The Nightmare

Allen Kane Steele

It is a dark and stormy night. You run over the plains blindly, as the rain lashes at your face and the wind whips around you. You hear the wind howling, and you start to think frantically, hoping for a miracle, for a way to live. You search for a place, any place that is safe, and your eyes darting around. But then, all you see is the flat open plains, not a tree or building in sight.

Out of the corner of your eye, you see a rush of dust and debris. Your first thought is tornado! You push yourself to run faster, but your legs don't obey.

Suddenly, as if by pure chance, a barn appears on the horizon. Shelter! you think, Safety!

You push harder to run, and this time, your legs reply. You sprint across the plains faster than light, it seems, and a growing sense of victory is wild in your chest. You finally reach the barn. It looks rather old and rickety; it won't stay together for long in this hell of a storm. You dive into a pile of hay, trying to get as far away from the tornado as you can, digging yourself even further and further in.

But you suddenly stop, when you hear a deep, menacing, and majestic growl in the back of your head. It taunts you, like a finger at one's temples. The wind grows louder. A horrible roar crescendos until your ears hurt. You feel the wild feeling of victory fade as primal fear inundates you, filling every fiber of your being.

And then, the growl lightens, and begins to speak in a thunderous voice.

"Be torn from your life, little fleshing; join me, the master of existence and time themselves, in the eternal sands of the timeless hourglass!"

You are frozen with terror and horror. The voice deepens back to a growl, and the wind and roaring reach a maximum. Suddenly, the barn is torn apart, and the hay is blown off of you. A tall whirlwind of dust and dirt towers above you, and it seems to be taunting you, torturing you, waiting for you to move or blink. The debris that was once the barn spins and flips around the tornado.

The voice says to you once more, "COME JOIN ME IN THE SANDS OF TIME!" The debris turns into little clouds of dust and sand. The landscape crumbles into sand, and the tornado morphs into a figure, a horrible, terrifying one. You scream as you are torn asunder and sucked into the pathways of time.

You wake up.