Authors: Carly Fall,Allison Itterly
Tags: #Literature & Fiction, #Romance, #Romantic Suspense, #Science Fiction, #Mystery & Suspense, #Suspense
The Dream Walker
© 2013 by Westward Publishing
All Rights Reserved
The Six Saviors in Reading Order:
The Light Within Me
Finding My Faith
The Dream Walker
This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places and incidents either are products of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously. Any resemblance to actual events or locales or persons, living or dead, is entirely coincidental.
Note from author: if you come across someone with glowing, silver eyes, please contact me ASAP. That would be really cool to meet them.
I have to dedicate this book to my editor, Allison Itterly. Thank you for your guidance, and for working through difficult times and biblical floods. I don’t think I can every express how much your enthusiasm, constructive criticism and ideas help me. I’m so luck to work with you!
Abby stood among thousands of knives stretching as far as the eye could see. Some of the blades were broken, while others were intact. The bright light glinting off the metal was almost blinding, and he squinted as he took in the scene, knowing he should leave, but curiosity got the best of him.
What was this?
For someone who seemed as happy as Abby, he would expect her dreams to be filled with unicorns, kittens, and giggles. But knives? He had to check it out
—to see what would happen next—so he remained in the shadows, just outside of the bright light.
What do you have going on here, Abby?” he whispered.
She grasped a long, shiny silver knife in her right hand, her flowing yellow dress reflecting off the blade. Staring straight ahead, her auburn hair hung to her shoulders, her pretty face showing no emotion. Nico detected a faint smell in the air, one he recognized but couldn
’t quite place. She stood there for a long time, simply holding the long knife as if she was preparing for battle.
Suddenly, there was a disturbance in front of Abby. It danced and swirled, almost as if someone had lit a fire, and smoke drifted up from the ground. After a moment, it became a form, and Noah shimmered to life in the dream, wearing all black and staring at Abby. He also held a knife and didn
’t look friendly. Abby’s eyes narrowed, and she took a step back. She didn’t seem afraid, but more uncertain. They stared at each other for a long while, neither of them moving a muscle. It reminded Nico of an old-fashioned Wild West gunfight where the two gunslingers stood still until one of them flinched, and then they shot the shit out of each other.
Nico waited, holding his breath to see what would happen. Anxiety ripped through him.
Abruptly, the dreamscape starting spinning, signaling Abby was about to wake up.
He bolted upright, his room dark except for the silver glow of his eyes.
He never should have dream-walked.
Nico jogged through the desert. The temperature gauge read ninety-nine when he had left the silo, and he was sweating profusely.
He needed to get out of the silo for a bit, and wanted to do so alone. Jogging in the desert in the middle of summer pretty much guaranteed that.
Having been up most of the night with a good case of insomnia, he was tired, but he pressed on. He thought of the absurdity: a Dream Walker with insomnia. It was so ha-ha not funny.
Guilt ate at him. He had made a promise to himself and to the Six Saviors he wouldn’t use his ability of dream-walking on them. He earned their trust, and as an outcast his whole life, he finally found a place where he belonged, something he never had with his family. But last night he had been a bit desperate. Although he stood at six foot five and weighed in at two hundred and thirty pounds, when insomnia struck, he felt as lonely and as vulnerable as a child. And like said child, he wanted to connect with someone—anyone—to squash the feelings.
He should have just sat there in his boxers and stared at the TV until CNN bored him to into sleep. There were plenty of lonely people in the world who were big boys and girls and just dealt with the feeling. They didn
’t have the ability to dream-walk. They sat up at night by themselves, the insomnia their companion. He should have been like them and just forgot his ability.
But he hadn
’d broken the trust, and gone dream-walking last night.
He had lay down and closed his eyes, focusing on putting himself in a light trance. Having never really honed his ability, it was a crapshoot on whose dreamscape he ended up in.
Concentrating on Jovan, Nico found his dreamland after a few tries, but immediately backed out. Of course, Jovan was dreaming about sex. No surprise there, and Nico certainly didn’t need to see that.
Next, he stumbled onto Blake, the half-breed Colonist. The poor bastard was dreaming of Annis telling him that she loved him. Blake really needed to get over her because this was just pathetic. Nico almost felt sorry for him, but not quite.
He tried to find Rayner, but had no luck. However, he tripped onto the dreamscape of Noah’s mate, Abby.
He thought about the symbolism of her dream and what it meant.
Knives in a dreamscape had many meanings: the fact that she was standing among the knives represented that she was trying to make a difficult decision. Some were broken, which indicated that she was confused, but she knew anger was not the answer to solving her problems.
The fact she carried a knife led Nico to believe she was angry and felt the need to be more divisive, which was a direct contradiction to his previous hypothesis. So, Abby was angry, but knew she shouldn
’t be. That had to be it.
Her yellow dress was interesting. If it had been a pleasant dream, the yellow would have signified things like happiness and harmony. But the knives didn
’t bode well for a nice dream, and the yellow only reaffirmed that she was fearful or unable to make a decision.
The bright light indicated that she was looking for clarity on a situation.
Noah emerging in her dream with a knife symbolized his dominance over her in her waking life. Was Noah what she needed clarity on?
Guilt ate at him. He never should have invaded her most private space. Whatever she had going in, he shouldn
’t be privy to it, and he once again cursed himself and his damn ability.
He remembered the first time his parents had discovered his rare skill when he was a young child.
Upon waking, he had ran to his mother and told her every detail of the dream she had the previous night. Nico still remembered the dream in great detail: his mother’s smoky light blue form whispered through the trees of the forests on SR44, almost as if she were a snake. She slithered along the forest floor, then twirled her way up to the top of the trees, bursting out of the foliage into the night sky.
You wish to return to the forest,
,” he had said excitedly in their native language. The ability to interpret the dream seemed natural and came with ease, as if all of a sudden he realized he knew another language fluently.
His mother had been a Forest Dweller on SR44, but she had left to mate Nico
’s father, a high-ranking military figure in the city. She was very superstitious and spiritual, and the fact that her son had an ability only heard of in folk legends just about sent her over the edge. And as it had turned out, she did want to head back to the forest, because a year later she’d left her family to do just that.
From the moment his mother found out about his ability, he had been an outcast in his family. His parents actually built a small shelter outside of their home where Nico slept. Word traveled quickly about Nico’s dream-walking, his mother telling anyone who would listen of her fears of her son and how he possessed the skills of the
, which was the equivalent of the devil, in human terms.
As a child, Nico didn
’t understand his mother’s turn of affection on him. The pain at her banishment still ripped through him when he thought of his childhood, an open wound on his soul that might scab over, but never fully scarred.
had left, his father turned the blame on Nico. According to his father, it was Nico’s dream-walking ability that sent his
back to the forests. As Nico looked back on it, his
had most likely wanted to get away from his father’s strict military ways, and Nico’s ability offered her the excuse. His father made sure everyone knew it was Nico’s fault his
had left. It was as if his parents pinned their own faults and mistakes on him.
From then on, he
’d been hesitant to use his ability, but he did every now and then to quell the loneliness.
He stopped and put his hands on his knees, breathing hard, and wondered what decision Abby had to make.
So tell me all about this dream-walker stuff, Nico,”Noah said as he leaned back in his leather chai
Nico sighed. It had been six months since he was taken in by the Six Saviors, and no one had brought up his so-called gift of dream-walking. He just assumed they all trusted him to stay out of their dreams, but apparently not.
And they shouldn’t, but he needed to convince them otherwise.
Noah, I don’t like to dream-walk, and I would never use it on anyone here in the silo. You have my word.”
He hated lying, but didn
’t think the truth would go over very well. Jesus, with this lying stuff down, he should think about becoming a politician. It wasn’t as if he dream-walked all the time. In fact, he’d only done it once on his own since he moved in.
Noah nodded, a serious expression clouding his face. Nico tried to remember the last time he
’d seen Noah smile, but couldn’t. “I know you wouldn’t use it on us, Nico. I’m thinking maybe we can use it as a weapon against the Colonists and their lovely children.”
Nico sat up, surprised. He ran his hand through his hair as guilt ate at his gut. He liked that Noah trusted him, and hated that he shouldn
’t. He made a vow to himself to not dream-walk on any one of the Saviors or their mates again. If he had to do a
and stab himself in the gut like Cohen did, he would.
Throughout his life, he was marked with a scarlet X, so to speak, and people avoided him as word of his ability spread. No one wanted to be around someone who could invade the personal space of dreams. He was a loner, excommunicated from his family, from his people, and wanting nothing more than to belong.
That was why it was critical to him that Noah and the rest of the Saviors, their mates, and that half-breed Blake knew that he could be trusted to not invade their dreams. He finally felt he had landed in a place where he belonged—a place where he was accepted. He didn’t want to do anything to break the trust the others had in him. Well, he wouldn’t do it again.
However, he was also intrigued by Noah
’s line of thinking.
He never considered using his dream-walking ability as a weapon on a sleeping Colonist.
“Interesting,” he said to Noah, trying to wrap his mind around the shift in thinking. From a pariah to a badass weapon . . . definitely thought-provoking.
So, how does it work? What do you need to do?” Noah asked.
Nico studied the white screen that hung from the wall and glanced over at the bank of computers in the corner, trying to get his thoughts in order.
Use dream-walking as a weapon.
He crossed his arms over his chest. “I’m not sure how to explain it. I just have the ability to leave my body and travel into another person’s dreamscape.”
Noah leaned forward and rested his forearms on the table in front of him. “Do you need to be asleep?” he asked.
Nico shook his head. “No. I can do it when I’m asleep, or I can put myself in a light trance.”
And how hard is it to get into that trance?”
Nico shrugged, remembering the other night when he skipped in on Abby
Pretty easy, I guess,” Nico said. “I just need to focus and relax.”
“Excellent. I want you to practice getting in and out of that trance at the word go.”
“Now tell me about dream-walking. Can you interact with the person in the dream? Or do you just observe?”
Nico thought back to when he had dropped in on Cohen
’s dream many months ago. Cohen had been dreaming of Annis, and his dead mate, Mia, who he had lost when SR44 exploded. Nico had studied the dream, the symbolism in it, and come to the conclusion that Cohen loved Annis but was bound by an oath, a
, to his dead mate, Mia. The second time, Cohen invited Nico to invade his dreamscape so that he could understand what Mia was saying to him. Nico had done as asked, and translated to Cohen what the visions meant. Mia had wanted Cohen to let go of the oath he had made to her, and now Cohen and Annis were together.
I can do both. I can just observe, or I can interact with the dreamer if they are present in the dream. But I do have to admit, Noah, I’m rusty. It’s not something I practice. I actually like to forget I have the ability and live like a normal male.”
Man, were his pants on fire . . . liar, liar.
Noah nodded again. “I get it, Nico. I know you and I have talked about your crappy childhood and parents. But it’s time to change that way of thinking. Now, can you make them do things? Like kill themselves?”
Nico could see where Noah was going with the line of questioning. If Nico could drop in on a Colonist’s dream and tell him to kill himself, it would be a lot less dangerous for the Saviors, and there would be no blood on their hands.
“No, I can’t make anyone do anything they don’t want to do, but I’ve heard stories of Dream Walkers from the past visiting dreams so frequently, it literally drove the dreamers crazy.”
Is there a certain distance or circumference you need to be in? Do you need to be close, or can you be thousands of miles away?” Noah asked.
Nico could practically hear Noah
’s gears churning. It had never occurred to Nico to use his ability in this way, and he had to admit it was a little exciting to think about becoming a secret weapon for the Saviors, especially since he was shunned his whole life for this so-called “gift.”
I do have to be close, Noah. I could dream-walk on anyone in this silo, but I can’t dream-walk on Jerry down at the bar.” Nico was referring to the side-of-the-road bar down the highway about a mile that the Saviors liked to visit every now and then.
Okay, then,” Noah said, clasping his hands together. “Here’s what I want you to do. I want you to go check into a hotel. I’ll have Abby make some reservations for you at a nice one. I want you to practice dream-walking on the other people staying in that hotel until the rust falls off and your ability is all shiny and new. You can dream-walk on humans, right?”
“I don’t know. I’ve never done it.”
Well, let’s try the hotel thing. I’ll send Jovan and Rayner with you. They just got back from the East Coast and could use a few days of R&R. I’m sure they’ll want to bring Liberty and Faith as well, if that’s okay.”
Of course,” Nico said.
Noah stood and stretched his arms above his head.
“I’ve got to admit, I’m excited by this, Nico. Just think . . . we’ll be able to get inside the heads of some of these assholes.”
“It will be interesting, that’s for sure.”