.comment-link {margin-left:.6em;}

Fermius Firefly

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

My Photo
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.

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Stormy Moving Day

I dreamed I was moving into a new home on a low hillside overlooking the ocean. The unpacking was a little chaotic as J and her family were there helping, as well as L and a couple of other folks including my brother and his wife. We were unpacking one of my parent's dressers when we discovered that it didn't sit very even. I opened up the top and we discovered an entire sewing machine cabinet, disassembled, stored under the top shelf. It was something my brother had inherited, but we'd not found it at the time.

Of course we took a break to assemble it and my brother decided that he wanted it. We had to disassemble it so we could ship it to Virginia. J was in a little bit of a mood as the kids were wildly running around discovering all the neat features of the house. Her son, however, thought it was because this was our fourth anniversary. I tried to point out to him that we hadn't been dating in almost two years, so that seemed unlikely (and it was the Sunday, not Friday before Thanksgiving, so there were still a few days left even if that were the problem.) All the while we were working, the light kept growing dimmer until I looked out over the bay and saw huge cloud wall, churning gray and green and full of lightning. A waterspout headed right for our little beach. I yelled at the people outside to hurry and get into the house. When they asked why I pointed out to the waterspout, and that got them moving. Several strangers also ran towards the house, then looked confused about what to do then, as they were sort of trapped against our sea wall. My brother and I helped them up over the wall and shooed them into the house. I was being pelted with water and small fishes as I ran into the house and pulled the french doors shut behind me.

"There's a box of towels in the back bathroom, bring them all."

The group of people from the beach were all trying not to drip on the carpet, so were all huddled in the six by nine tile space right in front of the doors. This room had indoor/outdoor carpet, though, and was meant to be more of an enclosed patio than a regular room, so I told them to spread out, "the carpet washes out." I remembered that it had plenty of sand in it when I bought the place, so wasn't worried about it.

The water spout lifted and vanished as it made its way overhead. The house was well built (very dome like) and it didn't even shudder, though lightning was flashing and you could hear the thunder so loud some of the people were holding their hands over their ears. The kids were helping me pick up the little wriggling fish and put them in a small bucket. I opened the door and ran out to the edge of the sea wall, a wave reached up to just a few inches below the wall, so I was able to scoop up a half bucket, it would be enough to save at least some of the fish. At least there weren't any more falling from the sky, just normal rain at that point. J's grandkids joined the beach kids in catching the fish and putting them in the bucket.

Labels: , , , , ,

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Ghost Squadron

The ready room was empty, or at least it looked empty. There were no signs of habitation either, no half finished drinks on the table, no tins of cookies, no clothes draped over the backs of chairs. The room felt used, busy even, but there was no visual sign of it, until the siren went off.

Doors flew open and pilots appeared from no where, translucent forms in uniforms from different countries and eras, but all with the same unmistakable air of people about to enter a fight for their lives.

In space, the squadron formed up and the briefing was short and sweet. Avoid the interceptors, and take out the lances and torpedo boats before they exited the transfer orbit of Jupiter. Our ships lurched under ghost thrust and we went with them. We engaged the invaders at impossible speeds, outside of time, wedded to fibre-optic synapses and finely honed machinery that spit iridium death at an enemy that didn't know fear, and little knew defeat. every encounter was a split second, magnified by our ghostlike condition to feel like several minutes. No living being could survive the speeds and energies needed to wage this sort of war, but no machine was trusted to do it alone.

Our sortie was successful, but there were a few losses on our side. Back in the barracks, the beds of the lost pilots shimmered and the pilots woke back to their previous selves, mind and flesh re-united, limited, unable to rejoin the fight, the transformation was a one time deal, no one came back from a second tour, the body and mind re-union just failed. No one knew where the spirit went from there, as none had returned to tell from the second journey.

Almost every pilot volunteered to go back in, even though it was certain death. So the decision was taken out of their hands, they were rotated out of service, placed in command of local defenses or in ships of the line where they could interface live rather than the ghost link. It was fast, and their experience made them invaluable, but it wasn't the same as pouncing intruders from a ghost ship at faster than the speed of thought.

I did not look forward to the time when I wasn't fast enough to jink around the blast of an enemy interceptor and found myself re-united with a recreation of my twenty first century body. It was a weird thing, only those of us who'd failed to move on were able to save the world. Though I'd been dead a long time, I wasn't eager to live in the flesh again, particularly in a world under assault from what appeared to be an implacable enemy. There'd been no demands, no conditions, just surveys, beachheads, and the ever increasing stream of inbound alien technology. We assumed, that like us, they were landing colonies of their own ghosts, who would resurrect once they had a successful beachhead. But, we really didn't know.

Monday, March 27, 2017

Hot Springs Carnival, Hospital Hoedown

I was walking with a couple of friends of mine, off campus. A carnival had been set up on the lot of a former strip mall. Years earlier the owner demolished the mall and graded the property, preparatory to new construction. Funds fell through, so the graded lot was fenced and forgotten, (except by the local LARPers.) As we walked through the carnival, noticing that it was very poorly attended, we came across a sexy woman who we thought was one of the Carnival performers. She was incredibly sour about that, as she was a witch of some great renown, or infamy, at least by her own admission. She was tired, and it seemed to amuse her that we were still treating her politely, even after her revelation. She strolled along with us for a time, finally stopping outside an alleyway between rows of red and white, striped carnival booths.

"This alley is haunted. if you proceed you will be forever changed. Or dead, your decision."

The female member of our trio looked into the alleyway. "Is that what happened to you?"

The witch pondered. "No, this is what happened to me." With that she reached out and took our friend by the hand. They raced together down the alley between the fabric walls and vanished almost faster then the eye could follow into the tent at the end of the row. All right, I could definitely credit that to magic.

My friend and I looked at one another, then nodded as if in accord.

I raced down the alleyway, making it past two tents before I realized the sound of my friend's footsteps were heading in the opposite direction.

I turned to shout at him to stop dicking around, but he was completely out of sight.

"Friends abandoned you, did they."

I turned around to see who was talking to me, but there was only an empty suit of armor hanging from a rack. It creaked. I moved closer, fully willing to believe it was haunted. It reached for where the hilt of its sword would be, then pantomimed swinging it at me.

"I think the city made the carnival surrender or store all of the customer accessible weapons." I had remembered reading that in the local news.

"What! You should still run in terror." it shook a gauntlet at me.

The suit of armor clattered and I took a step back. It didn't seem to be able to get down from the rack.

"If you stop trying to harm me, I could try to get you down from there, then we can try to find your witch and my friend."

"She's not my witch!" the suit of armor seemed to pause, thinking, not sure how I could tell that. "Granted."

I approached, and the armor stopped swinging. I couldn't budge it, though. I looked at the armor, there was a ring welded onto the back of the breast plate, the whole thing hung from a hook on the rack. It was far heavier than it looked. "Perhaps if I could take the armor down a part at a time and then put it together on the ground."

The armor paused, again, seeming to consider. "Granted."

I took a look at the right boot and shin guards, I found how they were tied together and unlaced them. So far so good. I pulled them off, and though there was no sight of it, it felt like there was a person in the suit. Everything was good until the armor cleared the foot.

There was a banshee wail and the armor, except for the piece I held started flailing around. I reached out until I found the spirit's kicking bare foot and slammed the boot back on, then tied it back in place.

"Sorry about that."

"We didn't know." The spirit sounded almost like it might be sobbing.

"I wish I were strong enough put you down whole."

"Granted," the spirit said quickly.

I felt a tingle and tried lifting the armor off of it's hook. It seemed much smaller than the first time I'd tried, and though it was a little bit of a struggle, I was able to rock the armor off the hook and then gently set it down on its feet. It tottered, the leg we'd taken the boot off of seemed to wobble and buckle oddly under it. I reached down and pulled the suit upright from the ring on its back until it could get its feet under it. That was when I noticed that my big floppy flannel shirt was tight around my arms, and the end of the sleeve was just below my elbow. I looked down at myself. My baggy cargo pants were now more like the length of board shorts, and strained at the seams. My flip flops only covered two thirds of my foot, like I was wearing kid's sized sandals.

"What's happening?"

"You have to be very strong to put me down whole." The suit of armor laughed. "Good thing I didn't have my sword, who knows what you would have turned into then."

The armor limped up the alleyway, all the while regaining control of the leg, and every time I noted an improvement in the spirit's strength and mobility, I seemed to grow.

We reached the end of the alleyway and entered the tent, I had to duck down to go through the flap. The witch was gone, nothing but her clothing left in the middle of the floor. My friend was there, her eyes newly shining with power. The armored ghost flew at her. I managed to grab him by the right foot and pull him back.

"Just because I have her powers, doesn't suddenly make me her." She looked at me with a quirky smile, one I'd only seen her give her future conquests. It made me a little uneasy.

"I see you have the strength to dismantle that thing."

"Can't we free the spirit without hurting him, he deserves better."

She looked at both of us. "Mental strength is also part of being strong. Your test isn't finished yet, but I need to go if I am to keep everything under my own control. Meet me at the hot springs. Bring a suit..." she looked me up and down, and I swear she licked her lips, it made me uneasy, that look, again, "or don't."

With that, she vanished. The armor wailed in frustration, then hung limp. The visor turned to glare at me.

"Perhaps I can put you down easy, by releasing you."

"It would be good to rest, I mean really rest. But someone must mind the witch."

"I don't think my friend will need much minding, but I will certainly attend to that task."

The armor sighed, "granted," I set him down, and after another little tingling feeling, saw how the armor and spirit were all connected, and how I could release him.

"Goodbye, rest well." I reached out and gave the armor a strong thump, every piece of it separated from the others and the spirit sighed, formed whole in silvery presence for just a moment, smiled, looked down at its un-gauntleted hands, flexing them then pressing them together as if in prayer, and then vanished with a smile and a wave.

I suddenly felt a very strong desire to don the armor myself, but backed quickly away. Then I turned around and took the plated belt and oversized buckle, picked up a plaid bed cover and pleated it around me, then held it up with the knight's belt. I took off the remains of my plaid shirt/jacket. The muscle tee was stretched to its limit and I reached under and removed the remains of my split pants. I tore off the sections with the wallet pocket and cargo pockets. The phone was in one cargo pocket and I draped it over the belt with the phone pocket on the outside, and the wallet and other pocket tucked on the inside. I looked one last time at the armor, resisting the urge to put on the helmet, and headed out the alleyway.

On my way back to the Hot Springs I couldn't resist stopping at the "ring the bell" carnival attraction. I made it shoot almost to the bell, then handed the hammer to a kid, "you try!"

The kid wobbled under the hammer, I knelt down and helped him steady it, "Aim for the outside edge, you'll get better leverage.Let the tool do the work." The kid lifted the hammer up and just as he let if fall, I gave it a pinky tap, sending the bell all the way to the top.

The crowd applauded and cheered, "Fist bump!" I held down my fist, it was larger than his head. He bumped me, all smiles.

People lined up to try the attraction, "Come back any time!" the operator shouted at me as I headed down the main walk for the exit. Lots of people wanted to stop and pose with me on the way out. I realized this would become tiresome pretty soon, I needed to go find some normal clothing that would fit, though I was quickly coming to the conclusion that there might not be any. My muscle tee had started to rip at the collar and under the arms. The Spirit of the armor was gone, I figured I would shrink back to normal size. If anything I seemed to be getting bigger.

I wondered what my students at Hot Springs Technical were going to think if this form didn't shrink back down. My friends and I were all "Senior Tutors" for the local University.

I decided to take the hillside path to the Hot Springs. The witch was waiting for me. She'd also changed her clothing, more modern than her predecessor, but every bit as revealing. Power seemed to radiate out of her. "I know why she thought she could rule the world."

"Rule the world?"

"Yes, this much power should never go to a megalomaniac."

"Are you sure that much power doesn't make you a megalomaniac?"

She slumped just a little then straightened up, "not as long as I have friends like you to keep me in check."

And that was when I knew, that was exactly what had happened. The powers in the alley had found two new hosts, only, we weren't playing along with the usual rules, and with only the belt from the armor, my powers just kept making me larger.

That was why there was a group of folks waiting for both of us at the changing house.

They wanted a sit down meeting with the witch, and made me wait in the lobby, which was way too small, I barely fit through the door, and the light fixtures were at eye level, so I had to stoop to move around. I noticed that there was an open space enclosed next to the lobby, completely unused. That was neat, being able to see the spaces in the building just by touching a wall. I tapped the concrete block wall, and it fell down. Revealing a trapezoidal area where I could actually stand upright. I used the rubble of the wall to build myself a chair. If the witch couldn't do something about my size, I was going to have trouble with my house. I was glad I had ten foot ceilings in most of the house. I'd still be ducking to get into my bedroom and the bathrooms.

My friend came storming out of the meeting room.

"All the local powers will be arriving soon, you need to be prepared..." a voice shouted at her from the conference room.

She cut of any further conversation by slamming the door shut on them.

"Nice chair. Get up, we have to go, there's people to save."

From behind the door I heard someone say "That's not your job! that's his, you'll upset the balance."

We left them behind and looked out over the field of hot springs, people were swimming in the well lit largest pool, and others were sitting in the smaller pools. No one, of course was anywhere near the boiling pools about half mile away. I noticed that the water was getting warmer, and that there was someone coming up from the depths.

"We have to get them out of the pool before it reaches the surface."

I shrugged and stood up to my full height, which was now somewhere near eight feet, I think. It was odd how much that two plus feet made everything look so much smaller. I shouted "Geothermal anomaly incoming, everybody out of the pool!"

That worked. I was surprised how loud I was, then noticed my friend had placed her hand on my back, I could feel the tendrils of her power pulling away from me. This could be trouble long term, I could feel it, she enjoyed playing the puppet master a little too much, and it made me sad. We made our way down the hill hand in hand, and her affection for me was palpable, I was very confused. I could see the creature below swimming for the surface, even though the water was too dark for normal vision. I leaned on the retaining wall, and without meaning to, caused it to collapse into the large pool.

I leaned over and waved both arms over my head at the creature to get it's attention, I waved it over away from the falling debris. It moved, and then watched the debris go by, hesitating.

A young man approached the other side of the pool and ran towards the cliff to dive in. Everyone around shouted "No!" at the same time. But he was already committed. He hit the water with a hiss and I could see him turning red even before his feet went under. My friend vanished and I knew she was trying to save the kid, I don't know that she'd have time. I turned my attention to the water boiling at me feet and stepped back from the heat. A large creature with a human face and segmented crayfish looking back and belly pulled itself out of the water.

"I am ready to defeat your champion!" As it stood up from my crouch he looked up at me and gulped. He held out a tube of gaming dice. "Do you have any dice?"

Now, I'm a long time game master with a dice addiction, so the answer was a resounding yes, only, they weren't on me. I asked if anyone had any dice to donate to the cause. After a few minutes I had a respectable pile of dice. He drew up a board on a broken cinder block and explained the rules, a combination of button men and some other dice territory games. Once I was fairly sure I understood the rules we chose our dice "teams."

I started talking to the Guardian of the Hot Springs, he liked that name. I asked him if he was the cause of the boiling, and he said no, it's a natural occurrence every decade or so. He could come up any time in some of the hotter pools, he just didn't like to, there weren't anyone who wanted to game with him. I could tell that wasn't entirely true, I was sure he spent a lot of time in the pools. I knew, somehow, that he could 'be' the water where it was above a certain temperature. The ritual of the Guardian of the Pool always ended up with people being injured, so he delayed as much as possible. I asked if he'd be able to surface before the event to warn people away. He stopped and looked at me.

"It would fit the name, you know." I said.

"I could, but the ritual..."

"Isn't this contest going to be the ritual this time?"


"So why not every time?"

"Oh." He sat looking at me, thinking about it. "But what if I lose, er, don't lose?" I could tell he wasn't even close to losing our contest, so he was worried about it at the moment. That struck me as odd, until I realized that he liked being the Guardian of the Springs. I looked at the tiny number of mismatched dice I had in my dusty grey reserve field, two of them were little pink pigs, we decided that the number of feet they had on the ground would be the number they expressed, and then looked at large shiny matched dice he still had in his home row. No, this context was all but over, only a truly miraculous set of bad throws on his part and great throws on my part could turn it around.

"Shouldn't the winner decide if they want to be the Guardian of the Pools?" I suggested.

He thought for a moment, then brightened, "Well, duh. Yes." I felt the magic plonk of rules and links being re-arranged and wondered if this was part of my ability to see how things were connected, and then discombobulate them.

"How many of these folks do you think would want your position, even if they could beat you in a game you've had decades to perfect your play? Plus, you're going to take the dice I lost as sacrifice, aren't you?"

"Hadn't actually thought of that, but sure, except, I want to get my dice back from you."

"Happy to swap prisoners at the end of the match."

The monster laughed. I asked if he like role playing games. I wasn't sure why, but something told me it was the right thing to ask.

"It's the only thing I miss from up here."

"Maybe we can figure out something to do about that. We'll have to play close to here, so you can do your job if needed, but I think there's a place big enough if we can get permission to use it." I was thinking of the recently renovated changing house lobby.

He made his last plays and I conceded the game. We traded prisoners so he had his original set complete, and several new dice. He didn't have any pockets for them, so I tore my pockets apart, and gave him one of the cargo pockets from the remains of my pants. "I don't know how that will hold up in the long run, but I'll toss you something better when I get a chance."

"Hey, thanks, man."

"Anything you can do about the kid?"

I pointed into the pool. He leaned over and stuck his hand in the water. "He's not there."

"He was pretty red..."

"Nope, no bones, nothing. I think your girlfriend got him."

I found myself hoping so. I decided not to correct him on the girlfriend thing, since she liked to use some of the hotter pools from time to time.

"Well, this hot bubble should be mixed in enough in a few hours, let people know that when I'm gone it should be safe again." And with that, he did a flip backwards into the large pool, and started zooming around underneath. I watched him with a little bit of envy, I would have liked to swim like that.

I noticed the elder magic types standing around with sour expressions and pursed lips.

I was expecting the little old lady of the group to bust out with "That's not how this works, that's not how any of this works," but she didn't, she just looked at me, shook her head and sighed. I smiled and waved.

I couldn't find my friend anywhere, and it was getting late, so I decided to stop ogling the coeds in the hot springs and go home. I was amazed at how fast everyone seemed to forget there was just a giant human crayfish swimming around, and that no one seemed to find it odd to see an old giant in a kilt and torn under shirt hanging out at the pools.

When I got to my car I realized that I was bigger than it, I typically drove it with the seat nearly all the way back, so an extra three inches wasn't going to cut it. I picked up the front end and began to pull it along the road home.


It took so long to document the first dream, even in low detail mode, that I don't remember anything about the second dream other than it took place in a hospital, and there was English Country Dancing, rolling intravenous stands, and wheelchairs involved.

Saturday, March 25, 2017

Reality Storm

I was stranded on an Island Nation, my plane had crashed and us few survivors managed to patch ourselves together and get the attention of locals. The Island Folk were perfectly aware of the modern world, and some had even gone off the Islands to college, but had returned to farm and fish. When the first group of rescuers came I stayed behind because I was on one of the smaller islands, learning about the various fish, fowl and flora, what they were each used for, and what to avoid. I was a little bit depressed that I had missed the "rescue" plane, but decided that my letter home would be sufficient to let people know I was alive and well. I helped the village by repairing their packet radio receiver and the village cell tower (not that the cell phones really could reach off island, but the islanders could talk to one another. Because I had repair skills I was admitted into the ranks of the priesthood. When I was asked if that made me a witch-doctor by a tourist I explained that it was more like an Electron Shaman. That got a confused look from the tourist, and lots of laughs from the Islanders.

I was quite content with my life there, and glad to have been accepted for citizenship; the elders of the island sitting around drinking grape crush and root beers saying "yep, he belongs here."

One morning I was helping replace the batteries in a local fisherman's Garmin Navigation system when I spotted some really odd lightning filled clouds on the horizon.

"Reality Storm, looks like a bad one." The fisherman hurried me along and asked if I wanted to ship out to sea with him to avoid the storm.

I was feeling echoing flashes in my head, like a migraine coming on, so I deferred. He shook my hand and thanked me for everything. In doing so, it felt a lot more like a permanent good-bye.

I made my way back towards my tree house in the hills, the Reality Storm overtaking me with bright flashes overhead, big splots of rain and echoing flashes in my vision. I never made it. I remember seeing my friends running towards me as I collapsed and then the world vanished in a white hot blur of headache and flashing. When it subsided, I was someone else.

Or, more accurately, I was somewhere else, I had never been a shaman, and those memories were rapidly fading, but I was still a technician, retired, and very confused. With the help of a friend I managed to get out of bed and walked to the balcony. I apparently had a micro condo in a tall high-rise. I couldn't stop talking about the Island and my life there, but my friend suggested that it was just a fever dream, aided by the unseasonal lightning storm we'd just had. The paramedics insisted, however that I dress and come with them. At the hospital there were lots of tests and poking and prodding. What my prostate had to do with cluster migraines was beyond my, but "I'm no doctor." I joked. My sister came to visit, and was the only person who seemed to be very interested in my experience. She even encouraged me to remember as much as possible of it. It was odd, in a way. I knew she was my sister, but we both couldn't tell a single incident from our childhood together. She said not to worry about it, she might be able to shed some light on that later.

On my third night in the hospital, oddly not missing my own bed, because I really had the feeling that it wasn't really my bed at all, in the sense that I'd woken up in it, but hadn't ever really been in it before then, a visitor arrived. Hew was dressed as an orderly but introduced himself as a friend of my sisters. I thought that odd because it was definitely plural, but I was sure I only had one sister. He asked me about my experience with the Reality Storm. I had, by then decided it had just been a dream, but played along and told him about it. He asked if I was feeling anything about like it still. I wasn't, he grunted and sat down to continue our conversation.

Now, I hadn't been, but as we talked I noticed the tiny flashes starting at the back of my brain, just at the base of my vision. I mentioned that, figuring he might be interested. He nodded, rose, went to the cabinet next to the bed and handed my my clothes. "Let's get you out of here now." As I scooted to the end of the bed he took the big machine at the foot of the bed and laid it down where I'd been laying. "Hurry, before the storm gets here."

He was very urgent about it, so I dressed, wondering if leaving the hospital before falling victim to the headaches was actually a good idea. As we walked out of the Hospital. "Where are we going?"

"The storm is heading for your sisters, we need to be with them if we're going to weather this."

"Weather this? You mean this storm might send me back home, to the Island?"

"Not likely," he explained, "Reality Storms, as you call them, affect different folks in different ways. Some get tossed about to different times and places so often they start to remember all of them, some get shifted once and never again, we suspect some get shifted and blend right into the new reality without ever even knowing, and some pile up. Like your sister."

We entered a large suburban home, my sister, and two other of her were waiting for me in the large living room. I knew I only had one sister, but all three of them were her. "Oh, my." The flashes in my head increased and I collapsed into a chair. The four of them were talking when police broke in through the front and back doors simultaneously. The Orderly and my sister (well, one of them) grabbed me and crushed themselves together with me sandwiched between them. The lighting flashed and thunder from outside drowned out the orders of the police to get on the ground and the three of us found ourselves under a threatening sky in an alleyway with trash cans overflowing and the stink of not having been collected for a couple of weeks, at least.

"Garbage strike," I informed my companions. One was dressed as an orderly and the other seemed to be a mildly attractive housewife sort, very suburban looking and quite out of place in a trash-filled urban alleyway. I vaguely remembered dreaming of an Island and a shining clean hi-rise world with a high tech hospital. I wasn't sure what had happened that had made me collapse in the alley. I checked, my wallet was still in my pocket, so I didn't seem to have been mugged. I was grateful that these two had come along to help me up. We made our way out of the alleyway next to my apartment building.

"It worked, sort of." They spoke to one another in front of me like I was supposed to know them, or what was going on. It was apparent they knew one another, and I thought it was odd that I was being helped by two people from my dream while unconscious in the alley. Though, that made some sort of sense if I'd noticed them before I passed out.

Labels: , , ,

Saturday, March 18, 2017

Pointless, Mean Work.

I was working in cubeville, doing endless pointless, uninspiring and essentially mean work on the computer. (Designing stuff that was essentially mean to people.) I was retired from one job and had taken this job to refill my savings after making a rather impulsive purchase.

The manager of my part of the cube farm was even more uninspiring and mean, and I finally decided that I had enough. I went on a rant about the only way to keep us doing uninspiring, pointless and mean work was to pay us well and treat us well. And I don't have a complaint about how well we're paid.

The company boss came over and gave me the perfect bound quarter page sized booklet about how to "get along" the "Company Way." I pointed out that it was available on the company web site in PDF format, and I had read it. It was 64 quarter-pages about how to go along and get along with your bosses, and it was pointless and uninspired. I then took the book, slid the spine half off the table hold it firmly in place with one hand I whacked it the other, breaking the glued spine. I then tore it in half and gave it to my boss, who, flustered, wandered off in a huff. My co-workers just sort of kept their heads down and looked away while I went back to my work, which now consisted of labeling some of my assignments as "pointless," or, "Paint it whatever color you want, it doesn't really matter." And then I selected every part of the drawing and made it Primer colored.

At this point I figured they would either fire me or ignore me, but I figured they certainly wouldn't bother to try being less mean or uninteresting.

Labels: ,

Friday, March 17, 2017

House Creature, Home Wrecker, New Cats

Rough Night last night, but I woke up enough to remember bits of three different dream experiences.

In the first dream, I had a small flying house. I was able to float between my three or four "landings" depending on which weather I preferred. On one of my Landings there was a knock at the door. Some local "Inspectors" were at the door wanting to check the premises for mice. I looked around the three rooms, and the little grey mouse got a worried look on his face, and dashed into the closet. The Inspectors spotted the motion, so I had to let them in and then had to admit that I had a small grey pet...The closet curtain fluffed out and a moose stepped out...moose. The inspectors were taken aback, and frantically started looking at their field book and ticket books. Apparently there was no infraction for having a grey house moose. Or a grey and silver cat, or a silver and black coatimundi, or a flying monkey, though the last one was more than a little bit scary when it jumped out and landed on my chest, asking, "how are we doing, boss." The Inspectors fled.

In the second dream, I was sleeping, when the whole house shook with a bang and then rattled to the sound of a heavy engine for a few seconds afterword. I just figured the neighbor was getting ready for work and had closed his gate, which is part of the fence running between our houses. Just as I was falling back to sleep, it happened again, only I could tell the sound was coming from my back yard. I struggled up out of my sound sleep and into some clothes and shoes. I looked out the window and saw that the back hill was covered in sandy dirt. A little darker and redder than street sand, and more powdery. It had over flowed the retaining wall, and only the top of the trees showed at the top of the hill. I could hear the sounds of engines and cracking wood from behind the slope. I noticed a pair of treaded tracks down the sandy embankment and then turning just at my now dirt covered patio, then up the hill over the space where the ivy used to be thickest. I didn't like this at all, I certainly hadn't given any permission for any work to be done. I followed the tracks up the hill, slipping occasionally in the soft dirt. I crested the hill and was looking over the back neighbor's yard. Bulldozers and backhoes were at work tearing down the house. There was a gap under the house where the granite had been dug up and pushed out the back yard and down the hill. Fairly shortly I saw a spinning cylinder covered in two foot steel spikes tearing up the granite as it drove out from under the house. The spikes were mostly bare metal, but the cylinder still retained some of its construction vehicle yellow. The fellow driving the vehicle looked very wide eyed and happy under his orange destruction cap. the tractor rolled back under the hill, then came out again, pushing the dirt in front of the now stopped cylinder, up the slope, across the back yard, and then toppled the heap over the hill into my yard. The tractor teetered on the crest of the artificial dune a moment before sliding down towards my house. He didn't make the turn this time, slamming into the fireplace, and shattering the glass doors on either side of it. (Apparently I'd added french doors to the dining room side of the fireplace.) The whole house buckled in slightly and was pushed about six inches off the foundation towards the front of the house. I shouted a loud "What the hell are you doing!" as the tractor climbed back up the hill towards me. The driver then spotted me, and with a maniacal gleam in his overly large, not very human eyes, lifted the cylinder and started it running, steering directly at me. The tractor was surprisingly fast and it was on me before I could dodge to the side, and though I might have been able to jump over the spikes onto the cab of the thing, he'd thought of that, and lifted the spinning cylinder of death just after I launched myself into the air. I knew I was dead. I wondered who would save the cats. I woke in a sweat.

The dream I was having this morning before the Chimester chimed in started out disturbing, the neighbors had dug a pit and were fighting insects and small animals in it. They had amassed a collection of scorpions, spiders, frogs and lizards and a struggling cat. I had to intervene for the sake of the vertebrates in the group, pointing out how sweet they were and how cute. It would be wrong to make them fight one another. Real animals feel pain and there is no Poke Hospital for them. The creatures all escaped, except one little dragon like thing that puffed out it's black and yellow scales, then eyed me sideways, then ran up my arm and dove into my shirt pocket. It cheeped at me and I rubbed the center of its head between its eye bumps, making it cheep some more. I wondered if it would eat cat kibble, or if I needed to make a trip to the store for crickets or mealworms. I needn't have worried, when I opened up my garage door it jumped out and raced over to the litter pan area, like it knew what it was doing, and began digging out the earwigs and snacking on them loudly. I crouched down to get a better look at what it was doing, then felt a cat rubbing on my elbow. It was the little white and black kitten. Marked much like Giles, only with more black than white on her. She ran off under a vehicle parked partly across my driveway. I went out and stretched out on the curb to see what she was up to. She came out with two more cats, a nearly all black cat with a just a white chin and toes, and an all white short haired cat, with beautiful golden brown eyes. The two adult cats had letters wrapped around their collars. The letters had obviously been written by a child. It stated that they had to move, and mommy and daddy said the cats would be okay on their own, but she knew better (I knew it was a she because there was a drawing of a little girl with her three cats, each with a name below them.) "Please take care of them and keep them together, they're family." There was a phone number. "text me."

My little dragon like friend cheeped at the cats, and they all got head bonks and shoulder rubs as they walked over me and then screwing up their courage, dashed across the open driveway and followed it into the house through the cat door. The white cat stayed with me the longest, unsure about the whole thing. I scruffed her up across the shoulders and ears, trying to let her know she would be safe in the house and wouldn't have to come out into the big blue room again. That seemed to satisfy her and she raced across the driveway, pausing only a second to two to figure out the cat door. I was glad I had just stocked up on cat food, and that I hadn't gotten rid of the extra litter pans yet. Giles and Ember would certainly be entertained with four new housemates. I texted the number that the cats were living with me, and they would be kept together. It was only a few seconds before I got an emoji filled text with hearts and kitty faces. I resolved to text pictures of the cats when they settled in.

Labels: , , , , , ,

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Sailing Ships and Wooden Cabins

I was, with a team of about 12, stationed on a wooden sailing ship that was searching for the Northwest Passage. We had been thwarted in our attempt and had retreated to the North Atlantic. Winter had been harsh, and the ship's stores were getting low. The captain wanted to make another attempt in the spring, so devised a plan to drop off the carpenters, masons and myself (apparently a structural engineer,) leaving us with about two weeks of rations (if tightly rationed) and the materials for a pair of cabins, which had been meant for way point storage to be set up. I was not particularly in favor of this plan, but the ship's crew made the decision for us one cold, wet night.

We found ourselves on a green shoreline, fumaroles sputtered and fumed in the distance. A wide fresh water river coming had a hot tributary. I looked at the sand on the beach and decided that if we could gather up enough viable seed we could set up our cabins, and then make a greenhouse, heated by the hot water, and we should be able to overwinter here if the captain wasn't good to his word of sending help from the Canadians on his first stop. (Since putting us off was in order to keep him from having to purchase more supplies, I suspect he had no intentions of telling anyone where we were.)

One of the carpenters opined, "It's too bad none of us are shipwrights." I had to agree. We decided that we would only set up one cabin, and look to making a boat of the other so that we might explore our coast and river valley better. There were only a sparse scattering of short woody plants around, so I figured we wouldn't be building much out of the local lumber. Perhaps the hot water was near boiling further inland, we could heat and cook all winter if that were the case.

Labels: ,

Tuesday, March 07, 2017

Surprise House Party

While I was sleeping, the house decided to throw a party. I woke up to thumping music out in the back yard, the sounds of running and giggling, a door chime, and the smell of BBQ wafting into my office. I had been working about thirty six hours straight, then had fallen asleep in my task chair. Except for bathroom trips and to get food, I hadn't been out of the office for several days. I had some sort of deadline I was racing to make, and had lost one of my illustrators, so was trying frantically to color correct everything for printing. the job was done, and I had fallen into a coma like sleep for a period of time I wasn't sure of, all my muscles hurt. I really needed to swim, but didn't have a suit that fit. I made my way through the surging crowd of party goers, only a few of whom I recognized. It didn't take long for me to decide that the party atmosphere had lasted long enough for me, it didn't help that I was dressed in a pair of pajama bottoms missing the fly button and an old holey T-shirt, neither of which had been changed for at least four days. I went back to my office, but the house had locked the door. When I tried to override the lockout the house said "You need to socialize," and that I would not be allowed to hide in my office until after I did so.

I made my way to the master bedroom, which was also full of party goers, who had overflowed even into the master bathroom. I reached in and grabbed a towel. I shrugged. "Okay, house, if that's the way you want it."

"What are you thinking?"

"I feel like swimming."

"Okay, shall I turn up the pool heat for our guests, the hot tub is already hot."

"That won't be necessary." I like my pool a little bit cooler, and the last thing I wanted to do was warm it up and make it more inviting.

I noticed that there were already a half dozen folks in the hot tub, and only a couple in the pool. They looked like they had gotten too warm and had jumped in to cool off before returning to the hot tub. I waited for them to climb over the wall into the hot tub so I would have the pool all to myself. I dropped my towel and pajama bottoms over a shaded (and thus empty) pool chair, then strode naked to the deep end of the pool. A couple of people came up to me to ask me to put something on, I didn't recognize them, so just pointed to the "Swimsuits or Nothing" sign, and said, "It's my home, my rules." One of them hurried off to go gather his children and leave. I smiled, waved at my friends in the hot tub and dove into the pool.

The house whispered to me through the pool speakers, "that wasn't nice."

I stayed under the water, kicking off the walls and gliding through the cool waters, enjoying the relief the cold water provided from my hand and foot inflammation. When I'd been down for a couple of minutes, several of the women in the hot tub had entered the pool to see if I needed help. I swam over to them and they dove down to greet me, saw my "condition" and turned and broke for the surface. I surfaced between them and mounted the stairs to make my way to the hot tub. A small pink and yellow swimsuit top plopped into the water next to me. My young friend M was below me on the stairs stepping out of her bikini bottoms. Only a couple of people stayed in the hot tub with us. I decided I liked the party after all.

Labels: , , ,

Saturday, March 04, 2017

Vampire Mom

I was in a lovely leather and brocade wallpapered train cabin with a woman and her teen daughter. It became clear that the woman, who referred to herself as "The Wife" was actually a vampire. The trip took on a much more sinister air. It was not clear that she was my wife. I don't remember any details from our conversation, except at one point the thirteen year old daughter (who I presumed was born before mom became a vampire) spoke up.

"Some people tried to kidnap me on the way home one day. I said 'why don't you take Suzy, she's way prettier than I am." She paused and looked out the window. Mom patted the back of her hand. "I still miss Suzy."

Labels: , ,