Say no to licorice part 3

My father’s house is mossy with high redwoods, a creek in the back. Fallen walnuts litter the ground. We’d always throws them over the fences, into the neighbors’ yards to see how far they could go. Sounds idyllic (his yard). Did I mention the dozen rusted cars, the big-rig trailer full of hand-me downs (junk), the road signs he’s stolen from the roads, the charter bus in the back back next to the apple tree? I have a lot of dreams that take place here – perhaps it’s just a familiar setting, but they always seem particularly strange at my Dad’s house.

Dream: My Dad’s yard (see above), I was outside in the warm sunshine. I came out to the front yard and two young boys standing there. They were supposed to be fixing something with the house, I think, (or they were just snooping – not sure) and when they said they couldn’t fix the thing or I realized what they were doing – snoops – I screamed, “GET THE FUCK OFF MY LAND!”

I went around down the side of the house – in my dream it was a long driveway. In reality the driveway is on the right side, but I went left and still a driveway. I remember the bright cedar-colored wood on the house as I walked by.

But the boys didn’t leave, in fact they went down the right side driveway and when I saw them from the other side, I picked up the biggest rock I could find and chucked it at the back of their heads. I have good aim. Nailed one, laughed of course and then I crouched down….(oh geez, sidenote – I said something much meaner to the boys to get off my land I said “GET THE FUCK OFF MY LAND OR I’LL BLOW YOUR FACES OFF” with a gun of course, I think that’s why they came after me). Anyway, I crouched down and the deck shielded me from sight, but they looked over to where the rock assaulted them from and decide to come check it out. Now we are playing hide-n-seek. They creep around corners and I creep around corners, I move where they aren’t, they move where I am. I finally hide behind a tall, fat redwood, but they see me anyway and come rushing toward me.

Now it gets sort of fuzzy – my brother and I are the last remaining members of our family. In my dream we are a cursed family. In real-life, well that’s up for speculation. But we are the sole survivors to our name, to this grand empire of an estate, a cursed estate. My brother and I are trying to figure out why the members of our family kept dying (the curse). We both live in the house, we have both thrown glorious parties, we are very rich and very famous and every one wants to come a drink our drinks and eat our eats.

Out of nowhere, my brother comes rushing down the right side of the driveway to me. I think he’s coming to help me from the boys, but he grabs me. He has a knife. He mentions something about the curse. Says he’s sorry, but only one of us can make it to keep the family name going. Only one of us can stop the curse. He thinks I’m the one who has caused all of the deaths, he thinks I killed all of them. He gets the crazy eyes and then he stabs me in the side.

I have no pain, other than the world becoming cloudy and gray. My vision spins, the shock, the spins, the shock.

When I come to, the sun is out again and I’m walking just as I was in the yard. I am alone. I notice this time the tombstones of my family members we’ve buried there. The stones are big as bed, the words scratched in with a rock. My family members were buried by a person who had no idea what they were doing. The letters uneven and rough. I see my Dad’s, I see one of my cousin’s, three rows of tombs all carved the same way. And then I see a bulbous tombstone, it’s not really stone at all. I’m not entirely sure what it is, but it has a tag and I’m holding this tag in my hands. It’s the kind of tag you’d find on a new toy, but this tag is covered  in a film of plastic. I turn the tag over and find my birth date written in pencil and some other random information, all pointing to my identity. This is my tombstone. I know then that I have died, that my brother murdered me, that my brother has been so paranoid about this family curse that it drove him mad. He killed every one because of it. I know at that moment that whatever is in my brother, the curse, must be stopped.

When I arrive back in the house there is a party going on. Food and wine, we live in a grand home with white columns and chandeliers and three stories, red velvet carpet. A few years has passed at this point and I have taken revenge on the innocent visitors that have come to the house. There is a growing reputation this house is haunted, which entices people all the more. The danger has becomes the allure. The mystery is that I am unseen. I am a ghost. I can move as I please, but still have the ability to touch and to grab and to do all the things necessary to haunt. I shove people, I play tricks on them and then I kill them, as I was killed – with a knife. It’s as if I, too, have become cursed by a need to make things right, to get my revenge, to ultimately get to my brother. All I’m trying to do is to get these people to leave my home.

At this particular party, I’m trying to find my brother again who has turned into a woman (no need for explanation – it’s a dream!). But this party is bigger and grander than any party he has thrown before and finally, finally I decide that this is where it stops. Every one must die.

Since my brother is a woman now, of course he has male suitors. He has left one in a private room. The white walls gleam, the red carpet sits ominously waiting. I sneak into the room, take part of the chandelier and smash it onto the floor. The suitor, elegantly dressed in a tux, looks around in confusion. I continue to smash bits of the chandelier blocking the entry-way with shards of glass creating, in my mind, a sort of trap to keep him in the center of room. The suitor, clueless to my presence, yells to my brother, “Be careful, there’s broken glass in here.”

As my brother re-enters the room, the suitor strategically placed below the chandelier, I chop the cord it’s hanging from and watch the light, the glass, the weight smash into the suitor killing him instantly.

People rush in, screaming. All this time, through all the murders, no one has known who or what was causing them. Not even my brother, he could never see me. I’ve lived anonymously, silently, invisible in the same house. He fears being alone, yet continues to live there. He invites people over. I kill them. A vicious cycle really.

I sneak past all the guests. I don’t have shoes on (ghosts don’t wear shoes, especially not in their own homes) and as I walk over the bits of glass, large pieces get stuck in the bottoms of me feet. I can feel the pain of it, but I know I can’t stop right now. There are still people downstairs in the living room. I decide to deal with them later, but right now my plan is to get every one in this room (about 15 people) corralled into the upstairs bedroom and trap them there.

I scream and I scream, the guests are running away from my screams and away from my voice, they are running upstairs, running into the bedroom, my brother included. The last I see of them I’m slamming the door, they are huddled together and terrified, my brother (the woman) is in a white wedding dress. Her long black hair is dressed with orange and pink flowers, but I close them in and lock the door.

I rush downstairs, running through the broken glass again. I grab a knife and head to the living room. Through the crowds I stab here and I stab there, watching the people fall while the others carry on with their conversations. No one seems to notice anything or care.

I rest by the fire, sit next to a woman with black hair. My feet are bleeding, chunks of glass sticking out from them. I begin to pull the logged glass from my skin and place the pieces on the floor.

The women next to me see the pieces of glass suddenly appear on the floor. She can’t see me, but we are close, almost touching. She seems to look directly at me and I twinge inside, feeling certain that she cannot see me, but a strange discomfort that she can in fact sense me there. I continue to pick the pieces of glass from my feet. She is still looking at me or through me, in my direction and suddenly she grabs my shoulders. I scream and spin up and around and around. She lets go and I rush to the middle of the room. I feel she has suspected some sort of presence in this house, that she’s been waiting by the fire for me to arrive, to touch me, to discover me. She knows I am there and yet something brings me back to her, the feeling of finally again being acknowledged. I sit down again next to her, all the while knowing now what I have to do. I can’t let anyone leave this house, not her, not me, not my brother, not the guests. No one can leave alive.

I take a book of matches, trying to light them in the fire quickly without her seeing the sticks of wood lift into the air and catch a flame. I place my hand in the fire, light the matches and move them over a pile of presents on the floor. They catch, the paper begins to burn, the flame grows higher. I need to get to the other fireplace on the opposite side of the room, but the dark-haired woman grabs me and tries to stop me. I shake away from her, knowing my brother is upstairs, knowing the whole house must come down in flames, knowing all of this must end. Our whole family is dead, the curse has to stop. I have to stop him.

I’m trying to light the matches quickly, but the fire on this side is mostly embers. The matches become long, slivered pieces of white wood, they won’t catch. I stick my hand in the fire, longer and longer, but I need to do this quickly or the woman will find me again and stop me. The matches catch, I place the flame on the furniture, but the flame turns to smoke and then out. Nothing will burn and people are rushing around me in a panic. The woman finds me somehow, places her hand on mine and says, “Look outside, look who is here. You can’t do this. Look outside the window.”

I look through the front window to find a blond-haired woman opening her car door and getting out. I feel a faint recognition. She has two small children with her. “It’s your mother,” the woman says.

Up until this point I had no recollection of a mother. It had been all males, a grandma here and there, but I had grown up in a cursed family completely of men. I had never seen this woman before, but I felt drawn to her. She was surrounded in gold light, the sun outside. Everything else at that moment disappeared. I didn’t see anyone else, not the screaming guests trying to put out the fire, not the knife I had been carrying around in my pocket, not even the woman next to me, seeing me for the first time since my death, talking to me. I couldn’t do it. I couldn’t do this. And just kept watching the woman outside and I let the matches in my hand slowly turn black and burn out.

*if you read ALL of this, I would like to give you a prize*

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