My dreams plague me with vivid realities so farfetched and daunting I’ve no choice, but to run. My feet pound against barren dirt, stirring dust into the air. Despite the burning feel of it, I must push on.
Glancing behind me, I see a pack of wolves. Scratch that. They’re much bigger than wolves. Much faster, too. Their snarls echo off the cave walls I’ve been placed in by my overactive imagination. I know it’s not real and yet my heart races.
Teeth sink into my calf and I fall forward with a scream. The wet, slickness of blood drips down my leg and sends these unknown creatures into a frenzy. Their bites shred my arms to ribbons.
Just when I’m about to pass out, I have been transported to the centre of a storm. No shelter in sight. But of course, I say to myself and will my sleeping self to rouse. It’s of no use.
The rain shifts from small drops to heavy bullets, or so it feels. My skin tingles and bruises under the assault. Thankfully my limbs are restored and I can run towards the edge of the clouds. The ground is wet and I slip with each step. Mud grabs my shoe off and I keep running, leaving it to the land. I can see the sun shining beyond the black clouds and I yearn for its serenity.
It’s too late, though. Hail the size of watermelons falls from the clouds. Lightning forks, stabbing at my tiny presence on the ground. The thunder sounds like laughter amidst the roar of the storm.
For the first time in years, I stop running. I stand in the centre of the chaos and let the storm strike me down. It doesn’t take long. Both hail and lightning hit me and it’s the most painful thing I’ve ever felt.
I wake with a shout and feel my head, inspect my pillows for blood. Everything’s wet from my sweating heat and my skin’s red. Upon closer inspection, I see white forks winding under my skin, following my veins.