This forum uses cookies
This forum makes use of cookies to store your login information if you are registered, and your last visit if you are not. Cookies are small text documents stored on your computer; the cookies set by this forum can only be used on this website and pose no security risk. Cookies on this forum also track the specific topics you have read and when you last read them. Please confirm whether you accept or reject these cookies being set.

A cookie will be stored in your browser regardless of choice to prevent you being asked this question again. You will be able to change your cookie settings at any time using the link in the footer.

En Route to Moscow
Jet sat on the aisle seat, in his customary posture of long legs stretched before him and crossed at the ankle, blessing first class and the efficiency of Joshua Ledger. The flight attendants had given up politely reminding him to fasten his seat belt. He would sit up straighter, smiling and say, “Of course!” and obediently follow their directions. Within minutes he would ultimately unclip it to get up for something in the overhead, or simply with the need to stretch. When he sat back down would “forget” to fasten back up, his distraction served to cement his reputation as a mild mannered rebel.

Sleeping only in spurts since the soul sucking night terror – for that is what he figured it must be – the same kind maybe that had plagued his little cousin – Jet dozed on and off, finally and fully waking with a sharp intake of breath. He pulled his plain white t-shirt up to expose tight abs, and used it to wipe the sweat from his brow and he was thankful he didn’t remember the dream. He had only had regular nightmares since that first one, but they startled him awake with a vehemence he hadn’t experienced since childhood.

“You ever dream, Beto?”
he said to his cousin sitting next to him, breaking a silence that had lasted halfway across the pond.
Edited by Jet, Mar 4 2018, 09:21 PM.
Beto's head was relaxed against the soft cushion of his seat on the plane. Overall, he rather enjoyed flying- just as he did riding the subway or standing in a line or being in a crowd, when he had to do them. The very process of cramming strangers together in close proximity somehow had a curious effect- people huddled in on themselves, became aware of physical space and boundaries. The became quiet and invisible. For the most part, anyway. There was always the boor who insisted on stretching out, heedless of everyone around him; the overly chatty person who demanded to engage with everyone, as if they were all old friends.

Insecurity, really, both behaviors. And so was the huddling and ignoring, he knew.

But at least when they did that they left him alone. He could allow his face to relax to a neutral state, didn't have to talk or anticipate what was expected of him. Instead, he could watch and study, observe people and their reactions. Or he could think on the problems before him, the cases or arguments or strategies that were part of his job. Or whatever else occupied his mind. But there were no demands from anyone else.

He was free. As free as he could be without being home alone.

And somehow Jet seemed to sense that and so had naturally left him to it. Or perhaps- perhaps- there were similarities between the two men. For all of the differences in their lives and personalities, they were both, at the end of the day, performers whose private modes of being were very different from that they presented.

The fact that Jet had finally given up- for the moment, anyway- his career, said that he was getting tired of the façade. As he had, though his was more of an open ended sabbatical. Jack had not been happy about it, but Beto had enough clout and was owed enough favors that it had came about relatively easily.

Privately, Beto couldn't help but wonder if Jet also feigned the emotions that he did. It was conceivable. Brain function was partially based on genetics, after all. Ironic, really, if that was the case. It might explain the fact that of all his myriad of relatives, Jet was the only one who didn't make him tired just being around. The only one whose company he could be said to 'enjoy' (if that wasn't too strong a word'.)

Until he wanted to chat, that was. Not that it happened often. But Beto's guard had been down, here on the plane. He had not been expecting conversation, beyond continuing their discussion of strategy for getting Mara out.

"Hmm? Dreams?"
He couldn't help but be surprised and turned his head to regard the man curiously. Why, of all things, had he asked that?

Beto had the intellectual understanding that he dreamed. From a purely biological standpoint, he knew his brain sleep patterns had to go into the REM state, for all the normal reasons- processing, organization, file keeping, and so on. Failure to do so (whether induced by coercion or other methods) usually led to mental breakdown.

And there were the other clues, too, though they were more alien to consider. He often awoke with his sheets soaked or his heart racing. Occasionally, there were tears on his cheeks. But he never remembered why- or what the dreams were.

It didn't bother him, not really. Made him more curious than anything else, though. And since he felt comfortable with Jet- and it wasn't revealing anything he felt protective of- he relaxed his guard and answered honestly.

"I'm sure I dream, but I never remember them. Why do you ask?"

Edited by Beto, Mar 7 2018, 05:21 PM.
As soon as he asked the question, Jet wondered why he had asked it aloud. The sleep deprivation was causing him to lose his edge. He admired Beto and felt they were similar in a lot of ways, but they weren’t exactly close. Jet let his head drop back against the headrest and brought both hands up to rub his eyes, the dark circles showing, his face paler than usual and he let out a sigh. In for a penny …

“So, I remember dreams. It was a trick that Melany taught me – she has amazing control in her dreams. She taught me how to remember them and actually to sometimes control them. At the very least, to be able to wake myself up from a disturbing dream. I wouldn’t say nightmares, because I hadn’t had a nightmare since I was a little kid.”
Jet stopped in his stream of chatter and pushed himself up straighter in the seat. He not only wanted to be more composed when he talked about this, but wanted to at least appear in control. It was his experience that if he acted a certain way long enough that eventually it would become his reality. And he didn’t like how this dream had become so all consuming. He needed to regain his self-control.

“I fell asleep on the couch the afternoon after I left your office. I had this … this crazy dream about being at an old abandoned carnival – I don’t know. Like those old photographs Abuelita had of Coney Island or something. Anyway, I was wandering the aisles and it was just a normal dream, but more vivid than usual. It felt … real. I was intrigued until it started to get weird.”
He glanced over at Beto, not certain he ought to admit he was going a little crazy to someone from whom he now realized he had always wanted respect. He already felt like he had said too much, but it seemed pointless to just stop now.

“I just can't emphasize enough how vivid the dream was. And I couldn’t wake myself up from it.”
He broke out in a cold sweat again at the recollection. Embarrassed, he wipe his brow with the back of his forearm. “Something – a pack of somethings - was hunting me. And let’s just say it ended badly.”
He wished he had waited until he saw Melany next. He wanted to ask her about it. Wanted to see if she had ever heard anything like it. Wanted his sister’s reassurance. Jet smirked and waved it off. He reached up and adjusted the air stream to point at his face and let the cool air wash down over him.

“Just having trouble sleeping now. It’s gotta be all this free time. I don’t know what to do with myself.”

Edited by Jet, Mar 10 2018, 01:38 AM.
Beto listened absentmindedly. He was unsure what he was supposed to say. Offering advice was not a trait he had cultivated. Well, beyond the moment. And in this case, he didn't feel like faking with Jet.

Instead, he focused on what he'd said that resonated with him. The dreams. "As I said, I don't remember my dreams....however...
He paused, thinking. His interest was piqued. "I have awakened in a similar state. Out of breath. Covered in sweat. The feeling like I escaped in the back of my mind. Though for some reason, I cannot remember why."

He frowned. Melanie. Jet's sister. His interactions with her had been far fewer. It didn't help that she was part of what frankly was new age hippy cult that preyed on wealthy women with far too much money and far too empty lives. Of course, he'd never say that out loud. People would be offended. And that would cause more chaos in his life than he cared for. His family was not the place for chaos. You could never escape them.

Still, regardless of his skepticism, what Jet said intrigued him. And he trusted Jet. As much as he could say he trusted anyone. "I'd be interested in learning these techniques of Melanie's. They could prove useful."

Edited by Beto, Mar 12 2018, 12:22 PM.

Forum Jump:

Users browsing this thread: 1 Guest(s)