Author’s note: there’s a couple pics that are supposed to be extremely windy and scary looking and due to limitations in the game that can’t happen so I apologize; please use your imagination.
Two days passed without any of my vision-dream things. I worried that, like, since I knew now about them maybe I’d never have one again. But I didn’t mention this to anyone in the family since they all seemed relieved I knew. ‘Specially my sisters. They both hugged me, telling me they were sorry they didn’t tell me sooner but Dad told them not to. They also told me that after I had these vision-dreams my eyes went super weird but wouldn’t tell me exactly what that meant. Just that next time I had one to go look in a mirror afterwards. If I ever had one again. Which I doubted now.
On the third day I woke up still without any of the dreams. I sighed and got dressed unhappily before scurrying down for breakfast. I didn’t say anything as we ate and promised my dad that I felt fine as he prepared to head off. He frowned at me, looking like he might try to push me for more information but finally just pat my head before leaving. Grandpa, though, didn’t accept my answer. But as much as he pressed about it I kept my mouth shut cause I didn’t wanna talk about it. Finally Granddad convinced Grandpa to stop bugging me about it and I could work on schoolwork in peace–not a nice thing but better than trying to figure out how to explain how weird I felt. The twisty feeling in my belly, the fear that felt like it was clouds coming in. That sort of thing. I mean, what if I had lost this ability to see the future?
Would it be the worst thing? I didn’t even know I could do it, and apparently it made my life bad. Difficult. Like, I had to be taken out of school. And Dad… he wanted to be with someone but was worried about me. Okay so romance and love and all that stuff was absolutely disgusting but I knew some people wanted it and liked it, and made people happy. Dad deserved to be happy. And if having someone like that around made him happy then–then it was my fault he didn’t. Was he unhappy? I didn’t think he was but the past few days made it reallllllly obvious that there was a lot in this house I didn’t know about so he could be…
“Ughhh!” I dropped my head on the table, groaning loudly. My head hurt but not because of hitting the table, mostly because of all the confusion welling up inside my head like someone pouring too much water into a glass. Any minute now my confusion would come pouring out of my ears and spill everywhere.
Instead rain spilled down. I blinked and looked up in confusion. Instead of the bland white ceiling of the living room I looked up at whirling green-black clouds. A few drops of rain splashed down. Wind whipped around, strands of hair flapping across my face. Sense of dread and fear took out the confusion pretty quick then understanding–a dream. I was having a vision-dream thing. But what was going on?
Then, screams. Well. One person screaming. I whirled around and toppled to the ground from a strong gust of wind. I yelped in pain as my palms scratched against the cement. Why did my dreams have to cause me pain?
“–where he is!”
I got up and saw two girls standing by a house. Young women. Not much older then Reeny. They were holding onto each other’s arms, looking terrified as their hair and the one’s skirt flung around in the wind. A wailing sound in the distance that sounded like some sort of alarm? I scanned the area but couldn’t see anything. Houses. Trees blowing in the wind. The dark clouds.
“You can’t go looking for him!” I faced the girls again. “Come on!”
“No, I have to f-find him!”
One girl began dragging the other towards a small shed. The taller girl was screaming about searching for someone and crying. The smaller girl did her best to drag the other. I followed them. They didn’t go into the shed but instead yanked open a door on the ground, going down there. I followed them or tried to. The door in the ground shut before I got there. Frowning I grabbed the handles but they wouldn’t open. Usually I didn’t do this sort of thing in my dreams but this–
“This is real,” I told myself, shivering a bit. Somewhere… somewhen this would happen. The weird clouds. That blaring sound. The wind getting stronger. That weird roaring sound. Like some sort of monster. Like…
“Oh shhhh–” I fell back, staring in horror at a tornado. A tornado. A–TOR–NA–DO!
I scrambled back a bit and began trying to yank open the doors, feeling terrified beyond anything else I ever felt before. This was real, a tornado, it was a tornado and it was coming this way, and I would die. Could I die?! I lifted my hands and saw blood smeared along my palms, a bit of grit stuck in them.
“OOF!” I felt the wind grabbing at me. “NO! NO! NO!” I grabbed the door handles, screaming as I felt my body lifting off the ground. “NO! PLEASE NO! NO! I DON’T WANNA DIE! I DON’T WAAAANNN–“
Then I saw it. Half-floating in the air, holding on with all my might to that storm door in the ground, I lifted my head and saw it.
Beyond the shed was a field. In the field was a truck. In the truck was a man. He was the one the tall woman had been crying for. He was driving fast, looking constantly over at the tornado. The truck bounced and swerved. He would make it to the house and shed. But then suddenly a tree, or part of a tree, flung out of no where and slammed into the truck. He tried swerving but I could see the windshield breaking and blood. Lots of blood. The truck swerved wildly around and finally tipped over. A branch stuck through the glass and in the man.
Then the sucking grew worse and my hands began slipping off the door handle. I began screaming as my body lifted more but instead of being flung into the tornado I found myself hitting the floor of my living room–screaming, sobbing, shaking, crying for help.
Then my body was being moved. I screamed again then realized it was Grandpa, moving me to face him. I stared up in horror then threw myself against him, sobbing into his shirt. Grandpa wrapped his arms around me tightly, making whispery sort of comforting sounds with no words.
After an eternity I pulled back and looked at my hands. My palms were as clean and unwounded as they had been earlier. I touched a spot gently, expecting to feel something like scraped up skin or grit… but felt nothing but smoothness. “A t-tornado,” I whispered, not looking up.
“I know.” Oh, yes. I shouted out my dreams. He would know what happened. “It’s okay, poliwag. You’re okay.”
I got to my feet, legs really shaky and I felt like I might just topple over. “I’m not okay.” I looked at my hands again. “That guy died. W–will die. He’s going to die. I actually saw him die. I saw him die.” My voice began breaking up. “He died. He will die. I s-saw him.” I began shaking like the tornado was on me again. “He’s going to die! All of them are!” I reeled back when Grandpa tried holding me. “THEY’RE ALL GOING TO DIE!”
“ALL THOSE PEOPLE!” I staggered back, breathing rapidly. “ALL THOSE PEOPLE I SEE DIE WILL DIE! Th–the fires–and–shootings–and stabbings–and–everything!” I began crying harder. “It’s gonna happen, it’s all going to happen! They’re g-going to die. Some of them had died?”
“THEY–WILL–DIE! FOREVER!” I fell to my butt, hugging myself, sobbing. They were all gonna die. That man with the tree through his truck, he was gonna be killed one day. What I saw wasn’t a dream but was real. All the violence. I was there. Really there, in the middle of all of it, seeing all of it. “–help have to help have to help–” I then realized I was talking without thinking. “–have to help have to help–“
“Apollo.” Grandpa knelt in front of me, a serious look on his face. “Do what I say okay?” He pressed a hand against my chest and commanded me to breathe in. I obeyed. After a few seconds he commanded me to breathe out. We did this for a long time until I managed to be calmish. Then Grandpa pulled me to my feet and took me into the kitchen for a glass of water. After I sipped a bit he got a wet dishcloth and patted it on my face.
“I thought it was cool. When Dad told me. I knew there was–bad stuff–I saw. But I thought it’d be cool. But it’s not cool. I’m seeing people… die.” I looked down at the glass of water, hiccuping a bit. “This is why you guys didn’t want to tell me. Not because of the other stuff. But because of this.”
Grandpa sat down across from me. “Yeah,” he said, not at all in the commanding voice from earlier. He had probably just been repeating Granddad then. “This was a big part of it.”
A small bead of water slipped down along the glass. I reached out and trailed my finger along the fogginess that the cold ice had caused. “I have to help them. I can help them.” My mind struggled to remember details. “A forest? Sort of a forest… There was a small bit of, um, houses off to the–umm–like… well, I could draw it. And a field. The truck was…” I squinted at the glass. “Blue…? Dark blue? I think?” I was babbling but Grandpa didn’t interrupt me. “The taller woman was black like me’n Arty, and the shorter girl was real light with black hair and…” It was no use. I couldn’t remember the details ‘xactly right.
More tears began going down my cheeks. “He’s gonna die and I can’t do anything. I saw him, Grandpa. There was blood. I th–think the tree branch went through him.” I choked out and bent forward, covering my face.
Grandpa scooted his chair over, putting an arm over my shoulders. “I know, poliwag. I know it’s horrible. I can’t even imagine how bad it is, but I know it is bad.”
“I can’t save his life. I could. If I remembered. If I knew more stuff I could tell him not to go out that day, to tell him there will be a tornado, to tell him…” I trailed off. It was pointless to even imagine what I could do if I was smarter. But, I wasn’t smart enough.
Grandpa sighed, pushing back some of his bright hair. “If we could find him then you could tell him, but we can’t find him. We’ve tried before. To find people from your dreams. But um, you know… we can’t really go to the police.” I gave a whimper. “Magic is still being barely accepted in the normal world. If we go to the police and say you’re having dreams seeing the future and stuff, then I don’t think they’d understand. Your dad doesn’t either… um, believe that they’d understand I mean. He does understand. The police though…”
I shook my head. “I’m just a loser.”
“No! No, you’re not. You’re not at all.” Grandpa got up and began pacing, looking over constantly at an empty chair. “You’re in a real difficult situation and–and I know it seems like it’s more than you can handle. It is more than you can really handle,” he added. “I’m so sorry. I know–“
“You d-don’t know. You don’t!” I jumped up, banging against the table so hard it nearly knocked over the glass of water. “No one knows or understands! I’m seeing people die. Actually die. I’m not dreaming it, I’m there!” I raised my hands. “I fell and hurt my hands, it hurt! My palms were bleeding and it hurt. I was there!” A thought hit me. What if I could interact with people in my dreams? I could be hurt by things and touch things. Even if they couldn’t see me, maybe I could write something down…
Why? Writing down ‘this guy died over there’ after the fact didn’t help anything, and writing before wouldn’t help. ‘Something will happen’ wouldn’t help.
I’m a failure. I looked at Grandpa then left the kitchen running upstairs to my room. I saw people die and couldn’t do anything about it. Couldn’t do anything. Couldn’t do anything to save them what’s the point in these dreams I can’t save them! Why? It made no sense… giving me dreams and seeing people die and not being able to help the people I saw in the dreams. Like showing food to a starving person and saying ‘no’. Or something.
I lay in bed, curling up a bit on my side, feeling lost and confused. I was shown these things… but why?
Grandpa let me alone for the day. He brought me lunch which I nibbled at but mostly I stayed in bed. My sisters came home and I stayed in bed. Dad came home and I guess Grandpa told him what happened because he came in. He knocked and just came in, looking worried. I rolled over so my back was to him.
The bed creaked as he sat down, his hand on my side. “I’m so sorry this happened today, champ.” Silence. Then he got up. Was that it?
“Dad?” I sat up, surprised to see him at the door, about to leave. No rambling? No promises that it’d be okay? Nothing but his sympathy? He looked at me with what seemed to be expectant eyes and I realized how stupid promising lies would be.
Dad gave me a small smile. “I really didn’t want that to be on your shoulders. Especially not at this age.”
“I only thought of the happy things when you told me.” I got out of bed, wiping my eyes. “I thought a little about the bad stuff too but mostly–I mean, like, um, I didn’t realize that… it didn’t…”
“I know.” He came towards me again and I didn’t argue when he hugged me; I felt a bit safer in his arms. Would it be impossible to stay like this forever? “I want to tell you to try not to worry about it, but you’ll probably just worry anyway.”
“I d-don’t know how t-to… deal with this.”
I wanted him to answer, to find some sort of answer to promise me that he’ll fix this–but deep inside me I knew he couldn’t. My dad wasn’t the superhuman hero I grew up seeing him as. He couldn’t snap his fingers or fly around the world and make everything better. Was this what getting older meant? Realizing that things couldn’t just be fixed?
“How about we get some ice cream?” Dad suggested.
I nodded slowly. Okay, maybe things couldn’t be magically fixed but ice cream might help a little bit. I mean, it couldn’t hurt.
The next coupla weeks were difficult. I really had a lot of trouble focusing on much of anything; good thing I was homeschooled since Grandpa didn’t give me much schoolwork. I had about a vision every three or so days… I began marking down on a calendar when I had the visions in case there was some sort of pattern but I couldn’t really see one.
Most my visions in that time were good. Maybe the Watcher was being nice. Reunions, first kisses, weddings, births, someone winning the lottery… there were a couple sad ones but there wasn’t death in them. A woman left at the alter, a man telling his wife that he had been fired… no, there was one death one but I didn’t see the death I just saw an elderly woman breaking the news to her kids and grandkids that her husband had passed away.
All these visions seemed so real and eventually I began trying to interact. It did not take long to realize I couldn’t. I couldn’t open doors, or pick anything up. I could feel the things in my hands but just nothing would happen. It was weird. It was almost like the things were too heavy and I didn’t have the strength… but it also didn’t feel like that. I just couldn’t move anything. But things could hurt me. In one vision I smacked my hand hard against a cupboard handle and it felt so real. My hand hurt so much!
During this time I also discovered what my sisters meant by my eyes. One day when I woke up from a vision-nap feeling cold and wet from standing in snow while two people sucked face in a snowbank I went to the bathroom to try and warm up annnnd…
I stared in the mirror. My eyes were–were solid?
Like, solid. I didn’t know any other way to put it.
They were solid.
Is this what it looks like always when I wake up from visions? I reached up and touched under my eye. The mirror image reached up, copying my movement. Oh Watcher it was me. Those were my eyes. I closed my eyes and rubbed but when I opened them again my eyes were still creepy.
Then they slowly faded back to normal. The solidness disappeared. My eyes didn’t feel weird as they transformed back. No itchiness or pain.
After a couple seconds of staring at my normal face I threw my clothes off and turned on the shower and curled up in the warm water crying. I was a total freak.
A freak that couldn’t even help the people who needed help.
I was a loser freak.
Halloween came and went. For the first year I didn’t dress up and go out. Reeny went to a party, Arty went out trick-or-treating with her friends, and Dad, Grandpa, and I stayed at home. They urged me to go out with Arty but I shook my head. I felt too sad to go out. Too… depressed. I told everyone I just felt sick but I didn’t think they believed me. Though Arty brought me back a bag of candy since she told every house she went to that her little brother was too sick to go out. I stared at the bag of candy then hugged her tightly, feeling a bit cheered up.
November started. My visions didn’t tell me what would happen. In fact, after it happened I realized my visions had never shown me anyone I knew and I wondered if that was because I couldn’t see things that would happen to people I knew or if there was some other reason. But a little preview of the big shakeup mighta been nice. Then again, what could I have done about it? And it wasn’t bad really. Just… surprising.
It happened the first weekend in November. Arty, Grandpa, and I were playing video games. Reeny sat at the desk typing at her laptop. Dad was watching us play the video game, sipping at a beer, trying to wind down from his previous day of hard work.
“I’ll get it,” Reeny said, hopping up. She went to the front door and I could hear her talking to someone who sounded male. Then suddenly she came back in with some dude behind her. “Um. Grandpa? This guy says he needs to talk to you?” Grandpa paused the game (right when I shot a green shell at him too) and looked up. I looked up too.
I didn’t know the guy. Slicked back hair, nice suit, glasses. He looked like a lawyer or business guy. He even had a small briefcase dangling in his hand.
“Can I help you?” Grandpa got up.
The man’s eyes darted nervously around the room. He cleared his throat and adjusted his tie. “You are Chance Danevbie-Greyson?”
I bit my bottom lip. Was this dude from the IRS or something? “Yes,” Grandpa said, looking as confused as I felt.
“Can we speak…” he gave us all a worried look, “privately?”
“Do I know you?” Grandpa asked, not moving.
Now he shook his head. “I don’t believe so.”
Now Dad was on his feet. “Sir, if you have something to talk to Chance about then it might be best if I’m there too.” I felt scared suddenly. Arty looked angry. Reeny was just studying this dude like she was trying to place him.
“I’d prefer to speak to him privately. It’s of a personal nature,” the man said, shifting his weight from foot to foot.
“Can you at least tell me who you are?” Grandpa asked.
“Ah… my name is, er, Piotr. Piotr Rutkowski.”