So here’s the nightmare.
We’re all sitting on folding chairs around the perimeter of a dance studio – pale blonde floor, mirrored walls etc. It’s my family and another one with kids of nearly identical age, plus a middle school age boy who seemed to be a ward of ours. It was casual, friendly conversation, and then the boy tried on a gift from the other family – a pale blue uniform shirt for school. Only it was obviously meant for a girl; ruffled sleeves and frilly neckline.
I mocked the shirt in good humor, not knowing at the time it was a gift from the other family, then apologized sincerely. I went out to our car, stating I knew we had a proper uniform shirt somewhere. I dug through the car with no luck.
When I returned to the room I couldn’t find Lu, or the girl the same age from the other family. We couldn’t find them at all.
Cut to a few days later. My brother in law and his wife are walking with me towards the entrance of the studio, now seen as a white cinderblock building with a steel door and a chain link fence around the parking area. The sky is an odd color. My brother in law is blowing off her disappearance, saying she must have ran off, and in response I blow him off with a curt word.
Then I am somewhere else, face to face with an evil man who knows something of her whereabouts. He is not the perpetrator of the act, but he knows of it. He states that one of the two girls has already been killed – I react with fear, and relax visibly when he says it was the other girl and that Lu is still alive.
“See how far your Christian concern goes,” the man said, gloating. “You don’t care about that other girl at all, so long as your child is allright.”
I didn’t bother disputing this. “You’re right, my daughter means more to me than someone else’s child. I’m human. But don’t you dare think you’re going to get away with hurting that girl.”
The man laughed and for some reason pricked my finger to ID me. As the little GPS sized gizmo sized up my blood, it flashed scenes of worlds exploding, of rivers of lava, of action and destruction. Finally the result: the readout read “The Doctor”, and the man gasped.
Cut again, this time to the same geographic area, but now in chaos. I have done what the Doctor does, wreaked havoc and mayhem. I am running up a very steep hill covered in trees stripped of their leaves. Someone is at my side. The sky is red.
The townspeople, long unaware of what was wrong,but aware of the evil alongside them, have risen up in fury.
Some of them confront loved ones ‘turned’ to darkness against their will. One man with a pitchfork pleads with his ‘turned’ wife to bring her back to the light. Behind him, the monster responsible for this terror slips unopposed out of scene. She is a tall, raven haired woman with a billowing, bright red dress.
It is days later, and I am at a table drinking coffee. The family sets out (in a station wagon!) for parts unknown, Lu in the middle of her siblings in the backseat. She is safe and unharmed but clearly disturbed by what occurred.
And I wake up.