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    Flashbacks and an octopus.

    by , 08-03-2013 at 09:22 PM (422 Views)
    A setting that looks like it's based on ancient China. I'm about to transport a prisoner, a high-ranking woman, but the focus of the dream is on the people I ran into guarding her cell, two men I'd known during what I think of as 'the bloodstained war.'

    The dream moves into a flashback to the war: I was some kind of government official, something to do with money. It kept me out of the fighting at a time when most men my age were soldiers, and I was conflicted about that, especially since my job required me to work closely with the military. Those two men guarding the cell had been soldiers who briefly acted as my guards while I was traveling through a dangerous area. During this flashback, we met a priest who I'd kept in contact with since, and I'm thinking about the major contrast between how earnest and naive he was then and how cynical he grew to be.

    (I woke up. I went back to sleep for one more hour.)

    Modern western setting, I'm playing the role of some teenage guy. I'd gone back to my hometown by the sea, thought I was just passing through but got into some kind of trouble and wound up stuck working as a camp counselor as some kind of community service. I'd resented it, wanted nothing more than to get out of town, but as I stuck around I've wound up being a lot fonder of the place than I expected, like some kind of cheesy family movie plot. Also my ex-girlfriend is working at the camp and maybe isn't an ex- anymore. And this is the last day of camp. So I'm in a good mood as I'm riding my bike back to camp after running an errand in town, getting stuff for the ice cream party at the cabin tonight, looking around at the streets and remembering dumb kid pranks and rivalries and shortcuts around here, when I happen across an octopus in the middle of the road.

    It's still alive, though it doesn't look too good, it's not moving much. We're just above the beach here, so I scoop it up and return it to the water, and it perks right up - and immediately crawls right back out of the water to cling to a rock. But at least it's not in the road anymore, and it can get back to the water if it wants. It left burns on my arm, like a jellyfish, which I think of as the normal result of picking up an octopus. When I get back to camp my maybe-not-an-ex sees the burns and goes "oh, you didn't," and yes, letting myself get burned was dumb, but what else was I supposed to do?

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