I need to see her face but she appears lost in thought. She's studying the girl as if searching for something I cannot see.
What is she thinking?
“Yes, darling?” she hums, glancing up with her face open and accepting. I instantly feel calmer.
“I’ve had this same dream for years. It used to be few and far between, but in the past few months, it's more frequent. It’s always the same but far more often. It starts and stops in the same place except now I feel her emotions. Before it was like watching a movie, like sitting in the front row, eating popcorn and watching the events unfold. Now, I feel her panic, her terror, and her fear. It wakes me up, and I feel what she is feeling. It’s disturbing, alarming.”
I sound stupid; even Mom has to think this sounds a little nuts.
The eerie thing is she doesn’t say anything, not immediately. She continues looking at the girl and the sketches and my eyebrows furrow at her silence.
Did she hear me?
Isn’t she going to say something?
“It’s understandable. When you have a nightmare, don’t you wake up in a panic? Your heart races, your breath is labored, and you're glad when you realize it was all a dream?”
Her words make sense.
“Yeah, that’s exactly how I wake up. Glad, very, very glad it was only a dream,” I explain as she places a comforting hand on my knee. “I want it to stop. I don’t want to have it anymore. It’s why I started sketching it in the first place, to get rid of it.”
“Why do you want to do that?”
“I don’t want to know what happens next. I don’t want to feel what she feels. I want to get this dream out of my head, onto paper and then burn the paper. I’m tired of carrying it around. When I get to my dorm room, how am I going to explain my panicked dreams to a girl I don’t even know?”
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