The Sleeping House
The Sleeping House
by Hunter Red
What follows is a dream. A dream I had one night when my mind would appreciate dreams of this nature. This dream took place in one of those cookie-cutter split level homes that seem to be built any place where large sections of farmland used to be. The home is decorated with mementos of the places where the family who lives in the house has visited, either on vacation or because they just happened to be there. There are also pictures on the wall of the family, dressed in sweaters, nice pants, and completely unflattering blouses, all staring at the camera and smiling for no discernible reason.
In the dream, it's late and the house is dark and still. Only a couple of lights are on in the house, most prominently one over the front door. I'm watching the door as the deadbolt is disengaged and the slightly carved piece of lumber opens. A man steps into the light under the front door before closing the door behind him. A dark skinned gentleman about fifty years of age with slightly graying hair and goatee, wearing a nice business suit.
The man is quiet, deliberately so, as he removes his jacket and dress shoes, setting them delicately onto the shelves and hangers where the rest of the family's shoes and coats also are set. The man looks around the house, his house, checking if any other lights are lit inside, before venturing upstairs when the rest of the occupants of the house, their house, are in slumber. The men steps lightly and quietly, ensuring that the stairs he is ascending do not creek nor that his steps resonate through the sleeping house. The man keeps his steps soft and his movements quiet as he opens the door to the first bedroom at the top of the stairs.
Inside the bedroom is calm and dark, the only light therein coming from an alarm clock. Not much can be seen inside the bedroom, except for one person. One small, young girl, no more than six or seven, her skin barely visible in the darkness of the night. She lays in her small, young bed, sleeping through the night with nary a care in the world. The man juts his head into the small, young girl's room, sees she is there and asleep, then leaves the room as quietly as he entered it. The man followes the same routine as he checks in on a tall, lovely young lady, fourteen years of age, a strapping young man, sixteen years of age, and a boy who's very sight brought a smile to the man's face, four years of age.
After finishing his check-in with the younger members of the family, the man, maintaining his purposeful silence, makes his way down the hall to the door leading to the largest bedroom in the house. The man opens the door, in the quiet way he had before, but this time enters the room, closing the door behind him. The room was warm and dimly lit, the only light coming from a small bedside lamp. The room is minimally furnished, containing only a king size bed and a small dresser. The man looks over the room and lets out a large yet quiet sigh, an outward expression of comfort.
The man approaches the dresser and begins to empty the contents of his pockets onto it's large flat surface. The man's keys, wallet, and a small amount of pocket change are placed delicately next to objects of similar kind. A large yet not too flashy watch is placed near another watch that, while small, reflected the brilliance of it's owner. Finally, the man's cellphone is placed in it's charging station, causing the phone's wallpaper to be momentarily displayed, a wallpaper similar to one of the family portraits hanging downstairs.
A small walk-in closet is attached to the room. This closet is filled with a wide variety of clothes, although only a small percentage of those clothes belonged to the man. The man enters this room and begins undressing, placing his work clothes in a pile next to his pajamas, which he then slips into. After finishing the slight transformation, the man steps back into the room. He surveys the room, then focuses on the bed, in particular the person that was already in it.
Undisturbed and peacefully ambivalent to the world, a woman lays in her warm, soft bed, attempting to brush off the weight of her day. Clad in purple silk and wrapped all around in layers of goose down, this ebony queen is a vision of perpetual beauty. The man looks upon this woman, his loving bride, sleeping in the bed, their bed, and gives a quick prayer, thanking his just and noble lord for blessing his with a companion so fine, so fair, so much a woman.
The man walks over to the small lamp that sits beside his bed and makes his first purposeful scrap of noise when he clicks the lamp off. As smoothly as he slipped into his pajamas, the man and his pajamas slips into his side of the cloud. Looking one again at his wife, his love, his perfect joy, the man drifts off to a blissful sleep.