The falling man was the most common dream. It usually came to him in the small hours like a lover. But its embrace always left him cold, shaking, and sure he would go mad.
But it wasn't as bad as the shambling homeless men. Although they had just been normal human beings when they died, they became rotting, flesh dripping animated corpses in his dreams. Their arms were always reaching for him, their teeth gnashing as they crept closer. In these nightmares, he was never fast enough, never clever enough, and they always fell upon him, their fingers tearing at his eyes, a metal pipe smashing his brains out for their evening meal.
When Jennifer came to visit, he always woke up screaming. His sister had been beautiful, until that night when he turned her into a demonic vision to punish her rapist. Now when she visited him in his dreams, she bore huge saliva dripping fangs and a face split in an impossibly wide grin. "Your turn," she always whispered as she reached her menacing taloned fingers toward him.
Tony shuddered. Over a year and still the nightmares haunted him. He wasn't sure they'd ever go away.
The smell of woodsmoke and frying bacon filled the room and he felt the dream begin to fade away. He cautiously opened his eyes. The hunting lodge was dark, only a thin sliver of light made its way through the mostly closed door.
Tony lay still for a moment, listening to the sounds of pans moving across gas burners and the sizzle of frying food. Dad had started a fire. Dad was cooking. The sudden acrid tang of cigarette smoke managed its way through the other smells, reminding him he had to get the old man to quit soon. Tony sighed and sat up in bed. The old man was supposed to sleep-in this morning and let Tony make breakfast. Tony looked down at his watch. The tritium hands told him it was 0430.
Shit, Tony thought.