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The Chiang-Shih
dreamed 08/23/2004 by Julian Garberson

I dreamed today that I was in the throne room of one of the Early Han emperors -- that is, before the rebellion by An Lu-Shan. I was not conscious of dreaming. This is unusual.

A Chinese traditional vampire (chiang-shih) was sitting on the throne in the otherwise empty throne room. He was disguised as an unknown 21st century "fighter" of the World Wrestling Federation (in which I have never been interested.) He was huge, strong and very fat. He had black leather bands strapped at intervals all along the arms and legs of his light-brown colored, naked body. He may have been wearing the Chinese equivalent of shuko and ashiko (hand and foot spikes). He appeared to cast some kind of jaho (magic) on me. He compelled me to walk closer to him, to the right of the throne where he was sitting. So I did. As I turned to move away he snaked his whole left arm and hand under my chin and pulled up with a measured amount of force. At the same time, he drove his right elbow down. behind my head. His controlled elbow strike hit me in the shoulder blades and the back of the neck.

I fell to a kneeling position. I could not move. I sensed that I was in no immediate danger, but if I were to move even the tiniest amount, he would break my neck. He took no further action, other than to continue holding me. He did not speak at all, in any language. Perhaps he did not have the ability to vocalize.

I racked my brains for a strategy. English text which I had never read scrolled by in my mind. It appeared to be a comprehensive dossier on Chinese traditional vampires. In the dossier, I read that one strategy which might work would be to mentally say the words "Teleport yourself into the ocean to the south." (The South China Sea? The Yellow Sea?) In that case, the dossier said that one would suddenly reappear floating alone in the ocean. One might drown, but at least one would be free of the vampire. I said these words in my head several times.

There was absolutely no effect. The situation in the throne room did not change. The mute, disguised vampire was still sitting on the throne. He was still totally unmoving, pinning me in exactly the same kneeling position. I knew there was something else I should try, but for the life of me I could not remember what it was. Some minutes went by. I started out calm and even intrigued, but gradually I became more and more desperate.

Suddenly, explosively, I remembered that I should try pronouncing the name of either Jesus or God. I meant to say it in my head. However, I realized belatedly that I was opening my mouth and saying it out loud. The vampire abruptly broke my neck.

I woke up.


--Julian Garberson


--Chris Wayan

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