The Nightmare Collector
by David Berardelli
Aaron Grill encounters a woman who offers to rid him of his nightmares.
Aaron Grill suffers terrible nightmares. When his wife left him for another man, he turned to the bottle and lost his job, his lifestyle and his self-respect. One evening, he is viciously attacked, loses consciousness, and nearly dies. While unconscious, he experiences a hallucination in which a beautiful young woman appears and offers to rid him of his nightmares. When he regains consciousness, he remembers nothing, but when the woman visits him that same night to repeat her offer, he fears he has suffered a concussion and is imagining her. The woman convinces him she is real and that if he accepts her offer, he will no longer suffer nightmares. He is reluctant, but in desperation accepts her offer.
As the days progress, he remembers nothing of the woman and soon realizes that he no longer suffers nightmares. He also discovers many other things in his life have changed. Bad luck vanishes. Good fortune has become his constant companion.
However, when he meets the woman of his dreams, his good fortune abruptly vanishes. He senses that he has somehow become a pawn of evil and fears that whatever was done to cause these changes in his life will lead to his certain death.
Keywords - click on word to search for more titles
Horror Suspense Hallucination Supernatural Nightmares Demons
Influenced by the works of Ray Bradbury, Richard Matheson, Harlan Ellison, and Theodore Sturgeon, he began writing in his early teens. He's also a James Bond fanatic and has read every Ian Fleming novel. As a boy, he was inspired by "The Twilight Zone," and focused on horror and sci-fi as well as suspense. He also loves humor, frequently including it in his stories, as evidenced in his DEMON CHASER series of five novels. His novels, WAGON DRIVER, AND DARKNESS FELL, and AFTER DARKNESS FELL, all focus on futuristic dystopian societies. APPRENTICE and STEPPING OUT OF MY GRAVE deal with death, and are both spiced with humor. His FUNNY DETECTIVE series is another example of his humorous take on death. His novel, IN ANOTHER REALM, deals with a world only our subconscious could be aware of. A RIPPLE IN TIME, AWAKENED, and YESTERDAY'S JOURNEY are tales dealing with illusion and the imagination. COLORS, FATAL INNOCENCE, ESCAPE CLAUSE, BEYOND RECOGNITION, BEYOND GUILT, and REDEMPTION are all suspense stories. Many of his stories take place in Orlando, Florida, where he lived and worked for more than twenty years.