Another half-awake visitation:

The text is brief. “Leave now. Do not pack. Kids already in transit.” As I pass reception, an upturned face. “Madam Secretary…?”

“Out. Go Now. Everyone. Move.”

Three minutes forty-two seconds later a flash in the rearview mirror, followed by a sharp jolt transmitted through the suspension. A glance upward shows a column of dark smoke already rising where we all used to be.

Once I’m back under, I send a text of my own. “The warning was timely. Your attempt was not. My representatives will be with you shortly. If you’d rather not wait up for them, I’ll understand.”

After that, a drink. Then once more unto the breach, for now, as before, what we do is who we are. No more, no less.

2 thoughts on “Responsibility

  1. bystander July 8, 2023 / 8:16 am

    Yikes! Exciting. When does the movie come out?

    Maybe I get to spend part of the day…. or my own next semi-lucid dream-scape creating another small piece of that story. My tendency is to lucid dream “what happens next” in whatever book I’m reading from where I turned off the light. You’ve got Writer’s Gold there William.

    • William Timberman July 8, 2023 / 9:50 am

      This was another one of those sit-up-in-the-middle-of-the-night-and-reach-for-the-iPad-before-you-lose-the-thread epiphanies. Tweaked a couple of words, decided it was a keeper, and Bob’s your uncle.

      Your “lucid dreaming” is definitely familiar. In my case, though, it usually occurs when I doze off while reading, then wake up and realize that the passage I was sure I’d just read isn’t actually on the page, or on any of the following pages. Then I backtrack, read a little more, doze off again, wake up again, hunt for what isn’t there again, and repeat the cycle until I give up and go make myself some coffee. Is this the muse taking pity on the aged and infirm? The onset of dementia? Who knows. Wherever these visitations come from, I’m embarrassed enough to admit that I often prefer my own continuation of a story, vanitas, vanitatum, etc., to the perfectly well-plotted one already on the page. I even like some of them well enough to store them away for use in my waking life. I’m told that economy of means is a virtue. In this case I certaainly hope so.

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