Perchance To Dream

on January 18, 2010 in Science Fiction

“So, what else you got?” the kid asked.

“Well… I’ve got this new thing,” the pusher said. “Don’t know if it would be in your line, though. It’s a little different.”

“What, is that supposed to make me want it more?”

“No,” the pusher said. “It’s honestly just not to everyone’s taste. If I recommended it to everybody, I’d have a lot of unhappy customers.”

“What is it?”

“It’s called ‘sleep’,” the pusher said. “Synthetic neurochemicals that activate some kind of vestigial brain function that no one’s used in a couple hundred years.”

“‘Sleep’? Like a computer?”

“Yeah, basically,” the pusher said. “It puts you into power saving mode and runs a screen saver inside your brain… sort of like hallucinations, sort of like memories. It’s hard to describe. But not everybody has them all of the time.”

“What happens if you don’t?” the kid asked. “You just… sort of stand there until you come down?”

“No, you wanna make sure you’re sitting down or preferably reclining somewhere before you take it,” the pusher said. “Because your whole body goes kind of limp, you see. You’ll end up on the floor if you try to take it standing up.”

“So this stuff makes you lie down on the floor, unable to do anything? And sometimes gives you some kind of visions? Doesn’t it get really boring if you don’t have them?”

“Not really,” the pusher said. “Your consciousness is sort of… shut off. You’re not aware of anything that happens outside your head or the passage of time, at all, when you ‘sleep’.”

“That’s some lame trip,” the kid said. “Why would anybody want that?”

“To get out of their lives for a while maybe? I don’t know,” the pusher said. “Some people who take it regularly say they feel more relaxed, sharper during the rest of the day, but I don’t know that you’d that notice that after one trip.”

“How long does it last?”

“About eight hours, give or take,” the pusher said.

“Shit, I can’t do that,” the kid said. “I’ve got stuff to do.”

“Like I said, it’s not for everyone.”

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7 Responses to “Perchance To Dream”

  1. Aiten says:

    Sometimes I wish I didn’t need to sleep, just because I’m always busy and there are things that need doing… but most of the days I dread waking up and getting out of bed in the morning.

    Anyway, I’m off to take some ‘sleep’ now.

  2. [...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Alexandra Erin, Matthew Leamy. Matthew Leamy said: Liking new short from @alexandraerin: http://tinyurl.com/y8e6l7l New way of looking at a very old thing. Slight (PG) Lang. #ae_stories [...]

  3. Oh, my. Written like an insomniac. My wishes for peaceful dreams, Alexandra.

  4. zeel says:

    i love sleep. its great stuff. addicting to. . .

  5. Stormcaller3801 says:

    Reminds me of the difference between myself and my sister. She can’t handle caffeine at all. She and my brother in law both- they get bad heartburn from it, and if they take it at night, forget about bed.

    Me? I’ll be sitting up at 11:30 and think, “I could use something to drink, but I don’t want to make anything. Maybe I could finish off that pot of coffee from this morning…” And I’ll be in bed by midnight, no problems.

  6. Jon Summerton says:

    Oh my god I LOVE this one. SO true. I can’t wait till we get to that stage.

  7. Everclear says:

    Definitely saw this elsewhere. Not the same words, exactly, but close. Not surprising though.

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