Awake. Suddenly awake.
I remembered the noise I’d heard in the dream.
I’d been running, running hard, and he’d been gaining.
Awake now, soaked in sweat, I heard the noise again.
Someone was in the apartment. I sat up and focused solely on listening. I heard it again. The moon was full, and I looked around the bedroom for something to use as a weapon, wishing for a small bat I remembered once having. A small bat – perfect. Naturally, there wasn’t one.
I heard the noise again.
I swung my feet onto the floor and slipped my pants on as quietly as I could, thinking hard about what was making the noise and where it was coming from.
I shivered from the coolness on my sweat-soaked back, and the fear of what was next. Fully awake now.
The dogs? Why hadn’t the dogs done something?
Where were they? Could the dogs have been silenced?
Now I felt a knot in my chest as another bolt of fear shot through me. My heart was working overtime.
I stood. Not moving forward, just standing, with the hope that height would improve my senses.
Then I remembered the kitchen knives. They were in a block right next to the kitchen door. Close. My bedroom exited into the kitchen. A knife would be handy.
I took my first step away from the bed, not making a sound. And a second step. Worrying about using a knife as a weapon, I felt the fear rising inside. I entered the kitchen. Yes, the knives were there. I pulled the biggest one out of the block and turned to scan the room.
The moon wasn’t as bright here, but I could see movement at the far end of the room. Good, the intruder hadn’t seen me yet. I slipped past the kitchen island, knife in hand, sure I was about to engage in a struggle to the death, when my foot hit the tricycle the kids must have left out when they visited the night before.
Rocky barked. Poof jumped down from the table. Both wagging their butts, hoping for forgiveness. I put the knife down on the island top and got down to receive the doggie licks.
Poof had been finishing off the dish of nuts I’d left out on the table.
Relief swept over me like a wave at the beach, and I laid down on the floor with my arms around my beautiful doggies.
Dogs following, I headed back to bed feeling the fear slip away, thinking about the events of the last few weeks and how they surface in my dreams… this time with the innocent contributions of Rocky and Poof.