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A Dream Of Nightmares
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ISBN-10: 1-77115-422-5
Genre: Fantasy/SF/Dark Fantasy
eBook Length: 132 Pages
Published: July 2018

From inside the flap

Mara’s dreams have always troubled her. Not because they were nightmares. Because they were so vivid she felt they were real.

When Mara finds a portal to her dream world, she realizes her suspicions were true. Her secret world of Alucinor is all-too real. But this is not her world. This world belongs to Clio, the girl whose eyes she sees through in her dreams.

Now the unlikely sisters must fight for their lives if they want to escape the terrifying world of nightmares.

A Dream Of Nightmares (Excerpt)


I learned the truth about dreams the weekend of my sixteenth birthday. It was the day before winter break, right when the leaves had begun to die and the nights felt endless. We were in drama class, rehearsing scenes for the holiday play-Romeo and Juliet-bound to leave the audience with a warm, fuzzy feeling for the Christmas season.

Just minutes from the final bell, I was already checked out. Something caught my eye outside the drama class window. A shiny black cat was perched on a trash can. His enormous yellow eyes watched me. I looked at it sideways and it cocked its head to mirror me. I never liked cats.

Kelly and Brian hurried past my desk to the front of the room. I'd forgotten they were up to rehearse their scene today.

"Good luck," I whispered, and when I turned back, the cat was gone.

Kelly pulled on her fake beard and spit out a hair. She was a full-bearded thirteen-year-old Romeo. Brian was her Juliet, standing on Mr. Hernandez's desk in a plus-sized floral muumuu. He must have raided his grandma's closet. It looked exactly like something she'd have on a hanger.

"Whenever you're ready," Mr. Hernandez said from the back of the classroom.

Kelly took a knee and looked longingly at Brian who was searching the classroom for his Romeo.

Then Kelly broke into song. Not softly; she belted it: "Don't thee ev'r sayeth I just walked awayeth, I shall at each moment wanteth thee."

I had to cover my mouth from laughing when I saw Mr. Hernandez's jaw drop. The class' laughter didn't stop Kelly. She only sung louder

"I cameth like a wrecking ball! I never hitteth so hard in love! All I did was breaketh thy walls!"

"Okay, thank you!" said Mr. Hernandez from the back of the classroom.

"All thee ev'r didst was wre-e-ecketh me!"

Kelly and Brian took a bow. Mr. Hernandez helped Brian down from the desk and they took their seats to the applause of the class. I couldn't tell if Mr. Hernandez was about to yell or burst into laughter.

Kelly took the seat next to me and leaned over: "How'd I do?"

"A-maz-ing." I said, red-faced from laughter.

Kelly looked like she could kiss herself.

"Right," Mr. Hernandez said, clutching his copy of Romeo and Juliet in a death grip, "I didn't know there would be so much… improv on the Bard's work."

The bell rang and Mr. Hernandez had to shout over us: "rehearsal tomorrow morning! And Kelly; an encore with the actual words, please!"

Kelly and I waited for Brian outside. He was trying to pull the muumuu off and get his backpack on at the same time. He joined us on the lawn. The trailer classrooms were lined up against the back fence and we had to cross the soccer field to get back to campus. I spotted Trevor and his friend Mark by the goal emptying. They each had an air horn and were seeing who could empty whose first. As we got closer, the noise became deafening. Trevor saw me covering my ears and stopped. He nudged Mark who only took it as encouragement to keep honking.

Trevor ran over and picked me up and spun me. A long-standing tradition ever since we were kids. It used to be cute, but now it drew tons of attention and made people think we were dating.

"Put me down!" I said.

He did. I flattened my shirt and saw he was smiling.

"We made it!" he said.

"It's just winter break," I said, "it comes every year."

Mark joined us. He was still laying on the air horn. It faded into a dull fart.

"Suck it, school!" Mark yelled, throwing the horn onto the grass like the winning touchdown.

We watched as Mark did his victory dance. The more Mark had been slammed into the mat, the more frequent these victory dances had become. He was on the wrestling team with Trevor; twice as buff with half the looks. Trevor had a strong jaw and big eyes that always smiled. Nearly unnoticeable freckles across the bridge of his nose. Mark's nose was flat. Flat like his brain after all those body slams. Spicy chicken sandwich in the cafeteria? Victory dance. Smoky the janitor drove his lawn mower over the principal's flower bed? Victory dance.

Mark galloped around and around us, spanking his invisible horse. Thank god not all guys were like this. I looked at Trevor, not dancing like an idiot, and forgave him for spinning me.

Kelly sighed. "Can we go? I don't want to spend another minute at school."

We headed across campus and through the treacherous parking lot. I didn't drive yet. I wouldn't want to get stuck in this daily traffic jam. A bro in a raised truck blared his horn at two preppy girls in a BMW convertible. They gave him the finger.

When they saw us, the one with a tan like a leather couch said: "ugh, is that drama nerd dating Trevor or what?"

"She wishes" laughed her friend.

I pulled on my backpack straps and walked faster, hoping no one else had heard her. Trevor was talking to Mark and that made me feel a little better.

"Want a ride?" Brian asked.

"Got my own, bruh!" Mark said and galloped away.

Brian blew out his breath. "Wasn't asking him" he muttered.

I worried about Mark. His victory dance hadn't ended and I had to wonder if his 'ride' was an invisible horse.

"Can you drop me off at home?" asked Kelly.

Brian threw his hands up. "All the way in upper Ojai? Do I look like an Uber driver? Take the bus, dude."

"You suck!" Kelly said and took off to make the bus. "See you guys this weekend?"

"Yeah!" I said.

I gave Brian a hug. He was still watching Mark gallop away. He either hated Mark or wanted him. Though, with Brian, these feelings usually went hand-in-hand.

"I can walk you home if you want," Trevor said, still smiling.

Why was he acting weird? He never walked me home.

I shrugged. "If you want."