I was in my old family house, and my dad's whole extended family were there, but the house was different - it was much larger, and full of strange rooms and corridors that I didn't remember. It was full of people, as if for a party. My dad arrived home after a long day at work - he was very tired, and there was so much distance between us that it made me sad, and put me in a bad mood. I started to sulk, just like when my favourite uncle got married when I was 14, and I refused to smile in the photographs.

Two psychiatrists that had arrived at the house for a conference walked in to the room accompanied by my mother, and one of them told me that I should open up and talk about my feelings. I yelled at him to shut up, but that made my dad angry. He told me not to be so rude. I told him that he had no right to talk to me like that any more, because of the distance between us, and he got very sad and annoyed, saying that he wished that people would just leave him alone when he came home from work, because he was so tired, and he had nothing to look forward to at home except more demands on him - to cook, clean, talk, deal with problems. Right now, he said, he was trying to cook dinner.

I felt sorry and ashamed, and I saw how much stress and labour he had in his life, and even though I knew that he had kept me at this emotional distance, I couldn't stay angry with him. I hugged him and told him I was sorry, crying a little, and he hugged me back, and for a moment we truly connected - for the first time in years. We were looking at each other and really allowing the other to see the naked emotional person underneath the mask. Just then one of the psychiatrists walked in and saw us, and he nodded and smiled, as if to say "my work here is done."

My dad and I went into the kitchen. He was roasting two entire, enormous pigs on spits in a huge oven full of orange-hot coals and flames. He turned them and made adjustments to the heat, and then he left me there in the kitchen because he had other things to attend to. Suddenly Lindsay was there, and I watched her nibble on crispy pieces of the pigs' skin. She talked about how her family used to cook stuffing in chicken or turkey at Christmas, and how she loved to eat it. It occurred to me that she was eating pork even though she was vegetarian, but I figured it was her business and didn't say anything.

I went to look for my dad again, and found him sitting behind a judge's bench in a large room along with my mother and the two psychiatrists. They were part of a telephone panel, answering calls from distressed people and comforting them or offering solutions to their problems. This seemed perfectly natural to me, and I left the room because I didn't want to distract them.

The next time my dad came into the sitting room, he looked completely different. He was shorter and had dark hair, and he was much thinner and looked much younger, with a fresher face and bright eyes. He explained that he had lost 32 pounds on some kind of diet and had undergone an incredible rejuvenation. Rather than face the unreality of this, I just accepted what he was saying, and we started to horseplay. I picked him up and turned him upside down, and just then a nameless relative walked through the room and I called out, "Look! I could never do this before!"

I couldn't quite shake the feeling that something was wrong, though. I started to get ready for bed. I was looking for somewhere to brush my teeth, and I went into the conference room where the psychiatrists were, but then I remembered that I had a room upstairs with a basin, so I went up to find it. Next thing I know, I'm with a small Chinese girl who I must have met on the way upstairs. I was showing her all around the house. This was the old family home as I remembered it from when I was very small - full of dark, slightly secret rooms and passageways and musty smells and mysterious presences. I wanted to show the girl a picture of my father when he was younger, to prove that the dark-haired man downstairs was an imposter. "I like him," I told her, "but he's not my dad."

We walked along the long landing that led to most of the bedrooms. The carpet was a dull hospital green colour, and daylight was coming throught he windows even though it had been night just a short while ago. There were many family pictures on the wall, but none of them was of my dad. We turned a corner and found ourselves in a huge children's playroom and bedroom. The sleeping area on the left had a huge bed and great sheets and drapes which hung from the ceiling and billowed in the breeze of large fans on the walls. On the right was a play area full of brightly coloured toys and books and a rainbow rug. A tape-recorded voice could be heard telling a children's story. I knew that the room had been built for my cousin Mark, who was born with cerebral palsy and epilepsy and was severely retarded. There was a picture of an older male relative on the wall - possibly my great-grandfather who died before I was born. The room had a very creepy, ghostly feel to it and we left quickly.

I pointed out some small stairs leading up from the landing, and the girl said "The post room is that way." I felt that we shouldn't go to the post room, so I brought her to my mother's bedroom. There were lots of pictures here, and I finally found a recent one of my dad, in which he was large and heavy and had greying hair. I showed it to the girl, and compared it to the man downstairs, saying "You don't go from this to that by losing 32 pounds!" She added "Or go from having grey hair to black," and we both laughed, and I said "Or from being 6 foot two to being 5 foot eleven!" We agreed that the man downstairs couldn't be my dad.

Just then the girl got agitated and told me that when she came into the house, she had seen a strange, unnatural blue light, and she thought this might have had something to do with my dad's transformation. I asked her to describe the light, feeling that this was very important, but just then all the lgiht in the bedroom disappeared for a couple of moments, leaving us in complete darkness. I felt instinctively that it was a psychic attack of some kind - for some reason I have had quite a few of these in my dreams, or at least that's how I've interpreted them. After the lights came back on, to reassure both myself and the girl, I showed her a power cord as we were leaving the bedroom, and said "It's the speakers for the stereo - my mother leaves them plugged in all day and sometimes it shorts out the power." It was only after I woke up that I realized that my power cord explanation couldn't have been true, because the light that had disappeared and then returned had been coming through the windows. It was daylight, and the whole world had gone dark. I think I just came up with my explanation so that I could keep a grasp on reality - in fact, throughout the dream I kept on finding rational explanations for insane situations, so that I could avoid facing the unreality of it - and presumably, the realization that I was dreaming.

It's winter and there's a good amount of snow around. I'm driving around Amherst common early in the evening. I'm not sure what I was doing but I think I was on my way home. As I'm turning out of the parking lot closest to the town hall and on to the side street I see my wife standing on the street. This version of my wife, however, is a younger girl, maybe sixteen or seventeen. Instantly I know that there's something very bad happenning. In an instant I understand that by virtue of her being here, she is trying to warn me that the werewolves are back and that they are hunting us again.

For some reason there is something special about my wife and I during a special time before we were married. Somehow we are marked out in some mystical fashion. I think we even had some sort of undefinined magical potential, but even in the dream it was hard to recall what that special quality about us was. What I can recall is that there were some very brutal and evil werewolf type creatures that hunted us because of that special quality. I don't know how we evaded them the first time, or what changed me so that I was no longer special. I just knew that seeing the younger Leah meant that it was all starting again, and that I was in serious trouble.

I threw open the passenger's door and my young would-be-wife got in the car. She informed me that her older self was with our daughter, but that when she sensed the return of the werewolves she projected herself out to me. Somehow I understood that this younger woman was not an aspect of my wife, not just a simple part of her consciousness, or even a fragment of a whole. shewas in fact that very same woman from my past, but some how brought into the present time. I also knew that by virtue of being with her all of my old magic power came back. Even though i didn't really know how to use the magic, I started understanding how best to deal with the here and now threat of the werewolves.

Since the beasts were active at night, we decided that it would be best to drive to the nearest city, while avoiding anything like forests, back roads, or any unlit locations. Ultimately we decided to head towards Northampton. This was a good choice because the whole route there is lit, has dense traffic, and Northampton has a large enough new age population that we'd be able to find whatever supplies we'd need to defend ourselves from the werewolves.

We drove down route nine, but that part of the dream went by very quickly. We were discussing the best course of action. As we pulled into a resort apartment complex (more on this later) we came up with a brief plan. We'd get our old suite at the resort complex and place some very discreet protective agents into play while we gathered what we needed to kill the werewolves - which we obviously hadn't done the last time for some reason.

The apartment complex was a very normal looking townhouse style development. However the apartments were managed in a strange way. One unit consisted of a single entrance which led into a large common area. The common area was basically a larger kitchen, living room, mail center, and storage facility. There was also a very small lobby. From the lobby there were three to six doors that lead into suites that had from one to three rooms. I think that there was only one bathroom, but I never encountered it in the dream. There was a main phone line that was in the common space, but the suites themselves could be arrainged at whime by the inhabitants

My companion and I were the owners of our sweet, so we had a lot of leeway as to what we could do with it. Right off the bat we decided to get both wolfsbane and silverleaf potted plants to put outside the main door. I have no idea what the hell silverleaf is, but in my dream it looked like a generic leafy bush whose leaves were like narrow bay leaves, and the whole thing was silvery white. We also had popourri of varying grades made of the stuff to be put into the carpet, and left boiling on the stove. These wouldn't kill the werewolves. The wolfsbane would repel the monsters, like citrinella candels. The silverleaf would mask whatever mystical signature we gave off. Since these items were fairly common, in the dreamscape anyway, it wouldn't look terribly suspiscious for someone to decorate there house with them.

So somehow the planning stage became the doing stage, and the doing was done. The girl went off to town for some task, I can't remember what exactly, but it was related. By now you're wondering why I wasn't all making with the silver and specifically the silver bullets. Well, dreams are strange that way. We had to beat them with magic, that's all that we could do.

While the girl was out a neighbor stopped by. It was her sister-in-law Tina, whom of all of Leah's father's side of the family I like the most. Be that as it may, I couldn't let her know that her sister-in-law, my wife, and I were around. I didn't want to pass on any knowledge that we were around, I didn't want her to get caught up in it, and I though that she might be working for the monsters. Tina was very persistent. She looked in windows, she called on her cell, and she knocked and knocked. It occured to me as some of my mystical senses returned, that the Werewolves had a variety of powers available to them besides just the realy strong muscles, big teeth, and a predisposition to rending human flesh.

In the day time the werewolves could take on the form of people, mist, or be invisible. They didn't have many other magical powers, and they couldn't suddenly turn into a furry killing machine during the day, but they were very smart, and very crafty. As I thought about this I lay myself flat on the floor, up against the wall that had the window through which Tina was peeking into the house. Suddenly I felt the presence of nasty magic. I remember saying to myself, "She's going to lay low the barriers between us and her eyes will see only my flesh". I snaked the phone cord out of the wall, to kill the ringing that was making it hard to concentrate, and began to think myself undetectable. Tina left looking scared and pissed off. I wondered if she was working for the werewolves, or if she had been momentarily possesed.

So anyway, my girl came back from town, and we finished off various other preparation tasks. Lo and behold there was a knock on the door. There was an old couple that had reserved one of the small suites from us. We let them in, showed them around, and sort of forgot about them. I remember that they were creepy looking, like the old couple out of the David Lynch film Mulholland Drive, but we paid them no mind. I told my wife about the visit from Tina and she was worried. We resolved to check on Tina and her husband (my wife's half brother) Bruce to make sure they were okay. By logical deduction they of course were staying in a near by building. See previous statement about dreams being funny that way.

We decided to go and let our new tenants know that we really wouldn't be around much and to give them our contact info. When we went into the suite, there was nothing in the room bust a light mist evaporating out the window. We'd been had, and our defenses didn't work against their human forms. We hadn't taken into consideration that during the daylight their lack of magical potency would render our defenses impotent as well.

The dream fades away into wakefulness when we go to check Tina and Bruce. Tina was fully awake and dressed very business-sexy. Bruce is half asleep lying on the couch. The aparment smells strongly of sex and sweat. Tina is yelling at Bruce in a very wifey-naggy kind of way. I wake up feeling like I'd been set up.

I am standing in my aunt’s house. It really isn’t my aunt’s house in real life, but I still know it is her house. My whole family is there. My cousin’s ex-girlfriend stands in the corner, extremely pregnant. Suddenly she starts to go into labor. My aunt bustles over and insists that she deliver the baby here and won’t let her go to the hospital.

The baby is born without a sound. My aunt spanks her butt, holds her upside down, throws her up in the air. Still nothing. The baby is turning blue. Everyone is panicking. I run from the room.

I find myself on a vaguely familiar couch. Orange, yellow and brown plaid. I cry into the pillows, hard. Hot tears steaming down my face, leaving a saltwater stain. Then I remember.

I enter the birthing room again and shout for my aunt to unclog the baby’s nostrils. I close my eyes and listen to the baby’s first wail.

I wake up and it is my birthday.

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