Sleepwalking

Sleepwalking

A Story by Oliver Jenkins
"

I had to write something for english class that involved Alice In Wonderland by Louis Carroll, a boot, a candlestick, a paper hat, and the Alchemist by Paulo Coelho.

"

            I awoke to the sharp pain of a claws hitting my chest. I was almost surprised to find myself laying in the wet grass of the rolling hills of Kentucky, but sleepwalking was not foreign to me. However I was surprised to see a lump of black, a cat, laying on me. The cat's eyes were bright yellow and looked like flickering flames when it blinked. I sat up and the cat leapt to it's paws. The air was bitter and delicious, I smiled as took in several deep breathes. Around me was the gray of night, and the moon glowed illuminating the seemingly endless expanse of deep green field. I noticed that the cat was sitting on it hind legs staring at me.

            "What?", I asked, curious about the animals odd behavior.

            It didn't look like anyone lived nearby, so the cat was probably a stray. How could I have walked so for from home this time? The thought quickly went up in smoke with the flames of the cat's eyes. There around the cats neck was a bright red ribbon, a sign that the cat definitely had someone looking after it. I petted the cat's sleek black fir and got a closer look at the ribbon. Neatly stitched in it were the words "you're late"

            The cat began meowing persistently. Was it trying to tell me something? It got up and began to walked a few steps. Then it stopped and looked back at me as if asking me to follow. I quickly stood up, and realized that my left boot was missing. Had I only put one on in my sleep? It didn't matter. The only thing I cared about was following the cat. Looking back on these events I think it would've been more beneficial to have also payed attention to the beautiful night around me. I followed the cat for what seemed like hours. I was knee deep in the most grass, and loved ever second of it. As we walked an old farm house came into sight. At first it was no larger than my fist, but it grew along with the pain in my legs. Occasionally the glowing eyes of the cat looked back at me to check if I was still following. I chuckled a little at the thought that the rest of my family was at home sleeping, and missing out on this interesting experience. They live everyday exactly the same, without ever feeling the need to travel.

            After an amount of walking that seemed very unnecessary the cat stopped at the fence surrounding the farmhouse. The farmhouse was a pile of wood covered in a layer of chipping white paint. It seemed strange that it was even still standing. The cat stared at me for a little while and then swiftly leapt onto the fence, then from the fence to a windowsill, and from the windowsill to the roof of the two story building. I watched in awe pondering the strange abilities of felines. The cat then turned around and meowed viciously, it's bright eyes looking right at me.

            "Does it want me to follow? How could it possibly expect me to follow?", I thought.

            I'm not scared of much, but I was never good with heights. A fall from two stories into the soft grass? Was it really worth it to follow the strange cat? I weighed the possibilities.

            I thought, "If I don't do this i'll overflow with the possibilities of what could have happened."

            I hopped over the fence and examined the house, looking for the best way to get on the roof. I knew it wouldn't be easy. I wedged my foot into a hole in the wood and used it to step up. I grabbed a rusty pipe and attempted to pull myself higher. My feet scraped the wall trying to find a sturdy foothold. My arms and shoulders ached as I was hanging from the pipe. Finally my foot found its way to some nails, and it was just enough to climb higher. In several minutes I had made a good amount of progress, I was just a few movements away from the roof. The cat stared over the edge at me, still meowing. When I finally reached for the edge of the roof it was weak, and snapped. Suddenly I was hanging painfully from a rusty pipe two stories from the hard earth. The wind had picked up a little and I was feeling sick the my stomach. I quickly moved my free hand back onto the pipe, and scrambled onto the roof. The cat was there almost teasing me with it's makeshift collar. It walked gently across the roof and I attempted to do the same. The cat stopped and sat down, but it did not turn around to look at me this time.

            I stepped closer to it, and my foot hit a soft spot in the roof. There was a loud crack as the boards beneath me snapped like twigs and almost too quick for me to comprehend I was plummeting into the musty old house. I didn't hit the top floor or attic as I expected I would. I saw nothing but darkness. The darkest darkness I'd ever seen. I looked around, and realized that there was no real way to prove I was falling. With nothing to see, I might as well have been floating. This defied all logic I knew, but it was an interesting concept. I fell, or floated, for what seemed to be an eternity. Part of me was throughly enjoying it and the other part was fearing for it's life. The eternity ended with a harsh smack to the wood floor.

            "Why couldn't the roof have been that solid?", I thought.

            I still couldn't see anything but black. Why did I have to follow that terrible feline here? What was I late for? I was beginning to appreciate the saying "Curiosity killed the cat.". Had my curiosity killed the cat? I hoped it'd landed on it's feet, it seemed to know where we were going, and it might know it's way out. I couldn't see any glowing eyes. I started to feel around on the floor for the cat.

            I touched something slender, cold, and metal. A candlestick? Yes, a candlestick. It'd be useless if I couldn't find something to light it with. I picked it up and kept crawling. My whole body ached from the fall. It was all so bizarre, so surreal. I had trouble believing it was even happening. I bumped head first into a wall, adding a headache to my pain. I felt the floor by the wall. It was scattered with something... Matches! A small section of the floor was covered in unused matches! How was I this lucky? It just didn't make sense. At first I really didn't care about any of this making sense. I picked up a match and scraped it against the rough wood. It produced a small flame that I used to light the candle. Suddenly I killed some of the shadows and saw that the walls had blue and white wallpaper on them, and an immense amount of newspaper clippings tacked over it. I scanned the headlines and quickly spotted the similarities. They were all about fires in the area. Many of them said things along the lines of "DINER BURNS TO THE GROUND". I was filled with fear  thinking of the match covered floor. Who could've lived here? Was it really even a house? So many questions clouded my mind, I decided to look around some more. The room was mostly empty except for some weathered furniture.

            It was a pretty small space and a saw no door, although there was still one dark area I hadn't explored. I approached it in hopes of finding a door but instead the first thing that was revealed by my candle was a hand holding an apple. I forgot to breathe. I held the candle up higher and saw that the hand belonged to mannequin dressed in a white button-up shirt with a red apron and a paper hat. It was standing behind a counter with a black and white checkered tile pattern. Behind him on the wall was a soda fountain and glasses for root beer floats. It looked like it'd been ripped from a 50's diner. I was both relieved a frightened by the presence of the mannequin. It occurred to me that the apple was real. How could a real apple be here? It was obvious nobody had lived here for years. I reached for the apple and the opposite hand of the mannequin that had been hidden behind the counter lifted. It was holding a revolver, and it was pointing it straight at me. This topped all the strange things that had happened so for. I saw the shiny plastic finger of the mannequin begin to tighten on the trigger.

            "You're getting to close.", it mumbled from it's mouthless face.

            The loud noise of the gun rang in my ears. I closed my eyes as tight as possible.  I braced myself for the pain, but I felt nothing. I waited a minute and then opened my eyes.

            I was surprised to find myself laying in the wet grass of the rolling hills of Kentucky.

            

© 2012 Oliver Jenkins


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Added on January 30, 2012
Last Updated on January 30, 2012

Author

Oliver Jenkins
Oliver Jenkins

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About
I enjoy classic literature, indie rock, art, graphic novels, hiking, and writing. Also I'm terrible at describing myself. more..

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