I’m in front of the peeling red Door again. I’ve passed all the floating and star shadows by now. A flake of red lands on my shoe transformed to a splash of blood. I look at the door. The paint starts to drizzle off the door landing on my shoes soaking them through.
I can feel the wetness on my feet now. I look at the door. Now the red is gone all I can see is blue. A blue Door. It reminds me of Jo. The handle starts to turn again and I swallow whatever is in my mouth. I expect to see the black waves but a grey brick wall reveals itself.
The wall starts to jiggle and crumble and one brick breaks loose and smashes on the ground. I squint and peer through the hole left. It’s dark but I can just about make out a room.
I see a sofa and a lump. It’s me. I’m starting to twitch and I know soon I’ll be screaming and soon I’ll be pulled awake. But the door to the kitchen slides open and a rectangle of light stretches into the living room falling on me. I can see myself more clearly now; my long, pin-straight nose, my eyes sunken hollows like my cheeks and my eyelashes sparse and pale like my eyebrows.
The only vibrant thing about me is my hair. When did I get so thin?
Jo stands in the doorway blocking the light. A steaming cup is held in her left hand while her other hand is behind her back. She looks plump and healthy, her skin radiating warmth and life. Her hair is blown to a crimson halo around her head and I see that her eyebrows are sharp and black.
I start to notice that we don’t resemble each other much at all. I’m tall and painfully thin everything about me sharp and pointed. She is the complete opposite. How can two people who are the same person look so different?
She does her own hair and Claudine never trusts a person who does their own hair.
But I don’t trust Claudine. Does that mean, by default, I have to trust Jo?
Jo takes a step towards my sleeping body her lips moving quickly. She might be talking to herself or she might be talking to me. Words spin into my mind joining together to form coherent sentences. I hear Jo’s mellow voice ring true in my ear.
“I’m sick of seeing the Door. I’m sick of being able to sleep for only a couple of hours at a time. I’m sick of the seemingly insuperable fog of lethargy! The Nightmares told me they’d leave me alone”
She pulled her hand from behind her back. She was holding a steak knife. It must be Claudine’s. I don’t eat steak. Jo advances towards me and I glimpse her eyes; they’re wide, fearful and the pupil is huge squeezing her copper irises into little slithers of colour.
“The Nightmares told me I have to kill the Door. Chop, chop, chop it into little pieces and throw the little pieces into a fire to burn, burn, burn” She drops the cup of coffee, the brown liquid sliding through the air as the cup falls and bounces off the carpet. The coffee sloshes against her legs.
I start to scrape at the bricks and manage to dislodge another one, I throw it behind me. She is kneeling on the sofa bed beside me now. I regret lending her my ‘Battle of the Bands’ t-shirt to sleep in. I watch as she straddles me to the sofa, pressing the knife against my cheek.
I can see blood forming around the serrated edge of the knife and my cheek in this dream world starts to sting. I brush it; no blood. Her little mouth is tight and straight set firmly in a grimace.
“My Door is blue, tall and thin. My Door reads far too much and my Door is too smart for his own good. My Door is vain. Vain enough to believe that I’m him”
I realise that I’m her Door. Killing me will open the Door to a new life for her.
I’m done for.