Flashes of blinding bright light like a photograph flash going off over and over again. Amongst the flashes, images.
A bed similar to the ones found in hospital wards.
A smiling man, mouthing the word "Relax".
A strange feeling like electricity buzzing up and down my spinal cord. A humming in my brain and the sound of clocks. Tick tock, tick tock, tick tock they sang frantically.
And then a dream within the dream. I saw myself, but it was an older version of me. I was taller. I was prettier. I was walking down a catwalk, posing at the end as many photographers took my photo.
The vision within the dream stopped. I woke up.
The sound of someone saying "She's done well," and then the thick, gorgeous taste of some foreign liquid that made the whole world go black...
I woke up properly.
O-kay... That was weird. Since when had I had dreams like something out of an alien movie. Is that what I'd been doing last night? Watching a sci-fi or apocalyptic film involving aliens?
I sat up straight. Whoa! That was weird. I couldn't remember. How could I not remember? It was last night for goodness' sake! And I was fourteen before you mention the a word - I didn't go around drinking until I couldn't remember my name.
I wondered if I was ill. But what kind of illness made you forget whole nights of your life?
The only thing that I could think of was brain diseases. I started hyperventilating at the thought of having Alzheimer's at 14. But then I shook myself and thought 'That's ridiculous. Why should your brain begin to deteriorate now? In the prime of your youth.'
I calmed down. But it still bothered me that I couldn't remember anything. I decided to text my friend Chloe, to see if she knew what I'd done last night. But halfway into the message, I realised that it would be too weird to ask such a question, and that she'd probably think I belonged in a lunatic asylum. Uh, no way was I going to a lunatic asylum. Not even if I needed to.
So I put my phone away and sat on my bed and thought.
I closed my eyes and recalled to mind the last thing I had done yesterday.
All I remember was coming home from school and dumping my schoolbag on the floor.
I didn't even remember dinner.
Hm, something was up. I mean, really up. And I even had a feeling, in my gut, that something fishy was going on here.
But how would I find out what it was? How could I ever talk about this to anyone?
Maybe it would come back to me. Starting to feel light-headed from not having breakfast, I wandered down to the kitchen and poured myself a bowl of cereal.
I sat there in the kitchen musing. I knew I had to stop when I started considering abduction by aliens.
I took a quick shower before going for a walk in the park. Maybe that could help me.