Awakening Alexa (Reality of Dreams #1)

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? ? Awakening Alexa (Reality of Dreams #1) ? ?
Are you afraid of the darkness, of the supernatural entities which go bump in the night?

Something sinister uncannily lurks in the heart of the darkness, watching, evaluating – waiting for the perfect opportunity to strike its victim, bringing destruction with it.

Why do the supernatural primarily operate in the dead of the night? Do they wield the darkness to conceal their immorality or perhaps darkness is used as a cloaking device because evil is afraid of the light? Seeing as light always trumps darkness.

My name is Alexa.

I see and hear things, normal people shouldn’t. I could find no plausible explanation for my dilemma. Could I be schizophrenic or targeted by a sinister otherworldly being?

My recurring nightmares torture me day and night. Asleep or awake. The nightmares were no longer restricted to the confinement of my mind. It found a way to enter this world – my world – roaming around freely. My nightmares consumed me and slowly but surely, it would suck the life right out of me.

I wanted a normal life – a family, some close friends – hell I would even sell my soul for anyone else’s life but mine. However, normality no longer was an option for me.

Take a journey with me. Whatever happens, don’t let the darkness inside you, don’t let it devour you – fight it with all that you have and send it back to where it came from. It does not belong in our world – it’s not welcome here.

This is the reality of my dreams.


Chapter One – Alexa

I sit at the dining table, twirling a glass of coke in my hand while staring at Azarias’s untouched dinner. Beef lasagna,garlic bread, salad and a slice of cheesecake for dessert. All his favourites. 

Kenny G’s Havana, softly plays in the background, causing an ambience of tranquility
throughout the apartment. I’ve never felt so alone before. It’s
depressing and infuriating at the same time.
Kenny G’s Havana, softly plays in the background, causing an ambience of tranquility
throughout the apartment. I’ve never felt so alone before. It’s
depressing and infuriating at the same time.

The wood in the fireplace, lazily crackles as the flames turn from a fiery blaze to a dying out blue. I add more logs to the fire place, hoping to keep the blaze alive – just like my marriage.

I’ve done everything I possibly could to create the perfect romantic night but Azarias still hasn’t come home to revel in any of it. Surely his meeting would have ended by now.

I grab my phone and dial his number, “You’ve reached Azarias Carlyle. Leave your name and number and I’ll get back to you promptly.” It’s the umpteenth time I’ve heard his voicemail tonight.

The grandfather clock loudly chimes, announcing it’s midnight. I raise my glass, “Happy anniversary Azarias.” I decide to call it a night. There was no point in waiting for him to come home now; our anniversary had already ended.

I lie in bed and daydream about our future – Azarias’s and mine. Where were we headed to? Today was our one year wedding anniversary and I’m certain he forgot about it. If he remembered, he would be right here beside me – holding me in his arms until the break of dawn.

As newlyweds, we were inseparable; longing to run home to each other and consummate our marriage (all over again) by ending up sweaty in each other’s arms. Talking about our future like we had a clue. Itwas the little things which made me fall deeper in love with him. He becamemy – everything.

However recently, it appeared as though Azarias
and I had fairly grown apart. We each wanted different things. Our marriage was
horribly failing and even though we never spoke about it, it was evident there
was a constant elephant in the room.

His work required all of his attention;
forgetting I even existed. It hurts when he no longer texts me just to say hi
or calls me to chat about absolutely nothing important – I feel as if something
else has caught his attention.

I yearned for a child but it was not the righttiming for him, with his new Law Practice and arduous clientele. Eventually,
he will agree to us having kids of our own. Hopefully it will bring us
back to the way we were – before we grew apart.

I’ll have to convince him to get rid of the ugly
black Porsche – I thought of it to be quite dangerous and not suitable for a
family. We will have to get a nice family van. Then there’s the matter of a new
house. This apartment already feels far too small for the two of us, let alone
kids. 

A house with a beautiful garden, a white picket
fence and a porch swing overlooking an oasis styled swimming pool – our kids
will get only the best. The things I never had whilst growing up. We
will get a dog and . . . my mind is on overdrive and exhaustion rapidly follows. 

I turn to my side to switch off the lampshade
and hug Azarias’s pillow, tucking it underneath my face. The smell of wild
spice lingers on the pillow and I realize I miss him dearly. My heart breaks at
the thought of someday losing him – or him finding someone else to share his
life with – it would kill me

I yawn and finally surrender to the serenity of
sleep and await my sweet dreams. At least in my dreams, I have him all tomyself.

Our dreams are intended to be sweet, to make us
blissful – the only time our emotions, notions and fantasies play out according
to our heart’s desires. Everyone wishes for their dreams to someday become an actuality.
With this ray of hope, reality becomes somewhat tolerable.

Then there’s the notorious parasites of the
dream world, known as nightmares. Everyone experiences a ghastly
nightmare some time or the other. Nightmares dishonorably invade our sweet
dreams and quash our desires and fantasies. Ultimately, it spirals us into
mindless controllable freaks.

My nightmare begins. I feel myself endlessly
falling down a pitch-black hole. I knew I was not alone. Something
has me in its clutches. I try to scream but I can’t part my lips – they’re
sealed tightly shut.

I kick my feet into a backstroke position, eager
to break free from my captor’s clutches. It’s proven hopeless – I hear the
jangling sound of the shackles which are latched onto my feet and hands. Escape
was going to be harder than I assumed.

The darkness surrounds me and I can’t see a
thing. I liberally blink, hoping to cast the darkness away – it’s futile –
there’s no glimmer of light, no glimmer of hope.

A stench of burning decaying flesh permeates the
air and I want to vomit. I take a deep breath and then another, hoping to keep
the bile down – I don’t want to die in my own vomit.

My captor drags me deeper into the labyrinth of
darkness and I ultimately succumb to the lucidness – I’m never going to see
Azarias again, I’m never going to have babies or the house with the beautiful
garden. My head lifelessly hangs as I wait for the nothingness to claim me.

I hear distant cries. Could it be . . . babies?
Their squeals are morose, similar to the sound of an animal during slaughter. I
shut my eyes and their voices echo inside my mind – pleas for help. Something
within me recognizes those cries. Something within me yearns to save them and
hold them in my arms, safe from danger.

I take the deepest breath I could manage. An
explosion of warmth courses through my veins and a flicker of blue light releases
from within me, breaking the shackles and parting my lips. I let out a loud cry
– victory is mine.

The light brightens as I look into the soulless
eyes of my captor. The familiarity of the monster astounds me. It’s like I’ve
seen it so many times before . . . but where? 

It does not retaliate or move to re-capture me.
It just stands there, glowing eyes transfixed on me as it slowly points its
finger at me. Chills run down my spine.

“Wake up!” a faint voice echoes around me, “Alexa, you have to wake up now!” 

My captor gives off an eerie cry. He has also
heard the echoing voice. He reaches to grab me but I will myself to wake up. The
next minute, I’m awake in my bed, sweating and battling for breath. But mynightmare is far from over. 

I blankly stare into the darkness and get a
haunting awareness I’m being watched. A bone chilling sensation, rousing goosebumps
and my heart pounds so loudly in my chest, it causes my breathing to become
shallower by the second. The hairs on the back of my neck nimbly prickle,
sending icy shivers down my spine. 

I watch shadowy figures frolicking around my
bedroom on the walls, the curtains and the ceiling. I don’t know which petrifies
the crap out of me most – the monster from my nightmare or the shadowy figures. 

I wonder if these shadowy figures are real or just
a figment of my imagination, caused by the nightmare. How do you tell thedifference? 

I switch on the light and Azarias is still not
here. The clock shows it’s now three o’ clock in the morning. I decide to leave
the light on. I tightly shut my eyes and return to slumber, only to have the
nightmare happen over and over again.

There was no plausible explanation for my
disturbing nightmare. I didn’t want to distress Azarias by telling him about it
– he already had too much on his plate. So I conducted my own research and stumbled
across an online chatroom called the Nightmares Club.

Change your sleeping patterns, empty your mind
before bed, drink some warm milk or chamomile tea, take some sleeping pills –
these things should help you get a good night’s rest. I tried all their
suggestions but the nightmares still came every damn night.

You see the people on Nightmares Club experienced
terrifying nightmares only when they were asleep. When they awoke from their
torment, they carried on normally with their day to day life. At least they
were afforded some peace.

For me it was quite different. My nightmares relentlessly
played on my mind, torturing me day and night – it was no longer restricted to
when I was asleep. It somehow managed to escape the confinement of my mind and
roam around freely.

Wide awake, I precipitously notice something
shift in my peripheral vision or hear subdued voices when not a soul was
around. I saw things no normal person should – faces with crying eyes,
plastered to a wall or the unfamiliar voice in my head asking me to do inconceivable
deeds. 

It was taking a toll on me and after more
research, I assumed the worst – I was possibly schizophrenic. 

I refused to accept this as my fate. Surely
there was some explanation out there, I just needed to find it. Before I was to
be labelled as a madwoman, I sought the professional advice of a distinguished
Psychiatrist. 

“Tell me more about your nightmare?” Dr. Singh
shifts in her seat as she waits for my reply. She’s wearing a purple pant suit
today with her favourite pearls. She is a sensibly fashionable woman, evenfor her age.

I’m not sitting today. I’m standing by the
window where the rays of light, devotedly shine through. My reflection (in the recently
cleaned window) catches my attention. I hang my head with vexation.

I notice I’m quite underdressed in comparison to
her, with my sloppy jeans and t-shirt. Dark circles formed under my usually
bright green eyes and my skin is paler than snow. I didn’t even bother to brush
my hair.

“Alexa?”

I gather my hair into a makeshift bun and
lackadaisically sit down, “It’s always the same doc. I don’t know why but every
damn night, it’s always the same bloody nightmare.”

She picks up her coffee mug and takes a sip, “Have
you been taking the prescribed medication?”

“I filled out the prescription yesterday.” I
lie. I flushed the darn prescription down the toilet pan. It could havefloated to China by now. I have to keep a clear head for what I’m about to
do.

She grimaces and takes another sip of her coffee,
“It’s the strongest medication on the market and it has received stamps of
approval from various laboratories. I don’t understand why it’s not helping you.”
Because I don’t take any of it.

My eyes fall on my entwined fingers, hoping to
avoid her eye contact, “I’m not insane doc.”

She softly sighs, “I never said you were.”

I play with the hem of my t-shirt, twirling it
around and around my index finger, “Your words imply otherwise.”

She walks over and sits down next to me, “I’m
here to help you any which way I possibly can. May I suggest something?” I nod
my head in agreement, “Bring your husband to our next session.”

“No.”

She recoils with confusion, “Why not? He has a
right to know about everything you are undergoing.”

“He’s a busy man,” I take a deep breath, “The
nightmares are far too petty for his concern.”

She places her well-manicured hand on my unkempt
one and I’m suddenly pink with embarrassment, “I don’t think it’s petty. We will
convince him to listen. He does care for you so let me get Leena to give him a
call.”

I turn to face her and rudely interrupt, “I pay
you to give me advice on how to deal with my nightmares and not about anything
concerning my marriage. If this was the case, I would be speaking to a marriage
counsellor . . . not to you.” 

She lets go of my hand and walks over to the
window, “My main concern is to get you back to where you were before the
nightmares. If I have to drag your husband to one of our sessions, I will do
it.”

I stand up to leave, “Then it will have to wait.
I’m leaving to New Orleans tomorrow.”

She looks at her watch, “We still have some time
left,” she motions for me to sit, “I don’t think it would be wise for you to miss
a session because . . .”

I callously hold up my hand, “I’m not going on a
vacation doc. There’s been a death in my family.”

She closes her eyes and takes a deep breath, “I’m
sorry for your loss. I too have recently lost a loved one,” her sniffles causes
my heart to bleed, “My condolences to you and the family.” She excuses herself
to grab a tissue.

I awkwardly shift in my seat and slightly relax,
“Thank you for your kind words. Sorry to hear about your loss and for just now
. . . for being rude to you.”

She takes my hand in hers and gently squeezes, “Think
of it as water under the bridge,” she smiles, “So tell me, will your husband be
travelling with you to New Orleans?”

“I was about to ask him when he mentioned a
renowned dignitary arriving from London. He seemed ecstatic and I didn’t want
to burst his bubble with such a trivial matter.”

She gently pats my hand, “Losing a loved one is
not a trivial matter.” 

“To him it is.” I say under my breath.

“Will you then do me a favour and at least tell
him about your nightmares before leaving to New Orleans. Maybe this will cause
him to have a change of heart and he will come with you to support you during
your bereavement.”

I nod my head in agreement but what’s the point?
Azarias never listened to me anymore. Whenever I would try to sit him down and tell
him about the nightmares, he would complain about being tired or some matter
which caused his foul mood. I felt us drifting apart – no longer having the
relationship we once shared.

I planned to text him when I safely landed in
New Orleans. He would be grossly involved in his meeting with his board members
and the dignitary from London. He wouldn’t read the text until tomorrow night. It’snot like he would drop everything and rush to New Orleans. The saddest part
was, the old Azarias I knew would have dropped everything to be by my
side.

Dr. Singh throws the used tissue into the bin, “I
will pray for your family’s comfort. If you need to talk, just give me a call.”
Her smile is genuine but mine is fake.

I wasn’t going to New Orleans to attend a
funeral – everyone in my family was already dead. I’m going to find answers and
end this torment once and for all. The zombie I had become, needed to die so I
could live happy again.

You see at first, I didn’t believe in the
supernatural because I had never seen these otherworldly beings with my own
eyes. Since seeing is believing.

I considered the supernatural to be folklore,
used as a scare tactic – predominantly by movie writers trying to make a quick
buck. Purely for entertainment.

After my first session with Dr. Singh, I decided
to ignore what was happening around me, hoping it would eventually go away. I
religiously took the medication prescribed by her but it didn’t change a darn
thing. The recurring dreams worsened – it disrupted my lifestyle.

But there is always a silver lining. After
joining another online chatroom called the Reality of Dreams and reading
the stories of people who were experiencing the same torment as me, I finally
understood I may not be schizophrenic – I could be targeted by a supernatural
entity. 

Dr. Singh considers my repetitious nightmares to
be normal but they were anything but normal. My ignorance (and the
medication) allowed the darkness to consume me and uproar my entire life.

I couldn’t exactly tell Dr. Singh the nightmares
were the least of my concerns. I came really close to letting it slip once about
my online chats and what I had discovered. I wanted to prove to her I was not
insane. 

But I quickly thought against it. If I told her
what I believed was really happening to me, I would definitely be diagnosed
with schizophrenia and incarcerated in an Asylum – even though I’m certain I
was not mental. The shock therapy would be the death of me.

So I decided to face my demons alone – it’s my fight
to the finish. My suffering would never end with medication or treatments. Mydemons had to be confronted.

My name is Alexa. Take a journey with me. After you’ve
listened to my story, your perception of the supernatural might also change –
you could also become a believer.

This is the reality
of my dreams.


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Author

Racheal Lachman

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