Kitty Land

Kittens were always a reoccurring motif in my dreams. I guess, I just liked those four legged, furry little demons that much.

At times, it was former pets who came to visit me and allowed me to reminisce and sojourn in times long past. At others, it was nothing but random instances, small glimpses at cats sitting somewhere in whatever dream space I found myself in.

A couple of months ago, all that changed, and I began to have a certain reoccurring dream. In it, I found myself in a world populated by nothing but kittens. I’d hang out with them, play with them and even join them on their little adventures.

At first these dreams were vague, and I only remembered a few select details about what I came to call ‘Kitty Land,’ if that.

Before long, however, they became more vivid, and I found myself visiting the place almost every single night. It was a world comprising wide, lush meadows and colorful fairy forests. Even long after waking up, I could remember how soft the grass felt, the smells of the many flowers, but most of all, every little detail about the many kittens I encountered.

It was strange, unnatural even. Usually my dreams were gone the moment I awoke. Yet Kitty Land would linger on my mind for hours, the details as clear as if I was still there.

And yet, I didn’t mind, I really didn’t.

Instead, these dreams soon became the best part of my sorry life. I worked at a dull, dead-end job, my social life was non-existent, and I spent my evenings perpetually wasting away in front of the computer. I’d watch whatever was new on Netflix or YouTube, played games I’d played dozens of times before, or I’d stare at the screen half in thought about… nothing.

The dreams, however, they were cozy, exciting, but most of all they were the first real fun I’d had in… much too long.

Only a few weeks in, I didn’t merely enjoy them. No, I looked forward to them long before I went to bed. Soon enough, I’d find myself going to bed early, because I couldn’t wait to return to Kitty Land. There I’d be able to play with my little four-legged companions, could go on adventures and could embrace a world that was as bright and colorful as mine was dull and boring.

I knew, of course, deep down, that this wasn’t healthy, and I knew I was growing more and more obsessed with a world that wasn’t real.

Around this time, I began considering getting a kitten or two of my own, to satisfy what was clearly an unhealthy need for furry companionship. Yet I could never muster up the energy. Just thinking about adopting a cat, and all the steps it entailed, was overwhelming.

And so, I pushed it off, telling myself I’d do it, eventually. I wish I’d done it, I truly wish… maybe then I could’ve stopped what was about to happen.

Instead, I fell deeper into my obsession with Kitty Land, and would even lie to myself that there was no need for real kittens.

More and more times, I took naps as soon as I got off work, hoping to visit Kitty Land for an hour or two. On the weekends, I’d sometimes spend almost the entire day in bed, only getting up to eat and drink, doing nothing but dreaming.

All the while, however, I began to notice certain things.

Kitty Land was a bright and happy place, had always been, but slowly, ever so slowly, I noticed slight hints of a change. Whenever I awoke, it was with a strange feeling of apprehension and the image of dark clouds gathering and growing thicker in the distance. I was afraid that Kitty Land, my safe place, would change, and before I knew it, it did.

At first these changes were minuscule, and I’d only noticed them out of the corner of my dream self’s eye. Every once in a while, I would notice how the shadow of one of little companions would… change. It seemed to stretch on endlessly, turning into a warped thing, an abomination with too many legs and of a form indescribable. The worst, however, were those dark clouds, which were now clearly visible and slowly seemed to inch closer.

As the days went by, these changes would become more and more noticeable. The twisted shadows became more common, almost ubiquitous, and before long, they influenced my little friends. Like a strange illness or some sort of corruption, they’d seep into them, and began warping them, contorting them into the ghastly, stretched out versions of themselves.

More than once, I awoke sweaty and shaking, after having encountered some bloated, kitten-like monstrosity, or having found a kitten centipede coiling endlessly around my leg, restraining me and meowing at me furiously.

Eventually, these nightmares became too much for me, and after yet another one, this one during a nap in the late afternoon, I opted against sleeping, afraid of the horrors I’d encounter.

Instead, I set in front of my computer, downing cup after cup of coffee in an endless stream of thick, black liquid, trying to understand what was happening and why my mind had chosen so to distort Kitty Land.

Work the next day was nothing but a blur. Things were hazy, as if the real world itself had become nothing but a dream, hidden behind thick fog.

The moment I made it home, I wanted nothing more than to slip under my covers and rest, but the dreams, those terrible dreams… They’d be there waiting for me the moment I’d close my eyes, wouldn’t they?

As much as I tried to stay awake, however, I was fighting a losing battle. I was just so damned tired. Eventually exhaustion overtook me, and more than once, I almost fell asleep while still standing on my two legs. In the end, I just gave up, and collapsed on my bed.

For a moment, there was nothing but the usual darkness you see when you close your eyes. Then I was plunged right back into Kitty Land.

By then, it was nothing like the happy place it had once been. The fairy forest had been replaced by an overgrown, spider-web covered thicket comprising gigantic, gnarled trees and mutated plants. What had once been wide, lush meadows had turned into barren plains and rotten swamp land. All of it populated by nothing but fur-covered monstrosities.

I’d barely realized where I was, barely understood I was dreaming when the first of these creatures noticed me.

An overgrown, bloated kitten skittered towards me on a multitude of overly-long, stretched out legs, hissing and clawing in anticipation. I dashed away, but I was slow, so slow, and after only a few moments, it reached me. In a furry, I tore the thing off my body, and crushed it below my feet only for a multitude of similarly disfigured creatures to burst from its bloated belly.

It was only the first of many such creatures that came for me, and before long, I found myself chased by a kaleidoscopic assortment of furred abominations.

It didn’t matter where I went, didn’t matter where I ran. They were already waiting for me. What had once been a lovely tree house had turned into a rotten wooden castle; a breeding ground for winged, cat-like creatures. The swamps were populated by tentacled cats, which started at me from the murky depths below with wide, almost endearing eyes before they tried to drag me away.

These things, these once-cats, drove me on relentlessly on their never-ending hunt.

I realized, however, this wasn’t so much a hunt, but a drive, and I realized where I was driven to: the center of the dark clouds that had engulfed Kitty Land.

Yet what could I do? What could I do but run on and on and on as they drove me deeper and deeper into the thick fog and strange vapors that spread out below the clouds?

The moment I reached its center, however, it all stopped. The creatures were gone, almost as if they’d never existed. Instead, I found myself in front of a mound, a gigantic mound.

At first I thought it was a mountain, but then I saw it move, move in unison.

What I saw in front of me was a gigantic mound comprising nothing but cats. It was an amalgamation of furred bodies, entangled and grown together; thousands upon thousands of cats, all forming a single feline abomination.

The moment the creature noticed my presence, it welcomed me with a purr. It was a purr so strong, so heavy and deep it shook the entire mound and the surrounding land, throwing me off my feet.

I could do nothing, couldn’t get up, as wave after wave of thundering purrs shook the ground, could only watch as a multitude of elongated cat-appendages came for me. They embraced me, coiled around my limbs and pulled me closer towards the abominable mound of cat.

I was lifted, brought closer and closer to its summit, and watched in stunned horror as fur and flesh were torn apart. Huge gushes spread out all over the mound. From them, darkish blood and yellowish puss pumped outward in never-ending, thick torrents. It was like watching a volcanic eruption, and yet, all the while, something was moving, pushing outward, like a sick mockery of a birth.

And finally, something emerged from the depths of the cat mound. It was nothing but the heads of cats, disgustingly warped heads like caricatures, comprising nothing but fused together mouths that all opened in unison. A single line, filled with an endless row of sharp teeth and licked by a never-ending number of cat-tongues. Above it all, there were no noses, no ears, no fur, but only… eyes, thousands upon thousands of cat eyes, millions of them even.

A second later, all those eyes focused on me and me alone, penetrating me with a stare that seemed to reach deep inside my very being.

I screamed, I cursed, I struggled, but couldn’t get free. I watched as the abomination’s whiskers moved, reached out, before they entangled me like spidery tendrils. Then they plunged into me, into my mind, my consciousness, my memories. I felt them tearing through them, distorting them and… devouring them.

In this moment, a dream-like understanding came over me. This dream, Kitty Land, it must’ve been nothing but a lure, a lure to trust, to come back, too long, to sink deeper and deeper into it, until I was close enough for this abomination to reach me.

When I finally awoke from the dream, almost an entire day had passed. Yet I didn’t feel rested. No, I was weak, exhausted and filled with terror, sheer and utter terror. I told myself it was just a dream, just a goddamn nightmare, nothing more!

And yet, when I could finally get up, I saw them. Covering the entire bed was a mass of white hair. No, not hair, whiskers, I realized, the whisker’s who’d plunged into me.

I stumbled back, and fell to the floor, first screaming, then laughing at the impossible sight in front of me. Did this mean that all of this was… real?

And yet, I couldn’t think straight, my mind was a mess, a hazy mess. Even after all the sleep I’d gotten, I was still tired, endlessly tired. Only a few hours later, I drifted off again, and the endless chase played out once more before I found myself in the grasps of the feline goddess yet again.

For the past week, this was my entire existence. However much I tried, however much I fought, I could only aver stay awake for a few hours before I inevitably drifted off again. After each of these ghastly nightmares, I felt a little less like myself and each time I felt more tired.

I don’t know what to do anymore, I don’t know if there’s anything I even can do.

Coffee doesn’t help, neither do energy drinks, nor any of the less reputable substances I could get my hand on.

By now, I can barely stay awake long enough to eat and drink, or to even type this out.I know it won’t be long now before I’ll stay in the nightmarish world that I once called Kitty Land forever.

It won’t be long before every last part of my mind, my consciousness, and my entire self becomes devoured by the disgusting abomination that is the feline goddess.

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