Earth’s Survivors America The Dead
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THE LEGEND OF SPARROW
The Legend of Sparrow Copyright © 2017 by Wendell G Sweet all rights reserved foreign and domestic.
This book is licensed for your personal enjoyment only. This book may not be re-sold or given away to other people. If you would like to share this book with another person, please purchase an additional copy for each recipient. If you’re reading this book and did not purchase it, or it was not purchased for your use only, then please return to your bookseller and purchase your own copy. Thank you for respecting the hard work of this author.
This is a work of fiction. Any names, characters, places or incidents depicted are products of the author’s imagination. Any resemblance to actual living person’s places, situations or events is purely coincidental.
Parts of this novel are Copyright © 2009 and 2010 Wendell Sweet. No part of this book may be reproduced by any means, electronic, print, scanner or any other means and, or distributed without the author’s permission.
Permission is granted to use short sections of text in reviews or critiques in standard or electronic print.
Light from another Moon:
He sat on the wall for hours. I watched. I saw when he noticed the name and number. Nothing. I slipped sideways, I watched. He traced the name with one finger. I saw his lips form the numbers. He closed his eyes, mouthed the name, the number, and opened his eyes again. Closed them once more.
How long, I thought. I slipped sideways again, traveling across time to the same place; short bursts. Less this time. It was dangerous. I wasn’t even all that good at it either. He was a no show. I slipped. I slipped again. There he was. His eyes closed his lips moving. He opened his eyes looked right at me. Really saw me. But I felt he didn’t know what he saw. I was not me… Not my actual self.
I dream as a sparrow. Unique? Probably not: After I decided to dream as a sparrow, I realized there were hundreds of dreamer’s who dream that way. Birds. Cats. Dogs. Lizards. A fly on the wall. His eyes held mine. He did know. I slipped back to where I had started from once again, and then let go, drifting in the blackness. Hoping for an easy return.
I fell hard, but there was no panic in. I lay on the mattress and wondered when it would happen. The ringing of the phone answered my question for me. I picked it up, but did not speak. An unreasonable fear lit a fire in my chest. He could be anything at all. He did not necessarily have to be a dreamer. He could be The Trickster himself. The Thief of Souls. He could be…
“Laura,” he asked?
I drew a deep breath before I spoke.
“You dream,” I said. There was nothing else to say.
“Wise words from a Sparrow,” he said. His voice was deep. No real accent. Inflection.
“I was afraid,” I said.
“Yeah,” he agreed. “Me to… So…” He asked?
“Where do you know,” I asked? “What places?”
“The docks… Around there… The factory… The house where I live with my wife and children. And I can create… I can create places,” he answered.
“Wife and kids,” I asked? Good, Laura, I chided. How stupid could you be? Or obvious… I thought about it. No matter, I still would have asked.
“I don’t understand it,” he said. “I used to go there in real dreams. Then one time the dream seemed to become a real place, or the place became real in the dream… It makes no sense. I rarely actually go there, but I very often start out there in my dreaming… There’s something wrong with it… Her… In that place.”
“There are places like that,” I agreed. A dream wife, I told myself.
“There’s a place farther up the river. Below the main factory. On the ledges. An older factory. They don’t seem to be there. No one… No dreamer’s. It’s a place from my childhood… Really not more than a foundation left on the river bank,” he said.
“How will I find it,” I asked?
“I’ll go to Locust Street: Sit on the wall. Watching, waiting. Once you come I’ll walk there; it’s not that far. You’ll follow me,” he suggested.
If he was anything other than a dreamer I could be in trouble, but it didn’t feel that way at all. “All right,” I agreed. I hung up, lay back on the soft mattress and slipped into a dream. A few seconds later I settled on the branch of a tall pine tree and waited.
He took longer. One second the wall was empty, the next it was not. Once he saw me he got up and began to walk. I followed him.
When he stopped I saw nothing but a small clearing at the river side. It was possible he saw something more than I did. Something I could not see. It was his dream after all.
Shape shifting is no big trick. If you dream you have gifts; I can shape shift easily. I dropped from the sky, slowed myself about five feet from the ground and changed.
It is fast. I have watched it in a mirror. It is not so fast that you cannot see what happens. But even if you see you may not understand.
My bird body expanded quickly, morphing as it did. I knew enough to cover myself as I changed. The clothes were an afterthought and did not come immediately. So far I had only shocked myself with that and I had no wish to shock anyone else with it. Most especially the first other dreamer I had chosen to reveal myself too.
It wasn’t so much naked. We have all been naked. If you dream it is a natural state of the dream unless you’re conscious of it and clothe yourself. It is the process that can be hard to understand. The feathers melt away. The flesh knits itself together, races across my body. Building it piece by piece. It happens fast, but it can be unnerving. For a brief second you can see the blood vessels swimming to the top of my skin from someplace deeper within me. Finally, the clothes come, the hair, the features draw themselves on my face. Dramatic. I knelt close to the ground, standing as I came together.
“I have never seen anything like that,” Joe said.
“It can be a little freaky,” I agreed.
He pulled out a notebook. “Page twenty-six,” he said, thumbing through it.
“What,” I asked?
“Page twenty-six,” he repeated. He turned it to show my name and the numbers. “Drove me crazy. I wasn’t as good then. I couldn’t remember where I got the name or the number from. And I could never remember the number in the waking world.” He turned the pad around closed it and slipped it back into his shirt pocket.
“Eventually I figured out how to take the notebook with me. I wrote in it, but it took so long to remember that I had written in it. Then once I found it, to know what it was.”
I nodded. “You can take it back and forth?”
He nodded. “Yeah. I can translate it both ways.”
I was impressed. “Maybe you can teach me. I’ve never tried.”
“Yeah, maybe you can teach me to shape shift” He raised his eyebrows.
“If I can,” I agreed. I looked around: As we had talked the old crumbling factory walls had rebuilt themselves around us.
“It’s because it’s private,” I said, gesturing at the walls. “A private place. It has to be built from your mind.”
He nodded. “Almost dawn,” he said.
It was my turn to agree. “You come here every night?”
He nodded again. “I’ll meet you here tomorrow.”
“You’re not weird… I’m not weird… Maybe we can help each other. I’ll be here.” I agreed.
I thought that he would say more, but he simply flashed out of existence. I shifted, side slipped, we were not of the same time, and I felt myself falling… Falling. Seconds later I landed. Crouched on my bedroom floor. Feathers flew in the air in a perfect gray-black storm. I made my way into the kitchen, started the coffee, and headed for the shower.
The Light from another Moon:
The garage was dark, as always, but enough light spilled in from the Moonlight to go through the items in the cart. The sacks were ears of corn. The parts were varied. A keyboard, missing the space bar. Two plastic stubs stuck up where it should have been. An old computer. The dinosaur kind. Huge and boxy, probably worthless. A small LCD screen or plasma maybe, the old flat screen type before flex screens.
She spoke from the darkness.
“Why do I always find you out here,” she asked?
I jumped. My heart skipping beats.
“The kids miss you. You’re never home.” She smiled, but the smile had too many teeth. Was too sweet. Too nice.
“I just got back,” I said. And that was true as far as it went.
“You’re always just getting back,” she said. She moved closer. The moonlight shining through her nightgown left nothing to my imagination, which is pretty good all on its own. Her hand touched my chest. Her palm flattened against it.
“I miss you too,” she said huskily.
“I… I have to go… I have to go again,” I said.
Her hand spasmed and then slapped flat against my chest. She backed away. “You are never here. Never!”
“I try? I’m your wife…” She leaned closer. “What’s in those other places,” she asked in a rough whisper. Her tongue came out, forked, purple, and licked at her lips. Colors shifted across her face. Iridescent greens, reds, oranges, yellows, purples. I sidestepped, and…
I found myself in the garage. Empty, but wrong. Something moved in the shadows.
The troll was on me so fast I did not have time to think. Stinking, hot breath on my neck, sharp claws sinking into me. I threw myself out of the dream and spun away into blackness. The pain followed. I spun down faster and faster.
I’d left my body sitting in a wooden chair pulled up to my desk. The force of my impact back into my body shattered the chair. I sprawled on to the floor and skidded all the way to the wall where I slammed to a stop.
When I caught my breath I checked myself over: Nasty bites on my chest, deep scratches on my arms. It could hurt you. It could kill you. I waited until I had my breathing under control and then made my way to the bathroom medicine cabinet.
The Light from another Moon:
Abignew squatted on his short legs and lowered his head to the ground. He inhaled deeply, sucking up the scent of the dream. He shook his head and shuddered as the scent worked its way up into his brain. A few minutes later he lifted his head and looked around the empty garage with his red glowing eyes. He snuffled deep in his chest. A bass sound like a suppressed snort. He lifted his head and sniffed the air, then slipped into the time stream…
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