Lost in the Twilight Zone Marathon | Ep 5 | Fever Dream

I go to bed with a splitting headache, a cold sweat, and what feels like ten-pound weights on my chest, and in my dream is existential dread.

I see him through the darkness in the corner of my bedroom by the closed door—his silhouette much darker than everything around him.

I close my eyes and pray to heaven above for forgiveness.

“Please, God. Don’t let him take me.”

When I take a peek with one eye open, the shadow grows bigger as he draws nearer. I can’t determine whether it’s the fear or fever that escalate my shivers. I hide underneath the covers, my whispering frantic as I repeat again and again my prayer.

“Please, God. Don’t let him take me.”

“Please, God. Don’t let him take me.”

“Please, God. Don’t let him take me!”

A light tug on the sheets, and they slowly glide down. The blackness overwhelms me. Eyes open or closed makes no difference. This is what it’s like, I imagine, when you’ve reached the end and you realize you’ve had one stumble too many, that God has run out of second chances to gift you and has finally turned His back. And it’s not the fires of Hell that burn you, but the darkness. The unquenchable, unrelenting darkness. The never seeing the light of day. An ever-presence that looms over you, hovers, and seeks to swallow you whole.

But then a cool compress touches my forehead, and the soft hum of a melody I faintly know the words to float above my head, and I drift off to sleep.


When I open my eyes again, I see the sun, and my fever is broken, and I can smell for the first time in a month.

I go outside and fill my lungs with the fresh morning air. I relish in the coolness of the breeze, sweet relief. In the wind, in the ruffle of the leaves, I hear that tune again. From my peripheral vision, I see the familiar figure, darting between the trees, and I follow him, toward the lake that touches the backyards of each house on the cul-de-sac. He stops beneath the old willow tree at the edge of the water, and I pause just a few feet away.

“I’ve been waiting for you, love,” he says. He turns and outstretches his hand. “Come.”


“Does it matter?”

I gaze back to my home, a silent prison for the last three weeks. “I thought I was dying. I was all alone.”

“No, you weren’t.” He takes a step back, partially disappearing between the weeping leaves of the willow. “Do you trust me?”

He curls his fingers underneath mine, beckoning, and as he hums, I let him lead me deeper, behind the veil, until we both disappear.

© 2021 Nortina Simmons

This hour’s episode of the Twilight Zone blogging marathon is inspired by the sweet and haunting song of “Come Wonder with Me” as well as the encounter with Death in “Nothing in the Dark.”

And for a longer version with the humming…


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