This was a dream. I knew it and I understood it. However, I was most assuredly not in control of the situation. I was standing on the surface of the waves, in the middle of the ocean. However, I was not stationary. I swayed back and forth with the motions of the seemingly limitless dream water, but never sank. I considered moving, but something inside convinced me that it wasn't worth trying. So I willingly followed the movement of the tides, for what seemed like the longest time. There was no sun in the bright blue sky, yet I felt a familiar warmth beating down on my head and shoulders. All the while, a dreadful, physically nonexistent sinking feeling flooded my guts. This was it; this was the drop.
I peered down into the depths of the false waters, wondering if anything lived down there. Surely my mind was able to conjure up a decent ecosystem. I took my first step, and found that I still remained on the surface of the waves. Still drifting with the motion of the ocean, I got down on my knees and pressed my face into the water. I felt no wetness or cold, but I was able to see clearly. Seeing as how this was a dream, breathing was quite unnecessary. A school of assorted tropical fish a few feet below me scattered around in a frenzy until their bodies were arranged to spell The Drop. I glanced down at the strand of long, brown hair tied to my ring finger and understood. I was falling for the girl. The fake, dream girl created by my own subconscious was suddenly the one thing I desired most of all. As unreasonable as it was, I felt as though I'd be ready to sacrifice myself for her, if the situation ever arose.
One of the fish, the most noticeable one, broke from the arrangement. As soon as this happened, the rest of them dispersed and receded into the infinite depths. The solitary fish came towards me at an oddly quick pace. Startled, I lifted my head out of the ocean and felt air once again. The fish poked its front up out of the waves and stared at me. I recognized the fish as an angelfish. It seemed to glow in the disembodied sunlight. "Are you prepared to fall?" the angelfish asked me, in a strangely gruff female voice.
I nodded. This was a dream after all, making any other option seem idiotic. "If you desire Epithymia," the fish began, "You must pass the Trial of Seven. Every night for the next seven nights, you will be challenged. Pass the challenge and you will advance onto the next. Fail the challenge and you will lose Epithymia forever. Any attempt to skip the challenge, such as not sleeping, will result in immediate forfeiture."
The fish returned to the underwater world. Sticking my head back into the water, I was amazed to see billions of fish in the most spectacular formation. The countless amount of assorted tropical fish had arranged themselves into a photo-realistic, high resolution image of this dream girl, Epithymia. She was stunning, even in fish-pixel form. Suddenly, the image moved as a singularity and she became the real Epithymia, beckoning me.
Breaking through the watery surface upon which I stood, I mindlessly dove down into the depths to chase the object of my affection. Dream physics decided that this was a good time to pay attention. She was just too far down and I simply had little to no oxygen left. Just as she was within arm's reach, my lungs gave out. I sank to the infinite bottom of the ocean, staring helplessly as I fell farther and farther from my beloved, Epithymia. To make matters worse, she didn't follow. Whereas I dove in for her, she only watched expressionlessly as I sank down to the bottomless pit of my subconscious.
No matter, she was going to be all over me by the end of next week. As my dream faded and reality surfaced, I held tightly onto the strand of the synthesized teenage girl's hair.