Those Cloud-capped Towers

Robert Quick

Where the -@!# did my muse go?

Writer, dreamer, knight, shackled by entertainment . . . and people.

Lloyd skated across an unnaturally still sky, the kind that looked and felt like twilight but you knew if you checked it would be nine pm or three am. Behind him followed a woman that wore many faces. He recognized some of them briefly, but knew that she was singular.

She said, “You're dreaming.”

“No. This is real.” He said. Even as he said it, his conviction waned. Under his scrutiny, the details of the world around him blurred and some memory returned.

“It's time. If you don't go, your body will die.”

He considered that. There was a vague memory, though it felt more like an echo of a memory, that he had tried to commit himself fully to dreaming. If he died there would be no more dreams but he wouldn't have to go back out there. Back to that place where he was fat, ugly, and alone. Live a life where he was happy . . . half of the time? Not even. He couldn't sleep much more than eight hours a day, unless it was medically induced, and even then not every dream was happy.

“I choose to finish this dream.”


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