I’m continuing with my WIP, Fat and Sassy, the tale of Bea Jones raising her family during the 1940’s.
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Are Dreams Life?
Bea’s leg twitched in agitation, flexing as if in motion. She looked out across the horizon. A hazy figure of a man next to a large tree stood out in relief against the bright sunshine behind him. A tremor of unease passed through her. A breeze blew through the oak tree, shifting the dappled sunlight. His hazy silhouette cleared, showing his face clearly. Ah, it’s Casey, she thought in relief. He beckoned to her and she stepped out on the well-trodden path crossing the neglected, overgrown field.
The path was clear for several feet, then abruptly ended in a mass of tangled briars. Bea looked up to navigate her way around the briar patch. Tipping her head up higher she noticed that Casey was gone. A gray haze had drifted into the far side of the field. Squinting, she thought she saw a darker mass hidden in the mist. It moved closer, towards Bea, revealing that the figure was still Casey. Except, he had a hat on now. When did he put a hat on? He must have been holding it in his hands.
Bea moved around the briars, lifting her skirt in her hands and stepping high in the tall grass. Ouch! A thorny vine caught her ankle. She kept moving, trying to ignore the sting on her ankle. A step at a time she kept on, moving across the field. A large patch ahead was clear of weeds and she moved towards it. Glancing up, the mist was gone … and so was Casey. The sunlight intensified, warming the top of her head and blinding her. Raising her hand to her brow to shade the bright light, a small girl with pigtails stepped out from behind the oak sentry. It’s not Mae, she thought. Mae doesn’t wear pigtails. That’s odd, it could almost be me as a young girl.
She kept trudging on. The girl was gone. Step by step. Stepping over rocks, crossing through weeds. The path sometime clear. The path oftentimes blocked. Around brushy patches. On and on, step after step. She kept going, never making it to the other end. The field was ever ending. The horizon changed, shifting with each peering look. Follow the path, keep going, she repeated to herself. Keep moving.
She looked up. No one there. Where did the voice come from? She shook her head and kept walking.
“Mama!” the voice called out again. “Mama, wake up, Alvin needs you.”
Bea’s eyes opened. She felt confused and disoriented. Where was the field? Where did the difficult path go? Now, she was in a dark room, laying on a soft mattress. Her eyes slowly focused to where Mae stood beside her. She heard Casey softly snoring next to her. The clock on the nightstand glowed softly in the dark bedroom. Tick. Tock. Tick. Tock.
Mae shifted from foot to foot, reaching out to touch her mother’s shoulder. “Mama, Alvin’s crying. He needs you.”
Bea’s eyes flew open in a flash. Oh Dear Lord, her first thought flew to the heavens, let him be okay. Don’t take another one from me. Sat up in a flash and dashed towards the boy’s bedroom. Rushing over to the cot where Alvin sat crying, she pressed a hand to his forehead. No fever.
“A monster was chasing me,” he sobbed, leaning into Bea’s arms.
Thank you Lord, she silently prayed. Only a nightmare.