Bad Dreams

The old man had bad dreams. Horrible images ran through his head as he laid there in bed next to his wife. He heard the refrigerator humming down the hallway. Sounded like a train chasing him through town. A locomotive building up steam and following him. Coming close to running over him on the steel tracks. Then he’d wake up.

He sat up in bed. Looked out the window and saw the streetlights flickering as they always did. Listened to the semis running up and down 41. Saw the cat’s eyes in the dark. His head was soaked. Sweat had poured throughout the night. The old man ran his frail hands through his gray hair. Noticed that his wife was still asleep. Sound asleep. He wondered what she dreamed about.

There was the sound of men talking outside his trailer. He could hear them through the thin walls. Talk of where to get rid of bodies. One man mentioned the river while another said it was best just to bury. A third man suggested cremation. Burn the corpse. Ashes to ashes. The old man listened and fixed himself a pot of coffee. He patted his forehead with a paper towel. Opened the fridge and noticed they were out of cream. Milk would have to do. The three men continued talking. She was a good wife, the one said. And, I want to do the right thing, there was silence. The old man looked out the window and saw them congregated under the light pole. The good Lord took her in her sleep, the man said. She didn’t feel a thing. The old man closed the curtains.

He fell asleep in his recliner. Dreamt of trains chasing him. He slept to the sound of semis running up and down 41. Woke up a half hour later and looked outside. The three men were gone. He wondered if they were ever there. Or, was it just a bad dream?

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