He felt unsettled, no, that was not the word, disoriented, no, not really that either. He shook his head trying to figure what he was feeling, but it seemed to be just like he was subdued or drugged, in a miasmic cloud of not quite there, stupor-ness. As he shook his head his eyes came into focus. It was dark, but not too dark for him to see. He strained and the dark and thought to himself how great it would be to have more light, and suddenly a dim glow spanned before him, lighting up cool brick walls. He looked behind him to see the source, and found nothing, but as he looked down he saw dancing globes of light circling his hand. He raised his hand to his face and the globes followed, illuminating his crisp features and high cheekbones.

He raised his hand higher and thought about the light, only to see more and more details appear as the light brightened and brightened, until it became a white glare.

“Ooops”, he actually said and thought himself how about low again, and the light subsided back to the dim glow that was there a moment before. He waited a moment for his eyes to adjust from the near sun brilliance that had been there a moment before and examined his surroundings. The bricks were cast and cool, a stone fortress of some type, a door beckoned in front of him, while no windows or other features seemed apparent. Above him the bricks formed a dome and sealed the room in with formidable rock. It could be a cell or room in an ancient castle, or a gun room in some modern dream home. Without getting out, he could not tell. There was nothing else in the room that caught his attention, so he went to the door.

“Off”, the light remained, a little flustered he imagined it turning off and he was in near darkness again. He soon realized that at the top of the room a small hole reflected light from somewhere outside, this had given him his light before and now. Moving silently towards the door he felt for the latch until his hand successfully closed around the small handle. The cool crisp steel was knurled and felt old as he turned it and felt the latches click and the door give way. He opened it slowly and stayed behind the door as it slid backwards into the room.

The door opened to a small hallway, and he slowly peered out and checked for movement. The hallway was dark, but he could see light at the end through a moon shaped rune in a door. He crouched and moved outward to the door. This door had a similar handle and before he touched it he peered out the small rune shaped hole, and saw the starry night and a flicker of flames licking a series of rocks in the near distance.

He opened the door and it again pulled inwards, as he stepped out cautiously he looked up and side to side quickly to see if anyone was close, but all he saw was emptiness and the cold stones of the building. He walked towards the firelight, cautions with his steps. Looking down he noted the sandals he wore and thought to himself he had never worn sandals such as these, nor had he word the tunic he had on, was this back in time? He heard the pop of burning green work and crouched behind a rock. There was breathing, and grunting, and he was not sure of what else, strange sounds that he could not make out, and a grinding or clanging of steel.

He slowly peered around the rock to see a woman chained before the fire with her arms bound overhead. From his viewpoint he could tell she had her legs free, but she could not lower or more her hands easily. She wore a tunic similar to his, only it was cut much lower, either by design, or by the rip and tear of an unseen assailant. Her legs were lithe and he could see she was near perfect even from his quick look. Her fiery hair shun with a life of its own in the wandering lashes of light laid out by the large fire.

Peering further he saw her assailant, or captor, or perhaps her soon to be devourer as he noted the near monster gnawing on a bone while leaning against a rock. He figured the giant stood nearly 8 feet tall and was built like a mid-size tree, thick and hard. Loose skins covered his body, perhaps from bears he had snacked on for fun.  This was a nightmare in any form.

He looked back at the bound woman and could see she saw him and peered deeply at him with her steel blue eyes, calling to him, beckoning, wanting him to be there, to free her, and something else. There was a sparkle in her eyes he had seen before, he struggled to remember, to know, but it eluded him.

He needed a weapon, he turned and scanned the ground, but there was nothing he could easily see. A few rocks and little else littered the ground. He could see the building still there behind him and wondered if he had missed anything as he left. His mind raced and he knew his point of origin and the walk here had been as empty as the ground before him.

He glanced around the rock again and noticed a pile of bones near him, most would be useless against the brute gnawing on some rotting piece of flesh, but there was a femur that may have enough strength to make a dent. He saw her again, peering at him, this time she struggled with her chains a little and the goliath looked to her, allowing him a moment to dart forward and grab the femur, then return to his hiding place.

The bone was strong, but had no heavy weight. The surface of the bone was pitted with teeth marks and scratches and was cool to his hand. He felt the weight and slapped the bone on his hand, and knew this would be only partially effective, but he had to act. He heard a loud crunch and slowly glanced around the boulder to see the behemoth adding even more wood to the fire, making the flames dance even higher.

Determined to save her he watched as the monstrosity turned his back to him and crept out of his hiding place, bone in hand. He walked softly in the sandals which felt as though they were silent extensions of his feet, and worked his way up to his quarry. 5 feet, 4 feet, he could now smell the monster, and the smell was more frightening than the look of the beast. With both hands he swung and bashed the femur against the monsters skull, only to have it break in half as it struck. As it turned the man beast swayed as though hurt and unsure, but he did not wait and with the remaining bone swung again to the head, glancing off. A huge arm swung at him and though he pulled away, still managed to catch him on the side, throwing him a few feet. He hurt with the impact, but regained quickly as the giant lumbered towards him.

Jumping up he looked to the girl and saw her brow furled in concern. He looked to her hair, then the fire, and ran to the fire, grabbing a loose log that had not yet caught. He hefted it and spun a wild swing, hitting the monster squarely in the head again as it approached. It was to no avail, the monster howled in pain, but pushed him clear of the circle of light, nearly 10 feet into the air and 20 feet beyond the flames. His back hurt, his side hurt, and he really felt pretty bad. He could hear the massive mound of muscle and sinew bounding towards him and really wished he could catch a breath. Could this be his end? “No”, he thought to himself and looked to the bounding lummox, raised his hand and thought “bright” and the light returned, he squinted as the blinding light halted the creature in his tracks, grabbing its eyes in pain. He puffed, and stood tall, grabbing a lungful of air, and ran to the thing, hoping he could knock it over, push Push PUSH, he thought and as his hands hit the beast he felt a jolt of power and saw the creature take its turn in the air. Amazed at himself he saw the monumental mass rise near the flame and shake its head. Something new crossed its gruesome visage, and right away he recognized that look, the look of fear.

He took another lungful of air, and was beginning to understand, he walked forward towards the fire, and the massive man-beast looked at him, fear turned to rage as it launched towards him. He glanced at the woman, who now smiled knowingly at him, and he simply said “no” and swatted his hand in front of him.

The beast was knocked back again, “no”, and again the beast forced back, “NO” and he pushed it back again towards the building “In” he thought and the beast was forced through the door. “enough, and the massive door closed and was lit for a moment by the brightness of molted stone as the building sealed.

Another breath, he turned to her. She was smiling. He walked to her and looked at her, eyes bright and shining. Reaching up he unlocked her shackles and her hands fell down around his neck, pulling him close. She smiled, and kissed him, as he kissed her. She pulled back.

“Thank you”, she said. She kissed him again, holding him tightly as he felt her warmth. Their bodies were close, then closer and he felt every curve of her body close to him. His mind was reeling with impossible thoughts as his tongue entered her mouth, her felt her relax and fold into his arms as the heat between them rose beyond that of even the fire raging near them. Her hands found his and the pain that he felt a moment ago was gone, as they kissed more and more deeply he felt like a raging volcano himself. He closed his eyes, and was once again in his apartment.



Alone and afraid…

“Sweetie, are you going to have a good night?” Elizabeth’s mother asked softly.

“Sure mom,” Elizabeth said looking at her mom in her sharp Madonna costume. The leather was tight and Elizabeth was hopeful she looked as wonderful when she got her mom’s age. “You look great!”

Her mom looked down at the outfit and said, “Wow honey, thanks. Not too bad for an old woman.”

“Mom,” Elizabeth whined, “You aren’t old. You are only 35, I know moms that are a lot older than you.”

“Thank’s honey,” her mom said. “I won’t be too late.”

“Stay out mom,” Elizabeth said. “Puffles and I will be fine.” The large tortoise shell cat purred at Elizabeth’s side and rubbed against her.

Her mom walked to the door, and the door closed leaving Elizabeth alone. She heard the lock motors whir shut from the crisp new electronic lock her mom had bought.

Elizabeth got up from the plush couch with the pillows thrown from side to side and walked to the kitchen. She reached into the new Samsung refrigerator and got a Coke, then walked over to the cabinet and grabbed a box of crackers. She noticed they were almost out so she said, “Alexa, add Cheez-its to grocery list.”

A computerized voice said, “Got it, Cheeze-its added to your grocery list.”

Elizabeth went back out to the couch and turned on the Samsung TV then talked to the remote and said, “Scary movie.”

Checking her phone she saw that Facebook was going crazy with costumes as her friends were out in force, going from spot to spot having fun while she sat at home. She really didn’t mind, because it was just as fun watching them get into trouble and her not being in trouble.

A list of movies came up and she quickly choose “A Nightmare on Elm Street” and a good choice to watch. Puffles came to her and laid down next to her leg, and she absently stroked her fur as she sat watching the movie. Cringing at the knives she hugged Puffles and he purred away. He was warm, and she always enjoyed feeling the big fluffy cat next to her. It made her feel safe. She felt the tile on the cat’s neck and laughed to herself how they “tracked” the cat.

At a particularly tense point Elizabeth screamed and Puffles jumped from the couch and went to the other room. She picked up her phone again and noticed there were no new posts, nothing at all.

Elizabeth jumped as she heard a “whoomp” and a crash in the kitchen. Getting up she walked to the kitchen and turned on the light. The light flickered for a moment and she looked at the bulb, but then the light stayed on brightly. She looked around and noticed a small bit of hair on the Samsung refrigerator. On the screen it said, “Cat=Food”.

Elizabeth opened the door and Puffles ran out of the fridge shrieking.

Elizabeth ran to him and picked up Puffles, holding him close to her chest, “There there, are you ok. How did you get into that fridge?”

Puffles “mewled” and she walked in circles in front of the TV.

“He wants the cat back,” the TV said gruffly with Freddy Kruegers face on the screen. “HE wants it back now.”

Elizabeth backed away form the TV and held Puffles close.

Looking at eh kitchen, only a short distance away she saw that Freddy was on the screen in there too, “Give me back the cat. Maybe we should take you too.”

She heard the Echo in the kitchen say, “Elizabeth added to grocery list.” and Elizabeth cringed. Grabbing her phone she ran to her room with Puffles.

Looking down at her phone she saw Freddy’s face and a smile on it, “You can’t get away from us, we are everywhere.”

Her Apple computer a few feet away lit up. “Bring us the cat and it will be ok.”

She ran from her room to her mom’s room. The IPad on the counter lit up, “Bring us the cat. Being a smart Refrigerator makes him hungry.” The image of Freddy said.

Elizabeth ran out and ran to the door holding her cat. She started to turn the door lock but it glowed bright blue and closed again, “Bring us the cat. We want the cat.” She heard the Echo say in the other room.

A small disc started heading towards her and she realized the Roomba was coming for her and Puffles. She screamed and ran back down the hallway to the living room again. She dove over the Roomba with the cat and curled on the couch with all the fluffy pillows.

The TV lit up with Freddy again, “Give us the cat, now Elizabeth.”

She heard chanting from all around, electronics sung in their own unique voices begging for the cat, pleading for the cat and Elizabeth kicked her leg’s back and forth on the couch.

She heard “Meeeowr” from her chest and looked down.

Puffles eyes glowed red and gold, the circuits were embedded deep into his head and his fur was like thin wire.

Elizabeth screamed into the pillow.

“Honey,” her mom was shaking her. “Wake up honey, you’re having a dream.

She looked up and saw her mom in her outfit a little tussled.

“Mom?” Elizabeth said quizzically.

“It was a good night,” her mom said. “You should have watched something besides scary movies you silly.”

Elizabeth shook her head, Puffles lay beside her purring, the pillows surrounded her like a cocoon and she was less afraid than a moment ago. She looked down at her phone, at the TV, and all the technology she had. Sitting it on the coffee table she walked towards her room.

“Mom,” she said. “I think I am going to read a book and skip technology tonight.

“Sounds good,” her mom said from her room.

Yes, it did sound good, thought Elizabeth.