The Dream

April 5, 2012
Chapter 1

I hear the sound following from behind as I run. A low, guttural growl like the gunning of a car engine. The sound so loud it rattled my bones. And close. It was catching up quickly. I pushed harder, though my legs screamed with fatigue. My few years on the track team gave me the single small chance that I had to outrun this thing. People say things slow down with an adrenaline rush, like the slow-motion action scenes in a movie. But it was very much in real time, real speed. If anything, things were quicker, the scenes around me barely registering before they flew past and were gone behind me. It’s funny how real things can feel in a dream. How much more potent terror could feel in your mind when your running for your life.

I continue like this for ages, but maybe only a fraction of a second, hearing nothing but the rumbling coming from the beast behind me. I hadn’t thought that odd until now. My feet slapped the ground hard to the rhythm of my heartbeat, thudump, thudump, thudump, and the wind bit hard again my face but I could only feel it. There was no other sound but its grunting. Somehow, this made my lungs constrict with rising hysteria. It was like that’s all that existed, the world became only my pain and tiredness and him. The eeriness of nothing but him. It, I have to remind myself, not he. Each dream like this was the same. There hardly was ever any change. I could never turn around to see what exactly I was running from. But I always knew I had to run, if I wanted to live. Every fiber of my being screamed for me to run. So I ran. Just as I felt his breath hard upon my neck, my mouth opened to scream, though I knew no sound would escape, and all I managed was emptying my lungs of stored-up air. They felt like they were crushing inside my chest, burning with need. I couldn’t even pump my legs any harder, they had reached their limit. I was done for. Somehow I always delude myself into thinking this time will be different. This time I will outrun it. But I never do. I always wake, just as I feel something, a hand, a claw, I’m never sure, reach out for me.

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