Realization

              He was frightened of himself. He was scared of what was happening in his mind. He was anxious to know what the message was.

              He kept seeing the same dream regularly, but an unfinished dream of a hole in the woods next to his home and of a cookie jar buried in it. Every single night, he would see himself walking towards the woods, blank-minded and terrified, but destined for something. When he looks down in the dream, he is barefooted and wearing the pajamas that he wears to bed in reality. He has a flashlight in one hand as he walks slowly towards the dark, deserted woods. Then, in every dream, he would dig a hole with his bare hands in the ground at the same place. He would dig for hours until he would come across a battered, dirty cookie jar, and every single time he would try to look inside the jar, the dream would end.

              The next thing he realized, he was waking up sweaty in his bed, panting and for some reason, dirty.

              He couldn’t understand why he was seeing these weird and curious dreams. He couldn’t see the point or reason for these peculiar visions that came through his head every night, but was terribly affected by them. Every day, the curiosity of the dreams and the stress, the desire of wanting to know what was in the jar terrorized and manipulated his mind. He could not sleep or rest properly, afraid that he would see the dream again if he let down his guard. However, regardless of his longing to not see the dream again it came every night and in contrast to the desire, a thirst to know what the visions meant and what was in the cookie jar was growing inside of him.

              He was frightened of himself. He was afraid that he might be delirious or going mad. Nevertheless, the desire for the cookie jar and the desire to know what it contained in his head grew daily. The dreams were steadily manipulating and dominating his mind. He found it difficult to not be obsessed with the dream and keep a sane mind. He even went to the hospital, to a psychologist, and a therapist to try to discover what was wrong with him.

              He didn’t understand what was happening to him, so he asked himself when the dreams started coming at night. Then, he realized something terrifying. He remembered that he started seeing the dreams on the day that his wife was killed in the very same woods that were the setting of his dreams. He wondered if his wife’s death had something to do with the peculiar dreams, so the mystery of the visions grew inside of him. However, he assured himself that he was probably just stressed and influenced by the recent horror in his life.

              His wife was brutally killed by an uncaught murderer, with a knife about ten inches long. He remembered finding his blood-covered, lifeless wife in the woods when he went out to look for her at dawn, since she didn’t come back home from a late-night stroll.

              The relevance of the dreams and his wife’s recent, death horrified him, but again, he told himself that he was just unstable from the shock. His wife had been the first murder that had happened in the woods since 1950 and now, one dead body was found every single day. The police find a dead body in the same exact place even though there are guards all around the woods to look out for suspicious movement. The police believe it to be a serial killing, and the murderer is believed to be a man, judging by how brutally people are killed. They are all found blood-soaked, with expressions of terror still glued on their pale faces.

              He remembered all of that and thought about the killings in the woods, but just told himself to not think about it. He decided that he was just still shocked about his wife and that was causing these odd dreams.

              On the day that he realized when the dreams decided, he was able to sleep peacefully and soundly because he knew the reasons for the visions. He saw no dream, and was able to think clearly again.

              That was when he found in a dim memory, the place of the cookie jar. Even though he saw the same dream every single night, he wasn’t able to acknowledge where he dug the hole every night. He realized that the place was just near a well in the heart of the woods.

              Although he was still frightened of himself and of the memory he finally was able to recover, the obsession over what is hidden in the cookie jar haunted him and his conscience. He was a bit worried about going into the woods because of the murders, but he also heard that the serial killings had stopped that day and no body was recovered among the trees. Every day, one dead woman, man, or child would be taken away in a blue sheet by the police, but it was the first time that there was nobody dead since the day his wife had been killed. Although rather scared, he found himself feeling an odd reassurance in his heart, a weird feeling of relief, and he, for some reason, assured himself that he was safe. He thought for some reason that the finding of the jar would probably stop the dreams. He knew the woods well and every place where the victims of the serial killings were murdered, so he felt he was protected.

              He trotted towards the woods with a blank mind and found the well where the cookie jar was supposedly buried.

              He searched for the exact place he saw in his dreams, and without any consideration, he began to dig through the dirt.

              He kept digging and digging. His mind was blank, for all he had in his head was the obsession over knowing whatever is hidden in the cookie jar, and he had a great, undeniable desire for nobody to see him as he dug. He got scared for one moment, and looked around, but he saw nobody in the dark, cold, deserted woods. Feeling safe again, he dug and dug, until he felt something hard that hit his bare hands.

              Trembling with excitement and curiosity he dug around the hard object to lift up and wiped off the dirt. When he got it clean enough to see what exactly what the cookie jar looked like in reality, he had a sudden flashback and remembered a fine detail from the day his wife was murdered. He remembered her coming back from the mall, holding the jar tightly in her arms, explaining to him of her new hobby of baking to him delightfully.

              He remembered her beautiful face so vividly that he began to cry and wondered why the cookie jar was in the woods.

              Out of sadness and melancholy feelings, he began to weep and felt furious towards the serial killer again, the first time since her death. He remembered all of the dreams he kept seeing, the jar and the woods appearing before him every night, and the brutal killings happening every night he sees the dreams.

              Hoping there is some kind of message, something to make him remind him of his wife, he opened the cookie jar….. to find a ten inch, bloody knife.

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