The dreamcatcher

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Fantasy  |  House: The Imaginarium

Fact: I took this photo of the dreamcatcher I have hanging by my car's rear-view mirror :)

I was very upset that my boyfriend Michael’s flight got delayed; he was supposed to be here hours ago. It’s nearly nine P.M. and he hasn’t arrived. I received a text message from him a couple of hours ago saying his flight was finally taking off.

We rented a cabin in the woods for the weekend. We are having issues in our relationship and I suppose, this is what people do to rekindle their “love”. Spend money on a weekend getaway to a remote cabin in the middle of nowhere. Of course, I had gotten here before Michael, as usual. He seems not to know the concept of time.

I began to unpack my things from the small luggage I decided to pack. The cabin is actually pretty peaceful. But it was dark out, so knowing that my nearest neighbor is about a mile away frightened me a bit.

After unpacking; just to occupy my mind, I took a quick shower. There was a small window in the shower and I couldn’t help but feel a sentiment of unease; as if something or someone was watching me.

I slipped into the lilac silk tunic Michael seemed to love and let loose my humid long black hair. I took the dreamcatcher my grandmother made me when I was a little girl and pasted it on the wall above the bed with a piece of scotch tape. I do not share the same beliefs as my family about the supposed power of the dreamcatcher and how it’s supposed to guard and protect you. However, I take it from my bedroom wall and carry it with me every time I travel. It’s more of a custom now than anything deeper.

I lied down on the bed and checked my phone; 9:42 P.M. and no unread messages or missed calls from Michael just yet. This is ridiculous. Why am I even here?

There was a thump that I heard coming from downstairs. As if someone was trying to break in.

I quickly sat up on the bed and listened as my heartbeat increased to the point where it may have seemed it would break out of my chest.

“Michael?” I called. Knowing deep inside it wasn’t Michael. He would’ve called out my name by now. ‘Aiyana’, he would’ve called. But he didn’t… and I was desperately hoping he would.

“Hello!” I shouted and perhaps I shouldn’t have. I stood from my bed as I heard footsteps coming up the stairs and my mind panicked. I felt the knot forming in my throat. This kind of extreme trepidation is the one that gives heart attacks. I very much welcomed that right now.

And then two tall men walked in, both wearing black slacks and black jackets along with dark beanies on their heads.

“Just look what we have here, Sam”, one of them said.

“Are we lucky or what?” the other chuckled.

“Who are you? What do you want? Please leave!” I felt myself losing my composure. My legs felt weak as if they were giving out.

“Relax, doll, we’re not gonna hurt you”, they smiled.

“Listen, I don’t have much but you can take my ring; it’s gold”, I ripped the ring off my finger so quickly and threw it on the floor beside “Sam’s” shoe.

“And take my wallet! I have two hundred dollars there, but please leave!” I exclaimed.

“Oh darling, but we just got here. What’s a pretty thing like you doing alone? You’re just asking for it”, the other man said.

“No, please, just leave. My boyfriend will be here any minute now!”—

“Tie her up, Luke”, Sam commanded.

“No, please, just leave me alone. Don’t hurt me, please!” I cried. Luke walked up to me and as I tried to fend for myself he managed to grab my arms and I kicked him.

“Please! Just stop!”—

“Shut up!” Sam walked over and smacked me.

“Throw her on the bed!” he commanded.

“No! Michael!” I shouted to no avail.

“Stop!” I found myself screaming helplessly and suddenly my cell phone went off and I opened my eyes in a gasp.  I browsed around and saw nobody. The night was as silent as it was, just the crickets from outside. There was no “Sam” or “Luke”. It was… a dream?

I answered the phone; “Hello”, I was shaken up.

“Baby, it’s me, what’s the matter?” It was Michael.

“Michael!” I cried and tears ran down my cheeks.

“I think I dosed off (even though I don’t remember dosing off) and I had a bad dream that I was being attacked and… where are you? Please, just hurry up!” I wailed to him.

“I’ll be there soon, baby. It was just a bad dream”, he said and I nodded while sobbing.

Yes it was just a dream, I thought to myself until…

Whose shoe print was that? I was barefoot and I came in with sandals.

And where was my ring?

 It wasn’t on my finger. I spotted it lying there next to that mysterious shoe print.

“Aiyana, Are you there?”—

I looked up to the once-perfect dreamcatcher my grandmother had woven for me. It was nearly destroyed. The deer pendant it has was barely hanging by a thread and the strings were almost ripped apart.

“Aiyana, Answer me!”—

“Michael… there’s a shoe print”, I whispered. Feeling that same anxiety I felt earlier.


“Aiyana, what happened?” he asked just as confused as I was.

“I—don’t know, but it wasn’t a dream”, I spoke. I gazed and stared at the dreamcatcher.

Can it be? 

Submitted: November 10, 2017

© Copyright 2021 jaylisbeth. All rights reserved.

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Add Your Comments:


Adam L.

What an incredible story, Lis! You should write these more often, you sure have a knack for them. Nicely done!

Fri, November 10th, 2017 1:53pm


Thank you so much, Adam! I am trying to write these more often, but gosh, they are challenging :)

Fri, November 10th, 2017 5:54am


You knocked up this short story when you were not in the mood, I'd like to read one from you when you're in the mood. This short story was fabulous. The plot was very good. The way you change it had me really worrying, where to now? I enjoyed it. If it was a book, it would go down well.

Fri, November 10th, 2017 4:07pm


Thank you, John :) Wow! I am so flattered.

Fri, November 10th, 2017 8:20am

Amy F. Turner

What a great short story that was! It was well written and paced. Very exciting and mysterious. Loved it!

Fri, November 10th, 2017 5:03pm


Thank you very much, Amy :) I am so glad you enjoyed it.

Fri, November 10th, 2017 9:36am

Mike S.

An excellent tale, J.B!

Fri, November 10th, 2017 6:52pm


I am elated that you think so, Mike! Thanks :)

Fri, November 10th, 2017 10:55am

Joe Stuart

I love it when you turn your hand to short stories, Lisbeth. This one is really good. I like stories that involve a paranormal mystery without going to the extremes of gory horror. This one is just right.

Fri, November 10th, 2017 8:38pm


Thank you, Joe! I am pleased to hear you say that because I had my doubts with this one. I wrote it yesterday and I was afraid it wasn't going to be well received.

Fri, November 10th, 2017 12:59pm


What a supernatural tale, jaylisbeth. Not a dream then, but perhaps turned in to one. An excellent read!

Fri, November 10th, 2017 8:48pm


Thank you, Hully! Yay! The guru approves lol :)

Fri, November 10th, 2017 12:58pm

Sue Harris

Great story JB. Liked the way the tension builds, her vulnerability, the shock of the intruders, their violence... then its all a dream... but is it? Well written, great atmosphere.

Fri, November 10th, 2017 11:17pm


Thank you, Sue! You are too kind :)

Fri, November 10th, 2017 3:47pm


This is excellent. This is a supernatural story that has more originality than a hundred Hollywood films. The tension is superb, and the pacing of potential insanity building up in her eyes is harrowing. The supernatural elements have a Stephen King vibe about them, and I appreciate you didn't use gore because that doesn't bring any tension or fear. I thought this was going to be a horrific tale about intruders being killers in a cabin. Like similar to the film The Strangers, which by the way is an excellent film. I love the slow pacing in the beginning, because it's the most effective way of creating atmosphere, because you can make your character think it is real, or just in their head. It's a great way of them not believing anything anymore, and the way it can bring paranoia is masterful. The way you use the intruders is excellent, using it to terrific effect to be a realistic frightening moment in Aiyana's head. Her struggle is brilliant because it borders on imaginary, and with her gold ring being on the floor beside the footprint is pure madness, the kind of madness that may or may not be inside her head. I love how self aware she is because she is informed of things that could make it scary for herself, and I prefer a character to have that knowledge. It makes you wonder if she was actually talking to Michael, and I admire the cliffhanger you leave, because what you don't see is the most frightening. I love the lore about the dream catcher, and how superstitious she is to not believe in the powers it possesses. In any type of history about myths like that, something bad will happy if you either don't believe it, or you break it. Fantastic story Lisbeth, you are such a brilliant writer, and I love reading your work sweet!

Sat, November 11th, 2017 12:35am


My, my, Dexter.... be careful, you might inflate my ego lol. I was having so many second thoughts about my story, thinking it didn't compete with the others that I have posted on booksie like my very own favorite short story of mine "Veronica Toxic". But thank you very much for taking the time to really dig deeper into my story. The fact that you took your time to write such endearing and outstanding review for my story means very much to me. Thank you very, very much :)

Fri, November 10th, 2017 5:25pm

Sunny Malik

Oh no!! Cliffhangers! Pls pls do another part to it! It's amazing! I love it! XD

Sat, November 11th, 2017 11:10am


Thank You very much, Sunny:)

Sat, November 11th, 2017 10:09am

Jeff Bezaire

That was an intense story! I kept trying to guess what was going to happen, but you threw me off every time! Obviously, Aiyana never watched the movie 'Scream' or she'd have known not to call out when she heard the noise downstairs. ;) I love that name, by the way - Aiyana. It's beautiful.
You blend reality with fantasy real well here. The mystery of the dreamcatcher - a great twist ending!

Mon, November 27th, 2017 6:52pm


Why, thank you, Jeff. I am trying to think of another short story but my imagination says it's not in the cards lol. I am out of inspiration. I have entered a rut and I have no idea how to get out.

Mon, November 27th, 2017 10:57am


Amazingly addictive! Draws the reader in, creates a puzzle, solves it, then questions whether it really was a solution or not, then leaves the reader wanting to know more, needing answers to the strings of questions in their own mind!

Wed, December 20th, 2017 8:32am


Awww thank you, Spy, one of my personal favorites.

Wed, December 20th, 2017 4:58am

Markie Bee

I enjoyed this, I'm not that familiar with Dream Catchers I do like them. I have one on my Kindle cover.

I like that something came through the dream catcher playing on her fears. As said by those below you are a master storyteller.

Fri, February 9th, 2018 8:28pm


I am honored, Mark :) thank you.

Fri, February 9th, 2018 1:35pm

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