I had a dream last night that will doubtless make its way into a story somehow. What was really fascinating was the sheer length of the dream. Most of my dreams are apparently normal, short one-off things that sometimes repeat once in a great while with a few changes. But every few days, I get really intriguing, really powerful ones. Usually these are a continuation of a prior dream from another day. Sometimes these serialized dreams last for years (I had one as a child that lasted well into my twenties about a man walking a desolated world being chased by a terrible, magnetic female force - likely a foretelling of all my horrible relationships to come - hah!), sometimes less. These are more unusual because they're so very, very vivid, and often times, I actually believe I can feel things in the dreams. Of course I actually can't, but the dreams are strong enough to make me completely and totally invested into them, no matter how bizarre or jarring the dream may be.
And then there are the dreams like last night, where the dream seems to last the entire night. Not just those weird minute-long one-acts that shift diaphonously into a new, tangentially related dream. These dreams seem to really last hours, and are usually the only dream I'll have that night, even if it's interrupted. In certain extreme cases, particular when illness is involved, these dreams seem to last even longer. Last night, I wasn't sick. I went to bed late, woke up late, and in between, had one hell of a fascinating and lengthy dream.
What about? Well, in a nutshell, some weird medley of Star Trek's Borg and the Terminator. Take your pick of any robotic doomsday scenario, really - Doctor Who's Cybermen if you want to get really ridiculous. But that's not specific enough. The dream started with three complete strangers and I being informed by a nebulous source that we were to become the last pocket of humanity, that we had to endure, and that not all of us would necessarily make it. We took a Chevy Avalanche (why an Avalanche, I have no idea, but sure, why not?) down a stretch of hazy mid-western road.
People obviously in a panic were driving like maniacs, and when we came upon a four car pile-up, four uniformed men were slowing and organizing traffic... except they weren't. They pulled the people from the car in front of us to the back of a large van, where metallic shrieks and whines were heard. The four were definitely human, but they were helping an unseen master use these people. The driver of our truck smashed through the barricaded cars, and led us on a terrifying road trip across a quickly disintegrating landscape, where civilzation was breaking down around us. As we made our way past the cities and towns, people began charging us, their faces and exposed limbs covered in a metallic mesh, with machinery badly sewn into their skin and muscles. One of the four of us was torn from the vehicle by one of these things, but not long after, we found shelter of sorts, nestled into the base of a series of hills somewhere in the plains.
The dream shifted slightly forward in time, a few months later. The three of us left were in dire need of food and supplies, so we decided to raid a nearby abandoned grocery store. There, we encountered a deranged middle-aged woman, a fellow scavenger rifling through what was left. We took what we could, but there wasn't much left. And what was there had been affected by rot and angry, panicked looters. As we hurriedly loaded the truck with what we could, the female scavenger informed us she'd betrayed us for favor with them, begging for her life as she ran for safety. As we prepared to leave, a lurching young man came around the corner of the store. His machinery grafts were all wrong, though, and his nearly discombobulated head kept questioning, "Dad? Dad? Dad? Dad?"
And that was the truly terrifying part. These weren't slick, cool machines from a movie. The machinery, the virus, it was flawed. Fatally wrong. These things weren't human or machine, but an ugly grafting of both, marred and wrong. That's the part that finally woke me up for good. I'm sure you can see why.