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Shelley Robinson

<<Continued from chapter 1

Chapter 2--Fantasy Life

John put on Stark's mask and relaxed his body completely. He had to clear his mind and not permit his own emotions interfere. He has tried to go into Aeryn's mind on several occasions but has always been kicked out because he reacted strongly to whatever he was seeing. John felt that familiar floating sensation.

When John's eyes opened he was in a dimly lit hallway. He shook his head trying to shake the cobwebs from his mind.

John: (grinning to himself) "That has got to be what an acid trip feels like."

Harvey: "Where are we John?"

Harvey appeared wearing a smoking jacket and holding a pipe. John looked at him up and down.

John: "What is with the outfit?"

Harvey: "I like to look good."

John: "What are you doing here? I didn't summon you."

Harvey: "I felt your mind traveling. I thought I would come along encase you needed me."

John: "This is a private party, Harv."

Harvey: "A party!"

John: (angrily) "Oh no Harv. This is not a party that you are invited to."

Harvey: "If this is anything like that red head's party, I wouldn't miss it for the world."

John: (authoritatively "Out or back to the dumpster."

Harvey: "Fine I will leave but if you need me all you have to do is call."

John: "I won't."

Harvey: "Before I go just let me warn you...when a person doesn't want their thoughts invaded they often put up blocks. Just remember that these blocks are not real they are a defense mechanism, to use your Fraud's language."

John looked at him.

John: "What does that mean?"

Harvey disappeared.

John turned back to head toward the door at the end of the hall and was struck across the face by a Scarrean.


He laid his hand on his cheek.

John: "That sure as hell felt real."

The Scarrean grabbed him and threw him against the wall. He looked at the Scarrean grabbing for his pulse pistol. The pistol wasn't there. John was filled with panic until he remembered what Harvey told him about blocks. He collected his thoughts and focused. He stared at the Scarrean. Telling himself over and over again that he was not real. He is just a figment of Aeryn's imagination. He cannot stop me. He is not real. John closed his eyes repeating the phrase to himself. When John's eyes opened slowly he was standing at the door to Aeryn's mind. He looked behind him. The Scarrean was gone.

John: (smiling) "Thanks Harv, I owe you one."

John laid his hand on the doorknob. He took a deep breath and opened the door.


Jool was in the med bay monitoring John and Aeryn.She had seen the increase in John's heart rate but it went back to normal within microts.

When John opened the door the bright light assaulted his eyes. He blocked his eyes and stepped through the door. As his eyes adjusted he realized that it was sunlight. He lowered his hand and looked around. He couldn't believe what he was seeing.

There was lush green grass under his feet and a bright blue sky over his head. He held his arms out to the side and turned around in a circle staring up at the sky. He fell back in the grass laughing.  He laid there for a few microts. He suddenly bolted upright and looked around. He started to take it all in and realized where he was. He stood up and started to run down the dirt road. As he made his way around the bend, there it was the cabin in Maine where he and his dad used to go fishing.

John: (confused) "What the hell?!"

Everything was as he remembered it from the last time he was there. He walked down and stood beside the lake. He looked around and saw the leaky fishing boat tied to the rickety old docks. John couldn't believe what he was seeing. He started to wonder if he had gone into Aeryn's mind or deeper into his own. He kneeled down and picked up a few pebbles that were at the edge of the water. He skipped one across the surface of the water and smiled.

John: "I still got it."

He heard laughter coming from the direction of the house. Although he hadn't heard the sound in what seemed like forever, he recognized it as Aeryn. John walked toward the house slowly.


Aeryn was sitting on the porch swing with John. He was telling her a tale about the 150-lb trout that got away. She had her feet up on the swing with her back against John's chest. His strong arms were wrapped around her. She was wearing a flowing white sundress and her thick mane of hair was loose flowing in the gentle breeze. Her features were soft and radiant. She had the most amazing smile on her face.

John stood there watching the scene trying to process what he was seeing. He realized that Aeryn had created an alternate reality for herself where she and John (the other John) are happy and obviously back on Earth. He turned away when he felt the sting of tears in his eyes. He had to keep his emotions under control or he wouldn't be able to hold on to his concentration.

John (Talyn): "I have been expecting you John."

John wiped around. The other John was standing against the railing of the porch looking down at him. He wiped his tears away. He looked behind him. Aeryn was gone.

John (Moya): (inquisitively) "You can see me?"

John (Talyn): "Yes."

He came down the stairs. He was wearing a pair of tan pants and a navy blue t-shirt.

John (Moya): "Where is Aeryn? Does she know I am here?"

John (Talyn): "No, she can't sense you, yet."

John (Moya)): "Yet? This is her mind. Why is that she can't and you can?"

John (Talyn): "I thought we should talk first."

John (T) walked passed him. He gestured for John (M) to follow him. John (M) looked back at the house and then turned and followed him down to the lake.

They stood by the water's edge in silence for several microts.

John (M): "Aeryn invented this fantasy world to get away from me and all of the pain she was in, right?"

His eyes lowered as he took in the pain of knowing that she would rather live in this dream world rather than in the real world with him.

John (T): (smiling) "Not a bad replica is it? She remembered almost every detail we told her about it."

John (M) head snapped up quickly.

John (M): (voice sounding agitated) "What? Do you understand what is happening here?  Aeryn is retreating into this world while her body is dying in reality."

John (T): "She is happy here."

John (M): "She is dying."

They looked at each other. John (T) smile faded.

John (T): "That is why you are here John, to help her."

John (M): "I have been trying. She doesn't want my help. The more I try to help her the further away she seems to be."

John (T): "You have been trying to help her for your sake. You love her and you want her back.  But what have you been doing to help her for her sake."

John (M): (voice rising) "I don't have to listen to this."

John (M) turned away from him.

John (T): "Do you want her to die in your world?"

John (M): "No, of course not."

John (T): "Then you have to use your love help her."

John (M): "All my love seems to do is cause her more pain."

John (T) laid his hand on John (M) shoulder.

John (T): "It is not your love that is causing her pain. It is the fear that is causing her pain."

John (M): "Fear?"

He lowered his hand and stood closer to the water's edge staring out. John (M) moved beside him and looked out at the water and the sky. John (T) pointed to the scenery.

John (T): "Look around John, what do you see?"

John (M): "Paradise. I know you were planning to take her back with you to Earth before you were killed."

John (T): "Do you know what I see? I see the back of Dad's closet."

John (M): "What?"

John (T) turned to him.

John (T): "Don't you remember what we used to do when dad was away and we had a nightmare..."

A look of realization came to John (M) face.

John (M): 'Take our pillow and blanket and sleep in the back of Dad's closet."

John (T): "It felt like the safest place in the world."

John (M): (smirking) "At least to an 8-year-old kid."

John (T): "Welcome to Aeryn's closet."

John (M): "How do I help her?"

John (T): "You have to convince her to leave and go back."

John (M) let out one of his 'you have got to be kidding me' laughs and looked skyward.

John (M): "Why don't you just ask me to lasso the sun out of the sky...it would be easier."

John (T): "Never said it was going to be easy. But then what has been easy since we came to this strange universe."

John (M): "You have a point. Why don't you convince her to go back?"

John (T): "I exist here through Aeryn's imagination. You exist in her reality."

John (M): (looking out at the lake) "You are the one she loves. You are the one she misses.  You are the one she is mourning."

John (T): "You are the one who has a future with her, if you are willing to fight for it."

John (M): "I have been trying to."

John (T): "I am a dream, John. You are reality. You have to convince Aeryn to live."

John (M): "How?"

John (T) laid his hand over John (M) heart.

John (T): "We both live in her heart and that is where you have to reach her. She has put up a block much like that Scarrean you encountered on your way in. You have to find a way to get through to her before..."

John (M): "Before she dies."

They stared into each other's eyes.

John (M): "You could have her with you forever here. Why would you want me to take her away?"

John (T): "The same reason you would, if you were in my position, because I love her beyond hope. I don't want her to die because I died. I want her to live."

They smiled at each other.

John (T): "One more thing."

John (M) raised his fist.  John (T) grinned and raised his. They threw out and both threw out scissors. They laughed softly.

John (T) looked toward the house. Aeryn had come back out on the porch.

John (T): "Go to her John."

John (M): "Your not coming with me?"

John (T): "It will be easier for her to hear you if she is only listening to one voice."

John (M): "Don't you want to say goodbye?"

John (T) looked at him.

John (T): "I said goodbye to her once in my lifetime. I don't think I could do that again."

John (M) looked up at Aeryn on the porch.

John (M): "Is she going to know that I am here?"

He looked back and John (T) was gone. He looked around. He was alone by the lake. He heard a whisper.


John (T): "Take care of her John or you will answer to me!"



Dreamscape chapter 3 >>
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