Two in the morning. He woke up to the sight of blue lights above him. The colors were a familiar shade, the same as in a memory at some other place a long time ago he couldn't quite recall. His heart was pounding loudly in his head from the nightmare he'd just woken from. He took a breath and looked around the room. The more he looked, the calmer he became and the details of the nightmare faded from his thoughts. The blue lights went with them. He rubbed his eyes. When he opened them, the blue lights were gone. He got up from the bed and walked to the bathroom. His hair and face were covered in sweat. He washed his face off. As he dried his face, he felt something fall from his hair. He looked down. The sink was covered in blue petals. He picked up one of them. "Again? Where are these coming from?" Half asleep, he thought nothing else of it and went back to bed. There was nowhere he needed to be tomorrow, but he hadn't been getting much sleep lately. Whether a nightmare or something else, he'd find himself getting up around two or three in the morning, and then again around four or five. Dusting petals off his pillow, he tried to get back to sleep. Sleep came on quickly, and then a dream--both rushing over him far too quickly. In his dream, he was cold. There were blue petals there too. He stood at the top of a snowy mountain before a single rose bush. The petals were a deeper, but equally vibrant blue than the lights he saw before or the petals that he noticed in his hair. He rolled up one of his sleeves. On his exposed arm, he saw a large, black mark covering most of his skin. It ached to touch. He saw the rest of his body in patches of ice not far from the rose. The face wasn't his own face, but it didn't feel strange either. The sun slipped below the horizon and was replaced with the moon. Where the snow and rose once were, the land was now green and full of many flowers. He sat down and looked up at the moon. That place too was nowhere he could name nor was it unknown. He glanced down to get another look at the mark, but the mark was gone. Most of his arm was gone. His clothes were different too. He wasn't alarmed by this. It seemed right, somehow. He felt over his side for a bag he knew would be there and opened it up. He took out a small mirror and looked at his face. This one was different too. His eyes looked different from one another. He put the mirror down and then placed his hand over one of his eyes. Then, he covered the other eye. As he expected, he couldn't really see out of one of them. He stood up and turned around to walk home. He didn't know how he knew, but he felt it should've been in that direction. A small castle stood behind him. He walked to it and went inside. When he opened the door, he found himself outside again. The space inside was darker than the space he had come from. There were no stars or moon there, no grass, no dirt; only darkness met with him. He wandered the darkness aimlessly until a light caught his attention in the distance. He kept walking toward the light until he could see what it was. A blue river flowed, too brilliant and full of stars. The waters tempted him to get in them, but he knew not to. He walked along the side of it instead, certain that this would definitely lead him back home. Glancing down, he caught a glimpse of his reflection. He was himself now. His arm hurt again. He looked back down and now saw deep scars along his arm. It didn't feel broken, but moving it caused a mild stinging sensation. This was the first thing he saw that surprised him. The scars, he thought, shouldn't be there. He paused for a moment to examine his arm more, wondering what could have caused such an injury. Lost in thought, he didn't notice the water shifting around. A figure rose out of the water beside him and took hold of his wrist. 'I've been looking for you. I'm sure you've forgotten the favor I asked of you.' He didn't recognize the man. He didn't feel afraid of him either. 'Favor?' 'My children haven't come back yet. I'm not worried about my daughter making her way back. She'll find a way. It's my son. I'm afraid he might get lost and not make it home.' The figure said. His form became more clear, though all of his body was blue. He hovered above the surface of the water now. If there had been anything on the other side of the river, it would've been visible through him. 'Could you look after him for me?' 'Do you know where he is right now?' He asked the blue figure. The figure nodded. 'He's not that far from you. You'll run into him eventually. When you do, could you keep an eye on him until he returns?' 'Of course, but are you really that worried?' He asked the figure. 'Well, yes, but that is my nature.' The man said. 'How have you been doing? I haven't seen you in some time now.' 'I'm fine. How are you?' He asked back. 'Same as you last saw me. What of your beloved? How is he? I've missed him.' The figure in blue floated over closer to him, but stayed above the water. 'He's, well...he hasn't changed much. I'm afraid he's changed hobbies though. He's really into photography now.' He responded. There was a part of him that was confused by his own words. After all, he was single. Who could he possibly be talking about? Another part of him understood everything. 'Photography? That's interesting.' The figure sunk down lower. 'The night is waning. Tell him I send my love.' He waved goodbye to the figure as the man disappeared underneath the water. 'But what if I don't recognize him?' He asked, but the figure was already gone. After he spoke, he wasn't sure if he meant the figure's son or his beloved. His arm hurt again. He clutched it tightly. Another figure approached him, this time from the darkness. This person was covered in a pulsating blue, but he was not blue himself. 'I'll be seeing you soon too, likely sooner.' He turned around. The person behind him nearly looked identical to him. 'Who are you?' The figure in the darkness smiled at him, then vanished. He now found himself in a field again, but this one was different than the one before. An oak tree stood in the center. Above him, a heavy storm swirled overhead. He'd seen this somewhere before, but not in person. 'A photograph.' He said to himself. He reached into his pocket and pulled one out. It matched the place before him, but still and silent. He felt a presence approaching him from behind. Heart racing, he turned around and saw the ceiling above the bed. He blinked and looked over at the clock. Four in the morning. He sighed and got back up to wash his face off again. 'What was all that about?' He wondered as he rinsed his face. The bathroom door opened. His friend, Alex, who he was currently staying with, stood in the doorway. He walked into the bathroom and closed the door. "Hey Eric, you okay?" Eric nodded. "Yeah. Can't stay asleep for some reason. Think I'll take a shower. Maybe that'll knock me out." "Is graduation coming up making you nervous?" Alex asked. Eric shook his head. "Doubt it." "You want a sleeping pill? My mom has some." Alex suggested. Eric shook his head. "I'll be fine. Did I wake you up?" Alex shrugged. "Lately, I haven't been sleeping all that great either. I'm gonna make some tea. Did you want any?" "Nah." Eric yawned. "I dunno, maybe." "Alright, I'll make some for both of us." Alex laughed and left the bathroom. Eric turned the water on. He undressed himself. Yawning again, he nodded off for a moment. When he opened his eyes, he thought he saw blue. Most of his dream had already been forgotten by now. He struggled to remember what happened. He got in the water. "Whatever. It's just a dream." He looked down at the water circling the drain. A few blue petals floated along. 'What plant are these from? It must be around the house.' Eric paid it no mind. When he got out of the shower, Alex was back in the room they shared. Alex had turned on his desk light. He was sipping on his tea on the futon, reading something on his phone. Eric put on a clean pair of boxers and a tank top, then sat down beside Alex. Alex handed him a mug. The tea was still warm. He wasn't a big fan of cinnamon, but he'd gotten used to the taste. Alex loved cinnamon tea. He leaned against Alex and looked at his phone screen. Alex was looking at photos he'd posted online. Eric asked. "What're you doing?" "Looking through stuff." Alex stopped and clicked on a photo of a rainy sunset. "This one came out really nice. Do you remember this? You were there with me." "That was at Lucille, right?" Eric asked. "Yeah, we went there a lot around then. I was getting bored of the Silver Comet Trail." Alex went back to look at the others. "Oh, look, the 'haunted' tunnel that we saw no ghosts in." "That place sure had a lot of dicks on the wall." Eric took another sip of his drink. He scrolled the page down and clicked on a picture. This one was different than most of the others. The majority of what Alex posted online were nature photos, usually weather and sky related. This one was one Alex took of himself to be silly. He happened to catch the sun reflecting through the trees and fog rolling through in a way that looked magical. "This one's my favorite." "Why that one?" Alex asked. "It looks really cool, and you look really good in it." Eric said. Alex's face turned red. He glanced away. "You think so? I dunno. I always think about deleting that one." "No, don't delete it." Eric said. "If you delete it, send me a copy at least." "Fine. I'll leave it." Alex changed the subject. "How are you feeling?" "Sleepy." "That's good. We should get back to bed." Alex finished off his tea. Eric nodded. They both went back to bed. As Eric was drifting back into sleep, he remembered something vague. "Photography." "What?" Alex asked him, half asleep himself. "Mm...I don't know. Forget it. It's nothing." Eric closed his eyes and fell into another dream he would forget.