From Inside the Dark Vault of Dreams

(This is fiction. It’s not about me. Enjoy~)


Not existing, that’s what scares me the most. Have you ever been lying on your bed, looking at the ceiling, thinking about the day and suddenly, like a flash of lightning, you wake up? You had fallen asleep at some point, as quickly and painlessly as someone pressing pause on a DVD player. That’s what I fear the most, that instant when existence ends. What scares me the most is that I won’t even know when it happens.

I live in the present. Obviously, you say, but most people—I suspect—have a sense of where they come from and where they are going. Not me. For me, all of life is a precarious balancing on the crest of a wave—a breathless, headlong rush with an abyss of nothing before and behind. That’s why I worry about my existence. At any moment, the wave could collapse and then, well . . .

I live in an apartment building, on the third floor. I don’t know who lives above me. Below me is Miss Second. She mostly stays in her apartment, moaning loudly enough for me to hear as I walk past her. I can’t tell if it’s from ecstasy or from pain, but I’m too embarrassed to knock and ask. And so, I tiptoe past her apartment, vaguely aroused, vaguely repelled, unsure of myself on her floor.

Below her is Mr. First, the drummer. He is constantly making rhythm with everything in his apartment. The sounds filter up through the pipes, sometimes grating, sometimes hypnotic, sometimes so beautiful I want cry for something I have never seen or felt, but which is hinted at in the music.

Then, there is Mr. Under, who lives in the basement. I never go down to see him and he never comes up, but from the crack in the basement door, I hear and smell things that hint at the horrors that go on down there, down under the building.

I feel bored, I wander the halls, afraid to knock on doors, too lonely to go sit in my apartment. I am drawn to the door of Mr. Under. Who does he have down there? I know them, don’t I? It sickens me, but still, I want to know.

The shrieks and screams rise as I approach. I peer through the crack in the door and in one mind-searing instant, I see what he is doing. I am repulsed and I flee up to my room. But I only live in the present and even as I do, I am still peering through that crack, into the heart of evil; still tiptoeing awkwardly past the door of Miss Second; still standing mesmerized by the beauty of Mr. First’s drumming, with tears streaming down my face.

The sun is rising. The first rays stab into my apartment and I look out, out of my small corner of the universe into something so much vaster, where all the answers are revealed. I take a step—

About David Stewart

I am a writer of anything quirky and weird. I love most genres of fiction and in each there are stories that I would consider "my kind of story". View all posts by David Stewart

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