The darkness quickly colesced into a room. It wasn’t any room I really knew. I’d been there before in my dreams. I knew this much. The picture on the wall of a tree was familiar but I couldn’t place it. Words whispered on the air currents and I couldn’t make it out. I was small. My hands picked up a block with the letter ‘M’ on it and I started stacking them.
The words became louder and clear to my young ears. “Monster.”
The panic rolled up inside of me. Where was the monster?
And then I remembered the book on the shelf. It was the only one. Sesame Street “There is a Monster at the End of This Book!” I remembered Grover the monster trying to stop me from reading the book – from getting to the end. Only to find the “Loveable, Cuddble Monster Grover the Monster” at the end of the book. It reminded me I was the monster the words whispered about.
I wanted to cry. But a voice caught me off guard. “Isn’t it like your 19th birthday today?”
I turned to see a man standing there. His eyes were ice blue and the smirk that splayed across his lips made me smile. I knew that wasn’t his face. The face he wore was The Doctor. Not the current Doctor but the one before him. I didn’t remember his name, tall skinny, he even wore the classic trench coat he was known for.
I remembered his question. He looked at me with a jovial expression like he was used to me spacing out. “Yeah, I guess it is.” I gave a little sigh, “Who do you want me to be?”
I frowned. “I’m no good at this.”
“You are great at it.”
I was lacking for images. And I flickered through a few before settling on the visage of a famous actor who played a geeky kid. Tall, smart, annoying. It’s how I felt right now.
He laughed. “Really. You are going with that?”
I shrugged and then shifted again. It wasn’t as easy as he made it seem. I wasn’t very good at manipulating the dream. But he did it effortlessly. It should have scared me, but the voice and the eyes they always comforted me. I wished I could smell him. I wished I could take comfort in that smell. But the place always smelled like home. Like apples baking in a pie, the cinnamon and sugar with just a hint of citrus to keep the taste fresh.
I looked in the mirror and smiled. The face that stared back at me was my best friends. I thought he was cute, even though my eyes still shown through and my voice from his mouth always sounded strange while looking in the mirror. I looked at my friend through the mirror and he was nodding, “That will do.”
“What are you doing for your birthday? Your last teenage year to come.”
I shrugged. “Normally I’d go hang with my friends, go to a club, get laid. I’m stuck in the middle of nowhere and no one around of any interest. I think I fell asleep reading a book.”
“What book?” He asked taking a few steps closer to me until he was standing behind me looking over my shoulder.
“City of Fallen Angels. It’s the fourth book in a series.”
“I think so.”
“But you fell asleep?” He asked curiously as he pressed his face against my neck.
“Maybe I fell asleep to come see you?”
“You remember me?” He asked looking up from where he’d been starting to nibble on my shoulder. His hands grabbing my wrists and turning me around so I could stare into those great blue eyes. We were the same height. Eye to eye. His lips were with in kissing distance and I wanted to. Wanted to kiss him. But he was looking at me expectantly waiting for an answer.
I shook my head. “No, but you remember me. I feel that I should remember you. But no.”
There was a frown on his lips as he pouted a little. And I couldn’t help but kiss him. His lips were warm and soft and he tasted wonderful. But he tasted like home too, comfort, pumpkin pie, chocolate, all my favorite things rolled into one. It was how I knew this was a dream. Nothing was real. Not even him. He was just a dream. But this dream was good and I wanted it to last. I needed it to last. This was home and comfort and I wanted to stay here forever.
“Make love to me.” The words were out of my mouth before I could think, and more tumbled out of their own accord, “In the dark, no lights, no sight, just the real you and the real me. No hiding from touch, just our bodies. Our real bodies.” It was a perfect idea. I smiled with Sage’s perfect mouth but I wanted him to be with me. I wanted to feel him with me. “Please, for my birthday?” I begged, the lust and desire dripped from my voice hiding the desperation and loneliness I felt. It was like I was the little boy I’d been moments before. Lost in a world without friends and family. Alone. I needed comfort and this was the only way I knew how.