Written by Jonathan Wojcik


Guest Art by Actual Identity!


Posted by Some Guy:

"A few days ago i had a dream, one that I dont entirely remember. But i do remember the Thing That Was A Tree. It was always wrapped in wax paper, and it glowed brightly in a variety of colours. It had seven arms that reached up high into the sky, making the faintly glowing silhouette of a dead tree. In my dream, my job was to convince the beast that it WAS a tree, or it would devour us All. Though I knever saw under it's wrappings, i knew that each hand had a mouth on the end."

The name already sets you up for something incredible, the physical description is haunting, and the problem with it is truly tantalizing. WAS it, in fact, ever a tree? It will only consume humanity if it realizes it's become whatever it is now?? Way to just randomly dream a cosmic horror more frightening than any on record.


Posted by Cobbington:

"I had a dream that my parents (who are great parents in real life, my dream doesn’t reflect my actual feelings about them) were incredibly controlling and didn’t want me to do anything on my own, leave the house without their permission, or disobey them in any way, and they had creatures working for them to make sure of that.

There were quite a few of them that I can’t really remember, but the ones I do remember were the most important and powerful ones. There were two, each one under my parent’s direct control.

My mom controlled something called the “dark lady”. It was a female figure, which was absolutely pitch-black, with matted black hair dangling over her face. She crawled around on all fours, her legs impossibly angled outward perpendicular to her body, like the legs of a lizard. She was incredibly fast, and she screamed at the top of her lungs wherever she went. The details of her body were indistinct thanks to how dark she was, but her outline was rough and lumpy, as if she was sculpted from clay.

My dad controlled the more powerful of the two, which was called the “red man”. This one was much more explicitly sculpted from clay, with the lumpiness and depressions of something crudely sculpted by hand, and it had the distinct shine of pottery glaze. It was a deep garnet red, unevenly painted with lighter and darker spots. It was flat and angular, with sculpted angles and edges, and was a couple inches thick. It had a head shaped like an upside-down triangle, with thin slits for eyes, and a vertical mouth with crude, cartoonishly pointed teeth. It had a body shaped like a larger upside-down triangle, with many thin, angular leg-like structures coming off of it, with many bends and “joints” like spider legs. It slowly floated everywhere it went, and it never made a sound. I got the impression that it had the ability to see everything at once.

One night, I broke into a museum after hours because I somehow knew that it would have information about my parent’s monsters, and how to finally be rid of them. I came across a room that had depictions of the red man from all throughout history, on everything from scrolls, to tapestries, to carvings on ancient stone slabs dating back many thousands of years. I learned that the red man was the vessel for an ancient evil god, and my dad had summoned him to keep watch over me. However, I had somehow done something to alert my parent’s creatures, as the many depictions of the red man started moving and staring at me. Then I looked up, and saw that the dark woman was on the ceiling. She leapt down at me, screaming, and I died.

However, I found myself in the museum again, having a second to redo all I just did, as if I had gotten the bad ending in a video game. I got the information I needed to kill the creatures without alerting them, and went back home.

But the dark lady was waiting for me on our front walk. She ran at me, shrieking. But I stood my ground. I’m not sure what I did, maybe recited an incantation or something, but my vision blacked out, and when I regained it, there was nothing left of her but a pile of pulverized black clay dust.

I looked up to see the red man in the doorway. I readied the incantation for him, but right before I said it, I was overcome with the feeling that no matter what I did, I would never, ever, ever be free of his gaze. So I ran away, and never came back. "

These two monsters are radically different, and maybe the Dark Lady is overshadowed by the weirdness of the Red Man, whose flat clay body is already vivid in my mind, floating around like something from an old PC game. The way he "works" is pretty scary, as is the entire scenario of normally nice parents using him and other monsters to be more controlling...or is it the monsters controlling the family?


Posted by Calaveracarnival:

"The dream started with some friends and I sitting around my apartment, bored. We'd decided to all get together but couldn't figure out anything interesting to do. After some bickering, someone suggested we watch a movie. At this, another of my friends exclaimed that we should watch "Gates of Hell".

They explained that it was supposed to be a cursed movie that would "summon some kind of surrealist boschian bullshit". Everyone thought this was a great idea and sounded fun, although my roommate did express that it was probably fake, and that they shouldn't believe everything they read on the internet.

The movie was a VHS tape, but in my dream we had a VHS player and this seemed totally normal. It began with a blue screen reading "GATES OF HELL" in white text. After this, the screen went black, and began to drip onto the floor as several little creatures pulled their way out of the television. They were about the size of a toddler, but stick-thin and bearing hopping, froglike back legs. Their front legs ended in three very long spikes of bone, and aside from these spikes their entire body had the scuzzy, unpleasant texture of the clotted hair in a shower drain. Their head was an almost featureless tangle of hair, save for a single reptilian eye set off-center to one side.

Three of these little things crawled out of the TV and I somehow knew them to be "frog imps". One of them ran out the front door and the other two set about causing mayhem. One hopped about the apartment, tearing decorations off the walls, and the other jumped on one of my friends. Despite the fact that it was stabbing them repeatedly, they seemed mostly unfazed, just saying "Huh, guess the cursed movie was real. That's wild." None of them seemed particularly upset or afraid, actually. They mostly seemed to treat the arrival of the frog imps as an unexpected mild inconvenience, with my roommate just trying to put the decorations back up while it was enthusiastically tearing them down. "

Nightmare frogs are back! These have an extremely fun design, and it's nice to see another dream-entity that emerges from a television. It's actually the second time one of our frog-like entities have come out of a TV screen, too! While it's common for dream-people to react inappropriately to dream-weirdness, I'd like to think the lack of fear is an actual effect these creatures have.


"I didn't really wanna stick around and see how that played out, so I went outside. Unfortunately, outside was just as bad. There were dozens of frog imps causing mayhem, breaking windows and streetlights, and tormenting random people. There was a shirtless man with an iron cage on his head stumbling down the street, bleeding from dozens of little puncture wounds. One of the frog imps was riding on his back, slapping the cage and poking him with its spikes. A pair of them had another person facedown on the ground, and had carved a tic-tac-toe board into their back.

I resolved to get away from the frog imps and tried to leave my apartment complex, but when I rounded a corner in the parking lot I saw a new monster. It was like a huge wheel made of veiny flesh, around the size of a small bus. It had a flabby, starfish-like center with a huge red eye, with the starfish arms forming the spokes of the wheel. As it got closer, I realized I couldn't tell if its flesh was hugely veiny or it just had secondary tentacles the color and consistency of human veins. It bounced towards me, seeming to go out of its way to crush cars and roll over one of the people the frog imps had been tormenting. The whole time, it emitted this high pitched giggling, which occasionally turned to a nauseating gurgle, like someone trying to gargle vomit. I ducked into a stairwell to try to get away from it, and it rammed the building, breaking a lot of it. As it bounced back to ram again, I woke up."

So the frog imps are a lot more sinister than they initially appear to be...and they have a friend! Larger-scale destructive power is all the imps are missing, so the meat-wheel makes a perfect strategic counterpart. I'm glad that it giggles, too.


Posted by Somnambulist:

" I dreamt I was at a birthday party held by my middle school science teacher for her son, who was 23. The party was held at her ex husband's house and was an obstacle course themed around the continent of Australia to celebrate their heritage. They had for some reason an entire building with theme park level theming and a dedicated running course. It was campy fun, with relay race sections through the outback, a timed drinking tour of Australia's cities, areas where you had to dress up like Australian wildlife and fight each other. I won and took home two little budgies. My teacher was British.

The next month I received an invite for her other son, who was the same age. His party was at the same place, but was inexplicably Dr Seuss themed. Everyone lined up, and when they cut the rope, the team sprinted into the entryway. At first it was bright and whimsical as the contestants ran through suessian architechture, serenaded by a myriad of chimeric creatures typical of his books. I sprinted ahead, determined to bring home another birdie. WE turned a corner into a deep forest, with monsters cheering us on. At first it was more of the same, it even had the same layout as when it was Australian outback themed. There were two other contestants next to me. The three of us reached a checkpoint, abruptly leading to a wall with a doorway leading down into a blacklight tunnel. There was ball pit balls pouring out of the entrance. We drank some water and dived in. At first it was easy, the walls were covered in neon dr suess illustrations, and it branched like a maze with whimsical music in the background. We split up.

As I walked forwardm the ball pit deepened. I couldn't feel the bottom and sank up to my neck, feeling the plastic balls rub up against my skin. I realized there was something watching me.

Overhead a rubbery vaguely Who shaped face stretched itself into a laughing monstrosity, similar to the head from "Tonight is Grinch night" spanning the whole hallway ceiling. Its neck sprouting out of the ceiling like kudzu vines and the face waved back and forth, weighty and threatening to fall. It's laughing sounded something like "OOGCHAKA CHAKA! OOGCHAKA CHAKA" And made the ball pit vibrate with how loud it was as little flecks of saliva flung itself from the toothless mouth. I felt the balls behind me shift. Without looking behind me I knew I wasn't alone in the pit, it wasn't human, and that something horrible would happen to me if I turned around. I passed under the face by swimming just under the first layer of balls so I wouldn't have to look at it's unblinking stare. My foot hit something squishy and wet. By the smell, someone else had been through the same pants shitting terror. I slogged through the next doorway, unable to touch the bottom and feeling my arms and legs burn as as I swam through the balls. It formed into a main pathway, and I told myself to keep swimming for my life.

I noticed something moving on the wall. It was these Dr. Suess style doglike figures in permanent profile, like an egyptian painting. They looked like a technicolor bas relief made of polymer clay, but you could see their skin expand and contract as they breathed. Somehow I knew that they weren't whole creature, and instead some kind of mold. There were more rooms off the main hallway, with glimpses of more horrific fleshy abominations and echoing voices. I refused to look.

As I turned the corner, I saw the The Cat. It had gaps under his eyes and his whole body appeared to be made out of silicone rubber. He hung limp like a animatronic with no power. Unlike an animatronic there was nothing to hold him upright. He didn't move, but I could hear labored breathing. He was in the hallway and there was no way forward except around him. I crawled slow, keeping below the surface and hugging the wall. my leg brushed his and it was clammy and cold like dead flesh. I scrambled forward, pushed by adrenaline. After a minute of heart pounding flailing as fast as I could, my foot touched the bottom. I stood up. Step by step I waded through the balls. The voices faded. I turned a blind corner. I found the exit. An overweight middle aged desk lady gave me a stupid T shirt.

I emerged in a retail space parking lot. Down the alley between the shops it circled back to the beginning of the maze, and I saw a family about to go inside. I woke up in a cold sweat, my dream self's screaming for them not to go in echoing in my head. "

This is one of the scariest dreams of the year, I have to say. The smooth deterioration from Cheerful Seuss to Horror Seuss, the ball pit, the flat cartoon dogs that are somehow "mold" and the rubbery, limp, heavily breathing cat are all seriously disturbing and hard to get out of your head.

And all you get is a stupid t-shirt!