I had the most whacked out dream last night.  Actually woke up in a sweat and struggling to breathe.*  I was back in my old neighborhood in Franklin, Indiana.** I had just left my cousin’s house and was walking toward my grandparents home.  I had stopped at their next door neighbor’s house to talk to the old man tending his garden, when a lone came walking down the center of King Street.  He had a gun and a rifle and was walking along just randomly shooting people.

I take off running.  I hear the shot that takes out the old guy was just talking to.  I run down the alley which separated my grandparents’ house from the schoolyard park.  We used to play hide and seek through this neighborhood.  This alley was my standard route of escape.

(cue the harps for flashback montage of memories)

-when me and my buddies used to throw rocks at passing cars and on the rare occasions actually hit one, which would cause the driver to stop and chase us

-when the local bullies would wait for me at the bus stop (the bus dropped us off in front of my grandmother’s house which was on one end of the alley and I had to make it to my house which was on the other end).  Now that I think about it, I have an unpublished story written about this.

-whenever it was time for me to cut my own switch (read:  time to flee grandma’s house)

-even the one time I thought I could out-pedal (I was on my Big Wheel) my friend’s older sister after we had pulled some prank on her while she was talking to a boy.  She clocked me in the back of my head with her shoe.

(end montage on that image …)

So I tore down the alley, the echoes of gunfire in my ear.  I watch as several of my friends fall on the basketball court.  I cut across my aunt’s yard, dodge her German shepherd, and scurry down the basement steps to the old church next door.  I’m pressed up against the wall of the mildewed stones, the door to the basement locked, of course.  This was always our favorite hiding place when playing hide and seek.  Then it fully hits me that it was our favorite spot to hide when playing hide and seek.  And the shadowed form of my friend’s head looms over the steps.  Then I wake up.

It’s funny how dreams can seem so terrifying when you’re having them, but seeing them on the page robs them of their existential terror.  I’m sure there’s a lesson in there somewhere.  Rather than search for one, I will direct you to the SF Signal podcast wherein—starting at the 18 minute mark—Jerry Gordon and I are interviewed regarding Dark Faith, King Maker, and WARN YOU OF THE IMPENDING THREAT TO HUMANITY!!!***

(and here’s where Chesya Burke reminds me that I’m supposed to be writing.  Fiction.  She wields the Mighty Reminder Stick of Impending Deadlines!)

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*This may speak more to me being so out of shape that even the dream of me running made me out of breath.

**One, for all of those upset about me setting the legend of King Arthur in Indianapolis, be glad I didn’t set it in Franklin.  You REALLY wouldn’t have been able to find it on a map.  Two, yes, when we first moved from London, England, we first settled in Franklin.  Absolutely no culture shock there at all.

***No, there’s no threat.  Not really.  Though I did start drinking a Shiraz (not Riesling for a change) at 8:30 pm thinking that the interview would begin at 9.  The interview began at 10.  So hilarity ensues.  Somehow they managed to edit my hour’s worth of antics down to something manageable.  My favorite memory is watching Jerry remain professional and on point while I’m doing my level best to distract him.  He’s unflappable … like a palace guard to my obnoxious tourist routine.