Fiction: Interlude: A Dream Sequence
Ravine dreamt of a gloomy forest. She dreamt of dirt roads that wound around great ivory-colored trees like snakes. She dreamt of a cloudless night with a full moon—its light spilling through the boughs and onto the path ahead, though it did not illuminate the area around the path. In fact, she could only see—perhaps five feet off the road before it gave away to an inky blackness which the woman did not find inviting at all. The air was cold and biting against her skin, and she wished she had brought along a coat—or a extra robe though the wind did not blow.
Walk. It was all she could think of. Just keep walking until the end. Don’t stray off the path. Her legs started to move as walked down the dirt road—though she had no clear idea of her final destination. Once in awhile, she felt a pair of eyes watching her from within the forest, though she did not stop to look. Soon, she realized she was being followed by someone—or something. That one something turned to many. But something in the back of her mind told her to ignore it all and just keep moving.
There were many creatures that emerged from those woods. Some were tiny, impish things with gremlin faces that looked devilish when they grinned from ear to ear. Others were larger—their bodies barely resembling humanoid features. Some had many arms, and many heads. Some had armor which had been fused to their body. All of them had tried to lure Ravine away from the road—telling her that following this lighted path would do her no good.
“Come to us,” they said. “You’re one of us. You belong to us.”
“No,” she responded defiantly. “I am not like you. I am not a creature of the dark. I belong to myself.”
They did not relent. They knew of her troubles—how she could not control the felflame inside her. They giggled, and mocked, and ridiculed her for something that came so natural—so easy to them. Their words were sweetened with promises help her tame her magic. The only thing they asked her to do was to step into the woods, for they could not stand in the light.
Ravine stood her ground. A voice in her mind screamed at her not to listen. They’re trying to trick you, it said. They will devour you if you follow them. It reassured her there was another way, and that she would not have to walk with demons to do so. When the creatures realized she would not follow them, they hissed and seethed at her, cursing her name.
Many of them tries to cross into the light—attempting to drag her into the darkness by force. They ignored the pain, the smoke and sizzling sounds that came from their skin—their hunger being too great. Surprised, but not completely caught off-guard, flames flickered from Ravine’s fingertip—conjuring large fireballs that flew towards her assailants. The smaller ones screeched—consumed by the flames, while the larger demons howled and cursed in their native tongue as fire scorched their skin. Many of the other creatures stayed back—not for fear of the fire she threw, but of the light. The battle ended as quickly as it began when they realized the fight was in Ravine’s favor—and therefore, a fight they could not win.
One by one, they slunk back into the darkness of the wood—their voices screeching unpleasant things at her. Once again, she was alone again on the road.
Looking up to the heavens, she asked to the nameless voice in her head, “You said there is another way!”
Yes, it responded.
Follow the road.
Ravine stared down the path, and muttered. There wasn’t anything that stood out.
“Should there be… something I should look for? Anything?”
Silence. She grumbled again.
“Some help you are…” Despite her grumblings, she continued down the road, leaves the ashes and smoldering corpses behind her. As she left, the bodies and ash piles vanished like wisps of smoke—and soon, so did the rest of the dream.