The little girl dreamt of unicorns. Pink and golden unicorns

galloped by a silver stream. Rich fruits grew in a meadow not far

away, and a variety of creatures lived on the delicious provender

they provided. Beyond lay an evil looking mountain with the

quintessential sinister castle resting atop. The girl stirred in

her sleep, approaching wakefulness, and this was the critical

moment…None of her dreams must be allowed to enter the


They called him many names; Dreamcatcher was the one he liked

best. Sure, Zeta-Phase sounded cool at parties, but Dreamcatcher

was what he thought of himself as. He sighed as he looked at the

one-horned creature; this sleeper had a particularly vivid

imagination, and it’d almost be a shame to cull these things. He left

a hazy memory of things for her to mull over as she lay in bed,

for this one was was too innocent (at any rate, he had enough time

to make this one clean) to see the true fate of her creations…She

yawned and woke up, stretched about and soaked in happy

thoughts of knights and castles until, like smoke swirls in the

wind, all the details evaporated, leaving but that craving to

remember what it was all about. She’s think of it all morning, but

the harder she thought, the hazier it’d become until the monotony

of day life distracted the waking mind. As she’d grown older,

she’d subconsciously understand the futility of it all, for the

subconscious knows that its creations are being destroyed each

time, and her dreams would become more and more commonplace

and dreary, all the fantasy sapped away…And the Dreamcatcher’s

job would be made easier.

As the Dreamcatcher rounded up every imagining around him, like

innumerable times before, he reflected upon his task. People

always told each other to follow their dreams, it was his task

made easier that most didn’t care to. After all, if all the creations

of every little kid entered the waking, it would be a very difficult

world indeed. Waking minds could only handle so much detail,

and would easier choose insanity. The simplicity of the world was

just an indicator of how efficient he was – or so he told himself.

He did miss a few sometimes, of course, largely on purpose

(again, he told himself) and he’d seen poor women turn into

snobbish overnight billionaires on a few crude details he’d

neglected to destroy. Or a man who had a dream making vast

differences to millions all because someone had slept on the job.

He had a job to do and largely liked it. But he did grow weary

sometimes. Maybe he’d purposely slip up one of these days, give

the world a hint of the good old days when dreams were real

dreams, nightmares were real nightmares; and the waking and the

dreaming were one…

A tube shaped craft zoomed past a spy satellite, sending its

sensors hyper; a large goat- like creature leapt across Tokyo and

snacked on a paper house; knights in glistening armour served

burgers with side orders of fries; the statue of liberty got tired of

modesty and remembered her European roots; piles of tax return

documents filed themselves beside the bed of a sleeping IRS man;

31 types of ice cream chased children around a school, eating the

more delicious ones.

The Dreamcatcher was happy for a while.

Richa Goenka

B.A English Hons
2nd year
Lady Shri Ram College

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