Florian slept fitfully the night before he died. He dreamed of strange creatures with masked snouts and madmen in boats, of a wanderer with a spyglass, and of many other things that need not be mentioned here. He rose in the morning as he always did, by hitting his alarm clock until it shut up. He shuffled to the bathroom, where he had a staring contest with his bedraggled reflection. The thin face with dark brown bedhead stared back at him and stuck out its tongue. Florian showered and dressed quickly, donning his very favorite tie (a navy blue one with oranges on it), drank a cup of coffee, and moseyed his way down to the front door of his apartment complex.
Now, Florian Jones was a ...view middle of the document...
He opened it to the fifty-third page and examined what was written there:
A dog-like creature with long, silvery fur that reached to the ground stood in the middle of a glowing forest filled with weeping willow trees . It wore a mask on its snout and had a forked tongue. A wild-looking man in a floating rowboat rocked back and forth and cried like a child. He looked up at me, pointed a shaking finger at me, and then I jerked awake. After a while I fell asleep again and the same creature was there, but this time there was a girl sitting on its back. She was laughing. The creature turned and touched my hand with its tongue, and in my head I heard the words, “Your time has come.” I woke up again. After a while I fell back to sleep and the boat was there, but not the creature or the man. The same girl stood beside the boat and laughed at me, and I woke again to the melodious sound of my alarm clock.
Florian sighed and closed the notebook. Nothing had come to him. ‘Should’ve known there was no point,’ he thought. He’d been dreaming about those same two people and that creature every few nights for nearly two months now, and he still didn’t have an inkling of what those dreams meant. He loosened his tie a bit and went back to work, doing this, that and the other thing. Each of his tasks felt the same as the next: boring.
The hours slid by, as slowly as they could, it seemed. Nonetheless, lunchtime came, just as it always did. Lunchtime is one of the few things in life that one can always count on. It will always come, albeit not always at the same time, no matter what, and that is why Florian was so fond of it. As soon as he was allowed, Florian, dream notebook in hand, vacated the building and, by way of the subway system, made his way to the opposite side of the city. It seemed fitting to him that he should be as far from his workplace as possible if he wanted to properly enjoy his lunch.
Florian’s favorite place to lunch was a quaint little café that was hidden away, tucked between a bank and a hotel. It had little to announce its presence save word-of-mouth, and Florian had discovered it purely by accident. He was quite fond of wandering about the city in his spare time, and he had stumbled upon it one Sunday afternoon during one of his excursions. Run by a cute old Scottish couple, it had a sort of charm to it that one does not often find in the midst of a city as massive and impersonal as London.
Florian stepped inside the café, ascended a risky-looking spiral staircase, sent a silent thanks to the heavens that his favorite table was unoccupied, and sat down. He liked that particular table because it was by the window on the second level of the café, giving him a lovely view of the street below. Having eaten his lunch in this same seat almost every other day for several years, Florian had become quite the people watcher. Instead of perusing his dream books, he would watch the street below. (Wouldn’t want to risk dirtying the notebook pages.)...