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This prompt is for Kittehs and Louis, who requested "the patience of lovers and the separation of souls that is not." It takes place in the Tree That Wasn't series.  Happy Nightmarathon, everybody!

Dream Lovers

For as long as she could remember, the dead had tormented Chavela—and sure, she had Socks, but her magic dead repellant powers only applied at home.  Outside the front door, Chavela was still fair game, and for some reason, she’d never attracted the helpful, entertaining, or friendly dead, only the angry, obsessive, and malicious dead.

Until Dion.

She still wasn’t sure why he was such an exception.  Neither was he.  Whatever the cause of his untimely demise, it was apparently unpleasant enough that he could no longer remember it—or much of his earthly life either.  It was all quite mysterious, and distressed Dion enough that she tried not to bring it up.  He was pleasant company, easy on the eyes, and the attraction was mutual; what could be better?

Well, there was one problem.  Dion wasn’t corporeal.

Which was… inconvenient.  Chavela had lost her grandmother’s china to some furious little old lady poltergeist, been strangled by some ghost thinking she was his ex-girlfriend, so she knew that at least some dead could interact with the corporeal world.  But go figure, the one dead guy she’d ever wanted to be solid, and—

Whatever.  She was lucky.  At least she had someone, someone funny and kind who could understand and deal with the whole dead people thing.  And at least the sexual frustration was mutual.  She shouldn’t have been glad about that, but she was.

“I’m dead!” Dion complained. “I don’t even have blood anymore!  Why do I still get hard-ons at the worst times?”

Chavela snorted. “Sorry, pal.  None of my research has discussed the matter.  Maybe you’re an incubus.”

“I wish.” Dion grimaced and tugged at his hair with a groan.

Chavela knew the feeling.  Voyeurism and voice and creativity were all well and good, but it just wasn’t the same.  Chavela wanted all of him, and it was one thing to have nobody around worth touching but something else entirely to have someone very touchable in front of her and not be able to do anything to him.  In her opinion, the latter was far more frustrating.

She sighed and rolled over in bed to set her alarm clock. “Sorry, D.  I have to take Socks to the vet early tomorrow, give her the yearly inspection.  I better turn in now.”

He blew her a kiss. “Sleep tight.”

She caught it. “Don’t let the kitties bite.”

With a sigh, he went to return to the couch.  Chavela sighed too and thumped her head back against the pillow.  Damn it.  Her bed was too small for two, but times like this, she thought it’d almost be worth the creepy ice-water-in-bone-marrow feeling that she got when he passed through her. (The one time they’d tried to sleep together, she’d woken up shivering and sweating under the blankets.)

She hugged her pillow, but it still took her a while to get to sleep.

One of the side effects of having a childhood full of dead people was that Chavela got a lot of dreams about them.  All of the ghosts who’d demanded she solve their mysteries, finish their rites, fulfill their last wishes followed her into sleep, screaming, weeping, and begging.  Sleep did not improve their dispositions one bit.

This night was no exception.  This time, it was the little old lady who’d burned to death in 1958, who’d followed Chavela around all through the fourth grade, haranguing her to return to Mexico. (Chavela’s family had originated in Guatemala, but the little old lady ghost had neither known nor cared about the difference.) Blackened and crackly, with a voice that could’ve peeled paint off a wall, she now screamed at Chavela to get out of her house, no matter how far Chavela ran.  It was all her house.

Then Dion appeared.

The dream spell broke.  Chavela stopped running.

The little old lady charged up, screaming, but the dream spell was broken, and Chavela was sick of her screaming, so she just shoved the ghost out of the way and she fell and puffed away into smoke.

“God, I’ve wanted to do that since forever,” she said, then turned to Dion. “What are you doing here?”

Dion looked as surprised as her. “You were having a nightmare.  I heard you, and you just sounded all broke up, you know?  I was just trying to wake you up, but I just…” he made a vague pushing, toppling motion, “…fell into your head?  I’m really not sure.”

Chavela blinked. “I didn’t know you could do that.”

He put his hands to his chest. “I didn’t know I could do that!”

“That… makes a lot of sense, actually.  Jeez, no wonder I had so many nightmares growing up.  And dreams about the dead are so common…”

Then realization hit, and she forgot her intellectual curiosity.  She looked up at Dion, who’d apparently just realized the same thing.

“I shoved her.  She was solid.  Which means…”

They stood there, looking at each other.  The dream world had gone calm and still around them.

“Aren’t you going to…?” she asked.

He cracked a nervous smile. “I’m scared to.”

So was she.  But Chavela squared her shoulders, strode over to him, yanked his head down, and kissed him.

Dion’s skin was warm and solid, his hair rough and soft, and when they pulled back after a while, they were both panting.

“Oh my god,” he said.

Chavela didn’t let go of him. “We need to have sex.  Right now.”

“Oh hell yes.”

As she shoved him flat on his back and struggled to get her shirt and sweater off in one go, he said, “I take it back.  Hard-ons are great.”

“Yes they are,” Chavela said, and there was no more talking after that.

It was the first time she ever woke up to her alarm clock smiling.

Date: 2014-08-08 04:55 am (UTC)

Just what the doctor, er, king, ordered!

Date: 2014-08-09 02:06 pm (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)

Love it, Rogan! It strikes me as almost as Louis's and my situation becoming yours and Mac's, being in a physical environment within headspace.

I'm very glad the cold-patch thing doesn't happen with us. I'd have one chronically cold thigh and two chronically cold shoulders, 'cos he thinks I make a pretty good pillow. :P


I enjoyed reading more of your world, of Chavela and her love. I thank you for writing this for me, it is a fine tale, and it is good to read of lovers satisfied.

Re: Just what the doctor, er, king, ordered!

Date: 2014-08-09 04:24 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I'm sure they were totally satisfied IF YOU KNOW WHAT I MEAN.


Re: Just what the doctor, er, king, ordered!

Date: 2014-08-10 01:02 am (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)


Oh yes, we knows!

- Kittehs
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