(CW: Slight gore)
Author's note: This story is based off a dream I had.
"I hate sleeping. Whenever I close my eyes for more than a few seconds, I see it. Not just that, but I sense it. Feel the fresh sea salty air burn my eyeballs. Because of that reoccurring nightmare, I now have a rational fear of the ocean. Not irrational whatsoever. I have a very logical reason to explain WHY I feel this way."
"...You want to know what it is? Fine, I'll tell you, for a price..."
"NO, I'm not asking for your soul. Just one simple doubloon, please."
"Thank you. See? Was it that hard to hand over some useless pocket change? Don't roll your eyes at me. It's rude."
"Anyways, let's get onto the story, shall we?"
"Every night, once I went to bed, the dream started immediately. I was standing on a dock. Foggy, with a cold breeze. A ship- no- a CRUISE ship was there in front of me. White, gold, silver, and bronze. I wandered inside, taking in everything around me. The smell of assorted gourmet food guided me to the fancy buffet."
"Expensive grub from all around the world, placed on a silver platter right in front of me. In a daze, I picked out a random nourishment, several other people around me did too. Sitting down at a beautifully set table with a warm white dining cloth and a lit golden candle holder, which was burning a clean linen scent."
"Mellow orchestra music was playing, and a stunning celebrity was singing along with it. I asked her to dance with me, she accepted the invitation. Everything was going smoothly until there was a sudden crash. The guests were panicking, the staff were trying to calm everyone down (which honestly wasn't working, I mean... would you tell someone to calm down who's having a panic attack? No, I don't think so.)"
"A guy, I would assume, is dressed in a red velvet coat, tipped with gold. Wearing some baggy beige trousers, gold buckle boots, and a pirate hat. Though, what caught my eye most was that he had a mask on. A white on, with black mesh eye slits and a matching black mesh mouth hole to breathe."
"His crew captured everyone and tied them up. He challenged me to a duel. One on one. His long metal saber against my small, dull, chipped dagger. The odds were against me, but if I didn't agree to fight him, he would throw all these innocent people overboard. It was raining really hard; the cruise was rocking back and forth violently."
"This is when things seemed... off. His entire crew were awfully odd looking. Not in the way where it was a deformity. One of them had a REALLY long, pointy nose. Another had shark teeth. I noticed that each member of his team had something that resembled oceanic creatures. As we dueled, which eventually led us up to the plank, my dagger took off a big chunk of his mask."
"It revealed his eyes. Those eyes, the pupils in slits, his hair hiding underneath his hat... I just knew what would happen next. Taking off the disguise, his true form was an octopus. He screeched and slid the saber into my stomach, then I fell off the plank. Into the water I went, sinking deeper while I bled to death."
"But then, lightning struck the cruise, which broke into perfect halves. It was on fire and sinking down with me, taking the pirates and innocents to their cold, salty death of drowning."
"The dream kept happening. Every single night. Not exactly like that, but it ends up the same. Getting stabbed and drowning."
"Yes, I went to a therapist about it. Did that help? NO."
"Screw that, I just continued on with my everyday life. People ask me 'are you okay? You seem tired.' OF COURSE, I SEEM TIRED. I HAVEN'T GOTTEN A GOOD AMOUNT OF SLEEP SINCE I WAS TEN YEARS OLD."
"I basically run-on adrenaline and caffeine. There is no energy left in this old body of mine. Alright no, I'm not THAT old, but you get the idea. That's beside the point. If you have a dream, don't follow it. Follow your ambitions instead. Your dreams can get you killed. Be smarter than that, kid."
"Did I ever get over the nighttime terrors? Yes, actually. Apparently, that very dream I had, meant something specific. I got metaphorically stabbed in the back by someone I trusted most and was left for dead. But my guardian angel had other plans for me. I got up off of my sorry bum and started a new life. That's how I'm still here today."
"So, here's my advice to you. Wise up and be logical. Those horror movies? Aren't real. Those scary stories? Absolute nonsense. As the one intellectual said: 'Reality is an illusion, and the universe is a hologram.'"
"Yes, that was a reference from Gravity Falls. I'm hip. I have swag."
"...ANYWAYS. If you end up in the same place over and over again, remember that you just need to get out of the loop. It'll be hard, but you can always start again and turn over a new leaf. Don't give up. It'll be worth it when you get to your goal."
"I never got over my fear of the sea though. Some people never get over their fears. That's normal though. Just like the dreams keeps happening even when the event already happened in real life. It's like my conscious is deliberately trying to torture me."
"It's interesting how humans are afraid of things they hate or don't understand. I understand the ocean, but have you ever thought that space is more explored than the deep blue sea? So many things that are still unexplored down there. The unknown is what keeps us up at night. Like when you ponder random topics in the shower."
"People get fears through trauma they had in the past, whether it's something that happens normally to everyone, or something totally out of the blue! Life is crazy and mother nature is a sadist. We all just have to take it anyways because we have no other choice in the matter. It's either deal with it or die, and I still have things I want to do before I pass."
"The decision is yours to make on what you want to do with your life. You write your own story. Become a legend. A hero, a villain, an average citizen. It's up to you to mold the way you want it to end. Hopefully you'll get a good Hollywood ending. I can't guarantee that it'll be perfect, but it will be yours and yours alone."