This story contains graphic sex, voilence and scary horror bits (not for the light of heart...?). I hope you enjoy it. Any comments, constructive criticism or whatever send to email@example.com.
Dreams and nightmares.
"So, are you in?" Caroline asked.
Redge looked at Caroline's glowing smile and decided that he'd do anything to be around this woman. "Yeah, sure," he responded enthusiastically.
"Great, I'll put your name on the list then. Saul only needs four volunteers and that makes you the last," she said.
Redge tried to figure out exactly what he had just volunteered for. Caroline had said that it was some kind of a drug test for a dream research program. Being a guinea pig paid quite well and the test sounded safe enough, but he probably would have said no if Caroline had not been part of the program.
"Groovy," Redge responded in a laid back tone, quite thrilled with the situation. Caroline was vivacious and outgoing but she was also a bit quirky and possessed a strange sense of humour, characteristics that he was attracted too. He liked the way she never seemed to get down and was always optimistic no matter how hard things got. She was also very pretty with a generously endowed body and an angular face which always displayed an infectious smile.
"So we all meet on Saturday at the psyche building, at Zeig's office. I'm one of the test subjects this time," Caroline said.
Redge nodded, "all right, I'll be there. What are you up to for lunch?"
"Um, I've got nothing planned. I thought I'd go down to the Union and grab a foccacia and a coffee."
"Mind if I tag along," asked Redge.
"No, that would be great," Caroline responded,
Redge was suddenly optimistic about the way his day was shaping up.
* * *
Redge was running a bit late for his appointment as he streaked into the building and sprinted up the stairs to the office. He was a bit flushed when he got to the right floor and paused to gather his breath before knocking on the door.
"Come in," a voice on the other side said.
Redge entered and noticed he was the last to arrive. Caroline, Saul and John already stood in the office.
"Sorry I'm late, flat battery," he lied. A flat battery always sounded better than oversleeping. He nodded at Caroline who shook her head, hiding a grin, her brown eyes dancing merrily. She knew that he didn't even have a car. He smiled covertly at her. Lunch the other day had turned into going to dinner, followed by catching a soppy film. This was a promising start in Redge's books.
Saul cast a disapproving look over the latecomer, as though his time were too valuable to be wasted by a trifle such as Redge. Saul presented himself as a quiet, studious man to the lecturers but to the other students he showed his true colours, being surly and stuck up. Since he had received his honours he had set his eyes upon an academic career. Unfortunately he had become so full of himself that he was generally regarded as unapproachable. The worst thing was that he was very bright and constantly rubbed other peoples noses in the fact. His tall, gaunt, emaciated frame and lack of personal grooming did not endear him to anyone.
John on the other hand was very affable, a smart sociable guy who was always ready to give assistance or chat, a real people person who possessed an endless range of contacts he 'knew'. Chances were if you were acquainted with someone, John would be able to name your acquaintance amongst his list of contacts or somehow trace that person to himself. Sometimes his networking skills were a bit daunting, and everyone knew that John was going to go far in the psychology field, particularly John.
"Now that we are all here," Saul started, "I would like to further explain what the test is attempting to achieve. Using a new drug I have developed and the sensory deprivation tanks, I intend to bring all of us to a R.E.M. state which shall be monitored closely by the computers. With the subjects, namely ourselves, lacking outside stimuli, I wish to determine if the dream state will in any way differ from the norm. The way in which dreams incorporate outside stimulus into their framework is well documented, but the effects of an isolated mind upon a dream are not so well known. I know that the sample is small but I hope that I will achieve the desired results. Any questions?"
"Yeah," said Redge, "what's the drug?"
"A new sensory inhibitor, which has just received approval for controlled human testing," Saul replied. "It is intended to enhance the effects of the tank. The reports so far have been very promising. I have them here if you want."
Redge nodded accepting the proffered literature, not willing to have an untested substance used on his body. After careful inspection of the documents he was satisfied with their validity. He passed them to Caroline and John who did the same.
"Good," said Saul, rubbing his hands together briskly. "If you will follow me?"
Saul took them down to a sound-proofed basement where four large coffin-like tanks sat. "Wow, I never thought I'd get to use one of these babies," John said eagerly.
"Me either," Caroline said,
Saul smiled condescendingly at their chatter, causing them to quiet. "Now if you would take your tablets and choose a tank?" Saul held up a platter with four containers, each with the drug they were testing.
Redge, Caroline and John collected their medication, then chose a tank each, looking around in bewilderment. There were no privacy screens set up as they had expected. Though he was being paid good money for the test, Redge hesitated about stripping down in front of Caroline to enter his tank.
Caroline started to disrobe without much concern for her audience and, deciding to play it cool, Redge began to undress as well. John did the same, but Saul could not help but stare as the attractive woman began disrobing, a lascivious expression on his face.
Caroline cast a leering expression almost identical to Saul's back at him, causing the stuck-up man to turn away and hurriedly unclothe. John and Redge chuckled to themselves as they stripped, swallowing their medication and climbing into each of their tanks, Caroline and Saul following suit.
The computer which monitored the subjects hummed as the state of the art equipment turned on automatically. The electrodes which had once been part of such experiments were long gone, finely tuned instruments in the tanks measuring all the biorhythmic activity of each person
A small screen displayed an infrared image of each person in their sensory cocoon. It would not be long before the drug took effect. Saul rubbed his hands together in his tank, wondering how the other test subjects would have reacted had they known that the drug they had taken was not officially approved but a highly refined, untested substance.
* * *
Redge sat up and climbed naked from his tank. It seemed as though the lights were broken, his vision shifting strangely in front of his eyes. He looked down at his naked body and received a surprise. He possessed something protruding from his abdomen which he had never seen before. It was a lumpy, knotted fiber of sorts, much like an umbilical cord. He gripped it in his hands and felt an ethereal pull from the centre of his gut as he tugged on it.
Following it to the other end, Redge received a second shock. The cord branched outwards like the roots of a tree and connected to the skull of a person, almost like some disgusting parasitic plant. Looking closely at the wispy filaments which enveloped the strangers head, Redge realised with some surprise that it was his face.
"Out of body experience," he said, his voice echoing and reverberating around the room. He approached the other tanks and saw that an umbilical traced from one of them. Saul's tank. Another led from Johns tank.
"I wonder where they've gone," he asked aloud. Without a doubt Saul had gone exploring, probably intending on claiming this strange new land in his name. Redge also felt the urge to explore, but decided to wait for Caroline to join him.
Glancing around the room, Redge realised that his vision was a little altered. It was strange, but the edges of objects were not as distinct as they first appeared, becoming blurry under close inspection. Phantom sounds seeped from reality into this ethereal place sounding discordant and hollow.
Redge moved to the automated computer, the screen a blank opaque blur. He tried to lift a pen but his hand moved through it as though it were not there. The pen had substance of sorts, just nothing which Redge could hold onto. On an impulse, Redge propelled himself towards the desk and passed straight through it. As he passed through it, his body resisted and he felt slightly nauseous. He could pass through solid objects, but it did not feel good at all.
* * *
In reality the desk shuddered a little.
* * *
Redge returned to Caroline's tank, looking down at her naked body with admiration. He reached out to her and stroked her face, tracing his finger along her cheek. Her hand came up and held his in a firm grip, startling him. Emerging from her flesh, Caroline climbed from the tank.
"Redge? What's the deal with the light?" she asked. With no answer forthcoming, she followed his gaze to her physical body. She breathed a sharp yelp of fear, then followed her umbilical to her navel. "My god! What's happened to us?"
"I think you'd call it astral projection. The drug we took must have been something else. Saul lied to us!"
"No shit Sherlock," she nudged him, "where are the others?"
"Out exploring I guess."
Caroline glanced around, realising that no one was present except her and Redge. "Well lets do some exploring ourselves," she said slyly as she moved towards Redge with unabashed abandon. Redge grinned, uncertain if they could do anything without their bodies but quite willing to try.
He hugged her tight to his chest and kissed her lips, her body feeling completely real in his grip. Their hungry and urgent tongue thrusting went on for some time. They pulled away, not because they were short of breath but because they weren't.
It was strange. They had no real bodies but everything felt real. They should not have been able to smell, taste, hear, feel or even see but they were able to.
Running a hand over Caroline's body, Redge was amazed at how supple and smooth her skin felt, just as he had imagined it would feel. She was also intrigued that everything felt so real. They held hands and looked around.
"You know the only thing we need is a bed. A big four poster with a canopy," Caroline said.
"I know what you mean!" Redge laughed. As they talked a bed started to appear before them in a swirl of strange energy.
"Wow!" Caroline said as the bed evolved before them. She touched it and discovered that it was solid.
"And some clothes? I know, how about a formal theme!" Redge said imagining Caroline in a very skimpy dinner suit, tailor made to show off her assets. There was another swirl of energy, this time around her large breasts and hips and Caroline was suddenly clad in a low cut and very tight shirt that hugged her lovely chest. A top hat perched on her head and her hair was slicked back. A bow tie materialised around her bare neck. Tight shorts that clearly outlined every curve were also created, as was a vest with coat tails. Finally a walking stick sprang into being.
Caroline looked down at the clothes, her breasts and nipples firmly outlined against the fabric which had miraculously appeared. An impish grin crossed her face as she conjured an image in her mind of Redge in a loincloth.
There was a swirling around Redge's nether regions as a nappy-like bundle appeared around his waist.
Redge knocked the top hat of Caroline's head and then pulled her onto the bed.
"It's so much more fun pulling clothes of a girl, "he said as he began kissing her again, slipping a hand into her vest. She knocked his hand away and shook a finger in his face before jumping on top of Redge. They rolled around on the bed and wrestling playfully. Their umbilicals were not a hindrance, instead they were elastic and fluid, being completely unnoticed amidst their mock combat. This struggling went on until Caroline gained the upper hand. "So Tarzan, who's the king of the jungle now?" she asked, pinning his arms to the bed.
Redge grinned up at her, "that would be you I suppose."
"Don't you forget it tiger."
Redge had a sudden thought. "But maybe I am the king of the jungle," he said as he willed himself and Caroline to change places. There was a sudden yanking sensation in the pit of his stomach and he found himself holding Caroline's arms just as he had willed. He smiled in victory until he realised he was looking down at his body.
Caroline had a similar shock, looking up at her female form, pinning her arms to the bed. She looked down and saw that she now had a flat chest and possessed a penis which was semi erect.
"Um, is this a little odd?" asked Redge in a surprised voice. A voice which was clearly Caroline's.
"Who cares, none of this is real. Let's see how it feels though?" Caroline suggested.
Redge shrugged. It was weird but this was all sort of like a dream. She leant down and kissed Caroline in her body. Caroline kissed back whilst unbuttoning Redge's tight top, letting her breasts spring free. Caroline smiled as he played with one of Redge's ample breasts.
"A can see why you guys like to play with girls breasts. This is fun," Caroline said.
Redge found it strange the way her nipples and breasts were so much more sensitive. She looked down at her ample cleavage hanging from a chest, swaying as she moved. "Well I can understand why you let us," Redge muttered as a shudder of pleasure went through her body.
Caroline gripped Redge by the back of the head and pulled her back into another passionate kiss.
Although the kiss was quite heated, Redge was becoming aware of something pushing into her through the seat of her pants. She was becoming quite wet and wondered what it would be like to have something inside her aroused pussy. Redge concentrated for a moment and the shorts vanished allowing Caroline to slide straight into her. Redge let out a yelp of surprise as her new vagina spread to accommodate the sudden intruder. It felt so strange to be penetrated, the way she molded around Caroline's member.
As Redge started to move her weight up and down the length of Caroline's penis she took the time to admire her body. Her firm large breasts were already giving her much pleasure as was her new sex but her thin arms, taut stomach and long limber legs were a source of curiosity. She knew how beautiful Caroline was, and for the moment she possessed this beauty. She was becoming excited just thinking about it.
As they continued to grind away, a growing awareness of what the other felt impinged upon each of their minds. Not only were they entwined in each others bodies but their minds seemed to merge in what could only be described as cerebral sex.
"You know, I forgot to use protection," Redge joked.
"That's okay, I think we're safe," Caroline muttered as he slowly fucked her.
* * *
The computer registered the spiking biorhythmic measurements of Caroline and Redge. According to it's readings, the two youths seemed to be going into some sort of epileptic convulsion, an apoplexy of sorts. The safety mechanism acted suddenly, electricity shooting into the liquid, jolting the lovers.
The results were quite dramatic. Caroline's body sat bolt upright, her face flushed, eyes bulging as her veins seemed to pop from her neck and face, gulping in air like a drowning woman.
The effect of the current was quite sensational on the young mans body as well.
* * *
Just as they seemed to be reaching a peak in their lovemaking, a sudden hiatus over came Redge. He felt himself pulled from Caroline's arms, sucked through his belly and down their intertwined umbilicals, towards his body.
With a god awful jerk and mental lurch he was brought back to a fierce consciousness. He gasped for air, his muscled contracting, rearing and fighting to go, blood pounding like thunder in his temples, his sense of time slowed down to a surreal snails-pace as reality flashed into his mind with an intensely vivid clearness. He sat up and struggled to control his body which felt like it had just been kick started by lightning.
A piercing scream brought his attention to the tank beside his. He focused on the person in the tank and realised it was him. Thinking that somehow he was still in the astral plain, or that he was hallucinating, he laughed. Instead of his deep, full chested laugh, his mirth came out as a high pitched tittering giggle.
Redge looked down at his body, quite accustomed to the magnitude of the shocks he was receiving today, and cringed slightly when he saw that he was still a she. She wore Caroline's body and, judging by the way her old body was reacting, Caroline wore hers.
"I think something is wrong," Redge said, quite dumbfounded. Somehow she had been brought back to reality in the wrong body. Before everything had possessed a dream like quality. Now this was very real.
"No shit!" Caroline said, his calm and easygoing attitude lost in this moment of turmoil. "I'm not meant to be here, and your sure as hell are not meant to be there!"
Redge paused to hold her new mamaries which seemed to rock whenever she moved.
"Hey, keep your hands of my tits, young man!" Caroline ordered as he struggled from the tank. His new body felt wrong. It was very energetic, but at the same time clumsy and bulky. It also did not react the way he wanted it too. As he exited the tank, he lost his balance and tripped, sustaining quite a nasty blow on the side of his head.
"Careful with my body!" Redge yelled back just as irrationally. After considering how bad the blow had been, she was a little worried. Climbing carefully from the tank, she made her way to the dazed form of Caroline, her new breasts moving in an unaccustomed fashion, the lack of male genitalia between her legs quite disturbing. Caroline struggled to get his footing, uncoordinated by the impact.
"How are you?" Redge asked. It seemed strange to talk to her own body.
"My head kills. I think I've got a concussion," Caroline responded slowly.
"Well I guess we won't be sleeping soon then?"
"No," Caroline answered looking down at his inherited body, "we could be like this for a while longer."
Redge sighed, her medium sized breasts lowering with her chagrin. She then laughed, the absurdity of their situation getting to her. "Somehow I always thought that the first time we were naked together would be a memorable experience, but I never counted on this."
"Tell me about it," Caroline groaned, "god I need an ice pack! Then maybe we should think about putting some clothes on."
Redge paused, suddenly aware of their proximity and the effect it was having on their bodies. She could actually still feel the sexual energy from their interrupted encounter flowing through her inherited body, and obviously Caroline could as well.
Redge went and found an ice pack from a small fridge and handed it to Caroline. They then gathered their clothes and started to dress.
"Um, should I wear this?" Redge asked, holding up the bra.
"Not if you don't want too. My T-shirt should do the trick." Caroline held up the body hugging T-shirt he had arrived in. Redge shook her head, pulling on the female briefs, trying to ignore the messages her body was sending her male mind. She looked down at her breasts and large nipples then pulled the top over her head covering her new breasts. She looked down again and saw her large nipples clearly outlined in the fabric.
* * *
Saul stood at the edge of a huge maelstrom of hurtling energy. It looked like a Technicolor whirlwind, with dark shadowy undertones. John stood a little further from the seething vortex which was both intoxicating to behold, but intimidating at the same time.
"What do you think it is?" John pondered aloud. He had his suspicions but did not intend on sharing them with Saul. The circling twister expanded and contracted, throbbing with a life of its own. It had sprung up suddenly, engulfing a park bench.
"I don't know. Perhaps it's a gateway to another dimension," Saul said, scratching his chin.
"Maybe. But I think we should keep our distance," John cautioned. John had already accused Saul of giving them a different drug, but his curiosity had overridden his anger and he had elected to explore with Saul.
Saul disdained John, convinced that he lacked the guts to make a truly momentous scientific discovery. John was hesitant and spineless whereas he was a true explorer willing to risk all to be the first. He saw this expedition as a race to the top where only the bravest and strongest would win. Saul extended his hand towards the seething and spinning mass in font of him, trailing his finger in it.
The self important man felt an awareness through his fingers. Another mind! In a flash Saul realised that it was a persons dream. Grinning in triumph, he turned to John, about to tell his yellow associate what he had discovered when he felt something grip his hand and pull him from his feet. Saul went hurtling around the periphery of the vortex, drawn into the depths of the strangers fantasy.
John watched for a moment as Saul disappeared into the raging torrent, then shrugged. "So you can enter peoples dreams, but can you get out?" John muttered, having known all along what it was. John noted that Saul's umbilical still protruded from the rippling flux.
Moving to a safe distance, John sat back and waited for the dream to finish, amazed that Saul had been so reckless as to enter an unknown persons mind. He worried for a moment that Saul might be dead but decided that Murphy's law would not permit it. After all, arseholes don't get killed in real life, only in fiction.
* * *
The computer started beeping.
Redge ran to see what was happening, not finished dressing yet. She looked at the sensor readings and noted that Saul was in a fairly bad way, the machine was not waking him though. Unfortunately Redge didn't know how to operate the computer to make it wake Saul. "Something is happening to Saul!"
Walking slowly to the tank, Caroline looked at Saul's body, his face warping in horror. Scales were developing on the mans body and a second pair of arms were developing just below his armpits. The mans entire body was slowly changing into some monstrous creature.
"Oh, hell! You better get over here, Saul's becoming a monster!" the young man bellowed.
* * *
John stood behind a businessman on a park bench reading the paper over his shoulder. Every now and then the person would turn around and look inquisitively in John's direction, as though he sensed Johns incorporeal presence. Noting this phenomena, John pondered curiously if the physical and astral worlds were somehow connected.
* * *
The creature crouched in the darkness, dark wet liquid flowing over its dark scaly hide, eyeing its prey with cold green reptilian eyes. The quarry leant against the uneven brick tunnel, moss and filth smearing his back as he gathered his breath. The poorly shaven man looked furtively in all directions, trying to pierce the darkness which his fear had turned into a dark inky fog.
Letting out a high piercing screech, the nightmare scuttled rapidly towards its victim, small vestigial arms rubbing together in anticipation, its sinuous primary arms heaving it along the walls and ceiling towards the bum. Long talons like obsidian knives flashed in the dark sewer, alerting the bum to the phantoms presence. Somehow the terrified man dove into the dark lumpy liquid at the last moment, evading his personal demon.
The abomination lashed out at the uneven brick tunnel in rage, dislodging chunks of mortar and brick. Every time it got close, the man somehow eluded it and escaped. It was as though the man were goading the creature, except the man became more and more frightened as time went by. The phantasm could feel its preys fear as a palpable object, hanging in the air like an intoxicating odor to be savoured.
Saul was completely aware that his mind had become subjugated to the bums nightmare entity, a fantasy creature of unthinking malevolence which had plagued the derelict for years. The students awareness was being thoroughly intermixed with the darkness of the monsters one track mind, an abominable evil created by the power of the derelicts fear.
Saul realised that the inevitable outcome of their encounter was predetermined. The bum would escape into wakefulness when he was captured, dispelling the nightmare to the dark recesses of his mind, freeing Saul from his figment. In the mean time however, Saul was going insane, gradually becoming one with the beast.
The vagrant emerged from the vile liquid further down the corridor, struggling against the current which he had just created in his mind. The creature looked at the wino, eyes narrowing as the animal mind which had overpowered Saul focused solely on its target. It hurtled along the roof of the passage, ripping clumps of lichen off the walls as it defied gravity like some monstrous spider, launching itself at the hobo just as the man tumbled from the tunnels torrent over a waterfall.
There was the rushing of air and the cold bite of water on the bums face. The creature which had once been Saul latched onto the vagrants body and tore it apart.
Finally! The creature cawed in feral triumph as the vagrants body disintegrated in it's claws. The wind and water faded but the monster kept falling, the world spinning around it.
* * *
"God damn it Saul, you're one ugly bastard!" Redge muttered. The transformation was complete. Saul had become a thin sinuous fiend, most of his features warped beyond recognition. A muzzled face, pitch black scales, a pair of vestigial arms, long double jointed arms which ended in three razor sharp jet-black talons, a smooth crotch and talon feet life a birds with only two toes. Saul looked horrid.
* * *
The bum on the seat sat up in horror, clutching his soiled paper bag to his chest, his clothes damp from alcohol and fear. He took a gulp of the cheap sherry in his paper bag and shuddered. The dream had been the same. It was always the same and always so real. The dream was the bums own personal hell. No matter how much he tried to escape it through alcohol and denial, it continued to eat away at him, as it had done for the last twenty years. The creature gnawed at the edges of his mind, even in his waking moments. His Nightmare. This time it almost got him too.
On the seat across the path, the businessman glanced up from his financial times, looking at the bum. The white collar worker shook his head in disgust at the waste of life.
* * *
John looked up from the paper and saw the dream start to dissipate, shrinking into whip like tendrils which whizzed around the bums head, drawing inwards. It was incredible to behold, but then so was the creature which was spun to the ground by the derelicts mental fibres. The creature lay for a moment in shock, staring at it's empty claws, then climbed groggily to its feet.
John took a step backwards in fear as he appraised the fearsome visage of the beast. The creature towered nine feet tall. There was something hideous about the way it looked around in predatory anger. As it sighted the bum, the brutal beast roared in glee, pouncing upon the unsuspecting vagrant. It ripped its taloned pincers across the mans throat, a strange black liquid gushing out into the astral plain. The man grabbed at his throat.
Reaching back it plunged its scalpel like claw into the mans gut and vivisected him, extracting dark phantom organs from the mans stomach, causing the man to double over in pain. It then grabbed the man by the bleeding throat and rammed its fist into the top of his head, pulling out dark, lumpy matter.
It held this to its mouth and slowly devoured it, a grotesque tongue lolling out of its head, deep slurping noises echoing through the astral plane.
* * *
The man reading the paper looked up in annoyance when the sleeping bum let out a scream and clutched his throat. The derelict then fell forward, clutching his stomach in pain. The man folded his paper in irritation, preparing to leave. The bum suddenly spasmed and went limp, sagging face down on the park bench.
Suddenly worried and mad at himself for being inhumane, the businessman approached the bum and shook him gently. "Hey are you okay buddy," he loudly asked the comatose man. There was no response so the businessman pulled the bum to the ground and rolled him onto his side, preparing to administer first aid. He looked around for assistance and spotted a jogger and waved him down, handing the exerciser his mobile phone.
* * *
John watched in disgust and fear as he slowly realised that the monster was Saul. The creature was messily eating dark remains which had appeared out of a hazy fog. Studying what was happening, John realised that somehow the creature had created a replica of the mans internal organs in the astral plain, similar to a dream construction. It was now eating these phantom organs.
The creature which had once been Saul paused in its feast and glanced up at the business man assisting the unconscious bum, its face contorting into a feral mask of rage. The lung it was eating whirled in its hands, disappearing just as the derelicts dream had.
In a animalistic leap it pounced upon the businessman, seemingly weightless on his back. The creature savagely raked its claws along the mans ribs and punctured his back from behind, producing a dark beating heart from his ribcage.
* * *
"Call 000 when I tell you too. I need more inf-," the man didn't finish his sentence, pain lancing along his side then his heart. He too dropped to the ground unconscious
The jogger held the phone for a moment in surprise. There was a palpable evil to the air and a huge scaly creature shimmered in front of him for a moment. Dropping the phone, the jogger started to run. He didn't get very far before he to was rendered unconscious.
* * *
"So what do you make of it?" Redge asked, indicating Saul's body.
"Well so far we've had two people exchange bodies and one person become a monster. John's looking like he'll be the next victim, going on what's happened so far," Caroline responded in his deep voice.
"Maybe the drug utilises a persons untapped psychic potential. This could be Saul's psyche fully realising itself and changing his body to match with his mind," Caroline suggested.
"Uh huh. That makes sense. It would explain why he looks so damn ugly... but what about John. And us for that matter. John hasn't changed and I'm certain that I've never harbored any desires to become a woman," Redge said.
Caroline nudged Redge in the side, "it could have been something else.".
"Oh, yeah, right," Redge muttered.
* * *
John watched the creature apparently massacre the businessman and then pounce on the jogger, ripping an ectoplasmic spine from the fleeing mans back, then crushing his head in a vice like grip. Warily John retreated, trying to use the chair and park trees for cover.
The scaly nightmare finished with the jogger, watching it's surroundings with malevolent slitted eyes. It believed that it had killed, that was all that it cared about. A noise attracted it's attention, and it turned its reptilian head to regard the astral figure of John. A faint recognition caused it to study John, Saul's awareness struggling against what he had become for a brief instant. Then the savage urge to hunt, kill and devour overwhelmed it again.
John made eye contact with the beast, saw the brief internal struggle that turned into a bestial resolve and decided to wait no longer. John turned and bolted, his fear and anxiety somehow quickening his pace, the dark trees flying past him incredibly fast. He almost flew onto the street, hiking onto an oncoming car, taking a leaping vault onto the roof of a nearby building. He looked behind him in surprise, amazed at what he had done, then saw the creature hurtling onto the hood of the vehicle he had just leaped off, flowing through the windscreen to get at the driver.
* * *
Malvin Smith drove his new yellow Volvo very slowly, taking up both lanes as required by Volvo driver law. There was a sudden booming sound from his hood and Malvin gently applied his brakes, aware that at thirty kilometres per hour his vehicle was going way past manufacturer specifications and that the wear on his break pads at this velocity was very high. Malvin never stopped, being rendered unconscious, his head lolling forward, his foot slamming on the accelerator, the car veering into a single lane.
Passersby looked on in open mouthed astonishment as the yellow Volvo drove down the street in a single lane, at the speed limit. They scattered in fear, realising that something terrible was happening. The Volvo overtook a little lady in a triumph, ran a red light and crashed into the rear of a bus.
* * *
While Saul was busy attacking the driver of the Volvo, John made his hasty retreat, watching the event from a safe distance. The monster was caught in the collision, but being crushed between a heavy Volvo and a bus did nothing what-so-ever to slow its rampage down. The monster sighted another person, making a murderous beeline towards him.
John realised that he had to get back to his body and wake Saul before someone was killed. He willed himself back to his body along his umbilical, going at a recklessly fast pace, the astral reflection of the world blurring past him.
If he had been concentrating on where he was rather then what he had to do, he may not have traced his umbilical into the maelstrom of a dream nexus. Fortunately for John, this dream wasn't a nightmare.
* * *
"I think we're losing John!" Caroline said, his deep voice sounding unnatural to his ears. John's features were slowly changing.
"I'm going in again," Redge said. "I need to know what's happening to them, see if I can help them. If I start to change as well, wake me!"
"Hey, that's my body you're wearing, you need my permission to put it at risk!" Caroline said, still holding the ice-pack to his head.
Redge looked at her old face, a resigned expression on her new face.
"Okay, you have my permission," Caroline said. Suddenly Caroline snaked a hand around Redge's waist and kissed her. The kiss lasted for some time, both of them surprising themselves as their bodies reacted to the chemistry which the two of them had possessed before the exchange. Caroline broke off from the kiss, his eyes wide in surprise at the intensity of the moment. "But take care, honey," he said, trying to impart the levity of the situation with the tone of his voice.
Redge grinned sheepishly, stumbling and tripping over her feet as she walked backwards from Caroline, turning and bumping into a table. 'Klutz,' she chided herself, 'what the hell was that!'
"I need another tablet," Redge said, searching for Saul's drugs. She found them after a quick search.
"But the tablets aren't tested. You've already had one and we don't know what the safe dosage is," Caroline said.
"Well, I'll just have to risk it."
Redge held up one tablet. Walking to the tank she stripped, taking another look down at her pendulous and large breasts. She swallowed her tablet and climbed into the tank. Darkness enveloped her.
* * *
John shook his head groggily, trying to figure out where he was. Looking around he saw that he was in a large room with posters of rock bands and crud action movies plastered all over the walls. The only piece of furniture in this odd place was a huge bed, upon which a young, heavily muscled teenager was being ravished by three buxom and well endowed women. The adolescent seemed to be enjoying himself immeasurably, but lacking any real imagination, he was settling for the standard missionary position.
The psychology student was amazed at how immature adolescent sex fantasies were. He could almost sense the palpable lust which the entire room exuded. Realising that retreat would be the best course of action once again, John headed for the large exit to the dreamers bed room.
Just as he was leaving, he felt a presence focus on him. "And where do you think you're going?"
"Um." John said coyly, realising that somehow he had been incorporated into the dream. He looked down, half expecting what he saw. He now possessed a buxom body, just like the three girls that had been pleasuring the adolescent. John realised that somehow he had replaced one of the girls. Fortunately the dream which John had entered was not the highly refined, recurring dream of the mentally unbalanced, just the healthy fantasy of a fourteen year old. The dreamers will was not enslaving Johns, merely bending it a little. Deciding that resistance would not be a good idea, lest the dreamer decide to enforce the dream upon him John decided to go along with the flow of things, hoping that the dream would end soon.
Apparently the dreamer seemed more interested in her than the figments of his imagination, running a hand along her curvy and voluptuous body. Feeling an intense pleasure and an uncontrollable lust, John pushed aside the brunette that was currently straddling the man and slowly lowered herself onto his engorged member. She arched her back, her large breasts jutting out from her body for the man to play with, rocking backwards and forwards, her vagina clenching like a fist upon the dreamers body.
The up and down motion continued, and she started to beg him to go deeper, harder just like she enjoyed with the girls she had slept with. Somewhere along the way the two other girls vanished, but she hardly noticed, engrossed as she was in the act of pleasuring him. It was her sole goal in life, the focus of her being. Johns ego sailed troubled seas, and it did not survive the encounter unscathed. When her lover climaxed, he grunted, cum flowing into her, the room spinning, depositing the girl back in the astral plane.
Climbing to her feet, John was quite amazed at how much she had enjoyed the experience. The feeling of being the woman faded a little, but her astral body remained the same, a buxom brunette. She had always preferred blondes, dammit.
* * *
"Well, there goes John," Caroline said, amazed that the man had transformed into a beautiful woman right before his eyes. Like stop motion photography or computer morphing except it was real....
"So what else can go wrong?" Caroline muttered groggily, his head still pounding.
* * *
Redge climbed from Caroline's body, expecting to be greeted by his own form in the ethereal plane, but Redge remained a she. She briefly worried what this might mean in the long term, but decided that she had best follow Johns umbilical, while she could.
Strangely she felt as though she could do anything, all she had to do was think it into reality. She imagined herself clad in clothes and there was a strange billowing whirl of clouds and she was in a pair of pants and a form hugging top. The top was a little to tight and left nothing to the imagination, but Redge left it, not expecting to encounter anyone in this strange realm.
Tracking the vinculum was not hard, but when she reached the swirling mass of the teenagers dream which the cord led into, Redge balked. Unsure exactly what it was, Redge scouted the outside of the shifting entity, keeping a wary distance. Johns umbilical did not come out of the dynamic energy field in front of her. Whatever this thing was, John was inside it.
Redge decided to wait, unwilling to enter this phenomenon. Unbeknownst to Redge, a figure approached her slowly from. There was a sound behind her and Redge turned in surprise.
She sat dumbfounded for a moment when she saw the approaching figure. It was her own male body.
"Caroline, what are you doing here?" she asked.
"I don't know. I passed out and couldn't return to your male body so I thought I'd come and get you," he said.
Concern creased Redge's face as she considered the magnitude of what Caroline said. "We have to get you back to my body! What happens if there is something wrong with it?"
"Yeah, I think there might be," Caroline said, "I don't feel too good."
They started to follow their umbilicals back to the lab, when Redge noticed something very bad. Caroline's umbilical just finished. Something had severed it!
"Hey I feel much better now," Caroline said with gusto, his form starting to dissolve into a being of light.
Redge looked at Caroline and realised that her male body must have died. A swirling white cloud appeared above Caroline's soul, drawing it upwards. Looking at the departing soul, Redge felt a deep loss and then anger.
"No, it's not fair! You're not going anywhere," Redge yelled, leaping up and grabbing the detached umbilical, pulling it back towards herself. She wrapped it around her arm and heaved, a mad tug of war for Caroline's soul. Desperately Redge prayed that they could stay together. Redge didn't want to lose Caroline. As though it had a life of its own the umbilical started to wrap around Redge's torso, merging with it, sensing his unspoken desires.
Caroline's dorm coalesced into her original female body.
Somehow the umbilical formed a link between them. They now shared the same umbilical.
"How the hell?" Caroline asked, looking down at her newly returned female body.
"Beats me!" Redge, now her twin responded. She felt completely drained. Bringing someone back from deaths door had sapped her of almost all her newly acquired psychic energy.
"You've over-dosed on the drug, that must be how you could do that," Caroline said, then a reverie came over her voice. "Oh man, that was too weird. There was this long tunnel with a light at the end. I went to the end and I was there! Heaven. I looked around and there were these bearded guys with halos, wings and harps sitting on clouds, everyone loved me..."
"Really?" Redge asked in awe.
"No, just that cloud you saw," Caroline said sheepishly. She gripped her umbilical, thankful for its renewal, uncertain what it would mean to share the same cord. They might be stuck together in the same body...
"Okay, I'll be right with you, but first I'm going to check up on John and Saul."
They parted company. Caroline returning to her body, Redge returned to where the whirling dream had been.
Redge found the dream gone, a naked woman standing where it had been. She was extremely well endowed and attractive, a merry grin fixed on her face.
"Caroline?" The girl asked in a husky voice.
"No, Redge," she answered.
"I'm John," the brunette girl giggled vacuously. "But John isn't really appropriate, is it? Maybe Jean... No I'm John!" she said firmly, struggling against the bimbo persona which she had recently donned. "You got caught as well, did you?"
"Sort of. Look you should get back in your body. Where's Saul?" Redge was suddenly hit with the realisation that if John had nearly become a bimbo, then Saul may be fighting of the instincts of a monster.
"Oh, shit. He's gone bad and attacked four people at least! He's a really yucky monster... he's a monster. You know I think I need a shrink? I'm having an identity crisis. I was in this dream with my master. He is so gorgeous.. No- I was in an adolescents dream. He made me into a sex toy!! He messed with my head."
Redge nodded, wondering what exactly happened to people that entered dreams. Nothing good, that was for sure. She looked at John and reached out experimentally with her mind, trying to probe Johns mind. She connected!
Redge found scanning Johns altered psyche very easy, but the results were scary. There were still all of the former mans memories and thought patterns, but overlaying that was a very simplistic, air headed persona. John had a split personality of sorts, his original self and the bimbo's.
"Look I might be able to handle Saul, I think I've got more control on things because I over dosed on the drug. Just a little test, but can you make clothes?" Redge asked.
"Clothes, what for? Why would I want to wear clothes... Um, yeah clothes. Give me a tick, I seem to have a one track mind at the moment. Thank god, you're a girl!" John furrowed her brow in concentration and slowly a mist developed around her bouncing breasts and nether regions. It took a while, but she created a nice slinky bra and G-string.
"Is that all you could do?" Redge wondered.
"Well, anything more would diminish my assets... Hey that was almost intelligent." John said. "Be careful of Saul, he's lost it. Like gone. Mentally deranged. He's big, mean and really quick, a fucking nightmare."
"Can you read my mind?" Redge asked.
John tried to but she couldn't and she told Redge as much.
Redge nodded and imagined how bad Saul could be, even without her strengths. She shuddered and wished she didn't have such a vivid imagination. Redge and John separated, John returning to the lab. Redge realised that she could have done something about John, but Saul was her first priority. She began following his umbilical.
* * *
"What do you mean? Saul's attacking people!" Caroline asked.
"He's become that monster and is on a rampage," John said. "You know that you look cute when you're worried?" She ran a hand suggestively over her body. "Wait, ignore that last comment."
"So what should we do?" Caroline asked John.
"Hope Redge can deal with him."
* * *
The creature looked around at the unconscious bodies in the cinema, the flickering screen lighting up the seats and showing a grisly range of astral cadavers in agonised postures. It held a dark ectoplasmic skull and leisurely ate the inside gray matter as a film played on the screen before it. The creature laughed, a sickly wheezing, high pitched chortle. That Jim Carey was a comic genius, there were just so many subtle layers to his humour.
"Saul, I know you're in there. I can see you. You have to stop this and try and regain control. You have the strong will, don't you?" Redge said, having found her quarry.
The creature growled, a deep throated menacing rumble. It dropped the skull, which dissolved into thin air, turning to look at its unwanted guest. The insane creature had been happy. A room full of astral corpses and a Jim Carry movie, it didn't get much better than that.
Redge appraised the creatures inhuman visage. Whatever she had hoped to find of Saul was long gone, buried under the mind of a brutal killing machine, the savage and primitive instincts of a nightmare spawned monstrosity.
The creature roared a challenge and leaped from its seat, bounding into the aisle, charging ferociously towards Redge.
"Mother," Redge said as she closed the door hurriedly, turned tail and ran. The creature crashed through the door with enough momentum to cause the door to shudder on it's hinges on the physical plain. As it tripped to the ground, it managed to drag a bladed claw along the retreating girls back.
Arching in pain, Redge dove for the floor, through the concrete slab into the car park underneath. She shuddered as she passed through the concrete which seemed to grab at every fibre of her astral being. Redge dropped from the ceiling to land limply on the bonnet of a car, the sound of her impact causing a couple to pause and stare in surprise as her figure shimmered before them.
* * *
Caroline screamed in pain, jagged cuts sprouting along her back, then wilted to the ground. John rushed to Caroline, particularly concerned. Caroline wished that Redge would get back here now. Strangely her injuries started to heal.
* * *
Redge could feel fire burning on her back and willed the wound to heal. She sat groggily on the hood, trying to figure out where she was. A dark scaly creature stirred some distance from her, apparently suffering from moving through the concrete slab as well. The monsters presence brought her back to full awareness.
Redge prepared to start running again and could feel a tugging on her umbilical, but realised that if she fled, Saul would continue attacking people. "No fear," she muttered to herself, trying to figure out a way to deal with this creature.
The beast rose to its imposing height, cold lifeless eyes flashing in anger. It snarled, bringing its wicked claw to its mouth and tasting the blood, flaunting a grin that was all teeth. Since its prey wasn't fleeing, it slowly circled savouring the fear that Redge was exuding.
"I can beat you," Redge promised.
The creature laughed evily. Apparently it was not as mindless as Redge had assumed. It slowly made it's way too the defenseless couple, a sinister and graceful walk of death. It seemed to be mocking Redge, showing that she was powerless to stop it.
It reached leisurely towards the young man, eyes firmly glued on Redge's horrified face. It lashed out at the mans arm suddenly, the victim reaching to his arm in surprised pain.
Redge's horror turned to anger. She could imagine a knife in her hand which she would throw at the creatures evil face. She could feel the hilt in her hand. Unthinking she threw the knife, as though in a dream. The dagger glinted and seemed to flare with the fire of her rage. The creature reacted quickly, bringing its hand up to block the blade.
Both of them stood for a stunned moment. Redge in realisation of her power, the creature in shock at the sharp blade which had impaled it's dark and armored palm.
"One all," Redge said, using her angers fire to fashion armor for herself. She imagined herself as one of her favourite ninja comic book heroes. Thin, flexible plates wove together like a second skin out of thin air. The power armor did not have to be rational, this was a dream after all. The hard unyielding metal became a fluid hide, to match the creatures. Redge found the rage which suffused her body was flowing into the protective covering, placing her mind on a higher level, a distant and passionless place. She watched the creature impassively now, confident in her superiority.
The nightmare beast gripped the blade protruding from its paw and savagely yanked it from its flesh, letting out a blood curdling roar, the couple forgotten. It hurled the weapon back at Redge, following the projectile with a rapid charge towards her. The monster closed on her like lightning, but to Redge the beast seemed to be moving in slow motion. In a single graceful move Redge plucked the thrown blade from the air. Stepping towards the creature Redge lashed out at the inner biceps of the striking creature, then flipping the knife in her hand and slicing its other arm.
The creature tried to kill her, lash out at her with its claws but they were no longer part of its body, the knife of Redge's rage having removed its limbs completely. It looked at its two stumps in bewilderment
"Saul, are you in there?" Redge asked.
The pitiless eyes that flared with insane rage faltered for a moment then narrowed into insane pin pricks. It snarled, bobbing forward rapidly to bite the girls face off. Before it was half way there, Redge's blade dived up, under the creatures chin, through bone and into it's brain.
"I guess not," Redge said, shaking her head. She dropped the blade and waited. The creatures frame buckled and warped, becoming a glowing nimbus.
A radiant cloud formed over the soul, which started to rise. Just as it merged with the swirling cloud, Redge could have sworn she heard someone say thank you. Redge slowly began retracing her umbilical back to her body.
* * *
'Can you hear me?' Redge mentally asked when she returned to her body.
'Yes,' Caroline thought, 'we share a mind after all.'
"This is so strange," Redge said aloud, her voice still Caroline's.
"You're telling me," Caroline said, then laughed.
"Are you all right?" John asked looking up from the tank which housed Saul's remains.
"Fine, Redge and I seem to be sharing a body on a permanent basis, now that Redge's body is dead," Caroline explained.
"Oh, right. What about Saul?" John asked.
"Somehow I doubt that Saul told anyone about this little experiment. I think that it would be prudent to dispose of the evidence and... God there is a mess isn't there?"
"Yep. I don't even exist anymore," John said than started to giggle like a little girl. She recovered after a moment, holding up her hand in apology. "Sorry, it just comes over me."
"That's all right. I know lot's of psychologists that can help you with that problem," Redge said.
"That was Redge wasn't it?" John asked.
"Yes," replied Caroline.
"Man having a conversation with you could get confusing." John said.
"Well lets clean up this mess," Redge said, "the last thing I want is for this to get out. I don't want to be a science exhibition."
"I don't know. I'd like to get poked and prodded by scientists," John giggled vacuously.
"Oh god what about my body?" Redge wondered.
"Well you died from a concussion. All we need to do is put you in a place where you could have fallen over."
"Do you think that would work?" Redge asked.
"Maybe," Caroline said.
"God, I'm covering up my own death, this is crazy."
* * *
"I'd like to tell my parents," Redge said. They had cleaned up the mess and were trying to sort out what they were going to do about their current situation. John had returned to his small flat. He was going to move in as his sister.
"We can't, not yet," Caroline said.
"What about my friends?"
"You think I like this. I've got to share my life with you! Everything. Toilet, shower, dressing, eating, sleeping, periods-"
"Periods? Oh no!"
"Don't interrupt me! It feels strange when you take over our mouth. Periods aren't that bad." Caroline explained. "Look you know we had something before, maybe this can be like a marriage of sorts. It might even have its benefits."
"Like this," Caroline said running a hand over her body.
"Hmmm. Maybe it does have possibilities..."
I have to apologise for this one. It started out as T/G but wandered more towards the horror/action area. Unfortunately I get a rudimentary plot in my mind then elaborate on it, often diverging from my original intentions quite dramatically. Well until I try and resurrect it, this is it for now.