Thursday, September 26, 2013

The Silent Room: Part 9

Number 11

Number 11 woke from what felt like the hundredth ever-changing nightmare. The only thing that stayed the same was that in each and every one he was being chased by spidery men dressed in long black robes, the words "Eight Watchers of the Ancient World" whispering in the shadows.  Maddening villains.  It felt like days had passed, and yet the sun was only just now rising.  Sitting there in the early dawn light, he slumped against the wall and wished, wished so hard he hurt with it, that he could fall asleep and just simply sleep.

He supposed vaguely that he could just let them catch him in his dream. That maybe that would end the dreams.  But then... he could hear their voices as if in memory rising in chant, "He will take the program. He must!", and he would struggle on away from them. He had let them get close once. Let them almost take over.  It had been so close, the moment of acquiescence rising within him like the tide drawing toward the moon.  He had felt almost like he would burst with the relief of it.

And then he had caught sight of a face hidden within the dark folds of one of the hoods. An unearthly face, gray and drawn, with a bony nose beneath strange burning eyes.  Eyes filled with anticipation and glee and banked fire that promised to eviscerate, incinerate, his very being.  The chill that had swept through him had been enough to draw him suddenly  back at the last, gasping as though he breathed in air from which all the oxygen had been burned away. He had wakened to find himself in a darkened attic room in this empty, forsaken land.

Looking out, he saw that at last the sun had risen just enough to fill  the world with a dim grayness and a drifting early morning mist. Time to get away from his dreams, he thought. If he couldn't sleep restfully, he certainly wasn't sticking around for another restless battle. Shaking his arms and shoulders to rid himself of his exhaustion, he stood and headed for the doorway and its ladder down to earth.  

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