The Injection

 

So, in this dream I hopped into another dimension. It was one of those moments where I just knew that I was in a different version of Earth without much explanation or buildup as to how or why I was there. I just…sort of appeared there… right in the middle of a professional football game.

It was a Lions vs Broncos game. (I do not know why my dream was so focused on the teams, especially since I never watch football and know next to nothing about it. In fact, those are two of the handful of team names I actually know!) However, their uniform colors were different: the Lions wore more of an electric blue and the Broncos wore purple instead of orange.  The game halted and I could hear boos and groans from the audience. It was like they knew exactly what I was, and that I was more of a nuisance than a source of wonderment or confusion. The Lions coach escorted me to the stands, where I was told to sit down. Overwhelmed and confused, I did as he told me to.  People around me glared in annoyance, and I shrunk in my seat.

The sitting didn’t last long, because one of the referees grabbed me by the arm.

“You need to see a librarian,” he said. “Unless you want to die.” I had no idea what a librarian had to do with my well being, but the look on his face told me he was serious. He lead me to a set of doors in the stadium and pushed me in.

In dream fashion, I was now inside a library. A huge, many roomed, and oddly shaped library. The rooms were all attached by square archways and the rooms were all different sizes. I had been pushed into a room with a lower than average ceiling, where a nondescript boy sat at the table in the center of the room, reading a book. To my right was a very small archway that seemed to get smaller as it lead to the next room — something I would have to crawl through. To the left was a much larger archway that lead to room that appeared to be bigger than the current one. Curious, I got on my hands and knees and peered into the small archway, I tried to crawl though, but my shoulders were too broad to fit. Persistent, I attempted to squeeze through with little luck.

“You can’t go that way,” the boy said without looking up from his book. “You’re an adult, that’s the children’s section.

I debated telling the kid off, as I didn’t think it mattered which book section I went into. Instead, I remembered the urgency of my situation and ignored his comments to ask where I could find the librarian.

The kid rolled his eyes. “In the adult section, of course,” he pointed to the larger archway, again without looking up from his book.

I sighed and walked through the archway. Despite instinctually knowing that I was in a universe that was far more technologically advanced than our own, the librarian and her desk seemed to come from the days of old. There was no computer, or self-scanning book checkout; just an old woman, a wooden desk, and an old book stamp.

“Hello?”

The old woman looked up from her desk.

“How can I help you?”

“I’m not sure,” I said nervously. “But I was told that I would die if I didn’t come to you.”

“Ah, a dimensional traveler,” she nodded. “Do you remember how you got here?”

“No.”

“Figures…” she sighed. “They never do.”

“You see,” she continued. “Travelers from countless other worlds fall into ours. Some die right away, as our oxygen is unbreathable to them, or they are crushed under the weight of our atmosphere. Others, like you, are close enough to this reality that you could survive here, with some adjustments,” she suddenly pulled out a large needle filled with green liquid.

I backed up in fear.

“Yes, it looks scary,” she agreed. “But it will save your life. Unfortunately, you cannot handle some of the sounds, sights, and sensations of our world for long before going insane or dying from your brain shutting down. This injection will not only adjust your ability to perceive the world, but will supply as much information as you need to understand and adjust to this world. We librarians are in charge of our world information. That’s why people like you come to us, not the doctors.”

“Don’t worry,” she added as she came around her desk. “We librarians take several nursing classes in order to do this properly…” I continued to back up, but the little boy was behind me and grabbed both my arms with surprising strength. Between this boy’s incredible strength and the old woman’s sharp movements, I was forced into a kneeling position with my head down. I felt a painful (but not extraordinarily so) jab near the nape of my neck, just where the spine meets the skull. This was followed by a tingling sensation similar to the sensation of regaining feeling after the Novocaine starts wearing off from a dental visit, only the tingling crept through the back of my skull and around the rest of my head. I felt myself go limp.

The next scene takes place weeks/months later and I am driving through a city area in a hover car that is driven by my own mind. There is no steering wheel and the cars are more oval shaped than rectangular. There were robots walking the streets amongst the people, entire buildings moved on floating platforms, and the sky was more of an violet color. The only thing that looked exactly the same as our world was the traffic lights. I mentally stopped my car at the red light in front of me. I glanced at a building and mused over how it looked like one of the buildings from my university back in my dimension.

Then the light turned green and I “told” the car to go, but I did not move. I tried again, nothing. The guy behind me honked, but I couldn’t get the car to move! I started panicking; I was holding up traffic. Was something wrong with the car? Then I blacked out.

I woke up in a small kitchen with small, brown tiles. I groggily stared up at the old librarian. She looked down at me with a small frown. The young boy from the library was now an adult. (He seemed to be able to morph between being a child and an adult.)

“She must be having an adverse reaction to the injection,”  the old woman said to the boy as though I were not in the room, “She’ll most likely die…”

“What?!” I shouted. “You said the injection would save me, and now you’re saying it didn’t?”

The kitchen was silent.

“Then send me back home so I don’t die!”

“We can’t, we don’t have the technology…”

“You’re telling me that in a world full of flying building and cars that you don’t have the ability to send travelers back?!”

“No. And you would know all the details as to why, if the injection had worked correctly. I’m sorry.”

I turned away from the two and just stared at the digital screen on the wall. I couldn’t comprehend the thought of dying, my mind kept focusing on the place where my car had stalled. The screen matched my thinking and morphed into a map of the area that I had been driving. I stared at the intersection while the librarian and the boy whispered to each other. My eyes began to follow the trails of some of the streets. In part of the map, I noticed all of the streets had names of book titles (what they were, I don’t remember) but, I made the connection that the intersecting and intertwining streets were all related by specific plot elements, (again, I cannot remember exactly what.) At this realization, I began to laugh: it was the funniest thing I had ever seen. I laughed so hard I started crying.

Then I woke up.

Score: 5/10. Crazy dimensional travel…minus points for suffering and being told I would die.

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