For a variety of reasons – noisy household, various crippling addictions, a bacon-heavy diet, multiple undiagnosed mental disorders, take your pick – I don’t dream in a very lucid manner. It’s not like there’s usually a storyline or a plot, I’m just suddenly somewhere doing something, and it’s usually not even that strange.
This time it was strange. I was walking down into a basement because some people upstairs had said there was a ghost down there, and I was a tough guy who didn’t believe them. I said, all right, you squares wait up here, I’ll go down and check your stupid basement for ghosts.
It was a half-finished basement, the floor dry and painted, but no carpet. Panelling on the walls but rafters and steel beams exposed on the ceiling. And a lot of stuff down there, too, like a small television and a couple of chairs set up on one side, and a little craft table, and stacks of boxes against some of the walls.
In fact, it was the sort of room where I never reached the end of the list of stuff that was in it. I’d keep turning my head and there’d be some other stuff. Normal stuff to find in a basement, really. But all of it definitely a little bit creepy – I’m not even sure where the light was coming from. The windows, probably; there was just enough of it to see everything, but everything was a little gray.
I apparently thought I was one tough, ghost-proof motherscratcher in this dream. I started calling the ghost out, not like on Ghost Hunters, but more like a drunken frat guy who thinks he’s on Ghost Hunters. I told the room that if there were any ghosts in it, then obviously they were too sissified to do anything except make stupid little noises at whoever was upstairs. Why not come on out and show yourselves, if you’re all that?
Then something soft clocked me on the back of the head. I spun around and fumbled with it in the air until I had it in my hands – a small, stuffed mouse like a cat might play with. I raised my eyes from the little toy and there across the room was an elaborate dollhouse made of real wood, stained and polished, and standing in front of it, motionless, was a tall, button-eyed doll, wearing a wide, old-fashioned dress.
I grinned and cocked my head a little bit, the way you do when you’re pretty sure you’re getting played. The doll was about two and a half feet high, but I was pretty sure I could take it, if it turned out to be a possessed doll. Physics is still physics, I’d just kick it across the room if it came at me. It’s still a doll, right?
So then I even said out loud to the room – is that the best you got, a doll? Throwing toys at me?
The doll didn’t move. I whirled around, looking around the rest of the room for anyone hiding anyplace, anyone who might have thrown the toy. Then something else hit me in the head, something harder.
A tennis ball. I looked back at the doll, and it was still standing there in the same position. The only difference was, it had a small wooden chair in its hands, from the dollhouse behind it. The doll was WAY too big for the house, by the way, it was like the doll had its own dollhouse.
I said to the room, oh, you like to throw tennis balls. I didn’t see how the doll could have accurately thrown a tennis ball with its little stuffed arms. I again asked the ghost basement if that was all it had, and asked it what it thought about me ripping the head off of its little doll toy over there and then burning its doll house to the ground.
I heard something on the other side of the room. Looked over there, and then the little wooden chair hit me in the back of the head. Something giggled.
Most of the tough guy ran out of me. I started thinking, hold on now, it might not be as simple as kicking the possessed doll across the room. Never works in the movies, right?
As I turned back another wooden chair hit me in the cheek. The doll was still in the same position, but had a stapler in her hand now. I said, oh, you like to throw staplers? And started stomping over to the doll.
There was just a little twitch of the doll’s arm, and then I ducked and the stapler whizzed over my face. When I looked back at the doll, she had a small, plastic box in her hands, the lid open, divided into compartments.
I carpet-bombed the basement with profanity, still stomping toward the doll, a frustrating dream distance that I had been stomping across for way too long. Something tiny whickered out of the box, hissing through the air, and then I felt a sting at the corner of my mouth. Something flew around in my face like a moth, and I batted at it panicking, as something bit and chewed at my lip.
After a moment, I got a hold of something tiny and slender, still whickering around my face. I’d reached the dollhouse, but the doll was gone. I turned around to see if she was running away or what, but there was no sign of her, anywhere. I turned back to the dollhouse and it was gone, too. The table was still there, and a couple of pieces of doll furniture, but no house.
Then I reached up and felt the blood at the corner of my mouth. There was something hanging off of it – a thread, and it was attached to what turned out to be a needle in my hand. I tugged at it and realized that my mouth had been sewn shut at the corner by several stitches.
I couldn’t pull it free, and the needle was wiggling in my hand. I felt certain that if I let go, it would keep stitching, and behind me, things started thumping and giggling in the darkening room. Increasingly heavy objects began thumping against me from various directions in the room, while the needle leapt and danced in my fingers, leaning toward my face like it yearned to keep stitching.
Then I was awake, thinking man, that sure was a terrifying dream about shooting my mouth off too much until someone finally goes ahead and closes it for me.
I wonder what on Earth it could mean?