CHAPTER 1: INSANITY.
A loud scream pierced the silence of the night. Mike sat up in his bed, sweat pouring from his face, hands shaking, his eyes going from left to right scanning the room. Nothing there but darkness.
He got out of bed, mumbling and swearing as he walked slowly over to the light switch. He flicked it and the bright light filled the room and he took a deep breath while rubbing his eyes.
”Why, why does this happen every night”? he asked himself while walking towards the kitchen and as he entered it he turned on the light and tried to figure out what to eat for brekfast.
The possibility that he might be going crazy floated around in his head.
”Maybe I should go see a shrink” he suggested to himself while making his way into the living room on this dreary Friday morning.
After eating his breakfast consisting of left over chinese food and a diet coke
he assumed position in front of his computer and lit a cigarette. The smoke was like a thick fog around the screen.
It was 5:30 in the morning and he was going to work at 12 and he would rather sit up in front of his computer than go to sleep again because he knew what would happen.
So he sat there a few hours and the ashtray filled up as the foul smell that emanated from it spread through the apartment. Eventually the sunlight broke through the dark clouds and made its appearence through the windows.
He turned off his computer and looked at the old clock on the wall which he had recieved from his mother before she died in a car crash a few years ago. Ever since that tragic day he had felt empty, hollowed out.
It said 11:22.
So he took a quick shower, got dressed and walked out the front door.
He was cruising along in his car towards the restaurant where he worked while
thoughts about the nightmares swirled around in his head along with attempts at figuring out what they meant or why he was having them.
He arrived at the restaurant six minutes late and mr Randall or the bone head as he was also called was on him like a complete lunatic screaming and shouting while spit flew out of his mouth.
”IF YOU KEEP DRAGGING YOUR ASS IN HERE WHENEVER YOU FEEL LIKE IT THEN DON’T BOTHER SHOWING UP AT ALL. BE HERE ON TIME OR YOU’RE FIRED DO YOU UNDERSTAND WHAT I AM SAYING, AM I GETTING THROUGH TO YOU”!
”Yes mr bonehe, uhm, mr randall, I understand, I am sorry”.
Fucking idiot he thought while he was taking orders from the guests that were slowly filling the restaurant.
Ever since the nightmares began a few months ago he felt as though he was disconnected from the world around him and he had a hard time paying attention to things happening around him.
It was even worse today, he was mixing up peoples orders and dropping things. The hours passed slowly then all of a sudden he experienced a feeling of being trapped and he couldn’t breathe and sweat started running down his throat and forehead and all the guests looked like pale sick imitations of humans with decaying faces. He ran to the bathroom and threw up.
”It’s ruining my life, my life, what’s going on I don’t understand, I have to get out of here, can’t stay” he said while gasping for air.
He pulled himself up and splashed some water on his face and looked at himself in the mirror. What he saw was a pale sick looking man with hair black as coal and blue eyes that were red from from sleep deprevation. For weeks he had done nothing but work and spend time in front of his computer sleeping as little as possible.
He felt drained and empty.
He walked out of the bathroom, everything seemed to be going in slow motion.
Mr Randall came running and Mike thought that he was coming to see if he was ok.
”Mike,may I ask WHAT THE HELL YOU’RE DOING”!.
”YOU CAN’T JUST LEAVE LIKE THAT”!.
”But sir I”
”I DON’T WANT TO HEAR IT”!.
”But sir I was not fee”
”YOU WEREN’T WHAT, WORKING, THAT’S WHAT YOU WERE NOT DOING AND IF YOU ARE NOT WORKING HERE THEN YOU MIGHT AS WELL GO HOME BECAUSE THAT’S EXACTLY WHAT YOU ARE NOT DOING ANYMORE”!.
”Are you telling me I’m fired”?.
”AAH FINALLY SOMETHING YOU UNDERSTAND, GOOD.
NOW GET OUT OF HERE”!.
”Ok sir but before I go let me say this you FUCKING IDIOT!. Fuck you and FUCK THIS SHITHOLE and have a nice day”.
Mike walked out relieved by the fact that he would never have to be around that idiot ever again. He cursed him as he walked over to his car.
He sat in his car for a while and calmed down then returned home.
When inside he started thinking he had to talk to someone about the nightmares. The only one he considered discussing this with was the saviour, a person who he had started talking to in one of the chatrooms he usually hung out in.
He seems like an ok guy. But then again I really don’t know anything about him. If I tell him about this he might think I’m some sort of maniac. No no I’ll wait, maybe the dreams will dissapear he thought while his head started pounding. He went into the bathroom to get some aspirin.
To clear his head a bit he went for a walk. He strolled around for a few hours looking at his surroundings and just had the lingering feeling that something was not as it was supposed to be. He watched the people he passed and time seemed to go by in slow motion as the feeling that his dreams were somehow connected to his new perception of the world around him kept eating away at his mind.
He decided to head on home. He passed a 7-11 and purchased a pack of cigarettes, some chocolate bars, beer and a dr pepper. After his visit to the 7-11 he also seized the oppurtunity to buy an extra large pizza.
It wasn’t too late yet, 21:23. It was dark outside.
There were not a lot of people out as he headed on home. It was very quiet and he listened to the sound of his own footsteps against the street. Then something caught his attention. He saw a man standing under a streetlight. He was wearing a black suit and although it was dark he wore shades. Mike thought he had seen the man somewhere before but wasn’t sure.
The man looked at Mike in a way that sent chills down his spine.
Mike’s pace quickened. As he looked behind him the man was still standing there just watching him. Mike continued to walk quickly down the street towards his apartement while feeling very uncomfortable. Once again Mike turned around but this time the man was gone.
Mike hurried home and locked the door.
He looked out the kitchen window but there was no sign of the black clad man. After a while he calmed down and convinced himself that he was not being followed. Why would anyone follow me. Hardly anyone knows I exist he reassured himself. So he ate his pizza, drank a beer and thought no further of the strange encounter.
The time was now 22:19. He decided to finish a book he had started reading a while back but never finished to take his mind off everything that was bothering him. It was Die Verwandlung by Kafka.
He liked reading Kafka because he felt he could relate to him and the feeling of not belonging anywhere. He read it in german because he liked to practice his language skills. He had always been very talented when it came to learning languages and becoming a translator was something he once considered but after some tragic events in his life he gave it up like everything else.
The hours passed slowly, time drifting by at a modest pace.
Mike finished the book just as he felt his eyes closing and it was like reality just faded away.
Finally he gave in, dropped the book and it made a light thud as it hit the floor.He fell asleep on the couch.
I’ll be alright was his last thought.
It was not long before a feeling of overwhelming panic caught him. He felt paralyzed and could not breathe. It felt like his body was covered in something sticky and a weird pink light surrounded him.
He tried to break free from whatever it was that had him trapped but it was useless. He felt as though he was going to die but at the same time he felt extremely alive.
And then he woke up, screaming and starring into the darkness.
He was bathing in sweat and tears came out of his eyes.
He whispered to himself,” what in gods name is happening to me”?.
He was shaking as he walked over to his computer and turned it on.
He entered the chat room where the saviour usally resided and lit a cigarette.
Almost immediatly a message from the Saviour came up on Mike’s screen.
The saviour: hey man what’s goin on?.
Mike’s fingers slashed across the keyboard.
Trax: I need to talk to you about something.
The saviour: yeah sure what is it.
Trax: I’ve been having these, ah shit you’re gonna think I’m crazy, nevermind.
The saviour: no come on what’s the problem.
Trax: ok,I have been having these really weird nightmares, and I’m not talking about ordinary nightmares. I mean these dreams are ruining my life I can’t sleep I can’t concentrate on anything. I have no idea what’s happening to me.
I seriously think I am losing my mind. Oh and I got fired today.
The saviour: shit that sounds bad man and sorry about the job but your boss was a dick anyway so who cares.
Back to the nightmares I mean what are you dreaming it must be some serious shit if it’s effecting you like this.
Trax: yeah it’s pretty fucked up but I’ll try to explain. But you’re going to think I’m crazy but ok here goes.
It starts out with a warm, comfortable feeling but then I just, I don’t know, I panic bigtime and when I open my eyes I am trapped in some, I don,t know how to describe it, some cocoon like thing or pod of some sort and I’ve got cables attached to my arms and legs and a big cord shoved down my throat.
And I have never been able to break out of the cocoon or whatever it is but I have been close a a few times and everytime I’m about to make it I wake up.
It took a while before the Saviours reply popped up on screen.
The saviour: that is a little weird.
Trax: Yeah I know but you wanna know what else. This is so screwed up but I feel when I dream that I am awake.
Ever since the dreams began I have had the feeling that I’m awake when I dream and that I am asleep when I am awake, hell, it feels like when I open my eyes in that pod or whatever it is that I am rising up from a lifetime of slumber.
Mike reached for the ashtray and put out his cigarette while wondering if he should tell the Saviour about the man with the shades but he decided he sounded crazy enough as it was.
The saviour: holy shit this sounds deep man have you told anyone else about this.
Trax: no and I don’t think I’m going to I might end up in straightjacket or something.
The saviour: I don’t blame you I wouldn’t tell anyone either. I’m really sorry but I have to go now I have some business to attend to. If you feel you wanna talk some more this is where you’ll find me.
Trax: yeah ok thanks man. I’m gonna make some coffee and surf around for a while. Talk to you later.
The saviour: you do that talk to you later. And don’t worry everything will be fine.
The saviour logged out. Mike lit another cigarette and wondered into the kitchen feeling somewhat relieved by the conversation.
ad icin evoc deht...