There were apples. An orchard. Emptied out. I was with someone and we were hoping for at least a few fruits. Two dimensional people drifted through the the trees with baskets full, walking to the edge where the empty dirt extended forever. We found only two trees with a few apples left. It took cunning to grab any. Hunger. Urgency.
Was in a group home of some kind and saw a man with a familiar face. My danger always knows me. The man had been on a show about murderers and pedophiles and had been a victim of one of them and was interviewed on the show. I said this to him. That I’d seen him on the show. Should not have said this. He knew I should not have said this. It showed the skin of truth blooming just under the surface. I couldn’t quite get at it and so I was safe for a while though I knew my time would run out because it always does. There were other girls but I have no real memory of what we were doing there together or how this man had come to be among us. Things were going wrong. There is a network of images I’m missing. They have been coming back to me all day in bits but I can’t recall them now. Rooms, white and crumbling, basements, television replays, things going wrong and me knowing that the man amongst us was not the victim of the killer but was the killer himself. Smiling up at me through the screen into my flesh, knowing we knew each other the way a killer knows his next victim and the victim, without being willing to admit it, knows her killer when she sees him.
Scrambling to find him before he kills. Wish I could pluck at the colors of the nightmare, pull the threads from the cloth to paint with. There is only the image that keeps coming back to me all day long. It keeps flashing through my head like memory. Not the memory of a nightmare but of substance.
I opened the last ditch door, flung it wide and stopped short. The girl at the bottom of the stairs looked up at me like a child holding forbidden cookies from the broken cookie jar scattered across the floor. Caught in white light her pale face free from actual guilt for stealing souls. I saw the dismembered man she held up, his legs and one arm missing. The blood punctuating the flooding light with apostrophes trailing off into the corners. Strangely not dead, the man looked at me too. Pedophile and girl. She explained that she had to stop him before he did it again. His unrepentant grin rose to meet me. I couldn’t not see it. I wanted to unsee it. I wanted to unsee his sawn off body. I wanted to unsee the girl’s serene face. I knew that the two of them were now locked together in their perfidy. I wanted to be glad he was dispatched but the face of the girl, the apathy and the emptiness is haunting. She is him. He is her.