The dead of the night was shattered by his scream. It was his all right: he heard its last stains added to the fact his mouth was wide open.
There was a relentless knocking on his door. Everyone inside the house was awakened and they probably waited outside to hear about his explanation.
Wilson was literally wet with perspiration; his hands still shaking.
He opened the door, ready with his alibi.
“I had a nightmare. Sorry for …” he stopped, seeing no one was there.
He wished he did not look down: two severed foot wore his shoes.
He shook all over: he was thankfully awake.
Strange! No one knocked on his door. His scream could have awakened the entire neighborhood.
If no one came, that meant only one thing: he had a soundless scream.
He tried to ward off the knowledge of the crash and everything connected to it. But happy moments of other events in his life were hard to come by. All his mind could think of were feet.
Wilson removed the blanket off him and decided not to continue his sleep. He was not prepared to enter the dream world again.
It could not be! How could it be?
He could not find any explanation why he wore his shoes while sleeping. It was the oddest act he never did before. Until now.
The hurried knock on the door gave him mixed feelings. On one hand, he was terrified: the severed feet could still be there minus the shoes. On the other hand, his parents could have been concerned hearing his most recent distressed sound.
“Ma? Pa?” he called out.
Wilson turned the knob, slowly opening the door.
He checked the floor first: nothing there.
When he turned his gaze up, he was too scared to watch two figures approaching him that he immediately closed the door and locked it.
His scream was too loud. He saw from his bedroom window that their neighbors’ lights were immediately turned on.
“Wilson!” cried a female voice from the other side of the door.
“Son! What’s happening!” yelled a male voice that sounded like his father. “Open the door!”
“Go away! You’re not real!”
“Open up or you’ll be sorry!”
Wilson could not be mistaken. That was his mother’s usual warning. He was awake for sure.
When he finally opened the door, he could not blame himself for being frightened. Without the light turned on, they appeared ghoulish to his troubled mind. His mother, wearing a white night gown with her long hair uncombed, frowned at him. His father, tall, dark and muscular, wore no shirt and only in his underwear, looked dead serious.
“What are you screaming about?” his father took a towel from a chair to cover himself.
“Why are you wearing shoes?” his mother asked, taking a seat on the same chair.
“I don’t know,” he replied absentmindedly, trying to recall what really happened to him.
Wilson’s parents looked at each other and pretended they had a nightmare, a nightmare involving their son who seemed to be obsessive with his new pair of shoes.
“Take those off and go back to sleep!”
They went out the door shaking their heads, believing they wasted time and effort for nothing.
“I can’t go back to sleep,” he replied, his shoes removed.
“Then, let US sleep!” his father stressed, his voice trailed off in the unlighted hallway.
Wilson walked straight toward the window and opened it. With one quick swing, he hurled the shoes out.
(to be continued)