Dreamscape

After discovering the power to make any of her dreams a reality, will Jessica overcome her fears and use this power for the good of mankind, or be devoured by terror and become trapped in a world of nightmares?

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1. Dreamscape

Her eyes shot open and her body sprung into a sitting position. Her navy blue comforter was flung from her upper body as she nearly hyperventilated in the darkness of her room. It was just a dream, she told herself, it was just a dream. She cradled her head in her hands and took a series of deep breaths in an attempt to calm herself down. However, the calming sensation was cut short when she felt that her hands were soaked, and now her face was wet as well. She gasped and tore her hands away from her face in shock, and reached with her trembling hands towards the lamp on her bedside table. Turning on the light revealed a crimson stain on either hand, and a hand print of the same color on either cheek. She stared wide eyed in disbelief at her shaking hands, and tears began to well up in the corners of her eyes. "It was only a dream," she managed to choke out between sobs, "it was just a dream." Her entire body shook violently as she clenched her fists and squeezed her eyes shut, causing more tears that were building up around her eyes to stream down her cheeks, and take on the color of the still-fresh blood on her face.

 

     Jessica Monyet walked through the hallways of Middlebrooke High School in complete silence, clutching her books to her chest. Her thoughts were almost drowned out by the sheer volume in the hall - fellow students laughing and joking, teachers reprimanding, and an overall jovial mood that one would expect from the well lit halls of a high school - but still she was lost in thought of the most terrifying night of her seventeen years of life.

     After waking up, she checked every inch of herself for any cut or gash, but found none. It wasn't her blood. But then who's was it?

     "Jessica!" Her thoughts were pierced by the unmistakable sound of a friend's voice calling her name. "Jes, wait up!"

     She turned around and saw David, who was sprinting down the hallway toward her with a smile on his tan face. She faked a smile to hide her anguish, and embraced her childhood friend in a hug. "Hey Dave, how are you doing?"

     "I'm doing just fine," he smiled, "are you okay? You look terrible!" He chuckled and put his hand on her shoulder.

     "Thanks," she said sarcastically, beginning to laugh as well, "that's what every girl wants to hear at eight in the morning." Her demeanor changed to a much darker one as her mind wandered to the night before, "I... Didn't sleep well last night."

     David's smile faded as well, and his face changed to an expression of genuine concern. "Is everything alright, Jes?"

     She turned her back on him and began to walk away, clutching her books to her chest once more. "I'll be fine," she said, "I'l talk to you later, I have to get to class."

     She repeated that process until her day at school came to a close; she walked in silence - deep in thought - from class to class, interrupted by the occasional ten-word conversation with a friend or teacher. In class, she merely sat in her desk and recalled the nightmare that plagued her last night.

     She closed her eyes and brought to memory the the hellish vision. In her mind she pictured herself sitting in a large wooden chair, her arms and legs both bound to the wood by iron and leather shackles. In front of her stood perhaps one of the most gruesome creatures she had ever imagined, although monsters stalking her dreams were not abnormal to her. Its eyes were a deep red, and its mouth and nose were covered by a surgical mask, and it wore a stethoscope  around its neck. Its skin was a pale and pasty grey, it held a syringe filled with a maroon liquid in one hand and a scalpel in the other. She writhed in the chair and screamed, while the demented surgeon jabbed the needle deep into her chest, and sliced her throat with the specialized blade. It let out a deep and bloodcurdling laugh while she coughed up her own blood. Apparently satisfied with its work, it used the scalpel to free her hands from their leather bindings. She moved them to her throat, and made a feeble attempt to stop the flow of blood that now covered her arms down the the elbows.

     Her eyes opened again, and her breathing was out of control once more. She looked around and realized that the school bus had passed her stop. "Crap." She got off the at the next stop, and began her mile-and-a-half walk back to her house. The rain instantly soaked her blonde hair and saturated her black sweatshirt. Her body was exhausted after a sleepless night, and the trek home seemed to last forever. Finally arriving at her small house on the corner of the street, she flung her backpack to the ground, and fell onto the couch without even changing out of her sopping clothes.

     Within minutes, the world of reality faded away as she began to dream again, against her better judgement.

     The room was pitch black, and she felt her way across it until she reached a wall. Her hands moved along the wall, which was cold and made of brick, until she found a lever. Clutching it with both hands, she took a deep breathe, and pulled it down. The room became bright, and the sudden changed stunned her eyes for a few seconds. When she regained her sight, she turned to face the room. The contents of the room were not what she expected at all, and she relaxed her body as she surveyed the place. There were only two things in the small brick room; herself and another woman, who was standing directly in the center, smiling at Jessica and holding a pen out in front of her in one hand, and an ancient looking leather-bound journal in the other.

     "It's good to see you, Jessica." The woman looked just like Jessica, only much older. She wore a long billowing gown, and her blond hair was pin straight down to the center of her back.

     "Wh-who are you?" Jes stuttered and looked around.

     "I've been watching you for a long time, Jessica, and I'm here to explain what has been happening to you over the last few days."

     "You mean why i woke up covered in my own blood?" Jessica's voice grew angry.

     "Precisely." The woman took a step toward the frightened teen, who took a few steps back until her back was against the wall. "Jessica Monyet, you come from a long line of very special people. Like your mother before you, and her father before her, you have the ability make anything that you dream of a reality. You are a -"

     "Whoa whoa whoa, my mother?" She interrupted the woman, who simply stood silently and smiled at her. "I haven't seen my mother since i was seven years old. She abandoned my father and I."

     "Your mother went into hiding when a great evil came to this world to hunt her. Just like you, your mother was a Dreamscape. This meant that she had the ability to take anything that she dreamed about and make it a reality. That ability, however, made her very dangerous to a certain demon named Kho'lan. Kho'lan lived in the realm of dreams, and ruled it with with an iron fist. He is the reason that people in your realm have nightmares."

     Jessica took a step forward and brushed a few strands of her hair away from her face. "What does this demon have to do with me?"

     "Your mother," the woman continued, "dreamed up a portal to the dream realm, and went there to destroy Kho'lan. There is only one possible explanation for why you have inherited her powers."

     "What do you mean?"

     "Only one Dreamscape can exist at a time, and everyone in the realm of dreams will live forever, unless destroyed by another force in the realm."

     Jessica's face turned somber, beginning to realize where the mysterious woman was going with her story. "So Kho'lan killed my mother?"

     "I'm sorry, Jessica, but that's correct. Because you are her only child, her power has been passed down to you through the last dream that you had between her death, and this moment. That is why portions of that nightmare crept into your world; it was her power to transfer things from one realm to another passing onto you."

     "So, what? I'm some kind of super hero?"

     "Jessica, you are whatever you want to be." She took another step towards Jessica, leaving only a few feet between the two of them. "I have only come here to do a few things: First, I came to explain why things are happening to you as they have been. Second, I am here to warn you. Kho'lan won't stop until he destroys the Dreamscape bloodline. That means he'll be coming for you   next."

     "Oh great, so now I'm doomed to go into hiding and die just like my mother did?"

     "Third," the woman continued, not phased by the incessant interruptions, "I'm here to tell you not to lose hope. You can defend yourself," she held the pen and journal out towards Jessica, "these were your mother's. While you're awake, all you need to do is write with this pen in this book what you want, and it will be summoned from the dream realm to yours before your eyes."

     Jes took the small objects with apprehension, and looked over them carefully. "Mollie Randell" was engraved on the notebook and written on the pen. After holding them for a few seconds however, the letters began to glow a shining gold, and then disappeared. In their spot, in flowing script text, appeared "Jessica Monyet."

     "These are yours now, Jessica, use them well." The woman began to glow, and then faded away, leaving Jes alone in the brick room.

     Then she woke up.

     She sat up on the couch, her clothes still soaked. Her head was spinning, so much was happening. She had just found out not only that her mother was dead, but also that she had been a supernatural hero, and that her mothers abilities were just passed down to her. Her eyes drifted to the coffee table in front of her, and she had to look twice when she saw the journal and pen with her name on them sitting there. She picked them up and walked out the front door, into the rain. She was suddenly filled with a rage that she had never known before.

     She grew up the last ten years of her life without a mother, because this bastard demon had robbed her of that. And now there was a chance that she would be killed too, just because she's her mother's daughter? She decided very quickly that she would not run, and she would not hide from Kho'lan. If he wanted her, then she wasn't going down without a fight.

     She opened the book the the first page, and clicked open the pen. Inside the journal there was written one sentence: "A portal to Kho'lan."

     The ground began to shake, and out of it came two stone pillars. Lightning arched from one pillar to the other, and when the miniature storm subsided, a black cast-iron gate filled the gap between them.

     She exhaled deeply, and put her hand on the gate. She pushed it open and stepped through, and the world around her became dark. The sky was black, and flames rose from the ground hundreds of feet. The ground cracked under her feet every time she took a step, and directly ahead of her stood a stone castle, surrounded by flames and hideous flying creatures.

     She looked down at the notebook and wrote a few more words, and as she did an army of knights in silver armor materialized behind her, perfectly organized and ordered in lines. With one more stroke of the pen, she found herself enclosed in a suit of armor that matched her new found company's.

     She turned back towards the daunting sight of the flaming castle and cleared her throat. "Charge!" she bellowed, and began running toward her enemy's stronghold. As she ran, her army followed, screaming their approval of their leadership, and brandishing their swords.

     The winged beasts began to descend on the attackers, but with a few more words written in the journal, a horde of armored dragons rose up to protect Jessica and her knights.

     The battle in the air around them was the most astounding sight that she had ever beheld, and she wished that she could stop to admire the dragons of green and black tumbling over one another, clawing and biting at each other in an attempt to land the killing strike. However, she kept running, her target still a few hundred feet away.

     At that moment, the drawbridge opened, and there stood Kho'lan. He looked to be at least ten feet tall, and he was covered from feet to neck in black armor, adorned with horns and flames. Behind him stood an army of twisted knights, in the same black armor as their master. They let out  a shrill shriek and charged towards the oncoming force, with no sign of mortal fear or apprehension.

     As they approached each other, Kho'lan and Jessica were the first to meet. He swung a battle-ax over his head, and brought it down at her. She jumped out of the way, as the armies began to clash around them. While the demon regained his balance after missing his target, Jessica wrote a few more words in her journal.

     Suddenly, out of the ground rose two more pillars of stone. From them, iron chains shot out and attached themselves to the unsuspecting demon's wrists and ankles. With one more word, she there was a sword on the ground in front of her. She picked it up, and looked at the face of her mother's killer. She readied the sword, and began to plunge it toward the captive Kho'lan's chest. The demon began to smile as the blade pierced his chest and exited his body to the right of his spine. He coughed a gout of blood, and breathed his last.

     At the same time that her enemy breathed his last, a sharp pain unlike anything she ever felt went through her. She looked down to see a twisted black sword protruding from her chest, and screamed.

     Her eyes shot open and her body sprung into a sitting position. Her navy blue comforter was flung from her upper body ans she nearly hyperventilated in the darkness of her bed room. It was just a dream, she told herself, it was just a dream.

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