I grabbed the dagger hanging from the troll?s thigh as I bent before the cliff awaiting death. I pulled it from its holster and in one swift move twirled it in my hand then rammed it through the troll?s primitive boot, stopping when I hit dirt.
I seized my friend Trevor?s forearm and pulled him away from the other troll. The troll clumsily thrust his sword at me and struck the other troll in the shoulder, slicing through his crude armor.
The uninjured troll ran to catch us as we bolted for the gate of the castle wall, but his meaty legs were much too large and awkward to beat our panicked stride. The other troll quickly followed but had to limp, giving him no chance whatsoever.
We reached the gate and had to struggle to turn the wheel that brought up the gate by an old pulley system. We didn?t bother to lift it the whole twenty feet, instead, we turned it just enough for us to slide under. Therefore when the troll?s got here, they would have to waste time.
I pushed my friend through first, then crawled under. I was so close to freedom when the troll grabbed my vest collar and pulled me back as I grunted trying to hold on to safety, serenity, sanity?
I wake up suddenly in a moist halo of sweat. As I sit up my eyes try to adjust to the pale moonlight gleaming through my open window.
?Same nightmare again.? I mutter to myself in a grainy voice.
I place my head on the pillow again and wander off into the vastness of my own mind.
The next morning I wake up to the family cat absent-mindedly stalking my hamster again. It leaps at the cage and knocks over my deodorant.
?Eh!? I push out of my rough throat. ?Git off of thu dresser? The cat responds and shoots out the doorway, knowing I would get up and chase if it didn?t.
After I get dressed I walk down the stairs like a drugged zombie and rebound a series of ?G? Morning?s to my parents.
?Hey sleepy,? calls my mother as she slowly slurps her coffee. ?How did you sleep??
?Not so great.? I responded. ?I?ve got kind of a headache.? Not wanting to say I had nightmares, I simply added the cat was up the same old antics again.
My mom spoke up again, ?Anything you want to tell me?? She twisted the red charm around her neck with a puzzled look.
Hearing the same line way too many times, I sarcastically stated that I was frustrated that penguins are invading Kansas and I?m stuck here with a flying amputee disco midget trying to eat my hamster.
?See ya later.? I called to my dad as I leave the house to get to the bus stop.
As I walk to the bus stop, a car flies by, leaving me soaking with slush all over my legs. I make a gesture to the driver and continue to the stop.
My head starts to throb and a massive headache beats on my forehead like jackhammer. The pain increases and I grunt, baiting the kids at the bus stop to stare at me. I sink to my knees and hold on to my head. The pain is unbearable now and I start shaking my head, my vision blurs and the other children huddle around my contorted body.
One of the parents crouches beside me, she tries to talk to me but her voice is carried somewhere else. All the noises haze into one and become distant, like I?m in a different room, a different world.
My eyes close after I grimace one last time, then the world dissolves into nothing and I am left inside my own mind.
A loud crack echoes in my head and my eyes open.
I?m in a forest and another crack is heard, crunching now. I slowly turn around and see an oversized cougar (about the size of an adult rhinoceros) ripping apart a bear carcass.
I notice I?m already standing so I run as fast as I can away from it. I stop a few dozen feet away and don?t hear anything any more. When I turn around I watched the cougar leap off the back of an uninjured bear and strangely run backwards into a thicket of bushes. The bear turns its head towards the bushes and then turns to a patch of soil and begins to spit up berry plants and shove them into the ground. After a few minutes it oddly waddles backward into the woods.
Not understanding what I just witnessed I continue to jog. Ahead of me is a boulder with a carving of a giant cougar head, staring down on a bunch of people.
I see a path crossing my way and begin to follow it. The path is a different color than the dirt around it, enabling me to see the path ahead for quite a length. The path is straight for about one hundred feet and then curves out of my sight.
Keeping a steady jogging pace I stare at my cracked but still functional watch, it reads 25:09. 25:09?
I slow down to figure this out when I trip over a root, sending me careening into the dirt before me. I close my eyes and brace myself for impact, but I don?t hit the ground. A cool wind rushes by my still defense positioned body and I open my eyes. I watch as a small pond becomes larger and larger. I am falling my body tells me, but my brain won?t let me believe it.
My brain finally agrees when I slap the water, creating not a splash but a ripple in the water. The ripple hits the edge of the shore and raises up for a few feet then freezes along with the rest of it.
It begins to crack at the top of the ripple then break open sending water gushing out in a dome above me, it then stops and hardens into a black material. The rest follows, enclosing me in darkness.
I wake up in a small room alone and cough, my eyes slowly adjusting to the powerful light above. I cannot connect any of my memory to the room or the people in it. People? Yes, there are people in the room now, two of them.
I get out of the bed and speak to the first person, ?Where am I??
The woman sits there weeping, nervously twisting the red charm on her necklace. I call again and still no response. I call to the other person, a man this time, ?WHERE AM I!? I demand impatiently.
I close my eyes and wake up in a small room with two people in it. The people are my parents. My father realizes I have come to first.
?Marion, he?s awake!? he calls. My mother pulls the tissue from her tired eyes and bursts out crying.
A doctor walks in the room and asks my parents to exit the room. He grabs a clipboard attached to the bed and pulls a severed finger from his breast pocket; he begins to write with it and comes closer to me. He stops writing and opens his mouth.
His mouth begins to stretch to the size of a small plate and folds over the rest of his head down to his neck. He then reaches out and grabs me, as he does, I close my eyes.
I open my eyes and see a familiar room, not my own but still recognizable. I sit rocking back and forth with my head resting on my knees, staring at the door.
The door opens and I scurry behind my steel frame bed. A man places a bowl of cereal on the table and leaves. I take the plastic spoon and greedily eat the cereal.
I stare through the barred windows and continue to eat, trying to remember who I am.