It was still early when the first noises were heard. The king was deep in a dream when the walls of the castle began to fall. “What’s happening?” he asked, confused and groggy.
No one could have imagined what was happening. The sudden shock to life was overwhelming. The images in the rooms began to fade and the mirrors turned black. Before they could even react, the floor beneath them began to shake violently. It was as if everything was being lost.
An unseen force, more powerful than anything the citizens of the magical kingdom had ever felt, began to shake their brains. Ideas no longer made sense. A knight in golden armor fell from his horse as the floor disappeared and the fall seemed to go on forever.
“Wake up,” said the voice of a maiden.
But where am I?
“Hurry, go see what’s happening,” she urged.
The knight, still disoriented, felt the cold of the night grip him as he struggled to remember his mission. All he could see was darkness until the doorbell rang loudly, repeatedly. It was as if the magical world he had known all his life had been destroyed.
Finally, he managed to get up and search for a sweater to protect himself from the cold. The doorbells continued to ring in repetitive intervals, adding to his confusion. He stumbled towards the door of his room, the doorbells becoming louder and more deafening with each ring. The pain of the loss of his dream life repeated over and over again with each doorbell, each racket.
Finally, the woman lying next to him, who had been demanding an end to the situation, stood up from the bed and walked directly to the window to see what was happening. Another woman in a red dress was looking inside the house and gesturing wildly, though her words were indistinguishable.
She turned to look at Levin. “Who is that woman?” she demanded. “What is she doing in my house at three in the morning?”
Levin shrugged and looked at Anita. “I don’t know who she is,” he whispered.
Anita turned away, determined not to let the events get in the way of her return to the world of dreams, and walked back to her bed. She closed her eyes and was carried away by a group of small angels from the highest clouds to the earth. She felt like she was flying, looking at the beauty of the landscape full of mountains, meadows, and a great castle.
Levin, meanwhile, continued to lose touch with reality as he descended the stairs of the house to try and stop the racket.
“I told you not to come to my house,” said Levin in a low voice.
“You don’t treat me like that when we’re alone,” said Marisa.
“Whatever this is can wait until morning,” he pleaded.
“I’m not coming back to you,” Marisa said as she walked away.
Levin watched her go, feeling the weight of the loss of his dream life and the confusion of the reality that had taken its place.