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Posts Tagged ‘lucid dreaming’

Note: Dreams are weird. This is an excerpt from a dream I had a number of years ago. A vivid dream. I embellished it just a little.

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What on Earth!? The Princess stormed down the hallway, her slippers half-slipping on the smooth surface when she came to a stop. Mary, her fluffy Lady-in-waiting, had been hammering on the Panic Button for some long time now. It was quite unlike Mary to get so exasperated, and even more unlike her to persistently irritate the Princess.

That was a lie: it was exactly like Mary to be so annoying.

The Princess slid to a stop at the end of the hallway. The door out was boarded shut! Now what!? There was supposed to be a stair well here and a very useable one at that. She pulled on one of the boards. Nailed, but not firmly. It would take her forever to get through and the crisis could have altered everything in that amount of time.

Damn it!

Lady Mary was agitated. If Her Highness did not hurry up, the stupid thing might blow up and then where would they be? They were stuck in the Continuum at approximately the same point the Dragon had last been located, and Lady Mary had no idea if the slithery thing was still breathing, or not. Sir Brave had chased off after it, swearing to dispose of the sorry thing before it could cause the considerable damage it was wont to. Lady Mary was, of course, concerned about her own flesh here. She was well-rounded and meaty enough to appear as quite a little feast for the sinuous devil and she did not want to confront it in some bend in the hallway!

She lifted the panel on the big box again and sighed. The gauge still registered HOTTER THAN IT SHOULD BE!  And the other arrow was pointing to the bright yellow section marked IT WILL BLOW UP AS SOON AS IT TURNS RED!

What was taking Her Highness so long??

Lady Mary lifted her heavy skirts and pressed her weight against the heavy outer door. She paused in the stair well and listened. Faintly, ever so faintly, she thought she could discern a dull pounding somewhere up above. The light was very dim, and Mary was reluctant to climb the four flights, not because of her weight (for she was considerably more athletic that the fluffiness of her build suggested) but exactly because she was plump, and that darn dragon might be making all the pounding.

Still, because she was the faithful Lady-in-waiting, she felt obliged to go search for Her Highness. She went slowly, peering upward into the grey light. If there was a dragon in wait up there, she hoped she would see it before it pounced.

The stairs were clear of reptilian life, but she had a terrible fright on the first landing. Two boys pushed the door inward, nearly striking Lady Mary in the face. Boys! Teen-aged ones, or almost teen-aged. They all seemed so young nowadays that it was hard to guess how old a child was anymore. These boys were fixated upward. Both carried little torches in their left hands. Their backs were to Lady Mary and she supposed they didn’t know they had nearly broken her nose with that infernal door when they pushed it in.

“You think it’s that guy, again?” the short boy whispered. The skinny one shrugged. They stood still, blocking the way as the pounding above became more desperate. Or furious. Lady Mary could now make out the exasperation in the Princess’ voice, shouting from behind one of the upper doors.

Given the problems with the infernal machine behind her (and its imminent threat to explode), and that she was the Lady-in-waiting for Her Highness, Mary had no choice but to make the decision she did, and to make it on the fly. She was going to have to expose her presence to the gawking youths. She reached out and pushed the pair aside, so she could pass, and then she began up the stairs as quickly as she could run.

The boys let out surprised yelps but recovered much too quickly: she could hear their feet on the steps behind her.

Lady Mary could make out the Princess’ words as they rounded the second floor landing. They were still quite muffled, coming as they were from the other side of the third-floor door, but their meaning was clear.

“MARY! DARN YOU! THIS DOOR IS NAILED SHUT AND I CANNOT PRY THE BOARDS OFF AND IF THIS IS NOT A REAL EMERGENCY OR YOU ARE NOT OUT THERE TO RESCUE ME I SHALL HAVE THE DRAGON BURN YOU TO A BLACK LITTLE CRISP. CAN YOU NOT HEAR ME? MARY! MARY! GET THIS FWEEPING DOOR OPEN, MARY!”

There was more, of course, but Mary had the sense not to listen to the ranting of frustrated royalty. She assessed the situation quickly: The door had been shuttered on the inside with large pieces of wood. Her Highness was on the opposite side of the door, possibly trapped in a dark hallway with that dragon slinking down on her, taking advantage of the situation with a diabolical plan to capture the Princess and hold her for ransom. The door was boarded up with pieces of plywood on the inside, not on the stairwell side. That meant she could not pry the boards back, but she would have to open the door and leverage the plywood outward toward the Princess.

She turned around just as the two scrawny teenagers skidded to a stop beside her. Not big, but masculine. Perhaps clever.

“I have a plan, Your Highness!” she shouted.

“You two. She’s stuck on the other side and you must help me push the wood away. Now.” Her voice carried the authority of one used to ordering lesser around, and the boys skidded to a halt.

 

Charley and John found themselves putting shoulder to plywood and shoving with all their might. They paused and pushed again, when the funny woman in long skirts suddenly lent her heft and the wood squeaked out from the nails by an inch.

“THAT BETTER BE YOU, MARY!” An hysterical female voice screeched from the other side.

Mary (they presumed it was she) rolled her eyes and signaled the boys to push again with her. “That dragon is on the loose!” she shouted.

“Well, I do not see him. Just get the blasted door open!” Her Highness dropped her screams by a notch.

 

The plywood gave way suddenly and clattered to the floor. One of the boys fell in a heap on top of it. The other one barely caught himself from falling by grabbing the door sill. Lady Mary stumbled, but righted herself in time to make a cursory curtsey.

The Princess barely glanced at any of them, but stepped over the fallen wood and splinters. A little black box on her belt began buzzing.

 

John shook his head. Charley was still trying to get up from the floor. The girl who had been locked behind the plywood marched past as if they didn’t exist.

The old woman from another century was dressed in a long, flowing gown that was held at the waist with a wide leather belt. John had seen the flash of pantaloons (he knew what they were because he had taken Drama class in the 8th Grade) when she stormed up the stairs ahead of them. She had plain leather shoes and white socks that had flashed in the gloom of the stair well when she pushed past the boys below. To top it off, she wore one of those pointy hats with long ribbons coming out of the point, like the fairy tale princesses in John’s little sister’s story books.

The girl, on the other hand, was dressed in a pair of tight faded jeans, topped with a dark blue Navy Pea Jacket. She had naturally wavy hair that flowed just below her shoulders, brushed away from her face. John made out a pale blue blouse, tucked in, as she passed She did not hesitate but took the stairs down two at a time, shouting back questions at the personage of Mary. Mary left the boys and hurried after the younger woman, answering the questions almost as soon as they were uttered, their voice overlapping each other. The older woman in the pointy hat, being somewhat heavier, preferred her steps one at a time.

John pulled Charley up and they followed the two women down.

“I just do not understand. It was working fine an hour ago. Whatever could be the problem?”

“I know it was working fine an hour ago, but this is a Continuum and you know darn well an hour ago could be two years ago or three hundred light years in the future.”

“What did you feed it?”

“The stupid Dragon was here, and I thought Sir Brave was after him, but you know how they can mess up things.”

“What is it doing?”

“It is building up pressure and clanging something awful.”

“When was that dragon here? And do not capitalize its name, it’s such a bother… If Sir Brave were here, why didn’t you call on him to fix this?”

“He is a doddering old fool when it comes to mechanics.”

“If it is building up pressure, it must be hungry, and we can just feed it something…”

She stopped suddenly on the first landing. Lady Mary barely slid to a stop, before the princess was out the door into the main hall and turning toward the exit. Lady Mary, Charley, and John were on her heels. It didn’t even register on either boy’s mind that the entrance was suddenly not boarded up, and the doors opened outward easily. They followed the fast-moving girl out into the parking lot.

She paused at the foot of the outside stairs. “Metal. Anything metal and anything big. There should be enough litter out here to work.” She pointed at a discarded shelving unit that leaned against the building. “Let’s take that.”

Her eyes met John’s. “Be a sport and pick up the other end, will you? We need to feed it scrap metal.”

“And quickly!” Mary huffed.

The boys hoisted their rusty treasure and followed the princess back into the south wing of the old warehouse. She took them around to the stair well, again, and led the way down.

Charley hesitated. There was no basement to this building. He’d been in the stair well before. There were no stairs going down. Yet… there they were. He stole a glance at his best friend, who looked back and shrugged. The girl with the curly hair was nearly to the bottom of the flight now, with the big woman on her heels. The boys followed.

Another door opened at the bottom of the flight, this time to the south which put the rooms it opened into under the parking lot.           There was no time to think about it. The boys followed the fat woman through the double doors. She was wielding a fender she’d found on the ground outside. A blue fender, like something off a pick-up truck.

John looked over at Charley, “Basement?”

Charley shook his head. “Fender?”

They were now aware of strange clanking and grinding noises. Low lights hung in the ceiling. The princess (or whoever she was) stood positioned along the wall, holding open the metal front to what looked like an old laundry chute. A red glow emanated from inside it.

“We have offerings,” she spoke into the abyss. “But your chute is too small. You are going to have to make accommodations.”

There was a grinding and squealing. The room shuddered. Charley reached out as if to grab the wall for support. John shouted, “EARTHQUAKE! We have to get out of here!”

Just as suddenly, the shaking was over. The princess was staring at him, as was the lady in the funny hat. “What earthquake?”

“That one, the one that…” his voice trailed off as he looked from woman to girl and over at Charley, who was, in turn, gaping at the wall. John’s eyes followed Charley’s open-mouthed gaze. The chute now appeared large enough to accommodate the entire old shelving unit. Warm, red light glowed from below.

“Um, no, he was just, you know, startled by the shaking.” Charley seemed to gather his wits quickly. “Not used to rooms shaking like that. Are we supposed to put this in there?”

“Well, of course you are.” Mary scowled at them. “And hurry. It is not a patient machine.”

The boys obeyed. Neither one of them said what was really on his mind: they were too confused by the events to formulate any coherent questions. The shelving unit was hoisted into the air, turned and pushed down into the red glow. It dropped noisily.

The fat lady tossed in the fender, “And dessert!” she said.

The princess let go of the handle as soon as the items had been tossed in, and ran across the room where a panel had suddenly come to light with green and blue lights. The strange grinding and clunking changed to a low, humming, vibration.

“There! That should hold it for a while!” She whirled around with a satisfied smile on her face. A smile which disappeared as she saw the boys for, apparently, the first time. She had to look up at John and down at Charley.

“Why?? Who are..?? Oh dear, the thing truly is messed up! MARY!”

“Here I am, m’lady.” Mary sidled around the boys, trying to look surprised and humble, but succeeding in looking rather smug instead. Her face read, I told you so!

The princess sighed. “I suppose I have to go ask for help?”

“Well, they are here. I do not think the machine will drop them off now.” Mary shrugged her shoulders.

“No, no. I suppose not. This is just a terrible inconvenience. It isn’t telling us where we are going – or when.”

“Um, could I say something?” John attempted to get a word in edge-wise.

“NO!” Both females snapped at the same time. The old woman’s eyes practically bulged.

She bellowed, “You may not, you simply cannot, address the Imperial Royal Highness Princess Boo without first being admitted into her court. You must be properly interviewed first.”

John felt like a gnat was buzzing around his ears. These people did not make sense! “Can I talk to you, then?”

The round face recoiled in horror.

The princess, however, seemed to like this idea. “Yes. You speak to him, Mary. I think I will go up and see if the café is open. I am famished.” She made a little bow and exited, stage rightt.

John looked at Charley who looked at John. “Did we just get played?”

“No way am I staying here to talk to her. I’m following her.” Charley made an uncharacteristic first move. John followed him.

The Lady-in-waiting threw up her hands and huffed along behind them, muttering loudly. “No manners. Not that I have answers. No manners. Heathens. Oh, where are we going now?”

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