Day 5 of 100 Word Prompts: Clip
Isis and Owen ran into the bedroom at a good clip, slamming the door behind them. The sun was setting outside, casting long shadows into the room. Out in the hall, the raspy laughter of their pursuer echoed.
“There’s nowhere you can hide from Al Take, children. I will find you,” the creature said as it dragged its nails up the wall.
“Shit,” Owen said, turning to Isis. “What do we do now? He’s coming!”
“Follow me,” Isis said, opening her closet.
“A closet? How’s that going to help?” Owen replied.
“Just follow me and stop talking,” Isis said as she pressed on the back wall, forcing it open.
Isis could feel her heart in her throat as her breath became shallow. Her hands shook as she pulled Owen with her into the other place before turning around to close the door.
“Where are we?” Owen asked, his jaw slack.
“We’re in the other place. It’s something I came up with to hide from my nightmares. They can’t come in here,” Isis replied as the door vanished.
Isis fell to her knees, out of breath as a cool wind swept past her in the green field that covered the rolling hills surrounding them. In the distance, birds chirped and danced around as they flew through the air.
“You made this?” Owen asked.
“When I was a little girl, yes. This is how I saw the small field out back of my childhood home. We should keep moving, just in case,” Isis said.
“Who the hell is that guy?” Owen asked. “Why does he keep chasing us and talking about himself in the third person?”
“He’s a nightmare now, but he used to be a dream walker like us. I don’t know how, but he started killing other walkers,” Isis replied.
“Wait, we’re walkers?” Owen repeated.
“Yes, we are, and that’s why we run,” Isis replied.
“Can’t we just find him outside of Dream World?” Owen said. “He has to be somewhere.”
“Hello, children,” Al Take’s voice whispered from the sky. “I told you that you couldn’t hide from me.”
“Run!” Isis cried as she pushed herself to her feet and took off at a sprint.
Owen followed closely behind, “Where is he?”
“I don’t know, but I’d rather not find out,” Isis replied.
“I can’t keep running like this,” Owen said. “I can’t breathe.”
“Then fly,” Isis said, grabbing his hand as she leapt.
Owen saw the ground beneath him rapidly shrink away as Isis pulled him through the sky. He looked down to see the flaming eyes of Al Take staring up at them only feet from where they had been. The monster’s grin seemed to grow larger as Owen watched it kick-off and begin its pursuit.
“He’s coming!” Owen said, looking up at Isis and then back at Al Take.
“Think of something in your head, a place of safety. Someplace that only you know about,” Isis said.
Owen thought about his parents’ bedroom. During thunderstorms, he had run in there and dove under the covers and into his parents’ arms. They always made him feel so safe.
“Don’t say it out loud,” Isis said. “Just concentrate on it, and imagine that we are there. Don’t listen to anything you hear and close your eyes. Don’t think about anything other than us being there, okay?”
“What about him?” Owen asked as he saw the crazed smile growing closer.
“Whatever you do, do not think of him,” Isis said as she adjusted her grip to be around his waist. “Now close your eyes, and block your ears.”
Owen did as he was told. He focused on the feeling of the cool sheets on hot summer nights. He thought of the instant level of security he felt as he crawled through them. It seemed so real in his mind and that he swore he could feel the sheets rubbing against his skin.
“You did it!” Isis said as he felt gravity pull the pair of them down into the down blankets.
Owen opened his eyes. “It’s so dark,” he said.
“I think there’s a blanket here,” Isis said as she began thrashing the covers off them.
The room was simple. There was a nightlight illuminating the hall just outside, but they could make out the vague shapes of two dressers and tv at the end of the bed.
“Is there a light?” Isis asked.
“Yeah, one second,” Owen replied as he climbed out of bed and flipped the switch.
The fixture in the ceiling flared to life, illuminating the powder blue walls and the corner of the room where a desk sat.
“Where are we?” Isis asked.
“My parents’ bedroom,” Owen said. “I haven’t been here for years.”
“Nice job, Owen,” Isis said, nodding approvingly. “I’m sorry I put you on the spot like that. I was out of ideas.”
“It worked out,” Owen said, running his hand over his mother’s desk. “I can’t believe how real this all looks.”
“It’s still just a dream,” Isis said. “I don’t know how long it’ll take him to find us, but we should keep moving.”
“Okay,” Owen said as he walked to the bedroom door. “What happens if he catches us?”
“I came up with a plan a long time ago, but it’s kind of a last resort kind of thing.”
“Alright, so plan A it is,” Owen said as he swung the door open.
“Hello, children,” Al Take said, standing in the doorway. “Are you done running? It’s getting boring, don’t you think?”
“Leave us alone,” Isis said.
“If I do that, how will I feel anything?” Al replied as he stepped into the room. The sneaker on his foot sounded like a hefty boot landing on a hollow floor despite how gently it looked like he was walking. “How would I get the satisfaction of knowing there are fewer walkers in dream world? This is my domain. Only I have the right to be here.”
“You’re not a walker anymore,” Isis said. “You’re just a nightmare.”
“I’m so much more than that,” Al replied, a sneer on his face as he reached the desk. “Nightmares can’t alter things, but I can create entire universes.”
Al Take snapped his fingers, and the desk lurched forward, the top center drawer opening to show a field of stars and galaxies.
“I can turn things from sweet and serene to terrifying,” Al said as he snapped again. The light in the ceiling began flickering, and the walls ran with blood. “Most of all, I can kill walkers.”
Al Take vanished from the spot and appeared behind Isis. His hands morphed into long blades as he thrust his arm toward Isis’ back.
“No!” Owen screamed as the flesh blade erupted from her chest.
Isis reached up and grabbed the blade as the pain exploded through her. She fixed her eyes on Owen and forced a smile as she felt the blood rising in her throat.
“It’ll be okay now,” she gargled as she closed her eyes and imagined the most secure prison in dream world. She imagined no doors, no windows, and no way out. Not even imagination would free you from it.
Owen watched as Al tried to pull his arm free, and Isis became a beacon of light shrinking in on itself. The nightmare attempted to pull free but was stuck in place, screaming and crying out in every octave imaginable as the light wrapped around it. One moment, Isis and Al Take were standing there, and in the next, they were both gone, leaving Owen standing in his parents’ bedroom alone.
“Isis,” Owen whispered.