My father says that almost the whole world is asleep...

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Sweet dreams~
quality_friend wrote in thewakelogs
Who: Dana, Batman
What: Dana has a nightmare (THANK YOU DARK AEON)
Where: Her room in the Eastern Welcome House/Wherever the dreams take place
When: April 11th, middle of the night
Warnings: Almost-death
Notes: Other characters can see the dream, but please don't interfere directly. EDIT: Anyone in the Eastern District Welcome House can jump in starting here!

Dana didn't know how she'd gotten back to Gotham, but when the first things she saw were Chelsea and Max at their lunch table, waving her over, she didn't bother to think about it, she just wanted to talk to them. Which she could, filling them in on everything that had happened in Nautilus. It should've taken a long time, but the bell for class never rang, so she never had to stop short.

Finally she finished, and waited for one of them to ask a question; they'd been silent throughout her whole story.

"What about Orihime?" Chelsea said, finally, in an odd, flat tone.

"I don't know," Dana replied. "It sounded like there wasn't anything I could do-"

"So you abandoned her to run back here?" Max interrupted.

"What? N-no, that's not- I don't know how I got here-" Dana stammered.

"It's all right. Why would you want to come back here, to us, when you have so many friends in Nautilus? You even have the sisters you always wanted," Max said with a scowl.

"I'm glad you found another family just as loving as your real father. You deserve it the most," Chelsea added in a mocking tone.

"Max, Chels- I know how much you both would like everyone there-" Dana started.

"But we weren't there, and you were. You get the family, and what do we get?" Max said.

"A father who never trusts me."

"A family that's never around."

"You get a boyfriend who would fight for you, I get one who would push me into danger to save himself."

"You have a boyfriend, and you're still making eyes at the first cute guy who talks to you."

Max and Chelsea's alternating accusations grew louder, until Dana had to cover her ears, or else she might go deaf. "It's not like that- I'm sorry-" she kept repeating weakly.

She closed her eyes, and when she opened them, the school and the girls were gone. She was in a park, Terry at her side, and she leaned on him, weak with relief.

"Terr- Thank you. I- really needed this together time..."

Terry wasn't paying much attention to her, so she gave up explaining and just hugged him. He barely seemed to notice, but at least he wasn't yelling accusations at her, which was comfort enough.

Until his cell phone rang, and he pushed her away to answer it. He listened to the voice on the other end, but he never said anything, and she couldn't pick up what the other person was saying. He hung up and turned away from her without a word.

"Terry? What was that? Does Wayne-" she started to ask, when Terry turned to her and cut her off with a snarl.

"Mr. Wayne won't need anything from me anymore. He's dead."

The shock of his words shook her, so much that she didn't even notice the anger at first. "Oh, Terry, I'm so sorry-"

"You should be," he interrupted her. "He had a heart attack, and nobody was around to save him, because you had to bitch about how your life was ending to me."

Dana shook her head, not understanding. "But, you said-"

"How would you know what I said about anything? You never pay attention to me, to what I want. You don't care about me, all you want is a boyfriend, it doesn't matter who."

She was too shocked and hurt to even make any token protests this time, and Terry went on relentlessly.

"You're just a shallow, selfish little girl, except you think you aren't, which makes you even worse. Anyone you know would kill for the life you have, but you, you're never satisfied. Everything has to be perfect with you, you can't tolerate not being the center of everyone's universe. You're so self-absorbed, you don't even notice how bad everyone else has it, and you wouldn't care even if you knew."

He pushed her away from him, then turned and started to walk away.

"We're through, Dana. It's your fault my father died, and now it's your fault that Bruce Wayne's dead. I can't stand to look at you. Find someone else's life to ruin."

"If anyone will have a murderer like you..."

Dana shivered at the all-too-familiar voice that came out of nowhere, seemed to surround her. "Patrick... no... you're-"

"Dead?" he finished for her. "And who did that, dear little Dana?"

It was dark, but she could recognize Patrick's lair in the sewers, except she couldn't see any exit this time. His voice continued to echo all around her, not coming from any source.

Suddenly a torch appeared out of the blackness above and landed in the sewage, setting the whole sewer afire in a second. "I thought I'd return the favor, dear Dana. When you killed me, I had my rats; who do you have?" The voice didn't say anything else, just laughed as the flames drew closer to Dana, while she stood there, frozen, trapped, alone...

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I have no mouth, and...


He wants to say it -- he tries to say it -- but every time Danny reaches out to her, nothing responds. No mouth, no arms, not even eyes to blink nor a head to turn away. He's conscious and trapped staring as Dana's friends slowly turn against her, as her boyfriend turns his back on her -- and who does he think he is, saying crap like that? Dana's one of the nicest girls he knows! One of the nicest people he knows!

And then the fire -- closing in on Dana, slowly, but surely...

Dana, no! Please!

Dana thinks she can hear someone calling her name, but- no. There's nobody here, nobody to know, nobody to care. She's alone, going to die, and now even her mind's playing tricks on her.

[Sanji has NO idea what in the world he's seeing here, or how, but as things get worse for Dana, his anxiety rising until she found herself in the sewers, that light approaching. He struggles to reach her, but it feels like he's trapped inside an invisible box - unable to break it no matter how hard he kicks at it.]

FUCK! MISS DANA! Where are you!? What's happening?! HEY! Hey, you bastard! You stay away from Miss Dana!! Do you HEAR me?! Stay. AWAY From her! Fucking damn it what the HELL is happening!? Miss Dana!!

Another voice, this one panicky. It sounded like Sanji. Her voice of panic sounded like a flirtatious pirate. She giggled, crying as well. It was absurd, but in just a few seconds, it wouldn't matter.

"What do you think you're doing?"

Unlike the other confused, scared voices, this one was clear. And the question made her start thinking again, rather than just cower and wait. What was she doing? What could she do? What had she been learning to do, to protect herself?

She concentrated, and with much less effort than she had expected, she noticed the temperature drop down to bearable levels, the flames getting pushed away by an invisible sphere. She used the reprieve to take several deep breaths, calming her nerves and steadying her heartbeat.

"Good. You've been told you need to use your head- you've got a decent one on your shoulders- now use it."

Again the voice that sounded like Batman, almost angry at her. She wanted to shout back, how can she use her head more than she was already, but that wouldn't do any good.

Use her head. Well, she could survive the flames and anything Ratboy sent after her, so she wouldn't have any trouble escaping the sewers this time... But how did she get in there? Last time she'd fainted, but this time she hadn't, and she still had no clue what she was doing there.

"This... doesn't make sense."

The date with Terry after school. How had she gotten to it from the lunch table? How had they both known where to go, when she'd been away for months?

"None of this makes any sense!" she screamed, and the sewers faded into a featureless gray void.

"And it won't. Think. Does any of this feel real?"

"No. This isn't real. Gotham- none of that was real." She stared at the void, challenging it to change back into something, anything, but it didn't.

"This is a dream, isn't it." It's not a question.

Edited at 2012-04-13 02:01 am (UTC)

And with those words, she woke with a start. She was disoriented at first, not sure whether she was in Nautilus or Gotham or neither, but then she felt Ghost batting at her desperately. It couldn't be Gotham, she'd never had a pet, so she must be in her room in Nautilus. She hugged Ghost, who didn't even yowl.


The door creaked open, and in padded Lily, hair in disarray from sleep and nightgown rumpled.

"I thought I heard-" Oh. She didn't look good at all. "Are you alright?"

Edited at 2012-04-13 02:38 am (UTC)

Dana looked up from hugging Ghost when the other girl came in.

"Oh, Lily- I guess I'm okay. Just had a really bad dream."

Lily stopped a few feet away from Dana and peered at her miserable friend.

"Jasmine or ginseng?"

"Whatever's easier to make," Dana replied. "Or- something cold. Not hot." Even though she'd dealt with the fire, she didn't want a reminder of the heat so soon after the nightmare.

Lily gazed at her, tilting her head. No, that wouldn't do at all. She walked closer and looped her fingers carefully around Dana's arm, tugging lightly.

"Right then. To the kitchen with you. I have just the idea."

Dana didn't resist the pull, but she did pause to give Ghost some help settling onto her shoulder.

"All right. I'm not likely to get back to sleep any time soon, not after that."

Lily continued guiding Dana, knowing that her friend could probably make the walk on her own just fine, but wanting to give what comfort she could. Once they neared the kitchen, she let her hand drop and set about gathering a few supplies.

"Is it something you care to talk about?" she asked, offering Dana a concerned look. She wouldn't pry, but Dana had listened to her when she'd needed it, and Lily was more than willing to do the same.

Dana sat down at the table and held out an arm for Ghost to climb down. "Hope you're not making something that's better than catnip to cats."

She almost refused Lily's offer to talk, but... "I think so. I- was going to going to try to make sense of- things, and a second opinion wouldn't be a bad idea."

Lily chuckled lightly, setting up her ingredients. "It certainly has a similar effect on idiotic boys, but no. It's called Butterbeer," she said, boiling water and brown sugar. It would be hot originally, of course, but she could always chill it with what little magic she had left.

"But I will be more than happy to give my opinion where it is wanted. Tell me about it?"

"Alcoholic?" Dana asked with a hint of a smile. "I'm still a good four years away from 21, but what're the cops going to do to me out here?" She wouldn't have enough to make her drunk, and maybe it'd help her get back to sleep.

"I'm- not sure where to start, the beginning or the end. The first stuff seems trivial compared to the end of the nightmare- well, almost the end, but- it all seemed to build up to it."

"Goodness no! I'm not Sirius Black!" Lily exclaimed, looking affronted. "But it does do marvels in lifting spirits."

While Lily continued adding ingredients to the pot, she was most assuredly still listening. "The beginning's just as good a place as any."

"Sirius Black?" Dana repeated with a confused look.

"Okay... The dream started with me telling my friends back home what had gone on here. They- started saying they hated me for being lucky here- and there, really- when they deserved what I got so much more."

"A troublemaker who thinks almost as highly of himself as James Potter," she said, trying to scowl, but unable to hide a very miniscule amount of nostalgia for anything familiar- even Sirius Black. "And who has no qualms with sneaking in contraband beverages to First Years."

Lily paused her stirring, turning around to meet Dana's eyes. "My best friend, Severus," she was quite sure Dana would remember their previous conversation about him, "had a terribly unfortunate life. And for all his faults, he never once held the life I had against me. Whatever your dream showed wasn't real- nor could it be if the people you know as friends said such things."

Dana held Lily's gaze for a moment, then looked back down. "I- I know that. But in the dream, it made sense to me, and I couldn't think about it..."

She sighed. "That was just the beginning, anyway. Next was with my boyfriend, and he got a call about his boss dying. He blamed me for wanting him to go on the date, because if he'd been there, Wayne might've lived... Then he started telling me how I was an awful person and he couldn't stand the sight of me, that I was responsible for both his father figures dying alone..."

She buried her face in her arms. It hurt to continue, but she forced the words out in a whisper. "Then Ratboy- Patrick- started talking to me, reminding me that I had killed him, and tried to kill me, taunting me that nobody would know or care..."

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