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PIER'S END

Dreamed 1989/2/21 by Chris Wayan

White sky, a horizon lost in drizzle, a soft gray-green sea. And me, walking along an endless pier. Before me, behind me, it bleeds into the white, like a man at a loss for words. This is it, the whole world, just sea, mist, pier, and me, in a damp, clinging dress, not quite warm enough, walking in the rain.

The endless pier ends. I lean on the rail and stare at the low, slow, sleepy waves.

The foggy dream-sea off the end of the pier.
Paws pad behind me. I don't turn. I know who it is. Chandler, the lion-man, walks up. Lion in a trench coat. My lover, the private eye.

He had a lead. He told me not to come, it's dangerous. I did anyway, and say it anyway: "Chandler... don't do it."

He grabs me hard, pricking me with his foreclaws. Gives me one long raspy lion-lick, and then he leaps over the rail onto the water.

Not into. Onto.

He's good. Real good. So good he can walk on water.

The drunken mutter of a speedboat idling. The chug grows till the boat coalesces from the rain. Four or five men, hatted and huddled, indistinct. It passes the wharf's end, a hundred yards away.

And Chandler charges. His paws carve shell-like gouts from the water's face as he goes from zero to thirty in two seconds. A zigzag stitch of spray arcs behind him, and already he's there, pouncing on the boat.

My boyfriend Chandler, a private-eye lion, pounces on a smuggler's boat.
But they're gone! They jumped over the side and ran. Not swam. Ran. They splash and scatter like amphetamine ducks. Like a swarm of trenchcoat Jesuses!

My love leaps after them, and fear stabs me. For the first time, he's up against men with powers like his own. What if he dies?

It bursts out of me, like someone else's voice. "DON'T LEAVE ME!" I cry, then grip the rail in shame. Distraction now could kill him.

Clomp clomp clomp behind me. Dark shapes coalesce from mist, stalk up the pier. Hard-eyed men, more of the gang. He was right; I shouldn't have come.

I either have to fight them, which I can't... or... or try walking on water myself. Can I do it? Dare I follow my love?

I grew up so sheltered. I thought of myself as delicate, till I met him. He taught me I was stronger than I knew. Now I'll have to find out... how strong. I don't know if there's a lioness inside me.

But I guess I'm gonna find out.

I'm Raymond Chandler's girlfriend, cornered by gangsters at the end of a pier.
NOTES WHEN I WOKE

LISTS AND LINKS: I'm Just Not Myself Today - cross-gender dreams - dream beings - animal people - lions and other big cats - detective dreams - walking on water - skills and mastery - love - fear - multiple personalities

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