Every night for the past three months, he's been having nightmares.
They always start the same.
He's in his room, in bed. Usually, he's asleep, but sometimes he's not. Sometimes he's reading, or playing on his cellphone, or just thinking.
It starts with the growling-- low rumbles that shake the room. Then shadows on the wall that are almost shaped like people and mostly shaped like monsters appear without anything to cast them.
Then, out of nowhere, clawed hands grab him and drag him. . . somewhere. Someplace dark and cold where they tear him apart. There's teeth and claws and so much pain, and it lasts for hours until they finally let him die--
--and he wakes up.
At first, he ignored them. It was fucked up, but so what? Some weird psychology bullshit. Probably stress. Work's been hectic. Family troubles.
But then he noticed the blood.
When he first wakes up, before he turns on the light, there are dark, wet stains on his clothes. By the time the lights are on, they're gone.
After, he saw the scars: thick, jagged, pink ones that run all over his body and vanish within seconds of his waking.
He tried to ignore it. It wasn't real, he thought. It's just stress.
But last night, he woke up still in pain. He screamed and found a three-inch long, shark-looking tooth embedded in the muscle by his neck. When he removed it, the wound healed over instantly, but the tooth remained solid and blood stained.
Now he's in his room with the lights on, staring at the tooth. He tells himself it's not real, but all the same, he doesn't think he'll sleep tonight.
Then the rumbling began. . .