Dreams At Midnight by Mick Howe

She lay upon her bed wrapped in scarlet hues and white lace. The silk gently laid across her skin and fluttered in the breeze of the ceiling fan. The lazy look in her brown eyes insists that she has been fighting sleep, or has been slowly welcoming the serenity of her quiet surroundings. She lie still except for her right hand occasionally moving her hair away from her face. Every time she did so, she smiled.

The clouds outside were finally parting away so that the moonlight could not shine through the lone window in the room. The only lights in the room were 5 candles spaced out into a cross on her hope chest. The moonlight mingled with a spattering of stars and bathed the room in a paler glow than what the yellow of the candles was originally allowing.

She slid off the bed, wrapping the silk sheet around her as she walked to the window. The lazy look in her eyes was replaced by the reflection of the night sky. Her smile widened as she leaned her head further out the window.

She was looking into the sky when something caught her attention on the ground. A darkened figure on the tree line was slowly walking toward her direction.

She could tell that the figure was large and wore what appeared to be a hooded robe. Though to most, the sight would be menacing, she stood there anxious, almost excited, but not out of fear. As the figure drew closer, she realized it wasn’t a robe, but an over sized hooded sweater. The figure was obviously male just in their stature. Pausing about 15 yards from the window, the man pulled his hood back, but even with the light of the moon and the stars, she could not make out his features.

Her heart was beating so hard that you could see her chest jump under the silk sheet wrapped around her breasts. She continued to stare outward toward the figure and appeared as though she would jump out to him. As she moved her free hand to the window sill, she gasped.

The man who was but a few yards away was now within inches of her window. The moonlight cast at his back caused the shadows upon his face to make him appear as a thick silhouette. The only detail that she could make out on his face was a pair of eyes that were glowing an emerald green with shades of earth woven into the pupil. As she opened her mouth to speak, he was gone, evaporated into the mist that was now flowing into her room.
She leaned out of the window, letting the sheet fall to the floor. She looked as far as she could from that window, but there was no sign of the man, not even a footprint was left in the moist ground. The wind blew gently as if it were trying to push her back into the room.

The chill could be seen running down her entire body as the goose bumps rose upon her skin. She leaned down to pick up the sheet and wrapped it around her. As she turned to move back toward her bed, the tear in her left eye trickled down her face, first burning the skin and then leaving it icy as the breeze blew over it.

As she reached the foot of her bed, she could hear a man’s laugh outside. She rushed back to the window, but the light from the sky only revealed an open field leading to the woods that were a little under a hundred yards away. No sign of anyone there.

She finally crawled back into bed and shut her eyes, seeing the emerald and earthen tones of the man’s eyes who was supposedly right outside her window. The sight made her smile slightly, and then the smile faded away. Her thought was that maybe it was all just a dream.

Elsewhere, a man was sitting on the edge of his bed, looking out his window and wondering why he continued to see five candles in his dreams. The candles, laid out in the shape of a cross, sat on a wooden chest with a lock on the front of it. There was a white, lacy garment laid at the foot of the chest. Somewhere, off in the corner, he could see a darkened red shade, but couldn’t make out what the figure was.

He stood to look out his window at the clear night sky, and off in the distance, somewhere in the middle of the woods that was just over a hundred yards from his bedroom, he could hear what he thought was a woman’s soft, innocent laugh. He smiled, shook his head, looked up at the sky one last time, and then went back to bed.

She woke up in tears with a pendant clasped in her hands. There was a heaviness in her heart, but she wasn’t sure why. As she looked to her hope chest, one of the candles had blown out, and she instantly knew what was wrong. He never woke up.

As she stared out the window the following night, she looked into the full moon and just to the right of it was a star she had never noticed before. It was shining with a power that could have rivaled the moon for the night sky light. It seemed to be winking at her for a moment, and then, just as the man in her window the night before, the star faded from view.

The tears in her eyes were accompanied by a smile as she took a deep breath in. The breeze was once again cool, but she was oddly warm. She looked across the field and could have sworn that she saw someone walking along the tree line, but alas, no one ever showed. She finally made the assessment that it was just shadow tricks from the trees and the moon’s light.

She lay down once again, the stars filling her head.

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