I get nightmares pretty regularly and I thought it would be fun to do a series illustrating some of them!
It originally started as my Inktober project for October 2017: One ink drawing for every day of the month of October. I got busy mid-month and onwards, though, so now I’m just adding to it when I can!
Oct. 1: Let’s start with a common one that probably everyone has had: falling teeth.
Oct 2: It was nighttime in an empty school and I was following the faint sound of a music box. Eventually it led me to a cliff where the sign said “This is where the children died. You are next.” There was a drawing of a happy egg on it. 🥚 I nodded at the sign and threw myself off the cliff. At the bottom of I landed in a giant frying pan and turned into fried eggs 🍳
Oct 3: I was in a bus and blood started dripping out of the air conditioner vents. A scalpel peeked out of one of them and said, “It doesn’t matter, all of you are going to die here.”
Oct 4: I was a few floors up in this old rundown building and something felt off, and I knew I had to get out of there. But as I made my way down I saw a couch and thought I could use a nap, so I laid down and slept. I kept being woken up by sounds of people screaming, of axes thwacking against flesh, of bodies being dragged across the floor and I kept thinking, “I have to get out of here, I have to get out of here” but… I was just too damn sleepy to really care. Then FINALLY I was able to get off my lazy butt and walk out of the building. On my way out I caught a glimpse of someone getting axed in one of the rooms. I walked a bit faster. Luckily my bicycle was just outside so I pedaled away as fast as I could.
Oct 5: Childhood Dream My grandpa had one of those old walking canes with a dog head. I never liked it and I always thought it was creepy. So one night I dreamt that I was falling from the sky, on a very dark night. I had the cane in my hand. It talked to me and said it could open like an umbrella, and we could float down to safety. I didn’t trust it but it kept saying to open it. I finally did and instead of an umbrella, several tentacles came out of him and they started strangling me as I fell.
Oct 6: The first time I ever experienced sleep paralysis was around 1999. I thought I was awake and I could even look around my room. Then something entered the room and climbed onto my bed. I clearly remember feeling the mattress sinking from their weight, then I felt his face on my neck. With a jolt I quickly woke up in a sitting position, breathing heavily. It continued on for months, with me waking upright and panting. Until I got used to him and then I would no longer wake up so I’d be trapped. Sometimes for 2-3 times I’d sure I was awake, only to realize I was still dreaming and I would fight to wake up, and then think I was finally awake but I wasn’t. And then the manifestations would sometimes evolve. Nowadays I’m a very light sleeper so I can ride it out (being aware of it but deliberately not waking up so I can see how it plays out) but I still find myself being trapped in it sometimes. There are a few occasions that I can get sleep paralysis even when I’m just napping at my desk at work.
Oct 7: I had to deliver a cake to this big empty house. While I was inside looking for anyone to give the cake to, I felt something float up from behind me. Her cold hands wrapped around my neck, and told me that my neck was pretty. I didn’t dare turn around but for some reason I knew what she looked like. Her own neck was snapped and I’m guessing she wanted mine. I felt that if I panicked she would snap my neck so I smiled and said sweetly, “Please don’t take my neck.” I continued walking around the house looking for the person who was supposed to receive the cake, but I couldn’t find anyone. As I walked, she held on to my neck and floated behind me. Every once in a while I would repeat nicely, “Please don’t take my neck.” She didn’t speak, she just breathed. Finally I gave up on delivering the cake. She seemed to sense it. “How much is that cake?” she asked. “You can have it for free,” I said.
Oct 8: I went to ride a roller coaster. I was wearing clear goggles and holding a tube of KY Jelly. When I sat down in the ride I realized I had nowhere to put my KY Jelly so I slipped it under my thighs as I sat to keep it secure. In the middle of the ride the jelly started oozing out from the tube, and it made its way to the tracks. The entire roller coaster track was covered in lubricant and it started to malfunction. Everyone was screaming and I was mortified because it was all my fault. The operator kept yelling “What happened? What happened?” and I just sat there in utter shame hoping that no one could figure out it was me. The screams got louder as we approached the loop, and the coaster came off the tracks and everyone went flying in all directions. I had the KY Jelly in my hands and it was squirting everywhere, and finally everyone knew it was me.
Oct 9: The entire dream looked like a medieval picture, complete with wonky anatomy. There was a skeleton who I recognized was death. It wasn’t my time, and we both knew this, but he refused to let go.
Oct 10: Another Dream remembered from childhood. My grandmother had these Chinese porcelain statues in her house. They had these maniacal smiles that creeped me out. I dreamt that they took my big brother and started dancing around him with scissors and they laughed and danced and cut his hair until my brother was bald. I couldn’t do anything to help him.
Oct 11: I was married to Superman and we had a really bad quarrel, and I was royally pissed off so I strapped his neck to my thigh and started cutting his head off with a chainsaw.
Oct 12: I lost my hands and I was so worried about them. I could feel that my left hand was scared because it can’t do anything, but at the same time getting angrier and angrier at me every minute because I never taught it any skills. And my right hand was probably running amok causing trouble. Meanwhile I was bleeding out so I needed to find them ASAP. But nobody seemed to care. Wherever I went people looked at me like nothing was wrong. I tried asking help from a few people but they just looked at me like I was being annoying and overdramatic. I was so frustrated I wanted to scream.
Oct 13: A kind of dumb one. I knew I was dreaming but I couldn’t pay attention to the actual plot of the dream because Beavis and Butthead kept hovering above me chanting “Cha Cha Cha Cha Cha Cha” from their version of “I Got You Babe” and the entire song was just on repeat in my head. There came a point where I abandoned the dream and ran away screaming but they just followed me.
Oct 14: I was in a crowd, and no matter where their bodies were facing, all I could see was the back of their heads.
Oct 15: I was out on a haikyo/urbex outing, exploring an abandoned house and there was this girl who just kept appearing in all the rooms. Every single place I went, there she was — in the corner, just quietly (and sort of angrily) staring at me. The thing was that she looked exactly like me, but I knew she wasn’t me.
Oct 16: I’m sure many people dream of planes crashing. My seat got blown out of the plane as it exploded and I accepted that it was my time to die. I closed my eyes and calmly waited for myself to hit the ground below.
Oct 17: I had a neighbor whose skin was coming off. He was always hanging by his window. For some reason I knew he was a killer. I kept hoping he couldn’t see me every time I passed by his place.
Oct 18: I developed a black hole in my stomach and it sucked in anyone who came near me.
19: I came upon this video arcade full of claw game machines, and inside the machines were several severed body parts, all still bleeding and pulsing. It turns out that the arcade was actually a prison, and the cut up bodies were prisoners. In order to get out, someone has to win enough body parts to build a person and then you sew them together and the person you put together would be then set free. Of course, the body parts you put together won’t necessarily all be from just one person. But they can go free like that anyway! Unfortunately I didn’t have money to win this guy enough body parts to go free. I felt bad, said sorry, and left him on the floor.
20: I was really confused because I was walking around in a palace and everyone was bowing to me and calling me princess. It made sense when I finally came across a mirror and saw that I was a pretty young girl who indeed looked like a princess. It turns out that somehow, I unknowingly inhabited their princess’ body. The Prime Minister came and spoke to me and said that by their laws, it is a violation of human rights to force me out of the princess’ body, so they would let me stay in it. However, they asked so kindly if I could at least let them have her face, so they can find a new body for her and apply her original face to it. I told them of course, since I didn’t want to cause any more trouble than I had. I ripped off the face I was wearing and happily gave it to them.
21: I was riding a ship on a beautiful day, and in the distance I could see the most beautiful view of a snow-capped mountain. As I stood on the deck admiring the surroundings someone told me that there are children hiding below the deck and that I should see them. Not really knowing why, I made me way below and found myself in a dark area in the ship. There were what seemed to be small figures that looked like dolls sewn out of sacks. But as soon as I saw them I knew they were children. Some were rolling around and some were twitching. Some were breaking, and when they broke you could see that the sack dolls were stuffed with meat and organs, in no particular manner of arrangement. But they were pulsing.