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email Norman Spinrad: normanspinrad@hotmail.

com

This is the opening and set up of a novel called WELCOME TO YOUR


DREAMTIME, which is more or less self-explanatory, except that the rest
of the novel, like the dream fragments below, are narrated in first person,
that you, the reader are the viewpoint character, as you are in your non-
commercial dreams, and that the book truly is a novel that tells a developing
over all story, despite the fact that six of the dreams have been published as
free-standing short stories in somewhat different form without reference to
what you will read here in Bain’s World, Weird Tales, Thrilling Wonder
Stories, Paraphilia, Fantasy Magazine and Pandora.
Despite this, I, and my French publisher Fayard, who will be publishing
WELCOME TO YOUR DREAMTIME in French translation in Spring
2011, are still seeking a reputable American and/or British publisher. The
full text English of the completed novel available upon request, but only to
publishers.

WELCOME TO YOUR DREAMTIME


opening act
by Norman Spinrad

YOUR DREAMMASTER 301

Since the dawn of time, the lives people lived in their dreams were far
more exciting than those in the waking workaday world, but quite
unpredictable, and also limited by their own unconscious imaginations.
No more! Now the DREAMASTER 301 allows you to not only
program your dreams but to enjoy dreams beyond your own imagination
created for you by the masters of this great new artform.
And it's easy to use too! Even children above the age of ten can easily
use the simple controls. Parental guidance is advised.

OPERATING MANUAL FOR THE


DREAMMASTER 301
1)Installing the DREAMMASTER 301
Carefully remove the DREAMMASTER 301 from its shipping
container. Plug it in beside your bed, hammock, or easy chair. DO NOT
USE IT WHEN IN THE BATH TUB. This could result in electric shock or
in drowning while dreaming due to the phenomena of sleep paralysis.
Plug the DREAMWEB into the DREAMASTER 301.
Arrange the DREAMWEB on your head to properly interface with your
dream center by aligning the red tab above your right ear and the blue one
above your left and pulling the wire mesh firmly into place.
2)Setting up the DREAMMASTER 301
In order to properly function, the DREAMMASTER 301 must be tuned
to the exact locations of your dream center and sensory cerebral brain areas
and their precise frequencies. Since failure to do this before operating the
DREAMMASTER 301 could result in disorienting nightmares or possible
brain damage, as a safety measure, the DREAMMASTER 301 will not
operate until it is initialized by the Setup Chip. Setup Chips allow only the
user they are initialized for to access the DREAMMASTER 301 and are
read only. Do not attempt to reprogram them. Your DREAMMASTER 301
may be initialized for additional users by purchasing additional Setup Chips
at modest cost. (See Accessory Catalog).
Insert the Setup Chip and press Enter.
#
Total blackness. Utter silence, then a static hiss. You feel nothing. Your
body has disappeared. For a brief moment, you are terrified.
Then you hear soft musical scales, vague and primitively synthesized,
that seem to be coming from a radio far, far away. A rainbow fills your field
of vision, but the colors are not right, and they change continually, up, down,
around, an artist's color wheel whirling through the spectrum. You smell
roses, shit, salt water, seductive perfume, sizzling meat. You taste chocolate
ice cream, paper, copper, root beer, jasmine tea. You feel yourself riding a
surfboard in the curl of a wave, making love, connecting with a high hard
fastball, taking a high-speed curve in a Grand Prix racing car.
Your sensorium wavers, flutters, hisses, stinks, then clicks into focus.
You are flying through clear cerulean skies like Superman. The air is
redolent with mown hay and lilacs. Below you is a verdant lawn or savanna
stretching away to a fast-approaching emerald city. Judy Garland sings
"Somewhere Over the Rainbow" and a great rainbow appears before you.
You land before it.
A great booming voice croons: "You...are...Oz!"
The Emerald City disappears. Only the rainbow remains. It becomes a
rainbow archway. You are carried through it on a plush litter by whistling
dwarves and munchkins. "You are the crown of creation," sings a heavenly
chorus of angels hovering above you.
It is a brilliant starry moonless night. Fireworks light up the heavens as a
jazz band plays "When the Saints Come Marching In."
The fireworks become huge letters of fiery gold:
"WELCOME TO YOUR DREAMTIME."
Then smaller and below:
"Insert Demonstration Chip now."
And you wake.
#
3)Using the DREAMMASTER 301--Basic Functions and Demonstration
Your DREAMMASTER 301 comes with a demonstration dreamchip
included. The DREAMMASTER 301 has an automatic sleep/dream/wake
function. In ordinary use, set the sleep time to put yourself to sleep after a
chosen interval, insert a dreamchip, and set the wake timer just like an alarm
clock.
The demonstration chip automatically puts you into REM sleep in 30
seconds, and wakes you ten minutes after an exciting tour through a sample
of the many dreams already available. Remember to extinguish all smoking
materials and to put aside all liquids before pressing ENTER.
Pleasant dreams!
Guaranteed!
#
You sit in a canvas director's chair surrounded by your waiting camera
and sound crew. The flats are blank. Nevertheless....
"Lights!" you order through an antique megaphone, and the shooting
lights come on.
"Camera!"
"Rolling!"
"Speed!"
"And...action!" you shout.
A figure appears on the set--it's a cartoon version of Sigmund Freud
looking like a long-lost Marx Brother.
"This is the Dreammaster 301 demonstration," he intones in the voice of
James Earl Jones.
And the flats become a bank of huge LCD television screens. The views
cycle in staggered independence every thirty seconds. Marines raising the
flag on Iwo Jima. A huge yacht sailing into the lagoon of a tropical isle,
escorted by cheering Polynesians in outrigger canoes. Teddy Roosevelt leads
the charge up San Juan hill. The Sultan enters his harem. A gunfighter
showdown modeled on "High Noon." Marilyn Monroe blows kisses.
Arthur is offered Excalibur. Thousands of men in tuxedos and women in
evening gowns pie each other from skyscraper windows.
"Welcome to your dreamtime," proclaims Sigmund Marx, "welcome to
the dreams of your choice! With the Dreammaster 301, you can dream the
dreams you want to dream, not the results of last night's rubber chicken or
your mother the yenta."
You stand in an infinite aisle of display racks in a chic Las Vegas
emporium. The racks contain one-inch square plastic cases containing
computer chips shrink-wrapped to colorful package boards. You've got a
diamond credit card flashing gold invitingly from within and throbbing like
a hot heartbeat. There's the sweet smell of adventure in the air.
"Dreammaster already offers you a selection of two hundred dreams
adapted from myth, history, literature, and the silver screen," a seductive
woman's voice purrs breathily, "and more will be available soon as more
rights for adaptation to this ultimate form of entertainment are cleared, and
our ever-expanding crew of dreamtime wizards produce them."
Before you, a cartoon showgirl, scantily clad as a circus ringmaster,
crooks her finger invitingly, and hands you the whip, which becomes a
Dreammaster 301 floating before you.
"Come along, big boy," she croons, "come along with me, trip the night
fantastic through a tour of our categories of currently available
dreams....your Dreamtime Majesty!" And she places a Dreamweb on your
head which becomes a golden crown as light as a feather.
"Start with The Driver's Seat. Here you can purchase dreamchips that
will put you behind the wheel of a Grand Prix racing car--
The wheel judders in your hands, the car bounces and clatters beneath
you, the g forces press you back in your seat, your teeth vibrate, the mighty
engine roars behind you, petrol fumes and hot rubber, intoxicating as
hashish smoke, swirl around you as you barrel down the hill towards the
hotel turn at the Monaco Grand Prix as elegant cheering throngs press
precipitously close to the curb.
You whip through the curve in front of the hotel entrance, past a Ferrari
colliding with a Renault, downshift, power up the ascending hill to--
#
"--in the cockpit of the Red Baron's Fokker Triplane--"
You’re in the open cockpit of a World War I fighter plane painted bright
red, hiding just above a fleecy white cloud in the partly cloudy skies above a
green French countryside. The engine hums throatily like a Harley
Davidson, the wind of passage blows in your face, somewhere hay is
burning below.
You push the stick forward and the throttle all the way in and plunge
down on a formation of six Spads like a hawk on a flock of pigeons, grab
your machine gun and fire, the gun vibrating in your hands, the puffs of
cordite smoke sweetly acrid in your nostrils, as you swoop through them,
bringing two down, whip up into a steep climb, turn an Immelman loop at
the apogee, and roar back down blazing away--
#
"--battling alien flying saucers in outer space!"
The silvery discs fill the star-spangled blackness to the left of you, great
ringed Saturn majestically rolling to the right, as you sit cocooned in your
Art Deco spacesuit, your rocket engine screaming. You fire white-hot blobs
of plasma as the flying saucers bank into a sweeping curve towards you,
their laser-beams bouncing harmlessly off your starfighter's brilliantly-
burnished armor. Saucers explode, spewing green goo and tentacle parts
into the vacuum--
#
You're back in the infinite aisle of dreamchips on offer, but now your
demonstration guide is an avatar of Fred Astaire with the benefit of cunning
plastic surgery and the body of The Rock in an immaculate black tuxedo and
twirling a silver-crowned black cane, and he speaks with a voice reminiscent
of Clark Gable. And you're wearing a ball gown fit for a Ruritanian princess
and a cloud of Chanel Number Five.
"Or for sophisticated ladies, here's a teasing sample of your wide choice
of Romantic Interludes."
And he takes your hand and tangos you down what has become a
glittering beach under a gorgeous sunset that goes on forever and ever past a
line of five star hotels transmogrified into an immense set of dreamchip
racks glowing from within and festooned with red roses and diamond
necklaces as Mick Jagger croons a romantic cover of "Girls Just Want to
Have Fun."
"Cocktails with Prince Charming at the Top of the Mark--"
#
You are sitting at a cocktail table watching the sun set behind the Golden
Gate Bridge, casting technicolor grandeur over a glimmering San Francisco
as the night lights begin to wink on like fireflies. You can smell the offshore
breeze rolling in with a breaker of pink pastel fog.
Your companion, bathed in a Hollywood spotlight, is wearing a white
evening jacket with an orchid in the lapel and looks like George Clooney
playing Rick in CASABLANCA, only more so.
"Here's looking at you, kid," he croons, raising his martini to you as he
gives you a smile that would melt the glass containing it or Mother Theresa's
underwear. You clink glasses, you both sip.
The taste of the martini warms your heart with an incandescent glow that
flows downward like a tide of irresistible passion--
#
"--a romantic dinner with the King at Buckingham Palace--
A vast Victorian dining salon, all walnut paneling, lush red velvet
flocking, gold leaf trimmings. You sit at one end of a long table laid with
formal white napery and solid gold tableware, under crystal chandeliers
providing dancing candle light. Waiters and sommeliers await your pleasure
at the other end of the room as a string quartet in tuxedos plays a chamber
music instrumental version of "Let Me Be Your Teddy Bear."
And at your side is a suaver version of Elvis in tight-fitting Vegas gear,
but minus about forty extra pounds, and with the sultry but civilized leer of
Rudolph Valentino, as he lifts an oyster from an iced platter of fruits de mer
with his hand, and, looking deep into your eyes, slowly slurps its slick living
flesh into his mouth with his tongue--
#
"--Jane meets her Tarzan on the Beach at Waikiki--"
The beach is empty. A bronzed Adonis on a silver surfboard rides a
foaming breaker towards you. He wears nothing but a leather loincloth. He
leaps off the surfboard as it kisses the sand and walks toward you. From
somewhere comes the music of a jungle drum and Hawaiian steel guitar
version of "All Night Long."
He strides up to you like the Lord of Any Jungle, and you can smell the
jasmine oil anointing his perfect body. His lustrous unbound black hair
flows freely just short of his shoulders, he wears a golden earring, and he has
the rough regal face of the noblest of savages.
"And you can only be Jane," he growls anything but menacingly, as,
without introduction or further ado, he sweeps you up with one mighty arm,
holding you tight against the hard warm heat of him as he grabs a convenient
vine with the other, and lifts you up, up, and away from the beach,
brachiating through the treetops of a lush tropical jungle like a muscular
Nureyev gibbon towards a treehouse platform atop the highest crown, and
sets the two of you down in an open air caveman boudoir, all leopard skins,
foliage, and palm frond awnings.
He finally allows himself the jungle man cry, beating his chest like a
tom-tom, and--
#
You're back in the aisle of dreamchip racks, now transformed into an
avenue of Roman columns, each topped by a marble bust of a hero of
history, fiction, or mythic lore; Caesar, Achilles, John Wayne in a Green
Beret, Napoleon, Davy Crocket, Teddy Roosevelt, Billy the Kid. The air
reeks of gunpowder, adrenaline sweat, horses, the smell of napalm in the
morning. Cheering crowds from real and imaged eras mingle along the
triumphal way as you ride down it on a chariot pulled by a Hummer in
cammo. You're wearing Viking gear with a laurel wreath in place of the
horned helmet and jackboots, and you salute your adoring admirers by firing
bursts into the air with your M-16. An unseen Heavy Metal band plays "The
Battle Hymn of the Republic" with Hendrix on lead guitar.
"Don't wimp out like a gutless wussy!" your charioteer barks in the voice
of a Paris Island drill instructor. He's Arnie the Governator, chomping a
stogie, and dressed as Sergeant Slaughter. "Every man who doesn't wear
ladies' underwear...Dreams of Glory! Be a samurai, kiddo!"
#
A down and dirty barrio perfumed as Deadwood with horseshit and road
dust. You're wearing a white karate suit between your Stetson and your
cowboy boots and you’re armed with twin Uzis.
Terrified shopkeepers and buxom beauties dressed to leave just enough
to the imagination to arouse yours cower in doorways looking to you for
salvation as a dozen black-hatted urban stormtroopers brandishing swords
and Glocks, screeching chainsaws and AK-47s, amble menacingly up the
street towards you to the signature bars of HIGH NOON.
"Stop right there, podners!" you command. "I am the Law!"
A breathless pause. One of them goes for his six-shooter, and it begins.
You're moving at 78 rpm, they're at 33 1/3; as they fire their fusillades at
you and surge forward in Sam Peckinpah slow motion, you're spinning
around towards them like a Bruce Lee whirling dervish, firing your twin
Uzis with Sergeant York accuracy as you gracefully dodge the bullets,
bringing down one of them with each unerring volley.
Then you're among them with giant fighting cock spurs on your feet and
a feather-light samurai sword in either hand, and it's hamburger heaven as
you slash and kick and body parts and gore sail through the red fog of battle
that surrounds you--
#
“--Be the Knight who wins fair lady!"
You're mounted on a Harley Davidson chopped in Deco Arthurian
chrome and wearing a suit of light-weight Kevlar armor covered in gleaming
gold leaf. Your fighter pilot's helmet is painted with the stars and stripes and
has full heads-up display. Your lance is a giant elongated SWAT Team
battering ram capped with an outsized stainless steel fist.
At the other end of the jousting field the Black Knight waits atop a black
horse with teeth filed to razor blades, blood red eyes, and a very bad attitude.
He's a Nazgul silhouette of Darth bin Laden in his matte black armor and
faceless robot helmet. His lance is a ten foot-long broken beer bottle.
The stands are filled with good old boys, cheerleaders, doughty peasants,
Las Vegas showgirls, presided over by King Arthur and Queen Guinivere in
their royal box.
Then she's beside you, Playgirl of the Year in a filmy Medieval gown
from Frederick's of Hollywood. "Is this a pocket for your pistol, or am I just
glad to see you?" she drawls Mae West style, as she winks and affixes a pair
of pink lace panties to your weapon.
A trumpet blows. The Black Knight gallops forward, his horse howling
like a banshee on crank. You gun your engine, drowning out the howl from
hell, and do a wheelie as you burn rubber towards him.
His lance doesn't just shatter as it hits the shield between your
apehangers, it bursts like a toy dashund balloon upon impact, while yours
hits him square in the head and sends it downfield in a wobbling spiral--
#
"--and the walls come tumbling down!"
The adobe walls of Jericho stand before you under a brilliant blue sky
and a Coney Island sun. Crowded atop them are the hordes of Al Qaida in
dirty burnooses, waiving scimitars, brandishing Kalashnikovs, burning
American and Israeli flags, lifting up their desert robes to moon you.
You stand a few paces ahead of a full division of tanks and Mad Max
dune buggies and infantry in full high tech battle gear singing "The West Is
The Best." You wear smartly-tailored and newly dry-cleaned white preacher
robes draped over your Doc Martin combat boots and a throat mike and
you're armed with an electric guitar shaped like a terrible swift sword.
Roadies bring up concert speakers the size of refrigerators and arrange a
seamless bank of the things facing the wall. The rhythmic beating of feet
and hands drums to a crescendo, and then the amps cut in with a monstrous
electronically multiplied gospel orchestra rendering an instrumental version
of "Joshua Fit the Battle of Jericho" at a volume to drown out a
thermonuclear blast.
You Jagger-swagger a few steps forward and play enormous piercing
chords in an octave that could shatter wine glasses on the other side of the
Red Sea. Lightning strobes in time to the music from the cloudless sky. A
fog machine of Herb fumes glorifies your big moment as you begin to sing
in a voice of thunder like the Good Lord Himself at the Hollywood Bowl.
"Joshua fit the Battle of Jericho--"
A gospel chorus trumpets the back-up like a herd of enraged bull
elephants:
"JERICHO! JERICHO!
Cracks slither through the walls like spastic serpents.
"Joshua fit the Battle of Jericho--"
The wall begins to pop into jagged falling chunks like a glacier calving
into the sea.
"And the walls come tumbling down--"
#
You're in the aisle of dreamchips again, now it's two endless banks of
regularly rectangular clouds as you whoosh between them seated on plush
leather upholstery in your Learjet. There's the aroma of leather and invisible
cigar smoke in the ionized air. Your guide is a Martha Stewart powerplay
type in tight-fitting combat fatigues tailored like a skirted business suit, the
short sleeves displaying her gym-honed biceps. You are dressed in similar
fashion. A male steward in Muscle Beach togs brings you a dry martini and
a dish of olives.
"Leave the toys to their boys!" you guide tells you. "Sisterhood is
powerful! Be the Chairwoman of your own Board."
You stride confidently down a long oak-paneled hallway lined with the
framed photos of the likes of Claire Booth Luce, Opra Winfrey, Hillary
Clinton, Eleanor Roosevelt, Christiane Amanpour, and of course yourself.
Reaching the gilt-framed door at the end of the hall, you push it open with a
smart thwack of the palm of your hand and sashay into the boardroom. The
men seated along the long Danish modern boardroom table stand and pop to
attention.
"At ease, gentlemen," you command. They sit down. You remain
standing.
These captains of industry are hatted for the occasion in appropriate
corporate livery over their identical black business suits, white shirts, and
IBM-blue ties. A steel-worker's helmet. A rap-mogul's reversed baseball
cap. An airline pilot's cap. A stock market plutocrat's homburg. A
signature chef's toque. They're all about 45 years old. They all have the
expressionless generic face of a cartoon American salaryman.
You stand there silently staring them down until their faces become
identical masks of nervous fear.
You smile like a benign lizard. They relax.
"You're all fired," you tell them sweetly in the feminized voice of
Donald Trump.
The door opens to an orchestral fanfare, and a chorus line of women
dances into the boardroom singing new lyrics to "Take Your Job and Shove
it."
Women in business suits, aviator gear, foreman's fatigues, generals'
uniforms, cowgirl duds, lab coats, tuxedos, waving riveting guns, $50 cigars,
conductor's batons, director's megaphones, whips and chairs.
"Gonna take your job, now shove it, you ain't workin' here no more...."
The board of corporate salarymen slink past them out of the boardroom
in a counterpoint chorus line of slump-shouldered nebbishes.
"Take your golden parachutes, and doncha forget t'close the door!"
It's the Oval Office now and you sit behind the desk in the ultimate
corporate catbirdseat with the sweet smell of success wafting in from the
open windows to the Rose Garden as the Marine Corps Band plays "Hail to
the Chief--"
#
"--and for the active Sportswoman--"
You're in the boxing ring before a packed house in Madison Square
Garden, filled with illegal tobacco smoke and legal beer fumes, wearing
Wonder Woman's boxing shorts and a Valkerie's brass sports bra.
The bell rings and your opponent comes bouncing towards you. For a
moment, it's a woman, then it's a lithe male heavyweight like a young
Mohammed Ali, but as he closes and begins to throw wild haymakers that
you easily block with your gloves, he's a huge menacing pug grunting,
snorting, and foaming at the mouth through his mouthpiece.
You dance around him effortlessly, feeling strong as lionesses as you
float like a butterfly and sting him at will with taunting left jabs like a bee.
The crowd cheers, laughs, pounds its feet.
Mr. Super Heavyweight pounds his chest with his gloves like the gorilla
he is and turns into one, King Kong with the attitude of terminal Tyson,
wading into you throwing leather heedless of your accurate combinations
tattooing his hirsute torso.
He grabs you in a clinch, reeking of garlic and ape funk, spits out his
mouthpiece to expose tiger teeth, with which he gnashes towards your ear.
You break it with a low left uppercut south of his belt buckle that the
referee at least pretends not to see. He roars and bellows as he staggers bent
over slump-shouldered backward towards the ropes, exposing his jaw.
You do a triple windup like Popeye and catch him under the chin with a
powerhouse right uppercut that lifts him up over the ropes and into the
ringside seats where wrestling fan grannies wail away at him with their lead-
weighted pocketbooks--
"--and you can Bring It All Back Home--"
#
You drive up your perfect suburban mini-mansion in your black Lexus
which matches the color of your skirted business suit and combination-
locked briefcase, the cherry interior still redolent of new car odor and
boardroom power, park it in the garage next to your husband's tacky old
station wagon stuffed with kids' toys, soccer balls, candybar wrappers,
moldy little sneakers.
You walk around to the front door as your husband opens it for you.
He's a handsome hunk in a pastel blue gymsuit and white maid's apron. He
hands you a nosegay of roses, kisses you chastely on the lips.
"How did it go at the office today, honey?"
"Another day, another thousand dollars," you tell him with a diffident
shrug, and walk into the living room. No juvenile toys are in evidence. It's
all white leather couches, wall to wall lime-green carpeting, Tiffany lamps,
country landscape paintings, an enormous flat screen television in front of a
brown leather recliner.
The remote is waiting on the arm of the recliner as you drop down into it
with a satisfied sigh, and the tv is already tuned to the classic movie channel
where "Gone With The Wind" has just finished rolling the opening credits.
Your husband appears with a silver tray bearing a wine glass and an
open split of Chardonnay in a silver bucket. "Dinner will be ready when
your movie is over, love."
He times it perfectly. "Dinner is ready!" he shouts from the adjoining
dining room, and you can smell hot roast beef wafting towards you as you
finish your wine, get up, and walk into the dining room. There's no kids'
crap here either. The dining room table is set with a white lace tablecloth,
two places of Limoge china and sterling silver cutlery, and a vase of purple
orchids. There's an open bottle of Mouton Cadet.
Your husband arrives with a covered platter on a serving tray and sets it
down before you, whipping off his maid's apron, and now he's wearing a
quilted burgundy lounging jacket and a white ascot and smells of lilac
cologne.
With a flourish, he sits down at the table, removing the shiny metal
cover of the platter to reveal a pastry log the size and shape of a roast beef.
"Beef Wellington!" he proudly proclaims. "I got the recipe off the Internet."
"Have I forgotten our anniversary again?" you ask him archly. "What's
the special occasion?"
He pours you a glass of wine, sits down across from you, slices into the
Beef Wellington and carefully places a perfect round of foi gras laden center
cut enrobed in pastry in the exact center of your plate. It smells deliciously
of fragrant bakery and hot meat.
"Every day's a special day when you're in my world, lamby-pie," he
croons sincerely as you bite into savory medium rare and rich creamy goose
liver paste. "And every night belongs to us when the lights go out, my
love--"
#
The aisle of dreamchip racks now lines the walls of a studio screening
room. You sit in one of the four perfect seats behind the control console.
The air smells of buttered popcorn and air conditioning. You recline at your
ease like a royal couch potato. Your guide, seated beside you, looks like a
cartoon of Mr. Mogul, with his paunch stuffed into a thousand dollar red silk
suit, his balding head gleaming, an outsized diamond ring on his left hand,
waving an enormous unlit cigar with his right.
"Ready When You Are, C.B. offers you a selection of film classics for
your dreamtime enjoyment, and here's a sample," he rumbles.
"Roll 'em," you order.
"GODZILLA TRASHES TOKYO TOMORROW--"
You lumberingly wade ashore from the wine-dark sea towards a skyline
of madly scintillating neon towers. But when you reach Tokyo, the tallest
towers barely come up to your reptilian kneecaps. You are enormous. You
are strong. You roar like a thunder lizard as you stomp towards downtown,
smashing paper houses, knocking down sparking electric cables, crunching
Hondas and Toyotas with every careless step of your splayed clawed feet.
Downtown Tokyo has been redone into a pulp science fiction magazine
cover out of the Jetsons, all skyscraper towers running animated product
commercials on giant television screens, amorphous domes and pavilions in
comic book colors, sky bridges, snaking monorails. It smells of tempura,
sake, and hot electronic circuitry.
You wade into it with massive karate kicks, kicking aside everything in
your wander path like soccer balls, as sirens wail, and tiny shells from tiny
cannon bounce off your leathery green hide.
Rocket-propelled fighter aircraft buzz around you like mosquitoes, their
laser-beams strobing off your head and shoulders. You swat at them with
your taloned paws, and then you're juggling them like rubber balls, to the
delight of your fans below waving little lizard dolls on sticks and chanting
"Godzilla! Godzilla!"
You reach the Imperial Palace Gardens, an oasis of trees and greenery in
the heart of Tinker Toy Tokyo surrounding the Emperor's palace itself. You
pause. You bow as deeply as your underslung thighs and bulging belly will
allow. Your eyelid nictitates in a lizardly wink.
You open your mouth, take a deep breath, bring it up from way deep
down, and belch a torrent of flame at the Imperial precinct--
#
"With Ready When You Are, C.B., all things are possible in the
dreamtime. DRACULA, starring...you...and you--"
You fly through the bedroom on the night wings of a bat. Folding your
wings into a dashing black cloak as you alight in the bedchamber, you
become the urbane Count in full evening attire, your hair smelling of
Vaseline, your mouth pleasantly alive with anticipatory hunger.
You glide to the bed, where an innocent young woman dreams in the
night. You lean over her, the beating arteries in her exposed white neck
awaiting your ready fangs, and--
#
--you awake lying beneath a soft downy comforter to confront the
smiling fanged face of a well-dressed and overgroomed vampire prince,
smelling of jungle musk and sultry jasmine.
"Do not be afraid," he tells you in a medium Hungarian accent, "one
moment of pain, and then--eternal life!"
You can't move as he sinks his fangs into your throat. You don't want to.
It doesn't really hurt, it's like a lover's kiss, as you lie there languidly with
the warmth flowing from your body into his, floating on a cloud of sweet
surrender as--
#
--you drink the thick meaty ambrosia deep into your undead flash from
the vampire kiss, sucking up life-force greedily, but careful not to grunt or
slobber, as you reach the ecstatic point of no living return, and--
#
"--Bollywood! Ta-ta-ta-ta-ta, Bollywood--"
You're dancing before a cheesy matte painting of a Las Vegas version of
the Taj Mahal in the forefront of a vast production number fit to turn Busby
Berkley green with envy, not so much a chorus line as a chorus mob of
something like a hundred dark-skinned men and women in brilliantly
colored pantaloons and mirror-brocaded vests, G-rated harem costumes
dripping jewels and bangles.
You're wearing similar harem gear redone for a movie star princess, and
you're being whirled around before the terpsichorean chaos by a lithe blue-
faced prince of Bollywood naked to the waist, his golden pantaloons secured
by a bejeweled red sash, light as air, dancing like Dr. D.
An unseen dance band featuring electric sitars and guitars rocking and
rolling to a rapid tap dancing tabla drum section plays ever more frantically
as the air fills with clouds of heady incense and multicolored fog machine
clouds as--
#
--you dance in perfect one-take tandem with your Bollywood princess as
the chorus mob behind you leaps and prances, then the two of you leap
upwards, arms upraised. Grinning, laughing, shouting with glee, you meet in
mid-air and hang there for what seems like forever in a magical and chaste
cinematic embrace as fireworks go off, and peacocks soar, and cutely-
dressed little children toss a blizzard of rose petals--
#
You're sitting in your director's chair, but the set is empty now, except
for your guide, who stands before you. He's a giant Oscar award now, the
gilded guy himself writ large in a spotlight, but with stardust sparkling eyes
and mobile golden lips.
"And that's just a little taste of what awaits you in the dreamtime," he
proclaims in a movie trailer's voice-over. "Experience the full-length
versions of everything you've dreamed so far, and much, much more. Don't
wait, be what you want to be in your Dreamtime, and at a price you can
afford. Yes, each and every dreamchip is available for the price of a movie
ticket, a paperback book, or a good hamburger."
A brassy fanfare sounds.
"You will now awaken, and you will remember everything," Oscar
proclaims as he snaps his metal fingers like a carnival hypnotist. This
concludes the Dreammaster 301 Demonstration chip. Welcome to your
Dreamtime!"
#
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#