“That’s why you wouldn’t let me leave.” I said with a nod. I agreed easily to Alex and even more so to Hunter.
Alex took my hand and we were in nothingness. Well not nothingness there were lots of orbs of various colors. “Where are we?”
“Erebus.” Alex said calmly, “It’s the place between dreams.” Alex pointed to the bubble we stood next to. “This is me.” He ran his hand over the top of the light blue bubble and smiled, “Usually it’s not quite so shimmery.”
“Why is it shimmery?” I asked. “Can I touch it?”
Alex shrugged, “I guess. I’ve never brought anyone here before. It’s shimmery because you are here.”
We blinked next to another bubble. It was tiny and hard and looked like it was a prison. “This is you.” Alex said. “I shouldn’t be able to enter your dreams with a shield like this. But I do all the time.”
“I’m not doing that.”
“You are. But you still leak like crazy.”
“What are all these lines?” I asked.
“Connections to people. Most dream walkers don’t see them. But your’s all get lost in a fog.”
“How come we didn’t see any around yours?” I asked.
“I can’t see my own.”
“I guess that’s fair. You’d know a lot more about the people who you’d meet.”
Alex smirked, “It does, but it would be nice to find the people I lose.”
I looked down, “So if you think I’m him, why don’t you follow the lines?”
“The fog…” Alex grinned. He tapped my head and took my hand. “Hunter is waiting.”
We blinked to another bubble, this one was poly-chromatic and shimmering as well. It flickered with images and Alex smiled, “He’s dreaming, which means he’s asleep.”
“Did you think he wouldn’t be?” I asked.
Alex shook his head, “No, but he has nightmares and he doesn’t always fall asleep quickly.” Alex smiled, “He takes after his Dad like that. His nightmares were a piec e of work.”
“Let me guess, darkness torture?”
Alex looked at me, “I guess you remember them?”
I shook my head. “No. But I have those dreams on occasion now.”
“Someone hurts you?” Alex grabbed my arm and turned me towards him.
“No. It’s just a dream. Not like you.”
Alex smiled. “You ready to see what Hunter wants to show you?”
“Is it scary?” I asked.
Alex smirked, “No, well to some it might be.”
But Alex didn’t give me much of a chance to say yes or no. We were inside the bright colorful dream. It was like a movie. “Where are we?” I asked.
“Central Park. Looks like Hunter’s favorite playground.”
We stood in the middle of the pathway and people flowed around us like we weren’t even there. “We aren’t.” Alex added out loud.
“That’s creepy you know?” I asked him.
He smirked without looking at me, his eyes drawn to the group of playing kids on the playground. I watched the same group and saw myself as the bottom of a pile of kids. Kids I didn’t even know.
Hunter and Cass and Drake, I was pretty sure that was his name – Alex’s kids – were all there. And several others I didn’t know.
“Most of them are pack.” Alex said, “Except Liam, he’s a friend of the family.”
Alex laughed, but the sound of his voice came from in front of us and I saw him walking up. “You think the big bad King of New York would be able to fend of little children.” He reached his hand into the middle of the puppy pile and pulled me out and into a soft kiss that the kids all said EWWW to at the same time.
“I remember that day, but I don’t remember you in it. I remember you offering to take the kids out of class for some much needed outside time. It was a day after we nearly lost them all when the Night Life building was attacked. I remember it all.”
I shook my head, “I don’t.”
Alex nodded, “I know. But this isn’t the future – it’s a memory.”
A small voice spoke below me, “I like memories Da.” He said, but he clung to my leg. “I like happy ones, these are so much better than my usual ones.”
I knelt down and smiled at Hunter, “What do you usually dream?”
He smiled but it was sad. His eyes lost that bright shine I loved about him. The world around us grew black and he pointed off in the direction we had been. We looked out on the city and it was dark. There was an orange glow on the horizon, and smoke drifted around the world.
I looked around us and everything was black except for one building, it stood strong and powerful in the middle of the city – the lights shining brightly but they flickered on and off. Hunter frowned and wrapped his entire body around me. He cried.
“If you don’t remember, this won’t even happen.”
The image flickered and it was daylight. The city was devastated. Ruins of twisted metal and concrete spotted the rubble. Not a soul alive. And then it was all gone. I was lying in my bed alone. Tears fell. I don’t know why I cried, but I did. Something about it all said something strong to me but I didn’t know what it was.
I couldn’t sleep after that. I flung my feet over the edge as my phone beeped an incoming message. I nearly jumped out of my skin, but I was quickly back to my senses. I grabbed my phone and headed up stairs for coffee.
I’m sorry about the dream, and sorry it’s a load on your plate, but Hunter’s dreams always come true. And if he knows some meaning – there is nothing we can do to change it.
Alex’s text made me sad. The world was going to come to an end in our lifetime – but what was worse was that I didn’t even know what I needed to remember.