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  • Writer's pictureDamiaan van der Werf

Entrées de Nuit: I

Dreamt the night of the 15th of December 2022 and recollected as follows:

I found myself seated on a patch of green outside the headquarters of British military intelligence, in the company of two women who were unfamiliar to me. There were other groups of people settled nearby, enveloped by generous sunshine. The ambient frivolity and chatter conveyed the sense of a picnic outing or otherwise charmed Summer's day.

At the periphery of my sight, I caught a glance of an object suspended in the air above the imposing building nearby. Like a drop of black ink introduced to the corner of a bowl of water—at first minor, but slowly expanding outward—the sight of the decidedly misplaced object caused me an immediate and irrepressible sense of dread and insecurity that began to worm itself into my consciousness. I did not allow myself to fully appreciate the implications of what I had seen and returned my attention to my entourage. With a trembling faux-sanguinity and faltering normalcy, we proceeded with our prior joviality and conversation.

The facade could not stand; almost involuntarily I took further glances at the object, indulging a disturbed and morbid fascination. The object was some kind of craft—inhuman in origin and appearance and utterly remote from any local or earthly designs. With each successive glance, I mapped its outline and finer details; the craft was of a slender and disk-shaped form, with lean dorsal protrusions and a raised compartment towards the rear which looked as though it could house persons. Despite these features, the entire object looked as though it were made from a single and indivisible material, with a perfectly smooth texture and no indication of joinages or assemblage. The entire body was of a light tan colouration and was not recognisably metal, perhaps closer to ceramic. Ultimately I could not place it within any class of known materials, rathermore I began to suspect it was of biomechanical nature. The lean and organic shape was suggestive of something distinctly predatory, intimating at some hostile and foreign purpose—almost bacterial, as though it were an invader-cell within the ecosystem of earth.

The craft began to circle above us, and with each successive lap it descended lower and lower, eventually causing some commotion amongst people below. Circling clearly now within the bounds of the greenery upon which we were all seated, people began to gather their things and hurriedly leave the area, gesturing at the object and clamouring as they did so. After several laps, it became clear that the object was circling over me. My companions departed—without a word by my recollection— leaving me alone beneath the still-descending vehicle. Lower and lower, mere meters above my head, I noticed my sense of terror and anticipation give way to acceptance and submission. With a newfound calm, I lay upon the grass as the object circled mere meters above me. Circling slower now, the craft passed over my body, reaching absurd new depths—leaving a mere meter between us, then a foot and ultimately an inch or so. As it passed over my body, it hummed and emitted a light from its underside which engulfed me entirely; a warm and hospitable glow that felt akin to a medical or biometric scan. As the craft scanned my body, I passed into unconsciousness—all surroundings and my very thought itself dissolving into a uniform sea of enveloping white.

It was impossible to tell for how long I remained incapacitated. I regained consciousness with the sense of having been subdued for an artificially long duration, akin to returning to wakefulness after the general anaesthesia associated with a medical procedure. In any case, I was even more taken aback by the location I found myself in. My uncooperative eyes, still heavy, began to take stock of my surroundings. I appeared to be in an officious room with wooden flooring and large items of furniture. It had the feel of a 19th century study, or of a doctor or professor's office. Lining the walls were wooden bookshelves and drawers, interspersed with additional items of furniture. Most notably, a tall grandfather clock stood proudly against the lefthand side of the back wall. Curiously there were no windows through which to see the outside, nor any other clues as to where the room was located within the wider world, as though it inhabited some entirely different plane altogether.

In the middle of a room stood an extravagantly large desk, upon which papers and other stationery were stacked loosely. One could hear the grandfather clock mechanism unnervingly loudly, since there were no other sounds to be heard. Behind the desk was a large green armchair, upon which sat a thick-haired and modestly podgy ginger cat wearing a lab coat. For reasons unknown to me, none of this struck me as unusual in the slightest. I stood calmly as though I were an entrant before the gates of heaven waiting to be judged. The cat stood up on the armchair on two legs, pulled a document of out its coat pocket and began to read. No sounds made their way out of the cat's mouth, rather immediate and direct meaning was transmitted to my consciousness. Leaping up onto the desk right in front of me, still on two legs, the cat reached for me with one paw. As though it were passing through a waterfall or other ephemeral and transparent barrier, the cat's paw painlessly plunged deep into my body without any obstruction, clutching what felt like my stomach. The cat telepathically communicated to me that although I have cancer, I have other more pressing issues closer to the surface of my skin. Pulling its paw out of my abdomen, the cat proceeded to give me an awkward hug, gripping me by my sides in a clumsy and somewhat uncomfortable fashion. I woke up.

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