I had to get a couple of people out of this house. The first one had made it to some kind of armored vehicle, and I was trying to trick the second one into joining him. The second guy didn’t want to go, not because he wanted to stay, but because he thought he was being heroic and didn’t know what he was getting into. Come to think of it, I didn’t really know, either; I just wanted to get them the fuck out of the house.
The outside of the house wasn’t in the same world as the inside — you could go from the inside to the outside, but not the reverse. I looked out through the curtains. It was a busy city downtown corner, stoplight and all, a guy was going to cross the street when a huge lizard streaked down the street and ate him. Huge lizard.
I led the second guy down a tunnel, we were going to come up underneath the armored vehicle and I’d lock him in it before he knew what it was, because there was a secret entrance into the thing from below.
I crawled into the vehicle, but the guy didn’t follow me, either because he wouldn’t or because it was too late.
The next thing I knew, the first guy and I were driving a desert highway in the armored vehicle at a good clip, but not speeding. Ahead was an aircraft, and for some reason I knew it was the goverment, and I was reassured.
It was our world, mostly, the way the worlds of the house and the street weren’t.
The aircraft left a barrier across the road and flew on. We drove around the barrier. More barriers, and suddenly the ship noticed us and started to chase us — what for, I have no idea. I was shocked at the time.
The guy drove. He kept talking about how he had to get out of the desert — had to reach the edge. Maybe that’s something that just happens in chase dreams. There’s a goal, a place you can reach where you’ll be safe and everything will be all right. You never make it, but there you go. Up ahead was a town. For some reason, I knew that if I could get the guy to the town, to a specific bar in town, he’d be safe — he didn’t agree, he wanted to go to the edge of the desert.
I insisted, we dashed into the bar, he touched the back wall, screamed “ollie ollie oxen free” and laughed hysterically. I saw an old woman — she owned the bar — that I’d been looking for, but she only shook her head. We had to keep going. I told the guy to run, I’d hold the government off. He started running, but he ran like people run in chase dreams, as if the whole world is anchored to them. He couldn’t run fast enough. He ran in place, slowly.
And I couldn’t keep the government back. They streamed around me, soldiers with guns.
I woke up.