A dream I had last night (March 1st 2014) where I jumped from person to person all from the same community. Though they didn’t all interact I somehow knew their stories were all intertwined and throughout it sensed this was a part of a post-apocalyptic world.
I was in the body of an Asian woman unhappily married to a Caucasian man too focused on his job, a job often brought home with him. There was no love in this marriage, only a sense of duty to be with the other because we knew nothing else. It was routine to be associated with one another, to be seen together in public, a proper pairing of pristine breeding. The only public shows of affection were the gentle touches of my hands on his arms or his hovering hand over my back, more possessive than protective.
I was in the bathroom, submerged in a bath of ice yet still in my bra and underwear. He walked through not glancing at me as he passed. Though we had not been affectionate with one another in some time sadness washed over me. I recognised the appeal my body once had was faded with the passing of time. A great shame and guilt ensued, a loathing held by me toward myself. I understood then that there was very little fight left in me, and as I leaned back against the tub and tilted my head to see outside my window, I knew I was hollow.
I was in the body of a girl in her teenage years, perhaps about seventeen or eighteen. Curious, inquisitive, daring and stubborn, blonde hair down to my waist, slim figured and vibrant. I knew I was someone important though why was a mystery to me. It was something to do with my parents, something about them that made me untouchable to the rest of the community. I had a feeling that I glided when others walked, that words spoken about me were never to reach my ears. It felt as though there were big plans for my future but none dared share them with me.
It was hard not to notice the whispering in a community so small and isolated. We were unlike anything the history books had ever recorded. Something had happened to the outside world but we had been spared. No, not spared. Selected. We lived in the rolling hills of south east Australia, in the state of Victoria I believe. We hadn’t had contact with the outside world in a long time or so were told. We were a community made up of fragmented farms, homes and blocks of land. Widespread throughout a region yet all intertwined.
I was in the body of the mail man. He took stairs down to bunker in which four doors were present. In my hands I held a mass of papers and envelopes. The names were different and as I separated them into the four piles I realised each person had more than one name. The outsiders contacting them knew them by different names. Why this was so significant I can’t recall. The only thing that I knew was important about this moment was this room leading to these four different families was hidden. It was secret to the authorities of the community. It posed a threat to the authorities though why was yet another mystery.
I returned to the body of the teenage girl. She was now with her boyfriend. He loved her without a doubt and she returned most of those feelings. The rest were held back by this subconscious understanding that the two of them had been forced together over time without her knowing until recently. She was happy being with him, but there was still something amiss.
I was now in the body of her boyfriend. Athletic, tall, blonde and quick thinking. I was engaged in a sporting competition in the community unlike any I could recall. I believe I was skateboarding or engaged in something similar, and I was dead even in first place with my best friend. I couldn’t lose to him, I wouldn’t. A determination rose up in me as I manoeuvred the course made up of various obstacles that required split second decisions. People lined the streets to watch this event. I knew the community looked up to me to continue into an outstanding citizen. It’s the role I was bred for. I didn’t ask why, I didn’t need to know why. I accepted my duty and would continue life in this way. I did not realise here, but this was my weakness. I was oblivious to the ways of the authorities and to the workings that go on underneath the shell. In many ways, I was the puppet poster boy to the people.
I returned to the body of the girl. Something had happened in a great expanse of time I couldn’t recall, but somehow I had discovered the hidden bunker where I knew the postman delivered his mail in secret. The octagonal shaped room had walls made steel. In four of the walls were heavy doors with faded yellow white paint in an alien script, yet I knew what they said. The first door on the left had my family name on it, and in this moment I knew in my heart the feeling of importance due to my parents was linked to this very bunker, this very room, this very door. I didn’t open it. Instead the door diagonally opposite opened to a man I remembered seeing very few times in my life, the last being around the age of five. He seems shaken, unstable and anxious. I’m being told I have to leave, that I am in great danger. Something is happening behind the other doors including the one bearing my family name. I know my parents are in there at that moment, and know the sounds I hear are the sounds of chaos and destruction. There is a battle going on behind that door, and all I can think is that my parents are going to die.
A bag is thrust in my hands by the man after he struggles with me. I had tried to fight past him to get to my parents but he would not let me go. In the madness he has told me there is nothing I can do for them and that it would not do my parents well to have their daughter run in and be murdered. After regaining my breath I suddenly realise there is a glass sliding door at the opposite end of his room concealed by long grass and cascading plant life on the outside that over looks a valley. I walk towards it and see two people in the distance running across the valley, jumping over the boundary line fence of our community and leaving. I know in this moment that the path they have just taken is one I am to follow. Whether it is to meet up with them or make it on my own I don’t know, but I know that the life of this community is not what it seems, and to find out the goings on within, I have to first get out.