Monday, June 21, 2010

A Recurrent Dream

Originally published in Pequin

At the breakfast table, Nestor’s wife breaks the news, revealing to him that the company she works for has scheduled yet another business trip for her to attend. She claims the seminar, which will be held seven-hundred-miles away in New York City, is necessary for the advancement of her career.

Nestor stares down at the eggs on his plate. “When?”


“Funny," Nestor says, focusing on the yellow of his eggs, "how these company meetings always pop up with little notice.”

“They weren't able to—” his wife begins to explain, but when she catches Nestor shaking his head her voice trails off.

"I knew you were going," Nestor says. His gaze rises from his plate to his wife's anxious face. “Last night I had the dream again.”

She doesn't reply. She knows, after all, her husband is referring to his recurring dream. In the often described nightmare, Nestor floats above his body and observes his wife bending over him while he sleeps on their bed. With a deceitful smile on her face, she sews his eyelids shut with a threaded silver needled.

In the heavy silence, only the tines of his wife's fork can be heard as they clink against her porcelain plate. Nestor says, "It's true, isn't it? My dream has meaning, doesn't it?"

She releases her fork. It drops onto the plate. She gets out of her seat and hurries from the room.

While he listens to her quick footsteps fade on the wooden floor, Nestor smiles. His ploy to put his wife on the defensive had been successful. His grin widens. He resumes eating his breakfast. Heartily. He knows, of course, that during her trip to New York, his wife will be too upset to wonder what Nestor is doing, and with whom.

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