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Fermius Firefly

A Dream Log, whenever I remember the dreams I've had.

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Location: San Marcos, United States

Fermius is a pen name drawn from a series of short fiction I wrote when I published the small press magazine Stellanova (on paper.) I play RPG games to escape from my daily grind as a technology wage slave for the state of California. I eat out a lot in order to do my part in supporting our increasingly service level economy. I am butler to 2 feline masters. If you ask them they will tell you I'm not very good at it, late with dinner, don't have enough hands with brushes in them, and sometimes I even lock them out of their office.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Chronomancer of Mars

              I dreamed that I was a 'Mage of Mars' fighting to protect a small settlement. I could fly and cast lightning and fire type spells as well as some sort of chronomancer style magic. The first part of the dream I was flying around some towers of stone, trying to avoid detection. There was a child that needed to be rescued and a couple (Red shirt and blue jeans man with a yellow bloused and green denim dress woman) who I was also trying to help, but they ended up jumping from the tower just as I flew up to where they were.
              As they dove to the ground ahead of me, I set some sort of chronomantic bubble around them that acted like a sort of a shield. They would hit the ground, but the forces of the impact would be spread out over several seconds, possibly enough to save their lives.
              I managed to land on the tower and pick up the child a couple of seconds before our pursuers landed all around us. There was a sort of race through the Martian canyons at that point, with me firing blasts of lightning over the back of my winged lion, while the child steered us through the canyon. (The winged lion was really a mechanical mount, not a living being.) between the two of us we managed to stop or evade all of our antagonists. Unfortunately, the child had steered us to her home, rather than to the Explorer Society compound. The only reason this was a problem, was that our enemies were watching the house. While I was sure we'd been spotted, the child wanted to use the bathroom, and no amount of me telling her that we had one at the Society seemed convincing. I gathered up a couple of piles of her clothing and toys and wrapped them in her bedding. I was tying them on to the winged lion when I heard her shout.
              “I'm not done yet!”
              I ran around the side of the house, spotting a rider hovering over the roof. I bubbled him, the next minute would take an hour or so to play out from his perspective. The bathroom had a row of tiny portholes. I popped the glass out of them and reached my arm into the room, calling to the child to grab on as we needed to leave, now. The door erupted in lightning and the child scampered to the top of the toilet and grabbed my arm. I pulled her out of the room, and that was when I noticed that she was a good foot taller than me, even though I was an adult. I bubbled the house behind us, much larger area covered, so the spell would not last but a couple of minutes. Lightning flashed out of the bubble and I stepped in the way, taking the blast instead of the child. Fortunately the blast was meant only to stun, and I was able to stumble over to the lion, As soon as the child was aboard I ordered it to fly off. There was no way I could have mounted it. I watched it fly away, then turn back.
              “No!” I shouted, “Get away!”
              But the flying lion dove down to ground level and snatched me up in its front paws. I marveled at the kids control of the machine, I didn't think I could have done that, and I'd been flying it for almost a year. (A Martian year, at that.)
              The red-brown rocks of the Martian landscape rushed past, the sky was turning into an inky star-filled dome above the creamy layer of blown dust. The Winged Lion tore through the night, taking us to the domed towers of the Explorer's League. My arms had grown numb from the grip of the machine on my shoulders. When we landed, I knew I wouldn't be able to raise my wand to defend us if needed.
              I worried needlessly, we arrived, hovering down into the airlock of the tallest dome. I walked the child to the counsel chambers, and there she rejoined her parents, who'd been able to come directly here after recovering from their fall. I had no idea why the child was so important, or what she might know or be capable of to be such a target. I was just about to ask that question when alarms started going off all over the dome.
              Our enemies had infiltrated the Explorer's League dome! Everyone was shocked, and more than a little surprised.
              “They've got a chronomancer!” a running apprentice shouted as he ran for the stables.
              An old gnome, slightly taller than myself huffed and puffed his way up a short flight of stairs to reach me. “You have to come, now, or we may not be able to stop them.”
              He took my arm and we shifted. I pulled my wand and began to un-bubble our people where ever I could see them. It was draining, I'd never seen such power, it dwarfed my own by an order of magnitude. I realized that my only hope was that he'd used more of his power than I, so I began to only temper the strength of the time bubbles, rather than dispel them completely. I hoped it would be enough. I found myself glad that he wasn't targeting just heads or limbs, the carnage would have been horrible and the damage might not have been reversable.
              I spotted the chronomancer at the same time he spotted me. We enveloped one another in a bubble of twisted time. He began to strengthen and add to the time compression of his, and I knew I couldn't match him. I had a sudden insight.
              I linked our bubbles together, anything he did to mine, would be mirrored on his own, I managed to do so with great finesse and little energy, whereas he seemed determined to put his all into bubbling me into the far distant future. He seemed unaware of his own time compression. The outside world sped up, we were both out of the conflict. I realized that this was exactly what they were planning but hoped that getting their own chronomancer trapped as well would even the playing field.
              I fired a jet of lightning plasma at him, set to follow the link between our bubbles, and at that moment my mind detached and drifted outside our mutual time prison. I could see the two of us, frozen in time, the lightning just leaving my outstretched wand and entering the thin purple channel that connected us. I realized that while we hadn't stopped time for ourselves, it was slowed nearly a million fold. The spell would not stop building until my stun-bolt struck home, but by then a quick estimate was that two or three days would have gone by. Except for our part in it, this skirmish would be over.
              The man was angry looking, dark haired, dirty and disheveled, he glared at me, and I realized that the glare was intensely personal. His black pants and jacket had traces of the red brown Martian dust at the knees and cuffs, as if he'd crawled part of the way here. I couldn't read the red embroidered cosmic symbols on his jacket, but recognized them as powerful focusing runes of some sort.
              I was in a powder blue robe with a classic conical Gnome's cap. I too had runes stitched all over my garments. Mine were far more varied and many were defensive spells, always active. I looked tired, but, except for my brow furrowed in concentration over the center of my very large and slightly lopsided nose, calm. The courtyard across which we dueled was made up of kite shaped tiles that seemed to make a large non-repeating pattern, but still self similar. It was relaxing to look at. I drifted over to my attacker, studying him. I could sense no power but that of chronomancy in him, even his focusing runes were tangled up in the energies of time. No wonder he was so powerful.
              I didn't recognize him, though, and that was a little bit frightening. There were so few of us that we had a rather tight-knit club, the magics were difficult to learn, and horribly draining without proper training. Since most mage's first spells were cast on parts of themselves, chronomancers seemed to suffer more fatal mishaps that other types of casters. That was why my right hand only had three fingers instead of the normal four.

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Thursday, July 16, 2009

Night Sea

              In this morning's dream I found myself at a school much like the Middle School and High Schools I both attended and worked at, the blend of the two places was uncomfortable, and I had some difficulty knowing where I was. Our assembly had been called, and words of modern wisdom had been dispensed and were in the process of being forgotten as quickly as the teen-filled room emptied. It was then that I noticed the sky had darkened and the shores of the night sea (night – mare?) had risen up to cover the valley below the school and breakers, low and oily in their blackness rippled across the long flat parking lot. I warned the students away, but in the reflection of the parking lot lights on the oily surface I could see the un-dead students rise and join the population. One disruptive boy was all ready in my custody, waiting to be taken to the office, when another, freckle faced and plastic cheery strolled by, ax in hand.
              “Pardon, but you need to turn over the ax, there is a zero tolerance policy,” I told the permanent teen as he shook off the black oily water of the night sea, prepared to take his place at the table of learning with the living.
              “You should take me to the office then.”
              “You could be expelled.”
              “I have been in the eighth grade for a decade now, that would sure be nice.”
              “Then where would you go?”
              “Not back to the sea, it is cold and I can't keep my dress in place,” a new voice joined the conversation. This was a girl, young woman really, her hair red, but faded as though the life were drained from it, she too had freckles, each one paled as its own life had fled long ago. I thought perhaps kin of the ax boy. “Two decades, or even more, we should be expelled, but to where, to where?” Her face was pulled into an expression of worry that triggered everything paternal in my soul.
              Her eyes, though, were as dead as she, and a coldness flowed from them that made the hair on my back stand at attention.
              She saw me looking deep into her eyes. “I'm still here, I am, take us somewhere warm. He's used to being sent to the principal.”
              “Yes, but the paddle is gone, so there is no warmth there, now.”
              The living student was silent as the freckled brother and sister's wet steps joined our own.
              “Pardon me for wandering, the school is not laid out the same since its renovations.”
              “You see all of them, the different schools here, like one of us.”
              “H-how many of you are there?” the living student, a spit wad shooter, asked, obviously frightened.
              “A lot.”
              “All of the school, some day. I'm Lucy,” she smiled at Spit-wad.
              Spit-wad tried to smile back and crossed to my other side, placing me between them.
              “Hello, Lucy,” I smiled at her, and felt her absorb that small warmth like a dry sponge. “Is this fellow your brother?”
              “Yes, that's just Billy.”
              Billy, ax boy, stuck his tongue out at her.
              “Real mature. You never change.”
              “Neither do you, your underwear!”
              “Hush a moment, let me think.” I was at the fire lane and trying to remember which way lead to the office at the front of the school. I thought I had figured it out and went in that direction.
              I asked the night students to wait a bit, and turned over the live student and the ax, telling them I had found it in the parking lot.
              I returned to the students, but Billy was gone.
              “What are you going to do with me?”
              “Where's Billy?”
              “He's dead. The ax is safe, so he can rest now.”
              “Do you need to rest?”
              “I need to find something first.”
              “It's out there,” she turned and pointed a slender pale arm out into the night sea.
              “Let's get a boat, then.”
              And we were on a boat, heading out onto the night sea. It was cold in the boat, but warm over the slick and oddly quiet waves of the night sea. Lucy moved close to me, I could feel the heat being pulled out of my body. I rowed harder to keep the warmth flowing.
              “You are not afraid of me?”
              “Just a little, but you seem to need help.”
              “Thank you, there are a lot of us.” Lucy hugged me, and I couldn't help hugging her back, and holding her, warming her.
              “Then we need to find a way to help them all.”
              Lucy poured out of my arms over the side of the boat into the dark waters of the night sea.
              “Don't look at my underwear, I haven't changed it in twenty years.”
              Not that she would have had to worry, as the water below the surface was pitch black. I reached after her, stopping my hand just above the surface of the water. I rowed along our previous course, looking for something, I just didn't know what.
              I must have rowed and hour before seeing the top of a spire sticking out of the water. There were people all over it, I rowed to them. Even though I knew they wouldn't all fit in the boat. I offered to take them back to shore.
              “I may have to make several trips,”
              “Yes this is just the top of the building.” One teen said.
              The building's spire was made of a material like hematite, polished smooth with the look of hundreds of window carved in deep relief. Like a miniature empire state building.
              “Oh, it's not miniature, Lucy's building is 750 feet tall,” a young girl said as she climbed into the boat.
              “Where is Lucy?”
              “She's lost, she went to get help and never came back.”
              “She brought me here tonight.”
              I turned to look at the young girl, she smiled a bright smile at me but said nothing. She was the only one in the boat with me.
              I turned to look back at the spire, and it was empty.
              “We're all aboard, you can go now.”
              “What about Lucy?”
              “She's waiting for us back at school.”
              “Okay then.”
              I turned the boat around, using the unfamiliar pattern in the sky to try to align myself up with the school. I started rowing.
              Again I rowed for at least an hour, easing off from time to time as I was growing tired. Voices sounded encouragement and more than once I felt someone lean against me, taking away my heat, just a little, then moving away.
              As I neared the shore the sky back in the direction we had come from lit up with lightning, I could see it strike Lucy's tower. The voices grew anxious.
              “Lucy is in trouble, you have to get to her!”
              I started rowing with everything I had left. I knew, from the time I'd been rowing that we must be fairly close to shore, or we were hopelessly lost.
              “There, we're at the breakers!” I heard splashes around the boat. The people were leaping out, wading the last little bit to shore.
              The young girl appeared again, looking a lot like Lucy, only paler, younger, and more worried. “Lucy is in trouble, you have to fly to her.”
              “Fly to her.”
              “Yes, you can fly here, you're like us, only from somewhere else, fly to her, or she will be lost forever.”
              I stopped rowing and stood, turned around to face the shore, the parking lot. I could see what looked like dozens of students wading towards the school. And at the school, there was some sort of ruckus outside the gym.
              “Fly to her, please.”
              I stepped up and swam my way up into the air, gaining altitude.
              “Thank you!” the little girl shouted, and then there were cheers from the students wading through the receding night sea.
              I climbed high enough to catch some of the morning sun, and then I dove towards the gym, gathering sunlight in each hand. I threw the sunlight, all hot and bright in front of me, aiming it at Lucy, who seemed to be in the center of a circle of dark menacing shapes.
              The light hit her and splashed around her, turning the grey lawn into green, and her torn dress into a brilliant red and white patterned dress, only I realized the patterns of red were blood.
              “Lucy, hang on.” I shouted as I turned into bright sunlight and landed in a protective ring around her.
              “You came for me.”
              “Yes, your students said you needed help.”
              “Someone came for me. No one ever comes for me.”
              Lucy vanished, gone with the slightest trace of relief on her face.
              Some – things, many of them, were caught in light, I struggled to hold them until the true dawn could spread sunlight over the campus. The dead students walked up out of the night sea as it receded. Soon there was nothing left but a dewy lawn, a ring of burnt grass, and two dozen waterlogged bodies, students, who'd gone missing on the night sea over the course of two or more decades.
              I didn't want to have to explain that to anyone, so climbed into the sky, looking back to make sure everything was peaceful before quiting that realm.

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Monday, July 13, 2009

Visit to My Brother

              I dreamed that I was in the back yard trying to water the pumpkins, but the water for the wall sprinklers came on at the same time. I discovered that N had rigged up a 3 way splitter (instead of the 2 way that is there now.)
              My brother had still not contacted us, so we went up to his house. His kids were all out in the back dressed in their Sunday finest. B and A were pouting because their dresses, the extra poofy kind with broad white and yellow print in A's case and blue and slate in B's, were making them “look fat.” Both of them spent several minutes tucking and pulling to try to create some semblance of shape.
              While they were fussing I went inside to try to find my brother and his wife. My sister in law was there on the couch, trapped by several of their dogs.
              N and I shooed the dogs away then helped vacuum up the rugs. N and L sorted out the junk in my sister in law's “mom purse.”
              I stepped back outside to herd the puppies into the side yard where they could be kept away from the kids who didn't want to get messed up. While I was securing the side gate I heard a ruckus in the front yard. It was full of media trucks and reporters. “This can't be good.” I said, making my way around back and struggling to get a comb through my hair, which the wind kept tangling right back up. I told the kids that there were a lot of media people out front, and that they might want to watch what they said. I could sense disaster written all over this situation. A grabbed her dress and pulled the skirt apart from the high-waisted to reveal her almost slender tummy and hips.
              “I'm pretty sure your mom isn't going to like that, let alone your dad.”
              “It made me look fat the other way.”
              “Now you have butt crack, that's a lot better.”
              She rolled her eyes and flounced off to tease her sisters.
              My brother hopped the fence of their back yard and asked “What is going on?”
              I didn't really know, so told him about the media in the front yard.
              “I can fix that,” he motioned for me to follow him into the house.
              Inside the house, with a dozen chains from its collar to the perimeter of the room was a 10 foot tall Rotwieler. The dog was looking out the window, listening intently to the noise in the front yard.
              “I have to get him to use some restraint.”
              “He's looking pretty restrained now,” I said. I was completely in awe of the animal's size and healthy condition.
              My brother crossed under the dog, patting him on the chest and came back with a leash for him.
              The dog whined.
              My brother puffed on his fingers and made his head blow up into a huge blue and green fish head!
              “That's all I have for you this time. When I come back from my next trip I'll have something even better.”
              “I want to see the whole thing next time,” the dog responded in a deep rumbling voice.
              “Ready to go for a walk and see what the people on my property want?”
              “Woof.” The dog actually spoke the word rather than barked.
              I remember thinking that if the news had gotten wind of the talking dog, that might actually be the reason they were there.
              “All right, wife, round up the pack we're walking to church!”
              My brother turned to me, N was all ready prettied up and ready to go. “You're welcome to come along.”
              “I wouldn't miss the walk for the world, besides, I can keep your dog company while you're inside.”
              “Goody, bring ball?” The giant dog asked.
              I looked around and found a much chewed basketball, my sister in law handed me a plastic grocery bag to carry it in.
              I didn't get to see the media reaction as I suddenly found myself, upon touching the plastic bag, turned into a fish. I slipped down the drain in the center of the room and was flushed out to the sewer.
              I swam around, looking for an exit, and came to a large square tank made of algae covered stone. It was huge, at least sixty feet deep and easily one hundred foot or more on a side. There were a dozen circles of light coming from above and one large rectangular area along one wall. There seemed to be an exit there. I swam up towards the rectangular area, staying in the darker parts of the water.
              “You're a smart one, then, aren't you?” I heard a voice.
              The wall near the lit rectangle moved, I could see great green scales ripple in the light. It was a giant eel. It turned to look at me, then sucked in a large amount of water. It was a giant puffer-fish eel, thing. Long spikes lifted themselves from its scales as its body swelled. “I can make them look like yours, too.” It smiled at me. Then it relaxed, inhaled again and this time the long spikes were replaced with small domes, about my size, with hundreds of little spikes. “Try it.”
              I inhaled and found that I swelled up to the size of a basketball, covered with three inch long spiked scales.
              “There ain't nothin' goin' to eat that,” the giant eel laughed and swam down into the dark.
              I very much had the impression that if I hadn't been able to inflate myself I well might have been the eel's dinner.
              I could feel a current of fresh water coming into the tank from the exit near the rectangular light. I looked up and could see water falling into the tank from a foot or so up. Every so often a mackerel would sail out into the tank behind me. I could sense the water level rising, so decided to wait rather than jumping up and trying to swim against the tide.
              I could only hope that once I got to the open ocean I could somehow find a way to turn myself back into a human.

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Wednesday, July 08, 2009

Preview Night

              I watched the premiere of “Warehouse 13” and the show, as well as SyFy's new advertising campaign, had a strong influence on my dreams last night.
              The dream started in my home, I had built a wet bar/cat activity center. Problem was, I didn't explain to one of our larger friends that it wasn't supposed to be mobile, and he moved it, breaking off the water and sewer connections for the sink. While I was trying to fix the thing, I noticed that aliens had moved in, they had created an extra-dimensional space under the sink cabinet. I had partially flooded their dimension before being able to shut off the water. They were not amused, and would not accept my argument that I didn't invite them to live there so couldn't have know to prevent the near disaster.
              At that point N came to me very angry. It seems CF, a friend of mine from my teen years had shown up at the house, hoping to see if there was “still any chemistry between us.” N can be a bit jealous, so that was probably not a good introduction. S and C showed up about that time, S with a radio and C running in and turning on the television.
              “The world is turning very strange today,” was the message from both of them. Every radio station was playing Debbie Reynolds version of “We'll Meet Again,” as S tuned across the dial. N dug through some boxes and it played even on N's old CB radio.
              The television was a different story, brown shirted Neo-Nazis were marching 10,000 strong on Washington, from Georgia. They had batons, black eagle on red banners and every “centurion” was armed with a side arm. Oddly, they had chosen to leave the swastika banners behind because “they didn't want to scare people,” according to the commentator.
              I was then flying in an alien craft, having “borrowed” one from under the sink to escape the increasingly hostile wet bar dwellers. I was high over the desert and the other alien saucers were hot on my tail. I pulled ahead of a giant aerial tow truck, causing it to swerve and drop one of its old multi-engined planes off of it's platform. (The platform had about 4 rows three across of all sorts of old aircraft, including one with 8 wing mounted engines.) The Giant Tractor plane was barely making enough headway to keep aloft. The loose plane flipped when it caught the wind and sideswiped one of the saucers.
              I really didn't want a deadly interplanetary incident, so I looped my saucer around, dropped the top and dove after the alien, calling on him to bail out so I could pick him up. The alien punched out and I swooped up and got the saucer rim under him at the top of his curve. I pulled the short green guy into the seat next to me. His damaged craft exploded in a shower of bright purple and orange sparks. “We don't want another Roswell, even if that wasn't us.”
              I showed him the brown-shirts marching on Washington and that they were carrying signs that said “Aliens go Home” and similar. He started chattering excitedly into a red bulb inside a gold mesh on the dashboard. Soon the other aliens had formed up on me, echelon right, and we set course for Washington as well. The alien language coming from the device soon turned into Debbie Reynolds singing the final words of the song “...some sunny day.” And then the big band music started and the song began again. The alien looked very disturbed at that. I could only shrug, “One disaster at a time. I have no idea.” I put up the top of the saucer and our formation accelerated to Mach 10, if I was reading the gages correctly.
              We buzzed the formation and landed in front of them. The aliens had somehow managed to make neon looking signs that said “Hell no, we won't go!” as well as several runes in their native language. The front line of goose-stepping morons stopped and the previously neat formation bunched up and collapsed on itself in the middle.
              “I don't think you're the sort of aliens we were talking about,” one of their shaking centurions finally managed to sputter out. That started an argument amongst the rank and file and soon other centurions arrived to join the debate. The DC riot police arrived and stopped, making a shield wall between the citizens on the sidewalk and the debate in the street. They did nothing else, obviously way out of their element. One of them grabbed me and tossed me in the back of a van, where I was taken to an underground interrogation room. The ware house was sealed off my chain link fence from the makeshift interrogation facility. As I was being walked to the furthest away from the entrance room, a ghostly woman stepped from between the boxes. My escorts didn't seem to notice her, nor the huge ax she hefted over her shoulder as she approached us. At least they didn't notice until I dodged the first attack.
              “Where'd she come from.”
              “Careful, she's got Lizzie's ax!” came another woman's shout.
              That woman was also a ghost, but I recognized her. She was the upstairs maid from my dreamland home. She had a leather sap and reached out with an incredible effort and sapped the other ghost, causing her to drop the ax. I jumped back and stood on the ax with both feet. I could feel it vibrating, trying to get away. The first ghost vanished, not in a melting sort of way, just suddenly not there as if she'd never been.
              “You really owe me for that one.” The maid smiled a truly dazzling sweet smile and then also vanished.
              I realized that if N was going to be jealous of an old overweight friend, this lovely blond-haired, green-eyed, shapely maid would really make her flip.

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