writing

Writing a Dream

Here’s another dream scene from the novel I’m working on. Again, this is first draft stuff and will probably change a lot by the time the novel it out, but I thought it was cool enough to share now. It’s loosely based on a dream I had about my grandfather just after he died. Anyway, let me know what you think and feel free to suggest changes. Enjoy!

The hotel was nice. The staff were friendly. Both Bert and Durham were greeted with a warm cookie and a bottle of water. Their room had two beds. It was the first time either of them slept on a bed since Las Vegas. They were comfortable beds with too many comfortable pillows. It wasn’t until the lights were off and the two were lying in their beds that they noticed the subtle scent of flowers in the air. Durham was quick to fall asleep. Bert had a bit more trouble. He got out of bed, put on his pants, and took the elevator to the bar. It was the only bar still open at that hour and shared the top floor of the hotel with the buffet hall. A jazz band played in a corner near the end of the bar. The walls behind them were lit up amber. There were two people sitting at the bar and no one else around. Both were staring at the band.

            Bert sat at the bar next to one of the women. He grabbed a napkin to write down the drink he wanted and passed the napkin to the bartender as she walked up. The woman next to him was wearing an elegant, small green dress. The bartender was wearing something that looked like it would go under a tuxedo. He couldn’t see the other woman from where he sat. His drink warmed up his stomach and coolly dampened a new napkin. Something he heard caught his attention. Out of the corner of his eye, Bert saw that the amber lights behind the band were blinking. It was a slow blink that lit up and the whole room, then made it dark again. All the instruments other than drums had dropped out of the song. The drummer was playing a solo that Bert recognized.

            As he turned in the direction of the band, someone turned off the flashing yellow lights. Bert couldn’t see anyone in the corner well. He remembered where he’d heard the song. It was the song the drummer played in the dream that he’d had in Las Vegas. When the thought hit him, red and blue spot lights burst on, pointed directly at the drummer. It was the same person. He stared at Bert while his playing intensified.

            “Speaker father?” the young lady sitting next to Bert whispered. “Tortoise arabica exhumed?” She turned to Bert, blinked slowly, then looked back at the drummer. “Manual.”

            Bert couldn’t look away from the man playing the drums. Even as the young lady clearly wanted to engage in conversation, his attention was locked in.

            “You never know.” the drummer sang. “You don’t know because it don’t matter right now.” he continued. Bert was not phased in the least that he understood. He expected it.

            “It’ll matter tomorrow.” the young lady in the green dress said, turning towards Bert. “You should really protect yourself.” Her eyes were flat and empty as she spoke.

            Bert had become so used to remaining quiet during conversations that he didn’t think of responding to her. The girl hadn’t blinked since she’d faced him.

            “Would you like another drink, sir?” the bartender interrupted.

            When Bert turned to his left, he lifted his glass to show her it was full. The bartender wasn’t the woman in the outfit resembling a tuxedo, though. The drummer was standing in her place. His eyes were bloodshot and stained looking.

            “It’ll matter tomorrow.” the woman and drummer said in sync.

            The woman sat still, staring at Bert through her matte black eyes. The drummer collapsed. He began vomiting across the rubber mats on the floor. After a few seconds, the vomit became blood. Tears dripping from his blood shot eyes were tinted red. The veins in his neck bulged. There was a second of peace while he inhaled an enormous breath. He then climbed to his feet, propping himself up on the bar, breaking a bottle that was pulled from the shelf. The drummer continued climbing, standing straight once atop the bar. A small stream of bloody saliva dripping from his open mouth became red vomit again, dousing the bar, the woman with the blank stare, who still had not blinked, and Bert.

            “Protect yourself.” the two said, again in unison before the drummer vomited directly onto Bert.

            Bert stumbled back from his stool, suddenly unfrozen, and fell backwards to the ground. He didn’t stop where the floor was, though, and continued falling through the hotel rooms. Thirteen floors had passed before he crashed onto the roof of a mini-van. He was in the parking garage below the hotel. An amber light flashed on a pillar a few feet away. There was no other light in the garage. The roof of the mini-van was caved in, windows shattered. It’s hazard lights were flashing and an alarm did its best to alert whoever owned the car, but made barely any sound. Bert laid back, sore, soaked, and confused. He dropped his head back and fell asleep.

             Before Bert’s eyes opened the next morning, his mind snapped out of sleep. It was just after sunrise. Sunlight struck his eyes, reflecting off something in the distance. He had a horrible headache. When he finally opened his eye, he saw that he was in the parking garage. He was also lying atop a mini-van. Bert slid off the mini-van roof. As he landed on the concrete, his ankle gave out and he tumbled over. Strewn across the ground about the area were crumpled beer cans and a few broken cocktail glasses. His hand smashed two cherries skewered on a tooth pick as he lifted himself off the ground. There was no room key in his pockets. Most of his cash was still in his wallet. Bert tip toed through the lobby, up the elevator to his room.

            Durham walked out of the room as Bert reached for the handle. He was a bit shocked to see Bert outside the room. Durham asked something, momentarily forgetting about Bert’s problem. When he realized what he’d done, he put his hand on Bert’s shoulder, pulling him into the room.

            “The first chance you get to sleep in a bed and you run off.” Durham said to himself. “I appreciated that fucker.”

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