Giron." She tossed stiffly over her shoulder.

"Thursday, and get some rest already!" he tossed back at her, raking a hand over his full head of curly black hair.

Ryan would never admit how much his last comment stung. Did the whole world have to know that she had a problem sleeping at night? Deciding to take Professor Giron's advice she swiftly navigated her way through the emptying halls to the parking lot where she had left her car. To be honest she was completely exhausted and it was taking way too much effort just to keep her head up. When she got home she fully intended to start taking her Daitamine again per her doctor's instructions. Facing her nightmares, no matter how scary, was preferable to failing pre-law and flushing all the money she spent on tuition and books down the toilet.

As she neared her vehicle she ground her teeth in annoyance. Parked, too closely for comfort, next to her 2006 navy blue Infiniti GX was the usual baby blue Honda Civic. She repressed the urge to sigh as the cars occupant, a short, caramel skinned, African American woman, exited. Her stark black hair was pinned up in a bun, hiding the burgundy highlights underneath. Her light blue suit was pristine, the skirt falling just a few inches short of her knees, and accented by rounded cream pumps.

Ryan didn't realize she was staring until said girl stopped and gave her a look that pretty much read 'what the hell is your problem?' She placed a hand on her hip and looked at Ryan expectantly.

"Hello, how are you doing?" the greeting was more prompt than one would expect; almost like it were a threat and the look she gave her could only be described as cautious and at the same time bold. As if she was daring the red head to try something. Not one to be intimidated and definitely not to be out done Ryan gave her a cool hello back.

The other girl raised an eyebrow at her. "Ryan Speaks." She stated not in the least impressed. The redheaded girl blinked in surprise.

"y-you know who I am?" Her brown eyes glanced at Ryan as if she didn't think much of her.

"Yeah I know who you are, and I'd appreciate it if you didn't park so close to my car too." She shot as she started walking to the double doors, her heels clicking the pavement as she did. Ryan was beside herself. This woman was infuriating! Park so close to her?! Ryan had early classes and she usually got here before Mrs. Baby blue and she had the nerve to blame her for parking close?!

"Excuse me?!" Ryan spluttered, clearly appalled.

"You're excused." The young woman threw over her shoulder before she disappeared through the double doors and into the 815 building. Ryan could only look after her in shock although she had to admire her nerve. There went a woman who didn't care what others thought about her. It was obvious that she had worked her ass off to get in this school and she was going to flaunt it. Shaking her head at the whole situation, she got into her car and started the engine, being extra careful not to scratch the baby blue Civic as she backed out of her parking space.


The dreary emptiness of her house never really hit Ryan until moments like this, when she got home at an earlier hour than usual. It was a large two story house, one of many that her father owned around the US. Usually she got a great deal of pleasure from the privacy the place offered and from having such a large house all to herself but today the loneliness of it settled around her like some invisible fog. She glanced wistfully out of her kitchen window. No doubt her fellow students were out socializing with one another at the campus Y or at a club or bar downtown even in the middle of the school week like this. Deep down Ryan regretted the fact that she didn't have any friends to hang out with. In fact she was completely devoid of a social life.

She would see her classmates laughing and avidly discussing what they had done the night before, the week before. Making plans to hang out again. Chapel Hill was one of the best college towns in America and housed one of the best law schools in the country, one UNC which she was currently attending. And borderline failing…

She glanced down at her completed class and homework from professor Giron's 'Contract Law' class. She'd come straight home intent on getting some rest but ended up deliberately stalling, finding other things to occupy her time so she wouldn't have to go to sleep, despite the fact that she could barely hold her eyes open. She had finished her homework, washed what little dishes were in the sink and set about straightening her already clean house. Pushing herself away from the cherry wood dining room table she carefully picked up the orange medicine bottle on the edge of the table as If she thought it would break. Ryan carefully read the instructions on the label before reading them again. Shaking her head at her antics she mentally chided herself before opening the bottle of Daitamine and taking out one large yellow pill and thoughtlessly downing it with the bottle of water she had been sipping while completing her assignments.

You are being so silly right now. She tossed the now empty water bottle into the trashcan as the image of unnaturally glowing green eyes forced itself in her mind. A shiver ran up her spine and she compelled herself to not shudder. Even when she closed her eyes she could see them, staring hauntingly back from the recesses of her mind. She had no idea why that man scared the daylights out of her. Well not man exactly. He looked human enough but she distinctly remembered him flinging the word at her like it was something disgusting that had fallen into his mouth. Taking a calming deep breath she tried to mentally assess all the things she knew about him.

He obviously had a love of scaring her within an inch of her life. He was defensive and secretive. He knew who she was. He knew just how to freak her out. His eyes were green. His hair was a sandy brown. He was not human. He wasn't all that bad to look at either…

Stop thinking, she mentally commanded herself before her thoughts went down some whirlwind path she didn't even want to consider. Ryan made her way upstairs to her room and started to prepare herself for bed, feeling a little more confident about going to sleep, despite her nightmares. They were only dreams and dreams weren't real. They couldn't hurt you. And now that she had an idea of what she did know questions started to form in the back of her head: What was he, if not human? Why did he keep popping up in her dreams? Why was he hiding his eyes before? Why would he rather remain nameless to her when he already knew her name?

Her eyelids started to droop over her eyes as she climbed into bed even though it was only six o clock in the afternoon and she rarely went to bed this early. It was time for some answers.


There was something off about this dream. It was different from her usual ones. For one it was still warm out. The sun sank slowly over the grass hills, spilling twilight over everything it surveyed. The hip high grasses were a beautiful pale gold in the fading light. Narrowing her eyes, Ryan swept her gaze around the vast fields. There were woods beyond but besides that nothing out of the ordinary. She vaguely expected something to be hunting her in the tall grass, beneath her line vision and did her best to be perfectly still. No wonder she always popped up in places like these. She was freaking herself out.

"Okay Ryan," she breathed while scanning the fields, "You're a smart girl. You've seen all the Jurassic Park movies. Don't go in the forest and watch for movement in the grass..." She took a tentative step forward, hunching over so as to not be seen. She felt really stupid doing this but in her defense, stupid was better than dead.

"What the hell are you doing?" The gruff voice made the red head jump nearly out of her skin as she whirled around to view her favorite homicidal stalker. He was slightly tanner than she remembered and looked completely pissed off, green eyes narrowed at her in suspicion as the last of the sunlight illuminated them. Well that ruled out him being some kind of vampire. Ryan, trying desperately to calm her pounding heart, took a deep breath before speaking.

"Truthfully. I was looking for you and meanwhile trying not to die… or get eaten." She shivered, crossing her arms over her chest. He stiffened at that. Why in the hell would she seek him? There hadn't been anything that he'd done, since they first met, to let her think he would be even mildly sociable with her. He growled low in his throat as he took an intimidating step towards her. She took one back.

"Why?"

"Because where I'm from, getting killed and eaten is bad." She said blatantly. She was a woman on a mission and she'd be damned if she was going to let this man coerce her. He growled again, this one a little more threatening, meant to put the fear of God in her. It was working.

"Why are you looking for me?" he asked slowly, menacingly, as he moved closer.

"I had-" she licked her lips nervously before she peered back up at him, "Questions." He was clenching and unclenching his fists in agitation.

"Questions?" he laughed low in his throat before leaning closer to her face, "You are a piece of work. I'm not your fucking encyclopedia. Take your questions elsewhere." He turned away from her and began walking in the opposite direction. Ryan narrowed her eyes at his retreating form, before rushing to his side.

"Why did you hide your eyes from me at first?" She demanded, "Are you ashamed of them?" Whirling around, he let out an inhuman roar in rage, the color around his pupils going from green to an odd amber gold mix. Ryan toppled over backwards into the grass and glared up at him even though she was beyond frightened and her arms were trembling beneath her.

"Don't you dare roar at me." Her voice wavered, "Do you know what you've cost me? I'm failing my classes. I can't sleep because of you. You owe me an explanation!"

"I owe you nothing." He snarled at her, "Your problems are not mine. Now leave me, before I personally see to it that you don't wake up. Ever." Ryan narrowed her gaze at him and seethed. "You don't scare me, you bastard."

She was lying of course. But she was pissed enough to pull it off. Green eyes glinting, he bared his fangs and hissed at her. Ryan hissed right back at him and he almost looked amused for a second before he turned and stalked off.

"Child!" She taunted after him, "Asshole!"

"Enjoy getting eaten." He grinned psychotically back at her over his shoulder and Ryan paled. She'd been so engrossed with him she hadn't realized that it was so dark out. There was the faintest sound of rustling from the edge of the fields closest to the forest. It could have been the wind...Or it could have been something else. He was just messing with her right? There was no way he'd leave her to get eaten? The rustling became more frantic as Ryan pushed herself up to her feet.

"Wait!" she called as she scrambled after him. Even though it seemed as if he was walking at a normal pace, he was moving rather fast for her. He was already halfway through the grass field when she finally caught up with him, panting, and still having a hard time keeping up. He didn't even so much as look at her as he continued forward. She shot him a glare and he ignored it, keeping his eyes trained ahead in a marked scowl. Ryan didn't know why she was following him, only that he was slightly more familiar than the scenery and it was better to be with a potentially homicidal psycho freak than alone with whatever was waiting in the woods. Tiny lights danced on the edge of the field and as they got closer to its end, Ryan's eyes lit, a row of buildings coming into focus.

"Thank God! Civilization!" The red head breathed in relief. She vaguely wondered if she should be terrified instead of relieved. This was the only time she had ever reached civilization in any of her dreams. The man beside her pushed forward as if she wasn't even there, which irked her to no end. Usually being ignored didn't bother her, in fact she embraced it, but there was something about him that got under her skin in more ways than one. They quickly made their way across the slight paved road and into one of the short structures that served as shelter.

Ryan froze as she entered what seemed to be a bar, behind the man with the glowing green eyes. The building was small but packed and dimly lit. Everyone inside went unnaturally still as soon as she set foot in it; she could feel their eyes burning into her flesh. The air was electrically charged with a maddening excited bloodlust and malice so thick it seemed to choke the air right out of her lungs. She took a fearful step backwards as the man at, what seemed to be, the bar raked her with a hungry stare. Ryan got the strange feeling that everyone here would like nothing more than to rip her to shreds. That or eat her alive…

"Herceg? Miért ugye belép -val egy emberi? Volna ön hozott minket egy ajándék?" Ryan turned to stare at him dumbly. He spoke in a language she didn't understand but was completely captivated by. The words seemed to tumble over one another, conflicting with each other, and at the same time it flowed smoothly in a way that was oddly beautiful. The man she was following took a seat at the bar and raked the bartender with a look that was a cross between bored and irritated before he glanced in her direction.

"Ő ellenőrzött én itt -ból őt saját szabad akarat." He replied indifferently before grabbing a misshapen bottle that was perched next to him and poured himself a glass of its contents. Dark grins spread over the faces of everyone in the room and Ryan's heart pounded in her chest as she mentally kicked herself for her stupidity. What exactly had he told them? The bartender leaped over the counter in a display of physical prowess that was inhumane. Gasping in terror she moved as far away from him as she could only to find several more patrons at her back. Her breath came in quick shallow rasps as she felt them practically spring up behind her. One of them grabbed her arm and bared his sharp fangs at her, his golden eyes wild with a sick sort of lust. A scream tore from her throat as another one came at her with claws at the ready. Ryan was instantly thrown to the ground which was covered in a heavy coating of dust that billowed around her on impact, filling her mouth and nose and choking her screams of terror into a sad strangled mewling.

"Ez minden elég." Green eyes flashed in disgust before he grinned sadistically, "Játék szép -val a emberi. Ő az én -m vendég itt , végül." All the men in the bar froze except for the one who had grabbed her, who whirled around in anger at him.

"Ön mondott ön nem kapcsolat vele. Ő miénk most." He growled in a challenge.

"Mondtam ő ellenőrzött én -ból őt saját akarat és ez volt minden Mondtam." His eyes narrowed at the man who had addressed him as Ryan glanced between the two of them bewildered.

"Menjünk tép őt -hoz bábu. Ez minden -unk természet. Vagy van ön haladó lágy rajtunk …Sable?" Insurmountable rage flashed in his green iris', turning them completely gold save for the sliver of tell-tale electric green that ringed them as his animalistic roar shook the building to its foundation. The room fell deathly silent as the man she had followed stalked up to her attacker and ripped his still beating heart from his chest with his bare hands. Eyes still wide open; her attacker fell to the ground dead, blood pouring from the gaping wound in his chest.

Ryan's vision swam and she felt her stomach heave at the completely vicious scene before her. Never in her dreams did she ever witness anything as violent as this. He just ripped a man heart out of his chest for crying out loud! Her grey eyes settled on the man in question, standing over her, clenching a vital organ in his bloodied fist.

"Sable?" She managed to repeat breathily and saw his eyes widen a degree before everything faded to black. Sable…His name was Sable.

Had to do a bit of revamping on this chappie. But YAY!! you get a bit extra....Okay so there's the first chapter of Sandman... I hope you all enjoyed. Please leave a review and let me know what you think. I love feedback both positive and negative just keep it tactful. ^^.. please. I should update soon but i try to go over all my chapters with a fine tooth comb so please be patient. I welcome emails, questions and homepage visits! See you all in the next chapter...