I sat up in bed, pulling my black comforter up to my chest as I tried in vain to slow my breathing.
It's just a dream, I kept chanting to myself in my head as I wiped the tears from my cheeks. As if I could really convince myself that it was only a dream. As if there were any chances of that not coming true.
I turned my head from side to side, taking in my surroundings. I was in my bedroom, in my bed, and through the dim lighting I was able to find the source of the awful snoring. Gabe was asleep under the covers. I quickly averted my gaze – he was the last person I'd wanted to see after a dream like that.
I took a deep, steadying breath and reached for my phone.
Letting out a disgruntled sigh, I reached to put my phone back on the stand. It clattered against the wood louder than I'd anticipated, causing me to flinch.
Next to me, Gabe began to stir. "Another dream?" he mumbled as he rolled onto his left side to face me.
I shook my head, instantly choosing a lie instead of the truth. "No, for some reason I thought I'd slept through my alarm for work."
How could I tell him the truth? He'd known about these dreams that I'd been having. They started shortly after we began dating, 5 years ago, when I was sixteen. Come to think of it, it was exactly 6 months after we got together that all of this started.
These dreams involving Gabe, though, they're new. They started two months ago when I had a very disturbing realizations. My dreams have been coming true.
I had freaked out once I had realized what was happening, and went to my understanding fiancé about it. Or at least that's what I'd thought. At first he tried to reassure me that I was just being paranoid, that they were just dreams, but when it became more frequent it was like he was trying to convince me that I was crazy.
I remembered screaming at him, saying, "You're the head doctor! Figure it out! You should know that I'm not fucking crazy! How long have you known me for, Gabe?!"
After that is when I started dreaming about Gabe, dreaming about what he was going to do to me. Ever since then, I've been on edge with him, and I definitely haven't disclosed any of my dreams to him lately.
"Mmmmkay, Cam," he mumbled, drawing me out of my memories. "Get some sleep. Alarms will wake us in a few hours. You don't have to be at work until 8," he mumbled again as I laid back on the bed. "Time for you to get some rest."
Goosebumps had risen on my arms, prickling up the back of my neck. His last comment stirred up the memories from that dream, the last thing he'd said to me before everything went black. It echoed over and over in my head, and no matter how badly I wished that I could shake the dream, pretend that it had never happened... I knew that I couldn't.
I waited until I head the soft snoring coming from him and snuck out to the kitchen. There was no way that I would be able to sleep after that.
Pulling a zip up hoodie on to cover my tank top, I padded my way in to the kitchen with bare feet for a glass of water. For being a summer night, it had gotten fairly chilly, especially since I was wearing shorts too. I grabbed a glass from the cupboard and as I went to the fridge to fill it with water, there was a knock on the door.
It's not even 5AM yet, and somebody is at the door?! Ugh.
I took a sip of my water, scowling deeply. If I ignore whoever it is, they'll go away... right? Taking another sip, I debated on whether or not I should answer the door.
Knock, knock, knock.
I let out a sigh, knowing that if they knocked anymore, then it would wake Gabe up for sure. Not wanting to chance what would happen if he woke up angry, I chose to answer the door.
Slowly, I unlocked the deadbolt with one hand as I balanced the glass of water in my other hand.
"C'mon, sleeping beauty! Open that door!" I turned my head to the side, recognizing Zayden's voice on the other side of the door but not understanding why he sounded so… out of breath.
Zayden was a close friend of Gabe's, actually he may have been his only friend. We were on a first name basis, but never really talked. Mainly because of Gabe. I wasn't sure what kind of friendship the two of them had, but I knew they spent a lot of time together. No matter how close they were though, I don't think Gabe would've taken the time to tell him that I'm just a head case to him now. Just another person to try to drug. With the way he was treating me, it was as if the sparkling diamond on my finger didn't stand for anything anymore.
As I opened the door, I was bombarded with an odd sensation. Zayden had the look of relief on his face, but I couldn't quite focus on that. What had grabbed my attention was the pull that I felt, and then it was as if I was sucked into another nightmare.
I can't breathe. Everything's black. What…
The pain that followed was excruciating. I let out a scream as I felt the tremors roll through my body once more, feeling as though I was being electrocuted. White, hot, never ending pain.
I tried to take a deep breath to control the pain, to try to convince myself that this was a dream. But how could it have been a dream? You're not supposed to feel pain in your dreams.
In the distance I could hear glass shattering and then someone panicking. I blinked my eyes open to see what had happened, but I could only make out two figures.
"What did you do? What did you do to her?!" a new, deep voice screamed in distress.
"Get out of here!" a familiar voice growled out. "You don't need to see this, Z."
Z. Z?! I remembered answering the door to him, seeing his face… but that felt like it was so long ago…
It felt like things were crashing around me. I could still feel the tremors, but there was something else, too. Someone else…
"Cam, you're okay," the voice whispered close to my face.
It was then that I'd realized the pain was gone, just a ghost of a reminder was all that was left behind. I couldn't hear any noises besides snoring coming from the other side of the house, and soft breathing next to me.
Taking a breath, I mentally took inventory of my surroundings. My shirt felt wet, the palm of my hand stung, I most definitely was not laying flat on the floor like I'd expected, and there was a hand on my cheek.
"Cam…? Please say something…?" a hesitant voice, Zayden, asked.
My eyes fluttered open, giving me a brief look of his panicked expression.
"What happened…?" I asked in a small voice, trying to prop myself up.
He shook his head. "Was hoping you'd tell me. Looked like you had a seizure, honestly. Surprised Gabe slept through it," he said quietly, raising a questioning eyebrow at me.
I looked down at my hand, where I still felt the stinging sensation, and noticed it was covered in blood. A look around me told me that my glass of water had been smashed, which was why my hand was cut and my sweater was soaked.
Shaking my head again, I said, "I… don't even know where to begin with everything." I took a deep breath and let it out, knowing he had no idea about the dreams. "Its like it was real this time," I whispered to myself, feeling lost.
"Babe?" a gruff yell came from my bedroom and both Zayden and I froze where we sat on the floor in the kitchen.
I looked to Zayden, holding a finger to my lips. "In the kitchen," I called to him, trying to keep my voice steady.
"I needed to talk to you about something, Cam. He can't know that I was here," he said in a hurried whisper, knowing it was only a matter of time be for Gabe was out of bed and looking for me.
"Come back after 9? I'm not going to work. Talk then," I whispered as we both got up off the floor.
He nodded his head and turned toward the door to go. As if second guessing himself, he turned back towards me. "Are you okay, Cambrie? Really okay?"
I shake my head with a sad smile. "I'm starting to have my doubts," I said.
Zayden looked like he was about to say something, but instead he shook his head and quietly left my apartment.
I made quick work of cleaning the mess in the kitchen, cleaned my cut on my hand, and then got in the shower before Gabe could intervene.