I was walking the campus late at night, attempting to get some air, clear
my mind, and get rid of a pounding headache that the drugs I’d taken just
didn’t seem to be helping. Snow
had begun to fall, blanketing the campus in white – apparently, winter had
returned to Grand Valley, something I’d been wondering about.
I inhaled a deep, cold breath, closing my eyes for a moment and leaning against one of the railings along the ravine behind the dormitories. I opened my eyes and watched the snow swirl down to blanket the bleak trees growing up from the ravine walls. I exhaled the breath only to find myself falling...
...and then caught by a friend dressed in green and white. The girl tucked a strand of raven hair behind one ear and frowned at me. “Be more careful, Shai. Wouldn’t do to have you die on us. Not now, when we need you the most.”
My shoulders were sore and I looked up, knowing that since I’d again found myself in that little dream world of mine, I probably wouldn’t like what I saw. I didn’t. I’d just fallen off a rough-hewn stone wall about as tall as Kistler Hall. My heart slammed into my throat as I stared up at the top of the wall. The girl next to me – Miral, something told me, was her name – was pulling a silver flask out of her backpack. “You look shaken, Shai. Here, drink some of this.”
I gulped down the vaguely fruity water and continued to stare up at the wall. “Uh, Mir?” The accent had returned to my voice, which sounded thick, almost choked, which was how I was beginning to feel. “Remind me why we’ve come here.”
She stared at me for a long moment, muttering, “Jude was right, you have been acting weird lately.” I know that she didn’t think I’d heard her speak. She raised her voice and continued. “Looking for some information that could keep your lover alive another week?”
My lover…? “What?”
She rolled her eyes. “Something that might just keep Craig’Ian and his armies up and rolling. Shai, what’s wrong with you lately?”
I shivered. “I wish I knew.” In more ways than one. “Well, let’s make this quick before someone takes exception to our being here.”
She muttered something again, something along the lines of, “She’s really lost it.” She looked me in the eye and said, “Shai, I don’t know what kind of whatever is going on with you, but you can’t continue to either make jokes like this or to be continually letting things slip your mind. We’ve gotten the information we needed. It’s in the scroll case you hid inside your tunic.”
I can honestly say that I have never been more confused than I was at that very moment. Usually, in these dreams, whatever I had just done came to me within a heartbeat of my thinking about it. Something was wrong, now. Terribly, terribly wrong.
But it was all a dream. So why did that prospect scare me so much?
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