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Introduction to The Nightmare Account.
Ever since I was in grade 9, I've had disturbing, but thoughtful dreams, almost every night. At first I was afraid, and at times I still awaken rattled and breathless, but I have become desensitized. It is like my own mind is blocking their dark influence from me, and the images are forced to change their approach. Sometimes, the dreams stop all together, and return in subtle, clever plays, skirting the boundaries of my unconscious mind. And sometimes, they attack with a brutal, unrelenting force, a stream of gore and intensity and suffering that bleeds into my waking thoughts. And perhaps the worst of them all, they infect my day time hours, making me question whether or not I am awake at all. A soothing, deceptive illusive, priming me for the cut, preparing me, and then ripping me violently from my dream and tossing me back into my bed. These particular dreams are rare, but they've happened twice and even three times in a row, making it impossible for me to tell when sleep ends, and the real world begins.
What followers is my absolutely true accounts of my dreams. This is not a story. It is what I see when I can no longer remain awake. Enjoy.
Excerpt #1. The Rockhampton Doll
I was standing in the middle of a car park, in pitch black night, sandwiched between a high office building and a low set, abandoned business. The glass store front was cracked and taped up. The rusty and shattered cars that had been parked here and left to decay had been piled up in one corner, as if some giant hand had swept them all aside. The only light was a street lamp that was so dim it could have blinked out any second. A tube light over a broken door across from the piled up cars did spark into life, but it flickered feebly, and did nothing to show the dark hallway, though I did hear a scuffling.
I looked down and noticed I was holding a piece of wood wrapped in oily rags, my makeshift torch. It didn't cast light very far, and holding it up didn't help. Something was watching me. I let my eyes adjust to the dark ahead of me, and I could somewhat make out the outline of something tall and slouched. Not wanting to approach it, I extended my arm to wave the brand. It cast a half seconds worth of light across something gangly and rust coloured, but nothing else. I heard it suck in a breath at this, but it did not recoil, instead tilting what I guessed was it's head. It took a step forward, towering over me as it came into my weak light.
It was like a child with the simplest knowledge of human anatomy had pounded out the shape from reddish brown clay, a doll of meat and dried blood. It's limbs were long and gangly, hips and shoulders lopsided, lower abdomen swelled and crooked. It's knuckles dragged along the broken pavement as it swung it's bent leg, tilting it's head curiously as he came to a halt, feet like sharpened bone spears digging into the cracked ground. The head was like the child designer had balled up clay in his palm, and mashed his thumbs into it, warping the entire shape into a twisted heart, sunken, lifeless holes now it's eyes.
As it crooned, a wet, deep, resonating grumble of sounds, I saw gashed in it's papery, filthy skin flutter, dried scraps of flesh and mucous coughing and spluttering as it breathed. It had no mouth, and for what I could see in the dim light, it's throat did not move as it breathed. It was at this point my usual suspicions kicked in, sleep drunk mind grappling with the concept that this wasn't real. Now partly aware that I was asleep, my 'character' still couldn't completely shake off the immersion of the scene, and I was ready to turn and run from this nightmare creature. But it never reached out, never let out it's bowel shaking wail or threw it's long, doll like arms at me. It simply watched me, as if curious where this small creature had come from. Had it been the one to blame for this wasteland? And if it had, did it know what it did? Had it just been wandering the empty playground it had unintentionally created, pondering why it had been left alone, why it's mere existence had caused such decay.
Was it even possible for something like this to comprehend the concept of guilt? Was all this destruction the creatures only method of channeling the loneliness and the abandonment, rage at a question it did not have mind to answer, a maddening paradox that was the only reason for it's existence?
Carefully, it eased itself down, falling back with a hollow, dusty boom as it fell to sit cross legged, and I felt a high pitched whining just at the edge of my hearing, like it's own echoing groan reflected in my mind. I couldn't deny it this brief, simplistic escape from the hell it was condemned to, and I pitied it, sitting as it did, waiting for the brand to burn out and leave us in darkness. As the light disappeared, I felt the pavement disappear, the acrid breeze fade, and the sound of the flickering light whisper out for good. Where had we gone? This was my last question as we both woke up, and the dream faded.