Friday, December 2, 2011

Empire of the Centipedes

Every so often I'm afflicted with especially memorable dreams over the course of several nights, linked by a common theme. Sometimes it's a vast desert, filled with dilapidated memories. Other times it's a particular word or phrase that seems to have monumental significance over the course of the dream-quest, but the meaning is immediately lost upon waking, such as "Argo" during one long quest about a year ago. Most recently, I have been plagued by dreams of centipedes.

So rev up those Freud couches, because things are about to get crunchy.

The furthest back I can remember was about a week ago. This was the de facto beginning of the dream-quest as far as I could tell, and it's beginning was only a prelude of what was to come; It started with me in my bedroom, it was nighttime and my window blinds were closed. This was a bad sign, my brain was already trying to deceive me by sending me to the one place I would expect the most. Maybe it was trying to fool me into thinking what I was experiencing was real life, in order to make what happened next more terrifying.

Suddenly, millions of ants started crawling around my desk and walls, spiders started creeping around the corners and even lizards would shuffle around. I was trapped, surrounded by all these crawling beasts.

They were everywhere, they started crawling all over my face, it was the worst experience of my life. But it only got worse; materializing from seemingly nowhere, the Centipedes made their entrance.

Now, I'm sure I've alluded to the dream where I turned into a giant slug creature before. That was a fun dream, because my metamorphosis occurred during a ski trip. It was the only dream that I remember growing tentacles in. But this was different, while the skiing slugs were a pleasant bunch, these Centipedes were altogether more menacing, vastly more sinister then other tentacled creatures I've met.

Imagine a creature as long as a man is tall, with hundreds of constantly writhing legs down it's long, crunchy body. The creature stands upright, with only it's hindmost legs holding up it's obscene mass. Surmounting the creature is a head covered in long sinewy tentacles that constantly twist in the air, the head is bright red in color, like blood. They were more like Mongolian Death Worms then any real world Myriapod.

They started crawling towards me and I could see their horrible gaping mouths, like a combination of a lamprey's mouth and the Aristotle's Lantern of a sea urchin. I woke up as they started to prod at my eyes with their tentacles, covered in spiders and ants.

The Centipedes haunted me for the rest of the week, as practically every dream ended with them lashing out at me. Even when the subject matter of the dream didn't concern them at all, there they were; always on time to put an end to my exploration of the ruins of an ancient sports stadium to try and crush me with their hideous face-tentacles.

If this wasn't bad enough, they also had underlings that would creep around whenever the Centipedes made their move. I don't remember them nearly as well but they could only be described as anglerfish with spider legs. It was horrible.

The last dream I had, I was in a dark misty forest. All the trees were dead and black, I could only see a few meters ahead of me because of the dense fog. Surprisingly, the Centipedes were nowhere to be found. Suddenly, I was in the passenger seat of a car driving down a dark highway late at night.

I felt safe. I don't know what radio station was playing, but I remember quiet lounge music. I guess I never bothered to see who was driving the car either. I had a moment to think. I felt dizzy, my thoughts drifted to shopping malls. Malls in all their myriad of forms were always a popular destination in my dreams. Sometimes they would climb so high they would reach into the cold, thin air at the edge of space, their escalators, never stopping, always climbing to the peak. For me, the mall has never been a place of commerce, it was a jungle of steel and concrete, a place where secrets could be hidden. A little world in it's own right, inhabited by indescribable objects with no worldly purpose: twisted, sculpted glass in any color imaginable, scented candles and delicate wire constructions in perpetual motion. Surely, the mall was a place that transcended day-time logic.

But just as quickly as I found myself in the car, I was in an old bathroom, once again surrounded by locusts, spiders and all other crawling malefactors. More lizards appeared, climbing into a heap and started melting. The bubbling mass of decaying lizard-matter was swarmed with ants, even as some misplaced limbs continued to convulse.

Then, they came: the centipedes. Only these were normal centipedes, creepy, but lacking the tentacles or the improbable size that made them so deadly. So there I was, in a dirty old bathroom, surrounded by melting, bubbling lizards and every arthropod imaginable except giant death-centipedes to be found. And then I woke up.

I doubt I've seen the last of my nemeses, my guess is that they're only waiting for the best time to strike. Next time I have a dream where my teeth fall out, I'll be waiting for them. This is now a battle of wits, dream-warfare.


mom said...

maybe the dream is telling you to clean your bedroom better. also, the first picture of the spider and spider babies is truly terrible and now IM going to have nightmares

Shadgrimgrvy said...

I don't think it's a good idea to fall asleep long enough to have nightmares, that gives the spiders plenty of time to make a nest in your ears!

mom said...

I heard in your lifetime you will swallow a ungodly amount of spiders while you are sleeping. how terrible is that?!

Shadgrimgrvy said...

Hideous! At least we have SOME way of fighting back!

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