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That moment was one of those that I knew was going
to stay etched in my mind forever. In my eyes a milestone had been
reached for both of us. For me it was breaking down that final barrier
between Mateo and me. For him it was probably the first time he had
actually let go and felt comfortable enough to let another person in to
his world. It was one of those milestones that could've gone two
different ways, with each having dramatically different and opposite results.
I was gracious that it had gone the way it had and not the other.
The milestone creating moment in the shower lasted for a little while longer before we finally got out. Our minds were on so many other things that neither of us remembered we were even naked until we both had our underwear on. To this Mateo apologized for intruding on me like he had and that he was surprised I hadn't gone ballistic on him. I could tell he was really not too happy about how he'd gone about getting my attention, so I turned it around into a joke and told him it was okay. It was the most action I'd ever had in a shower.
A nasty little chill was trying to sneak over the house, so the heater got turned on as soon as I left the bathroom. It always took awhile for it to kick in so I put on a pair of sweat pants and a T-shirt. My body is strange like that. It could be 50 below outside, but as long as my legs are covered and not cold I could go topless and have no problem whatsoever.
A cousin of mine had left some of his clothes by accident at my place during his visit before I'd moved back home. It was a good thing I'd kept forgetting to give them back to him because a pair of sweatpants and a long sleeve shirt turned out to fit Mateo almost perfectly. That way he wouldn't have to sleep in his clothes or in his underwear.
My place only had one bedroom and therefore I only
had one bed. My guest was welcome to it and I was going to crash
on the recliner that was also in my room. It didn't look like it
but it was very comfortable. I had fallen asleep in it countless
Once the two of us got settled in the our retrospective sleeping quarters, Mateo lifted up into a sitting position on the bed and looked over at me.
My eyes were closed as I responded,
"You...don't have to sleep in the chair. ...I mean, if you don't want to." he sounded a little unsure while saying it.
I opened my eyes a little and smiled.
"Oh, it's okay. I don't mind at all."
He started to say the first word of a new sentence,
stopped himself, then said,
He laid back down and turned over, facing away from me, and got relaxed. I laid there for a few moments, staring up at the ceiling and trying to wade through all the junk that was still swimming around in my head. The shower hadn't provided me with the opportunity to sort out the situation at hand, and I was still in dummy mode. I'm not sure how long that lasted until my body decided I'd had enough excitement for one day. It worked it's sneaky magic on me and before I knew what hit me I was asleep.
The only way I knew I had even fallen asleep was when I woke up. And I woke up to a very warm reception. The heater had dealt with the chill and was well on its way to making the house feel as close to hell as possible. I thought maybe it was just me who was hot and that the temperature was okay. When I looked over at Mateo and saw that he had kicked the majority of the covers off his body, I knew it wasn't just me.
Unwrapping myself from my blanket, I got up to turn
the heat off. Since heat rose and I had the privilege of being upstairs,
the house held warmth pretty well. I wouldn't have to turn it back
on for at least five hours. As I returned to my recliner I looked
over at the clock and saw it was 4:59 a.m.
"Won't be needing this anymore." I thought to myself of the blanket I'd had on me.
I started fixing it up against the chair so that
I could lie against it instead of it being on me.
A low groan from Mateo called my attention to him just as I was about to sit back down and recline. He stirred a little. His eyebrows furrowed for a moment and went back to normal. I kept watch on him for a beat. When nothing else came out of him, I returned to sitting down.
He let out another low groan, causing me to stop and turn again. His head turned slowly to face the direction opposite of mine. Another low groan came out of him and his head turned back toward me. Then very faintly the word "No" came out instead of a groan.
Becoming a little concerned, I went over to the bed. I could see his eyes darting back and forth under the thin membrane of his eyelids, and his breathing sounded harsher and faster than normal sleeping breathing.
"No. Don't." he pleaded with whatever was going on behind his eyelids in a distant tone.
His body shifted uncomfortably.
"Please...don't." he pleaded again.
"A nightmare." I thought. "He's having a nightmare."
Being the movie nerd that I am, seeing him
like that reminded me of the scene in the Sixth Sense, where the little
boy's mother is having the bad dream and he goes to her and talks to her
and calms her down. Wondering if it really worked, and certainly
having nothing to loose, I took a seat on the bed and gave it a shot.
"Mateo, you're just having a bad dream. Everything is okay. I'm right here with you." I said in a low voice.
His eyebrows furrowed and he groaned again, only not as
loudly as before.
"I'm right here. It's just your mind playing tricks with you.
I waited for a response from him. When one didn't come instantly, I waited some more. I pulled the rest of my body into the bed and situated myself with my back against the headboard. I kept waiting and waiting, but I didn't last too long. Sleep once again snuck up on me and lulled me into its world once again.
* * * * * *
The sound of a scrub jay right outside my window
screeching at the top of its little lungs woke me the second time and let
me know I'd fallen asleep again. Sunlight was streaming through my
partially open blinds. That meant it had to be 7:00 a.m. at the earliest.
I glanced over at the clock and saw the time at 9:30 a.m.
Thinking about Mateo, I looked to my left to see if he was okay. What I saw sort of surprised me and my body's automatic reaction was to move away. He had cuddled closer to me. His head was resting comfortably against my side and his hand was draped lazily across my stomach. The covers had been pulled back up to his waist and were over the majority of my lower body. I figured he must've woken up and done it while I was asleep.
That part of me that wanted to move away was put in checkmate when my eyes looked upon his face. He looked so peaceful, so innocent. He was the fifteen-year-old boy I'd seen for the first time in the shower again, instead of the fifteen-year-old man he portrayed during waking hours. It made me feel good inside to see him in that manner, but it also saddened me. It made me question why life was treating him like it was. He was a good kid, a smart kid. What had he done that was so wrong in the dear lords eyes that life had been turned into hell for him?
In a slow, almost hesitant, motion I reached out and gently swept a portion of his hair that had fallen into his face back out of the way. The second I did it, something inside me clicked and this memory unlocked. A memory of a place that I couldn't make out and of a person I couldn't quite see. A memory of reaching out to that person and moving the hair that had fallen into their face back out of the way. That person took my hand, kissed it, and said something that I couldn't quite make out. Then, as fast as it had clicked and appeared, it un-clicked and vanished. I tried to think of where the memory could've come from, but the more I tried the more I couldn't seem to remember. Defeated and with a slightly puzzled look on my face I wondered,
"What was that all about?"
Mateo stirred next to me. I looked down
at him and I saw his eyes come slowly open. Confusion came over him
as he tried to remember where he was. Then his attention went up
to me and that seemed to bring it all back to him.
"Morning." I said.
"Hi." he smiled a little.
He realized that he was cuddled next to me and eased
off, putting some inches between us.
"Sorry. I didn't mean to be all on you and stuff." He sounded a tad embarrassed.
"It's cool. I'm not trippin'." I said. And I wasn't. "How'd you sleep?"
"Okay, I guess. But I had this really freaky dream."
"What about? If you don't mind me asking."
"Just that I was at the police station and the police were questioning me. But they were asking me about stuff that I didn't know about. So they brought in my mother and hooked her up to this crazy looking machine and told me that every time they thought I was lying to them that they were gonna shock her. So they started asking questions again and I answered the same way I had before, because that was the truth. They kept shocking her and shocking her. They wouldn't stop."
"That does sound freaky."
"Yeah. But then, I heard this voice tell me that everything was okay and that it was just a dream. The cops kept trying to tell me it was real, but I listened to the voice and everything faded away."
His hazel eyes looked into mine, holding me
in their gaze.
"That was you, huh?"
I nodded a couple of times to let him know
"I knew it. You even got my back in my dreams."
"You just can't escape me, huh?"
His eyes looked away and off toward the foot
of the bed.
"Who says I want to?" he sort of mumbled.
I was going to ask him what he'd said when the phone
rang. Well, it didn't actually ring. It had an interesting
feature on it that if set would make the phone vibrate like a pager instead
of ringing. The base the phone sat on also flashed rapidly, courtesy
of the blue light that was inside it to also let you know the phone was
ringing. Whenever I would remember, especially during the weekends,
I'd set the feature before I went to bed so that my sleep wouldn't be broken
by some damn telemarketer. Strangely, though, I didn't remember setting
"Hello?" I answered.
"Good morning. Is this Jackson Williams?" asked a familiar female voice.
"Yes, it is."
"Hi. This is Miranda Walker. We talked last night at the police department. You came into my office."
"Oh. Oh, hi. Good morning, I mean."
"I'm sorry if I woke you."
"It's okay. I was up anyway."
"I thought I'd give you a call and update you on the situation before I check out. But what I'm about to tell you has got to remain confidential and stay between you and I."
Now she had my full attention.
"Okay. It won't go any further."
"The department has been working all night on the case. Both Miss Ruiz and her son Tomas told us that neither had any idea the drugs were in the house. However, the evidence is beginning to point to the fact that Tomas may have known that the drugs were indeed in the house and where they were located."
"What sort of evidence, if I may ask."
"Fingerprints. The drugs were hidden in a closet in Miss Ruiz's bedroom beneath the floorboards. When it got dusted, Tomas's fingerprints were all over it, not Miss Ruiz's."
"So then that means she had nothing to do with this then, like she said?"
"Possibly. Or she could've had Tomas retrieve the drugs in order to keep her prints off."
I didn't mean to scoff at her statement.
I didn't know Esmerelda that well, but I knew enough about her to know
that she wouldn't go out like that. I mean come on. The woman
was working two jobs. Why in the hell would she be working two jobs
AND selling drugs and not be making it better than she was? Still,
the scoff came out and I remarked,
"I doubt she'd do that to her own son."
"If you want my honest opinion, Mr. Williams, so do I. And this is coming from a woman who has seen a lot of imposterous and tricky stuff from people in her time."
"So what happens now?"
"The search for evidence at the apartment will continue so we can find out the truth behind all this. Once that's done, there will be a small court hearing and it will be up to the judge to decide what happens after that."
"And based on his decision what could happen?"
"If Miss Ruiz is guilty, she'll be up on charges of drug possession with intent to sell as well as child endangerment. The same drug possession charge goes for Tomas too if he's found guilty. And for whichever party is found not guilty, then that's also up to the judge what happens next."
I sighed heavily, not knowing what else to
"I know this is oddworld, Mr. Williams, but please just hang in there for yourself and Mateo. I'll make sure to keep you updated."
"Thanks. I appreciate your doing this very much."
"It's my pleasure. Good bye."
Miranda hung up the phone on the other end, but I
continued holding it to my ear. I was still processing the information
I'd just taken in.
"What's wrong? Was that that lady from last night?" Mateo reminded me he was there.
"Yeah, it was." I answered him. "Hey, could you excuse me for a minute? I got to make a phone call."
"Yeah. I gotta pee anyway. Is everything okay?"
"No worse than last night."
That answered proved good enough for him. He pulled the covers off of him and got out of the bed. The moment he was standing and had started walking, he noticed he'd been afflicted with a certain condition all men and boys who'd entered puberty experienced. His attention went back to me before I had the chance to act like I hadn't seen the obvious bulge in the crotch of his sweats.
"I hate it when it does that." He tried to be casual about it, even though I knew he was embarrassed. He stuck his hand beneath the waistbands of the sweats and his boxers and adjusted himself.
"Get used to it. You've got many more years to look forward to it." I informed him.
"It happens to you too?"
"To all guys who have the privilege of having the part a guy has."
"You know why it happens? I don't remember having any dreams to make it...you know."
"I think its because the body is relaxed and that just what happens when that part of the body relaxes."
"Oh. Never thought about that."
I took it that answer satisfied him, because he resumed his trip to the bathroom. My attention went back to the phone, which had started blaring the off-the-hook signal in my ear. I hung up the phone and dialed up Theo. If Esmerelda and Tomas were going to be going to a hearing then they were going to be needing a lawyer. Something better than the two bit wannabe's City Hall would provide for them.
Theo's sister, Cordelia, was a lawyer and a very good one. If anybody could get down to the bottom of this and bring Esmerelda and Tomas out, it was definitely her. Unfortunately I didn't have her number so Theo had to call her up on three-way. It had been years since Cordelia and I had talked. She had always been nice to us when we were kids, instead of despising us like some older sisters did of their younger brothers and their friends. Both of us were glad to hear each other's voices after so long and we said our greetings. I then apologized for having to call for a favor instead of calling just to say hi and let her know what was up. Even though Miranda had told me the information had to stay between the two of us, I knew the people who were going to hear it would keep it to themselves.
Cordelia had just finished up a case and was more than willing to take the new one. I let her know that I would pay her since Esmerelda might not be able to, and she said we'd worry about that after everything was settled.
* * * * * *
Three hours later me, Mateo, and Cordelia all met up at City Hall. As I said it had been years since I'd seen her last, and time had definitely not been cruel to her. She had aged into a very good-looking woman. We exchanged a hug and she gave me her apologies about my mother's passing. She'd wanted to come to the funeral, but her cases had kept her busier than she'd ever been. Mateo thanked her for decided to help out his mother and brother. I'd told him who she was on our way to City Hall so he wasn't out of the loop.
Mateo or myself were not allowed to be present during
the meeting between Cordelia, Esmerelda, and Tomas. We managed to
keep each other occupied while we waited for the two hours the meeting
took. When it finally came to an end Cordelia came out to the waiting
room where we were and took Mateo back to see his mother, which made him
His visit was for thirty minutes, so Cordelia and I went for a quick walk. She told me she had a feeling a strong case could be built for Esmerelda, but not Tomas. He hadn't appeared at the meeting, stating that he wanted separate representation from his mother. That didn't sit to well with Cordelia and I had to admit it didn't with me either. We both looked at it as a sign that he was hiding something. There was just no logical reason as far as either of us were concerned as to why he'd want to have separate council. Plus the fact that he'd been told just before our arrival that the evidence uncovered so far was pointing not at his mother but directly at him only made us believe in what we were thinking more.
We made it back just as the thirty minute visit for
Mateo and his mother was ending. Mateo didn't want to see his brother,
but told me his mother wanted to see me. After making sure it was
okay, I was escorted into the little conference room where she was and
finally got my first look at her. I guessed her at about late thirties
to early forties. But age had been good to her. Her skin tone
was the same as Mateo's, and when her eyes fell on me and a smile came
to her face, I was shown exactly where he had acquired his awesome eyes
and knockout smile from. She had a little bit of weight on her, but
it gave her definition instead of fat, and silky black hair had been pulled
back into a pony tail that went just past her shoulders.
"Hello, Jack." she greeted me warmly.
"It's nice to finally meet you. I just wish it wasn't in such lovely accommodations." I greeted back.
It didn't seem to matter that this was the
first time we'd ever meant person to person. Because we hugged like
we had know each other since forever. Nothing passionate. Just
a friendly hug.
"Yes, so do I. I tell Mateo to have you come in because I want to see your face and to tell you thank you for all that you done. For taking Mateo last night and for calling your lawyer friend to come and see me today."
"It's my pleasure. I just want to help you get all of this figured out and over with."
"I am glad. You don't know what is like for you to say words and for people to not believe them. They just take a look at you and see the skin and think you a bad person."
I nodded knowingly.
"I can't say I don't know how that is."
"I have one favor to ask you, though."
"If it is okay, I would like for Mateo to stay with you. My brother is the only other person who can take him, but they have things going on there and I really don't want Mateo around that right now.
Things. I knew exactly what that meant, even though she probably didn't know it.
"It's perfectly fine with me." I okayed.
Esmerelda sighed happily.
"Oh, thank you. But you are sure it is no problem?"
I understood her making double sure.
Taking Mateo in was going to mean me doing some serious altering to my
own life and it's schedule. She knew that. She didn't want
to put him on me like suddenly he was my responsibility and my problem.
She was doing what any mother who gave a damn about their kid would do.
"Not at all. It'll be cool having someone else in the house." I eased all doubt.
She thanked me again. It was then that the
door opened and an officer entered to let us know that our time was up.
I assured Esmerelda everything was going to get sorted out and that it
would all be done and over with soon. We hugged again.
I headed back out to the waiting room where Cordelia had taken Mateo. She let me know that if I'd said it was okay for Mateo to stay with me that it had been cleared for me and him to go with her and an officer to his house and pick up some clothes and his school stuff. Mateo thanked me at least a dozen times when I revealed I'd said it was okay.
I couldn't help but be excited as well, but found myself hoping that I was doing the right thing. I didn't have any kids and didn't know the first thing about dealing with and caring for them in the manner I was going to be with Mateo. That hope quickly spawned into doubt, which began to evolve into worry. But mid-evolution, something inside me said: "Don't worry. You'll be able to handle it. You'll see."
* * * * * *
The rest of the day went by extremely well. Mateo hadn't really gotten the chance to check my place out during his first visitation, so after we got back from getting his stuff and a bite to eat he got the entire tour. My entertainment center was the focus of his attention. Being a movie geek, I had hooked it up with all the bells and whistles of the practical and non-expensive kind. I had a big screen HDTV ready television. The sound was put through a JVC receiver and released through two tall and skinny speakers that stood on either side of the entertainment center, and two small speakers situated on either side behind my sofa. A wide variety of DVD's and VHS tapes was the icing on top of the cake.
But what had really nabbed Mateo's focus were my three video game systems. I had the Playstation 2, the Nintendo Gamecube, the Microsoft X-Box, and plenty of games for each of them. With those many options, he didn't know where to start. So I suggested we start off with the X-box and the NBA game that was out for it.
Me, Theo, Michael, and the others used to kid around
when we were younger and say that playing video games put you in a time
warp, because whole hours seemed to go by at the speed of minutes.
That theory proved true for Mateo and me, because before we knew it it
was eight o'clock. Hunger had come back to both of us, so I opted
to order a pizza. Mateo was happy with that idea. He said it
had been a long time since he'd last had pizza. I called up the nearby
Pizza Hut, placed my order, and asked them to deliver it. They told
me it was going to take 30 minutes, but the pizza always arrived before
the said time limit. It did. A young looking delivery girl
dropped off the order and I paid her three dollars over the price, which
I told her to keep for a tip. I had been a delivery driver once before
too and I hated it when people didn't tip. That got a smile out of
her and a good night. When I shut the door Mateo was standing in
the kitchen doorway, which gave him a good look at who was at the front
door. A smile came to my face as I shut the front door and headed
"Your type of girl?" I inquired.
"I said was that your kind of girl. You were standing there and I know you were catching a quick look."
He smiled a little and shook his head.
"She looked okay."
"And here I was thinking it was me she was smiling at me before she left."
That got a giggle out of him.
"I wish. Don't really have much luck with girls."
I almost dropped the pizza I was carrying to
the table. I sat it down and looked over at him in disbelief.
He nodded a couple of times and came on over
to the table.
"Well, maybe if your attitude wasn't so funky, things might go a lot smoother." I teased him.
"I know you didn't go there." he said glaring at me and trying to look mean, but a smile kept trying to break through.
"Oh yes I did. Took it there and brought it back."
He kept his mock angry look on, so I
imitated him in an overexaggerated fashion. It broke him instantly
and made him laugh. My goodness. It was the first time I'd
heard him laugh in days.
"But all joking aside, man, I don't see why you have such bad luck." I continued while going to the cupboard to get some paper plates.
"Have you looked in the mirror lately? I'm surprised girls don't go into heat when they see you."
"Really? You think I look okay?"
"Damn okay. I'd be all over you if I was a girl."
To this he looked away from me and smiled almost shyly. The closer I got to the table with the paper plates, the better look I got at his face and saw that he was starting to blush. There was no way I could pass this up!
"Oh look! He's blushing!" I teased.
He turned away from me quickly so that I couldn't
see his face anymore.
"No, I'm not." he denied, but he knew he was.
I couldn't stop myself, though.
"He's so cuuuuuuuute!"
And that was all he was willing to take from me. He turned around and took a boxing like stance.
"Don't make me kick your ass!" he warned, that crooked smile coming across his face, daring me to challenge him.
"Oh you don't want none of this, boy." I shot back, putting down the plates.
He jumped at me in an attempt to make me flinch.
It didn't work.
"I guess you do want some." I said, going into my own wannabe stance. "Come on, chico. Come on over here and catch this whoopin' I'm about to put on you!"
Both of us went at each other in a slap boxing match. I went into it thinking I was going to be able to best him without a problem. Two seconds later I realized I had a problem...or two. His quickness and his accuracy. I spent the majority of my energy blocking, or at least attempting, instead of delivering any hits. All the while he kept talking mess as if we were really fighting. I fed into it with talk of my own.
I lured him back into the front room where there
was more room to maneuver. I waited until I had him right in the
center of the living room before I charged at him and tackled him around
the waist. He may have had speed and accuracy, but there was
no way he was going to be stronger than me.
A high pitched yelp came out of him the moment my arms wrapped around his waist. I elevated his body a few feet into the air and sent it charging backward into the sofa behind him. He didn't get any time to struggle before his body impacted with the sofa and I pinned him down with as much force as I could without hurting him.
"No! That's cheating!" he cried out, squirming beneath me in an attempt to get free.
"Not so quick now, are we?" I had to gloat.
"That's because I...I...can't get free! You're stronger than me!"
"Yeah. That's what I thought."
Feeling like I had finally bested him, despite
cheating, I unlocked my arms from around his waist and lifted up into a
standing position. I never saw it coming until his legs lashed out
and wrapped around my neck and pulled me back down against him.
"Whoa!" I let out a yelp of my own as he took advantage of my surprise and locked his legs in a death grip around my neck.
His position put him at a great advantage.
I couldn't reach him with my hands because his legs were in the way, and
my body was pulled back down against him and the couch, so there wasn't
a lot of moving around I could do. Each time I struggled to get free,
he let out a satisfied giggle.
"Not so strong now, are we?" he teased. "You give?"
"I shall never give in to you!" I proclaimed.
His legs locked tighter and I continued to
struggle and get free. It took me ten seconds to realize it wasn't
going to do me any good.
"I'll ask you one more time. You give?"
"...Yes." I moaned in my best injured-sounding voice.
"Yeah. That's what I thought."
His legs relaxed around my neck and I started to get up. I had to turn my head up toward his direction in order to stand. When I did I saw he was staring down at me with this look on his face. It was one of those few looks that didn't have a name, only a feeling. The feeling it gave me feel strange inside, almost like what a man or woman feels during that one moment they look into each other's eyes and the world seems to freeze just before they kiss for the very first time.
I only got seconds to focus on the feeling before "it" happened again. The thing that had clicked in my memory, it clicked again, only this time a different memory came forth. Just like before it was a place I couldn't recall and I couldn't make out the person's face clearly. But I knew they were looking at me just like Mateo was. Both of us moved in closer to one another and then...it was all gone. Gone away just like it had done the first time, leaving me dumbfounded for a second time.
The memory only took a couple of seconds to reveal
itself and then hide again. So Mateo never suspected anything.
The look left his face and was replaced by that confident crooked smile
"You know, it's too bad you're not a girl." he said.
Unable to come back with a viable response
and still completely confused by that which had stricken me, I blinked
awkwardly and said,
"Uh, yeah. ...Let's go eat."
We ate the entire extra large pizza and spent the rest of the night just hanging out and playing video games. Eventually, sometime after twelve mid-night, we found our way to the bedroom. Since Mateo was going to be my houseguest, I told him the bed was his for the remainder of his stay. I don't think I even got to relax good before the sleep hit me and knocked me out.
* * * * * *
I was in a place. A circular brick lined tunnel that had no visible source of light in it, yet somehow it was dimly lit. The ground was damp and cold against my bare feet and the whole place had a chill going through it that felt like it was seeping through my skin and chilling me to the bone. Yet, I couldn't see my breath as I exhaled.
Where I was and how I'd gotten there didn't seem
all that important to me. All that was on my mind was what was behind
the door I was walking toward. Somewhere in the furthest, darkest recess
of my mind was a door. It had an ancient medieval design like I had
seen in movies that dealt with castles and such. The thing looked
so old and decrepit, like it had been through at least ten hurricanes and
had managed to remain intact. Through old and thick rusted chains
that covered the door could I see this, all of them connecting to a fat
old lock that had taken residence in the center of the door.
I stopped before it staring at it for what seemed like a long while. With my left hand I reached out slowly toward it and got ready to touch it.
"Jaaaaaaack!" a raspy sounded voice hissed suddenly, causing me to scream and jump away from the door.
The tunnel began expanding and contracting
as if it were alive and breathing. I fell backward onto the ground
due to the sudden movement, my eyes glued on the door where the voice had
"Let me out, Jack." it requested.
"W-Who...Who are you?" my obvious fear wouldn't let me speak normally.
"Let me out, Jack." It requested again softly, before it boomed, "LET. ME. OUT!!!!!"
The force of the voice blew me backward, sending
me flying back down the tunnel. As soon as I went flying it was like
I had been somehow detached from my body. The tunnel winked out into darkness
and I felt myself fly back into my body and my eyes opened.
I shot forward, a quick gasp coming out of me. I wasn't in the tunnel anymore. I was in my bedroom in my recliner. I'd just had a nightmare. The first one I could remember having in a very long time. I fell back against it and shut my eyes, trying to get control of my rapid breathing and slow down my pounding heart.
"Oh my god." I said to myself. "What the fuck was that?"
* * * * * *