Nightmare, or Was It?

The other night, I woke up to Westina shaking me awake. “There’s someone in the house!” she whispered.

I heard noises immediately.

Somehow, I was able to see a shadow moving down the hallway, which should’ve clued me in.

Getting up, I indicated to Loki to follow me. Inkling was still curled on Westina’s legs.

I walked into the living room to find a stranger sitting in the middle of my couch. He was stretched out with his hands tucked behind his head (as if he was surrendering) and his long legs jutting out from the couch as if they anchored him. He looked old, wiry and frizzled. He acted as if he belonged in that room.

I approached cautiously, saying, “You don’t belong here. Why are you here?”

He said nothing, just kept his relaxed posture.

Indicating for Loki to approach him and guard, instead the little monster sniffed him and licked his wiry, scraggly beard.

Before I could get upset at him, I heard Westina in the hallway behind me. When she appeared, the man perked up and said, “I know you. You used to go to ‘Xpressions.”

Westina’s surprise was evident. She laughed and waved off his words saying, “Oh, that’s old information.”

I glared at her, trying to desperately send the message, “Don’t give him any details about us!” but before I could practice my non-existent telepathy, I felt the man move behind me.

My heart thumping, I woke up for real.

Later, as Westina and I discussed this dream, I realized that the man went out of his way to present no danger. That my fear was of the unknown, but not due to facts. The disconcerting thing was that a stranger was in my house. But must we always assume a stranger is dangerous?

Everything in that dream, from Loki to Westina, to Inkling not growling to the man himself, told my senses to be wary but not afraid. Yet, I woke up with my heart threatening to leap out of my chest.

I think this was yet another lesson for me in terms of assumptions.

About Sharon Cho

As a child, I was sickly and so spent countless hours in bed with only my imagination to accompany me. 50 years later, my imagination demanded that I write things down and offer it to folks and so here I am, sharing my stories. Hope you enjoy.

One Comment

  1. Assumptions. I’m killing them as fast as I can. Sometimes they slip through the net. Then they usually pair with judgements, hide, and create havoc in my mind. That’s when I tend to ask the hard questions. They can run but they can’t hide. When caught they are squashed together with any case of toxic shame that is trying to drown me.

    Hmm, this reads like a mini story. Flash fiction. See, I can write flash fiction. Maybe.

    Your dream was fascinating. I’d say it’s not a nightmare. But then again I am looking at it from the third party perspective. I think only you can brand it a nightmare or not. Hope your sleep is better.

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