I woke from a nightmare. I was back in the womb. My current knowledge and awareness in tact. I knew what was to come. I could hear the despair and regret in their voices. They didn’t want me. I didn’t want the world. Impossible to communicate. When I wasn’t having the dream, distraction came in many forms; TV, work, sex, shopping. Petty! All of it. The dream was reoccurring for 9 months. Finally the contractions began. I was born. I woke crying, slick with sweat. I reached for my gun, no ammo, so I went to work and tried to forget.
Dark alleys, seedy bars, abandoned factories, empty houses, and under bridges; that’s where we lurk. My friend and I have been searching five years for a vampire. I know how it sounds, but we actually met her in a cemetery we used to frequent. She taunted us, told us if we could find her she would give us the ultimate gift of immortality. Occasionally we catch glimpses of shadows that move in ways they are not supposed to. I think she is watching us. And why not? Immortality would force you to be creative with the way you spend your time.
The place was haunted. Not by ghosts, but by thoughts. People’s thoughts were projected like holograms. We used to go there. It was the most intimate experience I could think of. Windows and doors to our minds were wide open, our essences spilling out into the tiny shack. Sex seemed silly after that. Although, we sometimes laid in bed and watched our projected sexuality’s make love on the ceiling. It was better. No condoms. I woke up once. She was dreaming and I watched as she was walking along a deserted street looking for something or someone. I carefully followed her.
The milk was sour today, but I didn’t have any cereal so it didn’t matter. I left without eating and decided to stop at the store. I only had $1.50 so I had to choose between coffee and something to eat. Coffee won. Coffee always wins. On the way out the door I tripped and dropped my coffee as I was falling down. Someone had lost a 5 dollar bill and it was laying in the puddle of coffee. I picked up the empty cup along with the wet 5 dollar bill and went back inside. I bought a blueberry muffin.
She rushed in all full of fear and desperation screaming something about things not being as they appear to be. “Everyone has it all wrong!”, she said, “We are nothing but numbered lozenges of purchasing power; little human batteries that keep everything going and going and going. I don’t want to be a fucking rabbit!” I glared at her and agreed with a knowing smile and then went back to what I was doing. I said, “It just so happens that I am working on a way to pull the plug on all those little batteries”, and hit the enter key.
The streets in my dream were made of worn brick and shadow. The sound of water dripping, carefully measuring time, could be heard down alleys I could never seem to find. My footsteps threatened to betray me to the enemies crouched and waiting around every corner. You could cut the tension with the knife in my pocket. I turned so many corners that finding my way back was impossible. Lost in the maze I kept looking for a way in or out. Around another corner. More rats. More garbage. More fear. More shadow. More footsteps. More longing. More searching. More sleep.