And Then I Woke Up

By , Fox River Grove, IL
I was at a party. Everyone around me were either dancing their butts off or chatting about who slept with who or going upstairs to add fuel to those conversations’s fire. Everyone had a cup of something in their hand and half of them had a joint in the other. The air was hazy and smelled strange with bright lights of every color beaming through, illuminating the pulsing mass of our bodies like bright stars. Sweat and alcohol slicked the floor, and it was amazing we could all keep our footing. Trash piled up in the corners and a window broke every other minute. The small house was shaking with the beats of the music, shaking so hard I’m surprised it didn’t collapse.
Me, I was at the center of it. I was dancing with this one girl, sweat pouring down my face. She was beautiful, sexy, seductive. Our bodies were so close, it felt like we were one. Song after song we pressed our bodies together and rocked our bodies to the rhythm. Beer sloshed out of my cup and onto the couple next to us, but they didn’t notice. We were all lost in the cadence of the noise that shook the house.
Out of the corner of my eye, between me staring at her body and trying to avoid the glare of the lights, I saw a bright orange color spring up on the wall across from me. It grew quickly, and the music gained a new rival in its overwhelming cacophony of rhythmic noise. Screams penetrated the beats, and a wave of drunken partiers surged for the door. The music stopped abruptly, and I heard smoke alarms beeping incessantly, their red lights flashing through the haze of smoke. This smoke was darker than the smoke from people’s pot, though.
I began to look around the room. This orange light was not from the lights on the ceiling. It was fire, and it had spread all over the wall. It had spread onto the partygoers, onto the ceiling. I looked out the window, balls of flame were rolling on the lawn, lighting the bushes on fire. The room was getting very hot, even hotter than it had been before. I jumped out the nearest window. I landed hard on the lawn, on top of someone else. I jumped up, and realized I had broken their leg. Then I realized I was on fire. I screamed, then I rolled on the lawn, then I screamed more. Then I blacked out. And then I woke up.





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