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    1. Romanticization and ugliness

      by , 02-27-2015 at 11:01 PM
      I'm in a garden, speaking in Russian with a very old human man in a wheelchair. We have an arrangement. I'm to kill him, but as he puts it, without ugliness. That he wants his death to be smooth, I have no problem with, but this ugliness he's referring to isn't about his own death, it's about preserving his image of me, or rather what I represent to him. He says I'm a man who should understand this, unlike that brother of mine - he uses a word that my dream doesn't bother to translate aside from noting that it's uncomplimentary. The old man wants to believe in the existence of a creature that's above all the things he dislikes in humanity, an embodiment of death without ugliness. I'm disgusted and feel illogically betrayed by hearing this from him, a man more intimately acquainted with violence than any human I've ever known - he of all people shouldn't have any illusions about this. It's hypocrisy.

      As he talks we move indoors, to a dimly-lit room that's kept very cold. He has a selection of alcohol lined up before a mirror, and I go to pour him a glass; as I do so I see a small portrait of a blonde woman, which I pick up. A woman who works for him, who's been pushing his wheelchair, urgently asks me to be careful with that. I recognize the image as his granddaughter - she's how I met him in the first place, years back. He laughs and corrects me, and he says this in English: "Vivian. Her mother." This startles me, and I examine the portrait again - I would never have guessed they weren't the same person. Her mother had died before I met her.

      (Woke up. Back to sleep.)

      While using a spell to pull out some relevant books and scrolls from a collection, one of the books that comes to me is titled "The Unbeauty of Life," by a Japanese author.

      I'm running up several flights of stairs, spiraling upward through a ruined building, piles of rubble around; I should have fled the building with the others when I reached the first floor but instead I kept going upward, thinking of the woman I'd originally come here to track down. As I reach the upper levels I find her laboratory, with her books scattered on the floor, sarcophagi in rows. The next level above that is devoted to "the theatrical vampire," complete with red stage curtains hanging on the wall, full of what I think of as romanticized images from stage and screen, and as I look at it I remember the sound of her laughing. There's one more floor above this.

      Updated 02-27-2015 at 11:10 PM by 64691

      Categories
      non-lucid
    2. Stairs on a cliff

      by , 02-19-2015 at 09:11 PM
      That pilgrimage again, but sometime before we reached that mountain range. We're camped out somewhere green. I'm walking through the camp with that woman leading the pilgrimage, and although it's her visions they're following, no one pays her any particular attention as we're walking around. We come to the top of a cliff with a long series of wooden stairs leading to the bottom, crossing back and forth. Far below, two of our people are fighting, sort of - a soldier and a man I recognize, it's clear she's training him. I wonder why he'd want to do that - he's really not suited to fighting. The soldier sees us watching them and they both stop.

      Time skip over all those stairs; we get to the bottom, and they're both sprawled out on the ground. She's asking him to list the three things he's learned. He goes um, ah, "Give me a minute. I just had it." She does give him a few moments, and then she gives him this expectant look. He seems surprised she didn't just drop it. He says, "I'm finished," and laughs.

      An enormous raven, three times the size of any I've seen, lands on a fence post nearby; then it's a very elegant woman leaning against that fence post instead. I'm thinking, that would have been much more convenient than walking down all those stairs.
    3. Pilgrimage and slave trade in the mountains

      by , 02-09-2015 at 09:50 PM
      I'm traveling with a woman who most recently has been climbing these giant stairs cut into the mountains, leading a very large group of people, guided by her visions and signs. Now she's reached an old shrine that's of great personal importance to her. But that's not what she was looking for - she thought her visions were guiding her to a place where all these people could be safe. Now it seems it was just something personal. She believes she's led them all this way for nothing.

      I'm extremely frustrated by all this, because the place I've been trying to guide her to with those visions I've sent her is still further on - I wanted her to see this shrine first for personal reasons, because I like her and I thought she deserved to know this part of her past, but it's not our final destination. Unfortunately, the stairs end here; there's no easy path after this point. How am I going to convince her to keep going now that she's doubting the visions? I'm almost tempted to just suggest scouting ahead myself and then conveniently 'finding' the place - but I need her to be the one to discover it, not me. I'll think of something, but I need to talk to her privately, and there haven't been many opportunities for that on this pilgrimage.

      Right now she's busy talking with a priest I dislike - I'm not fond of priests on general principle, but this one in particular irritates me. She's apologizing. She's saying she shouldn't have rejected the idea of divine guidance - maybe if she'd believed, she wouldn't have gotten them lost like this. The priest reassures her, saying, "You delivered what would not be prayerful."

      (Woke up. Back to sleep.)

      Still in that same mountain range, but this time I'm working separately from the main group, it's just me and a couple of her soldiers. I'm talking with a slave trader - he's got a group of people I've been looking for and I need him to release them. He says he can't possibly do that, they're an extremely sought-after species. He shows me a cage with a human man and woman instead, and a falcon that comes with the woman, and says that he'll give me one of them as a sign of good faith - he'll even trade me all three, the two humans and the falcon, if I'd be willing to give him one of my soldiers. He has a buyer who likes that specific shade of skin. Incredulous, I tell him this isn't a negotiation. He's going to release the people I came for, I'm not going to give him anything, and I don't care about his humans or whatever else he's selling.

      But then he takes the hood off the human woman - white hair and a young face. I know her. I'm shocked, and she looks just as shocked to see me - I'd thought she was dead. Last time I saw her, she'd sacrificed me to her people's gods. It didn't work obviously, I can't die that way, but there was no way she could have known that. When my 'death' didn't stick, her people reacted very badly. I'd seen them holding a funeral for her later, but I'd been watching from a distance - they must have held the ceremony without a body. I'd just assumed they'd killed her. I'd liked her a great deal, sacrifice aside.
    4. Grace, Elsa, cracks in the stairwell, clockwork

      by , 01-20-2015 at 11:36 PM
      Hellblazer, I/Constantine had been working with this teenage girl in the previous scene; now she's gone alone to a hospital to see her kid brother. He's in a ward with a lot of beds, and he's kneeling up on the end of his bed to talk to her. He's saying, "Is it possible that Grace is only after Constantine?" Grace is a surname - the Grace in question is a middle-aged man. And when the kid says Constantine, 'uncle' is implied. "Because he's not exactly a... us anymore." 'Us' meaning a person, a human being. I'd made one deal too many. Which has made it possible for me to be summoned up and controlled, used as a tool - that's what they suspect Grace is after.

      (Woke up. Back to sleep.)

      After an unsuccessful night looking for blood, I have to rely on Elsa, a sort of servant. Last resort. We use transfusion tubes to draw out the blood, to avoid any unwanted side effects on her, and I alter her mind to make it pleasant for her. I compliment her on the quality, she's changed her diet since the last time we had to do this. I'm speaking German-accented English.

      (Woke up. Back to sleep.)

      I'm climbing up a stairwell, climbing up through years. As I pass the platform that will lead to the 1990s, getting close to home, I hear voices up ahead. I come across a man and a woman leaning against the wall; the woman's saying, "No, it's 203. They changed the calendar - finally. I was starting to lose track."

      Further up, another group having a conversation, talking about the cracks in the walls. A woman's saying, "They're glitching so bad a man could get in."

      I reach my door, present day. But just beside my door, the cracks in the walls are so severe that they've formed a sort of second door - I think I could walk right through. The black sort of skittering motion that appears in all the cracks is more visible here. But the scene just before I entered the stairwell had involved accidentally intruding in a place where I shouldn't be, disrespectfully, and trying to make up for that. I decide against stepping through the cracks. I take the door to the present day.

      I step out into what's meant to be an apartment where I live, distorted in a sort of cartoonish representation of hallucination, like you might see in an old music video; it seems to be underwater. Then my field of vision pulls back - now I'm looking at a screen containing an image of this room. It's labeled as a game preview. I'm aware that if I'd stepped through the cracks, the scene still wouldn't have lasted for much longer, since this is only a preview - but that's where the real storyline would begin.

      (Woke up. Back to sleep.)

      I've taken my clockwork heart out of my chest to work on it. I have a mental association with the Snow Queen. I'm in my workshop, full of various clockwork devices, and I'm carrying on a conversation with my apprentice. The image changes to show the subject of our conversation - a bird whose flight over the desert is taking it over a pair of dark horses at the moment. I'm saying, "It doesn't matter if the bird is clockwork or flesh and blood." Either way, it'll fly the same repetitive pattern every year.

      Updated 01-21-2015 at 12:12 AM by 64691

      Categories
      non-lucid
    5. Jeremy

      by , 12-30-2014 at 07:48 AM
      At the McKittrick Hotel, I ran an errand for Hecate, and in return she's granting me access to a certain flight of stairs. I hand her written note to this effect to the doorman, and he removes the rope blocking off the stairs. He looks bored. He warns me that the things I'll see up there are just ghosts, so don't take any of it too seriously. I tell him I know. I'm still looking forward to seeing something new.

      At the top of the stairs, everything is airy and bright, and there's the dead body of a soldier in dress uniform sitting against the railing that overlooks the ballroom, arms spread and head dangling forward in a way that reminds me of a scarecrow. His name's Jeremy. A woman in white walks up to him - there's something careless about her. Jeremy gets up from the railing, and they begin to dance through the rooms of the hotel. There's no music.
    6. Wings and claws

      by , 05-11-2014 at 06:14 PM
      This guy's telling me about his cremation plans, saying that in a distant future, they're going to be able to revive people using their ashes - or rather, something about the carbon - on a specific distant planet or star or location in space he refers to as "G" followed by a short series of maybe three numbers. Seeing that place, I'm looking at vast stairs in the air, green, made of some vaguely moss-like material. Examining it, I see that it's made up of small, incredibly thin squares stacked on top of each other. The guy talking about cremation is still talking - he's saying these can be stacked so as to seem thick or thin, and they're used here in the perfect ratio to create a true geometric stairway to heaven. ("Heaven" used here to indicate something like perfection rather than afterlife.)

      I'm on a green, grassy hill with two friends and a large crowd of other people waiting for some event, standing near our car. To the right, there's a great view of mountains below us, very green. I'm looking down at a town of mostly red buildings and can make out the steeple of a church; I'm aware this is somewhere in South America. There are a few other people around here enjoying the view, but among them, there's a man beating a young boy, presumably his kid. I jump in and stop him, and as we're fighting I demand what he thinks he's doing. His wife's standing here now, among other people watching, and as an answer, the man produces some letter he'd written. It talks about not being human. The wife sympathizes with him, but I'm outraged by this response, and since I'm not human either, I take personal exception to him using that to justify his behavior. We start fighting again.

      Scene transitions during the fight, focusing on the blood on my wings which had come out during the fight. Now I'm in a motel room with a girl who's helping fix the feathers. A guy, a friend, comes in then and says "You two are (something about the fight and something we're looking for). I found the (thing we were looking for)." He holds up something that looks like a map, and I get up to go look at it. The girl with me is seriously upset with this guy, related to the fight, or more specifically the way I was fighting and the way he encourages me. She tells him that the guy I'd been fighting had swallowed my heart, and she'd watched me take it back from his throat with talons - she demands of the guy with the map, "That's better?!" As she says this, I remember how it had felt, though it hadn't been part of the dream before.

      (Woke up. Back to sleep.)

      Setting's a sort of fantasy version of Korea, 16th century-ish. This guy has been working for an organization that's just had some great victory, completely defeated this opponent that they've been working against for a long time. Now he's just returned to their base and is alone with their leader, a tall foreign woman with this elaborately painted face like a mask and gold ornaments in her hair. But as she's congratulating him on this great success, he becomes suspicious - something's off about her. She sees this suspicion, and attacks him.

      In actuality, this isn't his leader at all. 'She' is revealed to be the man who he thought they'd just killed, using an illusion (in addition to the physical costume and makeup - the illusion itself has been dropped now, the rest remains) to impersonate the leader. The enemy complains that he went to the trouble of portraying his own defeat just so the POV character would finally let his guard down, and it still didn't work! How frustrating! It goes unsaid, but they're both aware that since the POV character isn't human, he's impossible to kill unless he lets his guard down.

      Two other people burst in there, an old man and a young servant, who tell their 'leader' that the POV character - who has now disappeared from the room, and I've switched to 3rd person - has knocked out two of the guards and used some kind of gas to put everyone else to sleep. One of them says that he had just been starting to like/trust that guy. The enemy in his disguise as the leader keeps one hand raised over his mouth to prevent them from noticing his identity. They move out of the room.

      In the hallway, I see the shadow of a hand with long claws reaching down from the ceiling, just above the 'leader'/enemy's head; then it retreats. It's the former POV character on the ceiling. He generally tries to behave like a human being, and killing the enemy in that way would go against that effort, tempting as it is. So he loses the claws, drops down into the now-empty hall and looks around.

      Updated 05-11-2014 at 10:19 PM by 64691

      Categories
      non-lucid
    7. Corvo

      by , 04-11-2014 at 03:34 AM
      Shortly after passing a man whose head is a snake, three creatures are presented as things I'm meant to fight. But they seem harmless, and when I walk up to them, they disappear. Past them, I walk into a hidden door set into a tree, and spend some time walking through a series of rooms. The passageway I'm walking through makes a large circle, and when I get back to the start (there were a lot of scene changes along the way, so this "start" wasn't actually the same place as the tree-passage from before), I notice a flight of stairs heading down that I hadn't seen before, with small, glowing blue arrows hovering just above the floor, pointing down.

      The stairs lead down into an enormous room filled with books and a portrait of a man I recognize as someone infamous named Corvo - he's someone I've heard of often, in the context of being a doctor or a researcher or something similar, responsible for some tragedy or some sinister event; but I personally think of him positively, even though I know very little about him - mostly I feel curious. I realize this was his room, and these are his records.

      I'm standing in a city street in Corvo's POV, sort of - I'm aware that this is me going through his records, his reflections on the past. At this moment in time, he'd been disgraced, along with some other man who I'd also heard of, someone who's walking away from him right now. I have some mental connotation between this man and violence but also think of him as a better person than Corvo, someone who dislikes Corvo intensely but works more closely with him than anyone else, I have the impression Corvo somehow forced him or manipulated him into carrying out a lot of dirty work for him. Now Corvo's looking at the open gates to the city, looking at the crowds of people entering, aware that they're unknowingly carrying some danger that others refuse to listen to him about, and feeling powerless. With the knowledge that this is a flashback, he's feeling an incredible amount of pain over this moment in the past and whatever it eventually led to, and I feel that same emotion so intensely that I have a false awakening or something similar and spend it looking for some space to just calm down from that scene.

      Updated 04-11-2014 at 03:43 AM by 64691

      Categories
      false awakening , non-lucid
    8. Very brief lucid

      by , 03-23-2014 at 08:36 PM
      I'm in my IRL home, and I'm very, very tired. I've got a few things I should take care of before going to sleep, but I'm going to have to do them tomorrow, I'm too tired to focus. It's dark, the lights are off and the sun hasn't risen yet - I realize that's strange, why am I tired at this hour? I hit the light switch as I pass it, but the lights remain off. My assumption is that they need new bulbs. At the top of the stairs, for a moment I think I see something standing in front of me, a person, or more like the shadow of a person, inches in front of my face. It's just for a moment, my eyes playing tricks on me in the dark. As I walk down the hall, I think how this darkness reminds me of those dreams where the lights won't turn on. I don't think about that too deeply at first, but a few moments later I realize that this is, in fact, one of those dreams. But I'm already waking up. (I was disoriented afterward, couldn't remember actually getting to bed, for a few moments.)
    9. Hiding, seeking

      by , 03-18-2014 at 10:50 PM
      Based on F/SN, as Emiya, I've just found myself in a timeline where I'm acting as Servant to the white-haired version of Sakura. I'm thinking that I've been through this type of timeline before, and there are only two ways events play out after this point, neither of which I want to go through again. I'm trying to think up a way to avoid repeating those same patterns, to create a third possibility instead. At the moment, I'm helping Tohsaka climb up into some passageway, to either hide or escape from Sakura.

      (Woke up. Back to sleep.)

      After a series of extremely loosely IRL-based scenes (although I thought of all the locations as IRL-based, the only thing that actually resembled IRL was my own identity), I'm walking into the lobby of a hotel where I'm living, heading for the stairs. I pass a woman working at the front desk, a woman with straight black hair in a bob. Looking at her, I think that she reminds me of the woman who appeared in a shared dream with my IRL sister years back, in which she'd been my sister's roommate. Her hair's longer this time. When I make eye contact with her, I become lucid. I immediately start floating. I remember my intention to try summoning Julia today (usually my most common recurring DC, she hasn't reappeared since my first and last attempt at deliberately summoning her), and I start to do so, but then I change my mind about the method - rather than try to summon directly, it's easier for me to 'summon' by traveling. Since I'm still moving towards the stairs, I decide that Julia is at the top of those stairs. It's a spiral staircase, gold railing, huge, in the center of the room; it reminds me of a pillar and also of DNA. As I focus on it, I become aware that I'm waking up. I can feel the bed against my back, and the image of the staircase has frozen, as if I'm no longer moving. It gives me the impression that it's melting - not the staircase itself, but the visual image, like a filter being applied to a photo. I lose visuals. I spend some time trying to force the dream to reform, and have the feeling I'm getting somewhere, there's a brief sense of something shining in the darkness, but I eventually have to admit that I'm now too awake for this.

      Except it's a false awakening. I spend some time in that same hotel lobby, looking through my backpack, trying to find a pen with which to write down that dream, before waking up for real.