A dream, in color, like a ballet. For a contest
| I found myself on a darkened stage. It must have been a stage. There were people dressed like dancers from the ballet set of Oklahoma, full skirts for the women to whirl around, men in cowboy outfits flexible for modern dance. The solid colors were bright, even in the darkly lit scene, yellows, and tans, greens, and blues. Their faces were blurred. A thin mist rose up around us all. No one spoke. There was no music. Only hushed quick movements could be noticed.
I was afraid. The floor was wooden, so footsteps could be heard swishing, but not clicking. Then I realized the devil was there. He was dressed all in black, just a long sleeve shirt and pants, maybe leather. He was very skinny, and the clothes fit closely. He had a gun and wore a black mask like Zoro. His hat was flat on top and the brim was small. I don’t know how I knew his identity, but everyone knew it was him and gave him a wide berth. He began to chase after me, and I ran.
I ran as only a non-runner could, ineptly. My heart beat fast. I could hardly breathe. I felt I was about to die from fear. I turned to the left to dart away but fell to the floor. I landed on my left hip and elbow, my right hand also on the ground, my face having stopped short of the floor. I, too, was wearing a full skirt, like the other women, but not a solid, bright color. Maybe a print with a white background or a very pale pastel. I didn’t know where the others had gone, or the men. I was too afraid to wonder. I was alone and desperate. My left knee was bent under me; my temples pulsed; my breathing stopped. I turned my head to look behind me.
It was one of those slow motion moments that only take a few seconds. The eerie light in the darkness allowed me to see the skinny man in black, a would-be cowboy in black boots. His face was expressionless, but I could not make out his features around the mask. He could have been a robot or had no face at all; I couldn’t tell. He quickly raised his hand and pointed the black gun at me. I knew he would get me at point blank range.
I raised my right hand before my face, like that was going to help. And I cried out in anguish, believing these to be the last words of my mortal life. “Oh, God, help me.”
Instantly a big white, thick thing came down from above like a dove and spread out smoothly over me. It wasn’t a dove, but more like a thick white downy comforter that covered me completely, including my head. A comforter would not save from a bullet, but I was transported somewhere else as it landed on me. Just like that, I was no longer on that misty, dark stage with all the faceless people in stark colors and the devil in black.
But where was I now? I was lying flat on my back, up on a raised surface, not a bed but like a display case. Was I dead? The floor was still wooden, but not like the stage. It was more like an old country store with a floor that was highly waxed and polished and clean. The area around me was empty, which made the floor so obvious. No one was with me. The room was pristine. All around the periphery were objects, maybe museum pieces, maybe wares for sale. But I was warm and comfy and feeling no need to explore.
Then I noticed the smell of yeast, like rising bread. And cinnamon. I was warm and safe and comfortable right where I was. The only thing that came from the first scene to this one was the white comforter all snug about me. I didn’t understand what had just happened, but I was okay with it.