Strange Dreams

wuh woh it's a short horror story... BUT IS IT REEEEALLLL??? no

very sorry about the formatting, i still haven't really learned html.

So to start off, I want to say that I guess it could seem like I'm crazy, or it really is just normal dreams, or... I don't know, I'm not on any drugs that I know of. I used to take melatonin sometimes, I take aspirin when I've got a headache, you know. Regular stuff. But what I mean is that maybe this is all really dreams, maybe I'm crazy, and you can think that if you want. I hope that's what it is. But I don't think it is. I think there's something really, really wrong.

It started maybe a week ago? My sense of time is all messed up, and it never was all that good to begin with, but I had... a weird dream. Like it felt way too real, but it couldn't have been. The first dream went like this:

I woke up in a room, or maybe a box, that was so small that I couldn't stand up all the way. Dim light. Cubic. I think there was a sound somewhere far below, but I don't know what it was... I can never remember music from my dreams, no matter how hard I try. But it wasn't music, just atonal humming. I sweated in there, in quiet panic, for minutes before I woke up.

That was it! Barely any time, just a weird dream, but it was vivid and when I woke up something didn't feel quite right. Nothing concrete. But I was suspicious of everything... like the walls were about to close in on me, like the sky was going to fall in at any moment and reveal the metal framework behind it. Little delusions that could be brushed away easily. The next night was dreamless, and the day after I felt better.

And then, the night after that, I had the second dream.

In the second dream, I was in another room, bigger than the last but still featureless, dimly lit. Now the light had a little blue tint, and I couldn't figure out where it was coming from. Everything was perfectly smooth, and there was more humming - I could feel it in my chest. There was... a smell? There was some kind of, I don't know... some kind of aura, stinging in my throat, making my skin feel strange. I didn't feel scared, exactly, but there was a prickling feeling all over like every part of me was a little too sensitive. Someone was talking, but too low and slow to understand. I felt so horribly, horribly alone. I paced back and forth for some amount of time, maybe 30 minutes? Panic building, until, again, I woke up.

This time the paranoia was worse. I spent a decent chunk of time in the morning just sitting in bed, trying to will myself to put my foot down, paralyzed with some unknown fear. Thinking the floor would fall away. I finally managed to get up, and the feeling faded a lot over the course of the day (chores, groceries, TV) but even after another dreamless night there was a pervasive wrongness. I couldn't meet anyone's eyes, I swear to god, there was nothing behind them. Like automata.

By this point I wasn't sure what it could be but I thought you know, maybe I'm just having a bad few days. Maybe quarantine's getting to me. Like it gets to everyone. But I have friends, I have... I have cats, you know, I'm alright. I think. I think I have friends. I thought. I don't know. It's weird, and I had another day, and it was fine and then I had the third dream.

The light was dimmer, though I could still see a little, and I was in... a house? There was a door in the room, all these... I don't know, blocks. Like one of those playrooms with all the big chunky foam things. But solid, smooth, maybe more like modern art sculptures. My footsteps echoed, and out in the distance, barely audible was a low drone, incessant. Setting me on edge. I walked, and walked, and I found a wall and a door and another room full of shapes. It was all the same, and in the barest bit of light (no source, as before) everything was the same grainy gray. I wandered there for hours, trying to find the source of the noise, but it was the same throughout. When I woke up, it was barely dawn, so the light had the same quality and when I tried to turn on the light it flickered and scared me so badly that I almost screamed. Because of a flickering light!

But I knew deeply now, so very deeply, that it wasn't real. The dream had been real, but my bed and the light and the window, the floors, everything was false. Only the dream and my own body were real. And I was terrified. What could I do? Who could I go to? Anyone I talked to would be fake, anything I did would have no meaning! Where were my cats?

I couldn't find them, though I looked everywhere. I couldn't see anyone outside, either - which, you know, there's good reason for that, but all the car windows were... wrong? That's the best I can say. Everyone on the internet just looked like words on a screen. This website just looks like words on a screen right now, all lies, all a front. I don't know what it is, but it's just FAKE.

I spent all day like this. I didn't want to go to sleep, but I didn't want to be awake either. Which is worse - a familiar place that feels horribly wrong and false, or a strange and terrible place that feels intimately real? Everything was falling apart. Everything IS falling apart. Eventually I decided to brave sleep, and this time, this time it was twice in a row. I had the fourth dream.

It was all dark, and though I could see nothing at all I got a strong impression of an impossible space, a ceiling infinitely far above and columns going endlessly in each direction. I put my hand out and I found a wall, leaned forward, and it was gone. I stumbled-

And I woke up in my bed. It had only been seconds. It was all dark, and I tried to turn on the light and it didn't work. I'm too afraid to open the door. I opened up my laptop, and the light from it is... it's not right, it's not RIGHT. I can't explain why. I hate this, and I know you're all just words on a screen, all fake, but I'd like someone to hear me... I don't want to go back to sleep. I don't want to go out. I don't know what to do.

I can hear humming, deep, far away.

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