Where Does Paper Come From?

“If aliens visit us, the outcome would be much as when Columbus landed in America, which didn’t turn out well for the Native Americans.”

— Stephen Hawking

Though I have had vivid dreams for my entire life, writing them down was not commonplace for me until recently. Occasionally, however, a dream would be so epic in scope that I would take the time to jot it down. Such is the case of the first dream I ever wrote out, at age 21. This was also the first dream wherein I experienced actual pain. I guess the saying “pinch me, I’m dreaming!” must not be applicable to all dreams…

Please excuse the Billy Corgan references, I was obsessed with him during the time this dream took place. At the very least it should make you all laugh. Here goes:

People that get lost are taken by the collective them. Sometimes too, they take people by saying there was a chemical explosion or terrorist attack,or that a town has to be evacuated. These people never make it back to their families. There was this underground structure, only accessible by this seemingly innocent well. In the well there was this seat/pully apparatus that they would sit the lost people on, and then send them down below ground. They did this in the dead of night to avoid being seen. Down there is where the Nightmares are. These ghastly creatures that work for the government wait for fresh shipments of the lost. They have dark green, scaly skin and one giant eye on their grotesque, slimy faces. Their noses are slits and their teeth jut out of their mouths like those of an alligator’s. They are taller than humans, but structurally are about the same, with hands and feet and arms and legs. Their backs are hunched and the spine can be seen poking through their skin. Their fingers are long and end in black claws. They wear tattered black robes that barely hide their gigantic, rotund stomachs and scrawny legs that bend back at the hock, more animal than man.

When the lost arrive down in the well, these creatures take them and do all sorts of experiments on them. These experiments are mandated by the government, and they must be done in secret because, obviously, unwilling human experimentation is “against the law”, at least above ground. Mutilations, tests, transplants: all take place here.

The reason I know this in the dream is because, for some strange reason, Billy Corgan became lost on tour and they took him. Now, it was by simple error that they took him, because if a celebrity goes missing everyone will find out. Don’t question it, that’s just how it was in my dream. In any case, Billy had a tape recorder and some paper; he was able to document the whole thing. And the night before he died he managed to get back up to where the well was and throw the small bundle back onto our ground. This is how I know, and this is how everyone finds out what happens after the experimentations are over for a particular subject.

Down a corridor past all the dimly lit examination rooms and laboratories, there is a giant, terrible machine. It’s called being “processed”. On this long conveyor belt, people are lined up, chained to one another to prevent escape, and fed into the processor. From there, their bodies are crushed and ground up and then sent to other smaller machines to be turned into paper, or meat or even fuel. Billy was caught, of course, and this is where he was sent.

Back to the real world for a second. When I was little and I lived in the old house across the street from my grandparents’ house, there was a pump in the basement to keep it from flooding. Every night, whether it was raining or not, the pump would go off. It made this horrible, lurching, grinding sound. So it only makes sense that in my dream it wasn’t actually the pump doing this, it was the processor. In my dream this whole operation was going on right underneath my little town of Broadway.

So upon finding Billy’s last word and testament, I alerted everyone. The townspeople of Broadway dug up the house and underneath they found all the rest of the pieces of the people that had been ground up but not fully processed. The creatures that ran the whole thing were not there, however, because the government had removed them once they knew we knew. The government did a good job of covering it all up and making it look like there would be an investigation. They didn’t destroy the well though, and it stood there like a hungry, gaping black mouth waiting for more. When you approached it you felt sick to the stomach, but strangely drawn to it, like it was beckoning. People from all over would come by to look at it, always wondering if the government had made any headway to finding out what kind of sick twisted people would do this. The government replied that they were following up on some leads. All I could do was cry. It felt like my soul had been ripped in two and I kept dreaming (in my dream haha?) of how they all met their end down there, and how I didn’t want to be next.

Eventually everything returned back to normal for Broadway, even though most all of the tiny town had been dug up to uncover the nightmare. Jacob wanted me to meet him at the mall a few months later. Everyone was trying to cheer me up but I was absolutely depressed. All of those people had suffered and died under my feet while I was happy as a clam. Even poor, beautiful Billy died down there while I was totally oblivious. So begrudgingly I said I would go. One of my old friends from high school showed up, Emily, and we for some reason were wearing little dresses. We left for the mall to meet up with Jacob and everything was normal. We arrived there and locked the car and went into the mall. Now, I know I’ve been lost in malls before when I was younger, and I’m sure most people have gotten separated in malls from their group before too. According to my dream, the reason is because malls have a confusing design on purpose so that people get lost. Easy way to harvest. They take you like this.

It was a mall we had never been to before and for some reason my cell phone wasn’t working. We kept walking around, thinking we’d find Jacob, but suddenly we couldn’t even remember which direction we had come from. We had not even noticed the people dressed in white that were tailing us. I probably would have been more wary, after all, since I knew that it was the government that had built the nightmare under Broadway. No one else believed that part though, it was too impossible for them to perceive that their government could do that to them. They were investigating! It must have been the confused ramblings of a doomed man. In any case, once I realized, too late, that we were being followed I grabbed Emily by the hand and we ran. We took staircases, escalators, went through back doors into “employees only” areas, but still could not escape. ?Everything went black. They stole us away. No one else seemed to care that we were screaming and running from strangers. It was like they didn’t even see us;, we were already lost.

They took us to this place where men dressed in white talked very nice to us and told us we’d be back with our families soon, and that we would have new jobs that were high paying. They told us they were on the verge of a new and amazing technology being developed for medical science, and we could take part. They gave us new clothes and sent us down to a room of sorts. It wasn’t really a room in as much it was a long, twisted corridor. Other people were huddled in corners and along the walls. Everything was white and the lights were annoyingly bright. The floor was odd looking, it was white and almost rubbery, bouncy even. The walls and ceiling were the same way. Very hushed sobs filled the air and I felt a sickness take hold in my gut. People in white lab coats and odd rubber boots sat on chairs that were nestled in spaces that cut into the wall. They were holding things that looked like remote controls. Someone yelled “setting 3” and suddenly everything went weird. It felt like we were being shocked, but instead it was more like we were being disoriented. I tried running but my movement was slowed and my head was swimming. I lost total control and gripped a wall to steady myself. I had lost complete sight of Emily by this time. People screamed, but not in pain, more like surprise. I stumbled past a lab technician and saw he was holding something else. It looked like a small, rounded gun, and he pointed it at me and shocked me with real electricity. Never in my life have I felt pain in a dream until that moment. It actually felt like I was being shocked, as if I was 6 and sticking my finger into an outlet all over again.

Once they were done testing this equipment on us they pushed us through the corridor and into another room. This room was dimly lit and grungy. Rusty pipes lined the walls and small, rectangular slit windows let me know it was night outside and we were above ground. In front of me there were a series of checkpoints. We were herded through like cattle and poked and prodded and measured. They took our clothes and pushed us through the last checkpoint. I called out for my mother and Jacob and Keith to no avail. Here we were handed slips of paper and a brochure of sorts, assigning us where to go next. I peeked over at people passing by, and noticed there were three or four different assignments.

The slips of papers and brochures had nice things written on them. The slip of paper had your new factory and new job names written on them. They were normal, cheery names like “Oleda Sunshine Beef Company” or “Oleda Paper Factory” and “beef inspecting supervisor” or “paper quality control specialist” written on them. The brochures matched the name of the factory you were sent to, and listed so many wonderful things your new job would give you and how amazing of a workplace it is. My stomach lurched. I knew the fate that awaited those people sent to the beef and paper and fuel departments. But my paper was different. It said that I was being sent to the “Oleda Breeding Facility” and that I was a “pregnancy consultant”. I got pushed down more lanes with other people who were being sent to the same destination. Eventually we were all filed through a large metal doorway that led to an even grimier, straight hall. It was massive, and on one side of the hall there was a conveyor belt with shower heads over it. To my horror, the creatures were also there. I had not, up to this point, actually seen them, and only knew of them from what Billy described. They are much more horrifying than I can ever write or draw. They smell like rotting flesh and in this hallway they are constantly aroused. We are all naked, men and women, and are being forced on this conveyor belt and told to rinse with the water. There are government officials here too, and if you try to run away or move back you get tasered, sometimes to death. This is made very difficult because if you move forward, you have to face the creatures. It’s a tough choice. A few feet down the line, the creatures are randomly grabbing women off of the belt and raping them, or grabbing men and beating them to death out of jealousy that they cannot have all the women to themselves. At the end of the line there are cages. In the cages, they place a man and a woman together, or sometimes a creature and a woman, and are told they must copulate.

I am not enjoying any of this. The water is cold, everything is dirty and dark and either way I go I face certain death, whether it’s death by rape or whatever else happens after you reproduce, or death by electricity. As we are carted down the conveyor belt, freezing water running all down my body, I am weighing the pros and cons of being electrocuted when one of the creatures suddenly turns my way. It runs at the group of us huddled together, penis throbbing, and everyone runs back. The officials are chasing us down with the tasers on one side and the creature is lustily breathing down our necks on the other. Its massive arms swing wildly side to side, knocking people out of the way. And as I lift my arms to shield my face, the creature’s great eye staring me down and his long claws reaching, reaching, reaching for me and horrible penis throbbing, throbbing, throbbing…

I thankfully wake up.

Sweet dreams!

-Megan

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