I’m a little less thrilled with this piece of writing, but I just started writing and came up with something. It wasn’t really a fully fleshed out idea at first, so it might be somewhat lacking in some places. Anyhow:
A thunderous, terrifying, disembodied voice narrates Tom’s nightmares. The narration is unintelligible, mostly mumbled in a language devoid of form, but Tom understands, he doesn’t need words to detect the intended menace. And so he runs. He runs in place as imagined cityscapes move past him, trying to get away from something that he has no concept of.
Tom tries not to sleep as much as he used to. As a kid he had watched the Nightmare On Elm Street films, finding joy in their specific blend of terror and humor. But his own situation seems much more dire, lacking the levity that Freddy Krueger is so well known for. Tom can’t be sure that his nightmares are anything more than dreams, frightening machinations of his own subconscious, but he has a growing worry in the back of his mind.
Six weeks after his first nightmare, Tom has reached a point where he sleeps for less than an hour at a time, but every lapse into unconsciousness yields another nightmare. He longs for a suddenly bygone time when nights of dreamless sleep were commonplace. More recently, Tom has considered himself fortunate to have developed a self-imposed insomnia as a defense mechanism.
But even this moderate victory is short lived. Three months after his first nightmare, Tom begins to hear the voice bleeding through into his waking reality. His every moment is accompanied by a backing track of sinister gibberish, driving him towards the brink of insanity. In his desperation, Tom decides to go against his every instinct and go to sleep. He lays his head down on the pillow and is instantly unburdened.
The dreamworld seems new and exciting, and the concept of time disappears. As the freshness wears off, Tom becomes acutely aware of the silence. No voices, no sounds of any kind. Tom tries to cry out, but find that he, too, is voiceless. Bewildered, he tries to rouse himself from his slumber, but finds it impossible.
Tom is asleep.