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Another Nightmare

I lay looking up at the glow-in-the-dark stars stuck to my ceiling. I’m not sure how long I lay there; all I could think about, all I could see was the glowing light that had floated before me and all I could hear was the sound of someone calling my name, urging me to run faster and escape the beasts that chased me. My rational side repeated over and over: “It was just a dream, just a dream.” Yet it had all felt so real. My body yearned for sleep; my eye lids drooped. Soon I was off, back to my terrifying dream…
I lowered my arms and looked around me, shocked at the complete change in surroundings. Where the forest had been dark and full of impossibly tall trees, the meadow I now occupied was more blue than green due to the wide expanse of azure sky stretching out above it. Not a single cloud spoiled the bright blue color. The sun was high in the sky and I could feel the warmth of its light on my skin but it wasn’t an uncomfortable sort of heat. I spun in circles, stretching out my arms and throwing my head back, simply enjoying the peacefulness now welling up inside me. Gone were the gigantic trees. Gone was the dark shrubbery. Gone were the tiny white flowers. Gone were the monstrous wolves that preyed upon me. Even my savior, my light, was gone. Nothing was left except the sun, the meadow, and me. And I was basking in that knowledge. I felt like nothing could hurt me here. I was finally safe.
A gentle breeze brought the scent of wildflowers to my attention. I wandered through the tall grass that bent and swayed in the waft of air, searching for the blooms. Walking over a small crest, I saw that the green grass had turned to brightly colored blossoms. A little-girl giddiness overwhelmed me and I ran, squealing, for the flowers. Gathering as many as I could in my arms at once, I inhaled their heavenly scent. Glorious. I glanced about looking for more magnificent blooms to add to my bouquet. Raising my head, I saw the most remarkable daisy I’d ever seen in my life. Numerous white petals surrounded a sunshine yellow center. The entire flower was as big as my two out-stretched hands placed next to each other. I dropped the bouquet in my arms and reached out to yank the marvelous blossom from its thick, olive stem.
Clasping it to my chest, I rubbed the soft petals against my cheek. Remembering a game I used to play as a child, I began to pluck off petals one by one, all the while saying, “He loves me. He loves me not. He loves me. He loves me not.” Playing this game was like riding a rollercoaster. With each “He loves me”; lightness would lift your heart up to the sky. But with each “He loves me not”; a dizzying sensation would send you plummeting back to reality. I slowly worked my way around the daisy, pulling off petals and muttering the little verse. In my mind was the picture of my savior, surprisingly, as I wondered if he loved me or loved me not. I hoped he did. My hand started shaking as I got closer to the last petal, the one that would give me the final answer. Just five petals left. Now four. Now three. Just two more…and it’s…

“He loves me…not?”
Desperation stole my voice as my body shook with sobs. No. It can’t be. He has to love me. Because I love him.


It wasn’t until those last few petals that I realized just how much I hoped for the positive outcome and why. I loved him. I loved him because he cared enough to be my light in the darkness. I loved him because he tried to save me. I loved him because he was my hero. I loved him and needed him and it wasn’t until the last petal that I understood that. And now my hope was crushed. He didn’t love me. Now, someone who thinks too much would tell me that listening to what the daisy said would be ridiculous and he could very possibly love me too. But even when I was a little girl, the word of the flower was law. Sobs shook my body as a great depression overcame me. I laid back on the wildflowers around me and cried. Tears gushed from my eyes, pouring down my cheeks and soaking my clothes. Hopelessness. Utter hopelessness. How could this happen to me? I loved him. Why didn’t he love me back? What did I do?
With my arms over my eyes and sobs wracking my body, I didn’t even realize that the swaying grass and flowers were gone; I was back home in my bed. Once again, my imagination had created such a seemingly innocent picture that now would haunt me forever…





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