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14 August 2006 @ 11:29 pm
To sleep: perchance to dream (deadly_genesis)  
I jolted awake, gasping for air, my fingers digging into the bedsheets on either side of me. Early morning light filtered in through the curtains, but I kept my eyes wide open and trained on the ceiling overhead, trying to still my nerves. I was drenched in sweat, but I was shivering and I felt cold deep inside.

Bits and pieces of the nightmare came back to me as I forced myself into complete wakefulness. I tried not to focus on them, but the images were there, and I couldn't block them out.

Dream-running through the red-lit underground passages of Ord's ship. Like running through red syrup, difficult to breathe, and so slow, despite how hard I was trying. Peter, strapped to a lab table, unmoving. At first I thought the red light washed over him, too, but as I got closer I realized that he was covered in dried blood.

The major variation of this dream was the guards who followed me, shooting at me while I stood over the table. I phased, but each bullet left a cartoon-like hole in my body, so I was polka-dotted with empty spots. That's when I started to disappear.

I remembered this part of it clearly. It started with my feet. I looked down and saw them fading, and quickly turned to Peter, to try to revive him, to help him, just to touch him. But before I could, my hands disappeared. As I watched in horror, Peter woke up on the table, terrified eyes staring into mine. I heard the whirr of the instruments starting, and he struggled, but could not get free.

The last thing I remember is his anguished voice screaming my name, the name that only he calls me.


Organizing the fragments in my mind, I was able to slowly push them to the side. My heart rate had slowed to a somewhat normal pace, and I was able to breathe normally now. I relaxed my death grip on the bedding and lifted my hands to scrub them over my face. I had to figure out a way to stop these nightmares. Peter would not be pleased to know I was having them, and they were starting to take a physical toll on me. I was getting little sleep and waking up tired, and the images they produced were always in the back of my mind, stressing me out.

Worse, I was now worried that Peter would decide he was ready to talk about what he'd endured, adding more fuel to my cursed imagination. I wanted to be there for him, wanted to listen to anything he had to say and offer support, but what would the result be? This only reinforced my decision not to let him know about the nightmares; if he did, he would never want to discuss his experience with me, choosing instead to protect me by possibly bottling it all up inside. And I couldn't have him hurt himself for my sake, when he'd been hurt so much already.

I sat up in bed and came to a difficult conclusion; I was going to have to ask Emma to look into my head and lock the nightmares away. A chill snaked down my spine at the thought and I pulled the covers up around me, scooting back to sit against the headboard. It was one of the absolute last things I wanted to do, but I could unfortunately see not other way around it. The nightmares had to stop. There was too much going on now, and I needed to be at the top of my game. I didn't have superhuman reserves of strength like some of the others did; I had to rely on good old fashioned sleep to recharge my batteries. I couldn't be walking around groggy with visions of torture playing behind my eyes.

Decision made, I threw off the covers and swung out of bed. I saw that I was still in my clothing from the day before, and I remembered that I had fallen asleep in Peter's arms. Gentleman that he is, he must have tucked me into bed.

One of the perks of being a teacher is having a private bathroom in my room, and I quickly showered and dressed before heading into the hallway with thoughts of breakfast and pop quizzes on my mind.