It was my toe (the big one) I first became aware of… I could not move or even wiggle it so, I tried to open my eyes instead__ negative. Yet I could hear my mother humming post-war tunes in the background. In my mind’s eye, I could picture the sun slanting through the wooden Venetian blinds across the bed; it was always like that when I wake up around this time of the day on the same month, year after year after year… I imagined feeling the warmth of it on my face.
This was not the first time something similar happened to me. The initial experience occurred when I was fifteen years old. I know that eventually, I would properly wake up and everything will be alright. (If I fight as hard as I could at least) So, I laid there and waited… after a time, I tried to shock myself into movements… nothing. I concentrated hard, waited some more and repeated the effort, this time a nerve gave in; I was able to twitch. After several tries, I succeeded to slowly displaced myself. It felt like swimming in sticky thick syrup, every movement was a fight; the gluey glutinous surroundings holding me back. I could envision how a fly might feel caught in a fly trap.
Again, I tried to open my eyes, thinking if I could only manage to do this, the rest would be easy… found out I still couldn’t, so I slid myself out of bed… butt first. When my toes hit the floor, I stood up; my hand involuntarily circled a post, I realized I must have fallen asleep in D.s room.
I made my way blindly to the door, opened it (handy if one knows the layout of one’s house perfectly in case something like this happens) and called my mother. What came out was a gurgling sound. I slightly panic. I was not only blind but mute as well? Almost playfully, I groped for the banister, found the thing and slowly glided myself down using my butt. The house has a spiral staircase and I could easily conceptualize what would happen if I slip.
Reaching the ground floor, I realized I had to pee; probably from using my butt so much. My mother’s humming stopped. I heard the television came to life; someone must have switched it on. I paddled to the living room and once again attempted to open my eyes to see what program was being watched, I succeeded half way and only the right one; she wasn’t there but bombing somewhere in the middle east was still going on. I saw bloody mutilated bodies being loaded on stretchers… I proceeded to the toilet.
When I opened the door, I saw a man sitting there, no face wearing black. I slammed the door shut and became aware of the fact that I could see again. I thought I must be hallucinating. So, I opened the door once more to confirm my doubts and he was still there! This time he acquired a face and was looking at me straight in the eyes. He was a middle-aged man with an ordinary face, devoid of any emotion; as blank as an unused slate. Then he slowly smiled, the expression spread on his face like someone was pulling the corners of his lips upwards. I saw rotten teeth and were there fangs inside there somewhere? He languidly reached out to touch me and I must have passed out because everything went black.
The next thing I know I was back in bed. Around me, there were voices; several of them including D. I felt hands all over me, touching … poking… Then I was lifted and something sharp pierced my skin. I lost consciousness again.
I woke up in a hospital. D. was watching. He looked worried. Apparently, I had nightmares and aroused screaming. Then I fainted and he could not reanimate me and it was Sunday, contrary to my belief that it occurred on a weekday. When I asked the doctor what happened, he uttered to me one word; just one: stress.