The echos of his shoes smacking into rain puddles flew about the dark alley like swarming bats as he raced towards the street. Rounding the corner, he pressed up against a damp brick wall. The street, normally cluttered with cars, was empty. Neon lights buzzed like urban crickets.
He felt something cold and damp press against his bare ankle. Looking down, he saw the tip of a suckered tentacle slither around the corner of the wall.
With a scream, Barry woke up, flailing about in the sheets of his bed. At his feet, he saw Felix, his fluffy poodle, at the foot of his bed. Felix leaned forward and booped his ankle with his cold nose.
Taking a deep breath, Barry laughed. It had just been a dream.
The pelting hot water of the shower soothed his back. It was cramped, and ached like he hadn’t moved in months. After taking some time to relax in the steamy air, he shut off the water.
There was a sound like a metallic rattle. He wondered if it was the pipes shaking. It happened again, louder. The drain cover popped off, and two tentacles whipped out, wrapping around his legs.
Screaming, he awoke, face smashed into his pillow. A sharp needle pressed into his leg. Flipping over he saw Felix, his fluffy tabby, sitting on his leg, purring.
A second doctor approached the console.
“He’s still asleep?”
“Yes, but these brain patterns are concerning.”
“He understood the risks. Give him another dose.”