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Chapter 8 - Kaleidoscope of Dreams and Betrayal

by ariah347

Warning: This work has been rated 18+ for language and mature content.

My sleep is deep and heavy as I lay with Ezekiel. My dreaming is vivid, blurring the edges of my consciousness. All around me are mirages of shadows, a world caught between realities. A foreboding feeling wraps around me like a second skin. I walk toward a curved illumination. The light flashes rapidly, and suddenly, Zeke stands before me, his presence commanding yet fractured. His face begins to crack as if he is shattering glass, and his expression is eerie.

 His face begins to crack as if he is shattering glass, and his expression is eerie

“Abigail,” his voice sings, but his mouth does not move. I search his face. His eyes look through me, and torment shoots through my heart.

“Zeke?” I question the imposter. The dream world shifts and swirls around us like a kaleidoscope, and I fall to the ground.

He steps closer, standing above me with cold eyes, and reaches out his hand to help me up, but as I reach, a barrier keeps us apart, and I can’t touch him. “I need you to understand, Abbie,” an echo urgently says, but his mouth does not move again. My brows furrow, fear creeping in, “Understand what? Zeke? What’s happening? Hello?”

The world around us begins to shake and rumble—a loud thunderous sound booms through my ears. “I’m-I’m not-not-not who-o-o-o you think I am,” a quivering tendril with his face teases.

“No, none of these monstrosities are my Zeke,” I shout, standing to my feet.

“None of us. Not he or he or he,” the tendril calls as more appear, and the broken version of Ezekiel reappears.

“Nor me,” a voice calls behind me. I turn around and stand in front of what seems to be the real Zeke. I try to touch his face, but he steps back quickly.

“I’ve done things, Abbie. Things you would never believe,” he says, his head tilting weirdly to the side.

The dream world begins to warp, and breaks of darkness rip through the light. “No,” I whisper, my voice a desperate plea. “You’re not capable of that, Ezekiel. I know you.”

A bitter smile forms across his face, making him look evil. “You don’t know me, Abbie. Not completely. And you shouldn’t.”

The world fills with thick smoke, and I struggle to breathe. Coughing, I beg for the truth, “Who are you then?”

“I can’t tell you,” he says, glitching before reappearing like a broken screen. I reach out, my fingertips touching his, trying to bridge the gap between us.

“Zeke, please,” I plead, my voice cracking as tears gush out of my eyes.

But he lets go of my hand and walks away, his form vanishing into a swirling mist, leaving me alone with a fading landscape.

“Abbie! Abbie!” Zeke’s voice wakes me up, pushing my hair back from my face as I try to push and shove him away. “Hey.. hey. It’s okay, shh…” he calls, as he wraps his arms around me.

I’m sobbing and trying to make sense of the fact that I am no longer sleeping. I cry in bursts, and he tries to soothe me. “It was just a dream. Shh… I’ve got you. You’re safe.”

We sit on my bed for a few minutes until I calm down. Finally, my eyes adjust to the room cloaked in muted darkness, and I take in the warmth of his body around me. I pull away from him, and he grabs my face in his hands.

“Are you okay?”

I nod. “What time is it?”

“It’s just after midnight.”

I lay back down on my sides, his arms wrapped around my waist as he joins me. With soft kisses from him on my shoulder, I fall back to sleep.

His hand is brushing up and down my arm the next time I awake. “Hey baby, wake up.” His breath tickles my ear, and a shiver courses through me.

I blink away drowsiness and turn to face him. The shadowy silhouette of his face comes into view, and I manage in a sleepy murmur, my voice laden with confusion, “Zeke, what is it?”

A low chuckle escapes his lips, as velvety as the darkness around us. “Come with me,” he coolly calls as his fingers gently tuck a loose strand of hair behind my ear.

As I push myself to sit up, the blanket slides down, and I glance at the window, where a sliver of moonlight casts a glow upon our faces. His eyes gleam with quiet excitement, a secret that he’s about to share with me.

“Where are we going?” I mumble, my mind trying to anchor itself in reality after being tossed between dreams and wakefulness.

“You’ll find out. Trust me; you won’t want to miss this,” his voice is playful and mysterious, a combination that only adds to my curiosity. His hand extends toward me, a silent invitation I accept. As he helps me stand, the world around me solidifies, and I realize this isn’t another dream.

Once we have reached the main floor of my building, he pushes the door open, and a gust of brisk air encircles me. He drapes his jacket over my shoulders, and I realize that he’s thought ahead for this.

His motorcycle awaits, a powerful beast of metal and chrome. With helmets secure on our heads, he brings the engine to life with a throaty roar. I swing a leg over the seat, settling in behind him. He revs the engine, and I stretch my arms around his waist, the fingers of both my hands wrapping together.

As we speed away, the world blurs and the wind whips through my hair. Adrenaline rushes through me, replacing my sleepiness and making me forget that dreadful nightmare. During every turn, I cling tighter to him. The university fades away as the scent of saltwater teases my senses, a hint at the destination he’s taking me to. Crashing waves grows louder, a melodic sound that draws us closer to the beach. He drives me out to a secluded spot, and I’m amazed the bike below us does not get stuck in the sand, going quickly across the beach to the pier. I recognize where we are, Ephemeral Beach. Our only witness is the moon and stars shining above.

I loosen my grip around him as we slow to a stop

I loosen my grip around him as we slow to a stop. He cuts off the engine, and the sudden silence amplifies the crashing waves. He takes off his helmet and balances it on the handlebar. I slide off the motorcycle with his help, remove my helmet and turn to him, a knowing smile across his face. Hand in hand, we walk closer to the end of the dock. He lays out a blanket and sits, gesturing for me to sit on his lap, which I happily do. A tiny ember of golden light breaches the horizon, and I gasp.

“Wow..” I whisper, my voice barely audible in the hush of the moment.

Zeke’s arms wrap around me, nuzzling his head into my neck. “I thought you’d like it.”

“You’re not even looking at it!” I tease, leaning back against him.

“I don’t need to,” he mumbles into my back.

“What – why?”

“Because it could never be better than the sight of you,” he whispers into my ear.

I turn to face him, and his staring makes me bite my lip. His breathing increases as he leans down and kisses me. I moan as our tongues embrace.

We break from our kiss, foreheads resting. “A sea of people could surround me, the entire solar system, a thousand sunrises, and I would only see you.”

I run my hands through his hair and pull him closer to me. Our lips reconnect, and we lay back onto the softness below us. I grab his hands and put them on my thighs under my dress.

He pulls away before kissing me again, keeping his hands where I placed them. He stops again, asking, “Are you sure?”

I breathe out a “yes.” He begins kissing slowly down my chest. It’s nearly like he’s torturing himself by holding back, but then with a devilish grin, says, “Do you think you can handle me?”

He pushes my dress up, then lightly and slowly runs his fingers up my thigh, and I feel like I can’t breathe. I pull him by his hair, and he winces with a smile.

“Try me,” I huff, forcefully staring at him. I put my hand on his crotch, feeling him grow harder. I smile and lean forward, attempting to kiss him, my hand not moving. He stops me, putting a finger on my mouth.

“No, you don’t. Let me.” With that, I move my hand. I can’t resist him or this. He makes me feel like the sunrise – exploding colors all mixing in a masterpiece.

He gently pushes me to lie back down. “I want you to sit back and enjoy. Tell me to stop any time you want me to. Shut your mind off and focus only on this...” He leaves a path of gentle kisses down my thigh. I feel a tingle run down my spine as he teases me. “I’ll take it slow,” he says, nibbling my hip, and the wetness between my legs grows.

My breathing is erratic, and I writhe beneath him. “I know you’re nervous, but please relax, baby. Let me make you feel good,” he murmurs, his fingers tracing a path of electrifying sensations over my underwear.

I’ve never felt this way. Sex, for me, has always been a chore, mechanical and stiff. With Jake, it was a choreographed sequence, a task to complete and move on from, devoid of the raw, unadulterated emotions that now course through me. Zeke’s presence, the brush of his fingertips against me, is not simply about reaching an endpoint; it’s a journey conducted by our insatiable desire for each other.

I hear him unzip his pants and slide my hand down into them. He groans softly as I grasp him. “Oh no, you don’t,” he complains, stopping me by grabbing my wrist and moving my hand out of his pants, “You’re making me lose my mind.”

“You like it,” I say in between kisses. We break away briefly, and I stick my tongue out at him. He attempts to bite it unsuccessfully.

“More than you know.”

I sigh as his hand slides underneath my underwear. I open my legs wider as he rubs my clit. I moan as he moves his finger faster. Our eye contact never breaks as he teases me until I’m so wet he can barely move his finger. “How wet you are tells me you like it, too.”

I put my hand over his and stop him. I sit up and, without a word, unbutton his shirt. He pulls it off, and I kiss along the geometric lines across his neck. He flexes and twitches as I follow the tribal pattern that cascades out on his right shoulder. I push him to lie down, and he obediently moves as I guide him. Then, I make my way across his chest with my tongue, where a tattooed ornament with his monogram is, and he lets out a charged groan. His stomach is mostly bare except for vertical Roman numerals on his left rib cage. I kiss along that side, then down from his navel, stopping above his jeans. I hover my mouth over his cock, rub my hand on it, and he moans softly.

As I'm beginning to think he's going to stop me again, he hurriedly pulls his pants down, revealing his black boxer briefs

As I’m beginning to think he’s going to stop me again, he hurriedly pulls his pants down, revealing his black boxer briefs. I pull them down, and he removes them completely. Reflexively, I put my hands in his hair, pulling him into a kiss.

“Let me return the favor,” I demand, and he nods. I run my tongue along his shaft, and he shudders. Even though I am sober by now, I feel drunk by the power I have over him. This give-and-take between us is the most natural thing I’ve ever experienced. It’s like a tango we’ve been swayed into with music only we hear. We share who follows the lead, neither being able to stop.

I take his entire length into my mouth, at least what I can. I use my hands for the remainder of him. I suck gently and then harder. His breathing quickens as I tighten around him. I begin to move my head up and down. He grabs my hair and starts to thrust his hips. I keep my mouth on him but let him control how fast or hard he moves. I moan around his cock, and he tangles his fingers further into my hair. His hasty breathing is cut short as I feel him tense up, and I stop.

He groans as I stand and take my underwear off. I throw them to the side as he pulls me on top of him. I straddle him, and he sighs. “What am I going to do with you?”

“Make me yours,” I sigh and position myself so he enters me. With a hum, I slowly lower myself onto him. The lower I sink onto him, the louder my moan. He grips my hips tightly as I rock, sliding his cock in and out.

He loosens his grip on me, and I ease back. I can feel his eyes taking me in as I grind. I lean forward and wrap my arms around his neck. We kiss passionately, our tongues circling.

He quickly flips me over, taking control back. He thrusts into me, and my thighs begin to shake. “God…” he moans as he goes harder and faster. Our breathing and moaning synchronize. Our dance has hit its peak.

Suddenly he stops; I look at him with pleading eyes. He grins and starts again. “Ezekiel,” I whimper, and I bite his neck. “Fuck,” he draws out. I feel him tense up again and know he’s about to cum.

“Wait, are you on the pill?”

I suppress an irritated groan and demand, “Yes, now keep going.”

He laughs, and I grab his back, digging my nails in slightly. “Yes, ma’am.” He pushes himself back into me and begins to thrust again. In and out, in and out, at a rapid pace until he finally groans and cums inside me. He collapses on top of me. I giggle and rub my fingers up and down his arms, following the designs. He kisses me deeply before putting his head on my chest.

“That was amazing.” He smiles and kisses me again.

“You’re amazing.” We seal the moment with another heartfelt kiss and lie there until our breathing returns to normal.

As I put my underwear back on, I jokingly ask, “Mr. Mercer, do you bring all your women here?”

“No,” he sighs, putting his boxers and pants back on. It feels like forever before he finally bends down, putting his hand under my chin, making me look at him, and saying earnestly, “Only one.”

“Oh, I bet she’s got you wrapped around her finger.” I smile at him.

He smiles back, removing his hand. He kisses my forehead, nose, and lips. “Something like that.”

We lie back on the makeshift bed. Lying beside him, I snuggle into his chest as he wraps his arm around me, gripping my waist. Exhausted, we drift quickly into sleep.

The light from the sun above us wakes me up. I glance over at him. This is where I want to spend the rest of my life–in his embrace and completely enamored. I trace his jawline, and he twitches awake.

“Hey…” he breathes out, stretching his arms.

I sit up, rubbing my eyes. “God, you’re perfect,” he says, a soft smile forming.

Embarrassed by his compliment, I blush. “So are you, even with your morning hair.”

He chuckles, pulling me close to lie down again, and I rest my head against his chest, feeling the steady rhythm of his heartbeat. I run my fingers lightly over his chest, cherishing our intimacy.

“Told you I’d make you feel good,” he confidently states, his fingers playing with my hair.

I nod, smiling. “It was more than I could have ever imagined, but you could be a little more humble.” I nudge him.

He lifts my chin with his fingers, and our eyes meet. I could get lost in those mesmerizing eyes forever. In some lights, they are so dark that they are like a black hole, while in others, I can see from the iris out that they lighten to a shade of deep brown. His eyes hold so much depth and emotion, like an infinite universe waiting to be explored.

I am content as we lie there, wrapped in each other’s arms. With him, I’ve discovered something that defies description. It fills every corner of my being, leaving no room for doubt or fear.

I trace the contours of his face with my fingertips—the slight stubble on his jaw, the curve of his lips, the way his eyes crinkle when he laughs, the dimple on his cheek when he smiles sincerely.

In the peaceful morning, birds chirp in the distance, the ocean melodic and gentle, and I realize I’ve found someone who lets me into the parts of himself that no one else sees—the one who makes everyone else incomparable.

“You know, I’ve got to say I could get used to waking up with you by my side.”

“Morning breath and all?”

His smile widens, leaning in to kiss me, as he says, “Morning breath and all.”

Is this a review?



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1399 Reviews

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Reviews: 1399

Tue Sep 19, 2023 8:09 am
IcyFlame wrote a review...

Going to keep this one short and sweet because I can see you've already got a couple of great reviews on this one, but I wanted to pop by and leave some thoughts as I'm reading through this chapter ahead of chapter nine!

I have mixed feelings about the dream sequence. I kind of see where it's coming from, but honestly in the scenes we've seen with Zeke and Abigail recently he's been pretty forthcoming with his emotions and thoughts. I'd like to have seen more of this worry manifest itself in the previous chapter perhaps, to feel like we're more set up for this. I also think dreams are a tentative line to walk. They're often an overused trope - like dreams being the only way we can see what the character is thinking deep down. It works well enough here, but it's one section I'd encourage you to really think about critically when you come to editing, to decide whether you need it or if you can explore these worries Abigail clearly has through some other method - maybe it can come out through her art work?

The scene between the two of them was well done - though I spent the whole time thinking about how they're absolutely never getting rid of all that sand xD

That's all for now - hope this helped!


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537 Reviews

Points: 30168
Reviews: 537

Mon Sep 18, 2023 2:55 am
Ventomology wrote a review...

Heeyyyyy here we are back again.

...I just wanna say, having danced actual ballroom-standard tango, that it is extremely funny to me that people think it's a sexy dance because it really does not feel sexy actually dancing it. Nothing wrong with referencing the popular euphemism or variations thereof, of course, because people will fully understand your meaning, but I do think it's funny.

Moving on:

I'm going to focus mostly on the dream sequence for this review. I thought the sex scene was well done--like all the times you've described Abigail and Zeke making out, you do a good job with the sequencing and pacing and making it hot and all, so nothing to complain about there. My thoughts on it in regards to character development and plot have already really been laid out in my review on the previous chapter.

So, I guess the first thing I would say about the dream sequence is that I don't really see where it's coming from. I know from Zeke's perspective that he has an interesting past that has been alluded to once or twice, but I don't actually think Abigail has picked up on that in her own narration. And I think that for the dream's occurrence to make sense, we need Abigail to have some understanding (which she has maybe brushed away or ignored out of love/lust) that Zeke has a past that could be dangerous. In fact, I think it would really help the entire novel for her to notice things about him that set off those red flags, and then disregard them. It gives the story a lot of dramatic irony and builds up the plot tension right alongside the romantic tension.

Like, I don't if you do it on purpose, but I've noticed this pattern where I think it's often Abigail letting Zeke in to understand aspects of herself, while the only time he has really reciprocated was to teach her about photography and to tell her about his grandfather--a light and happy/bittersweet side of him that is pretty safe. It might help you if Abigail were to acknowledge this, and that is one of the indicators that something is wrong, which then gives her brain the "evidence" it needs to create this kind of foreshadowing dream. (Actually, often when Abigail is worried or stressed about something, I feel like Zeke uses it as an opportunity to kind of soothe + seduce at the same time, instead of focusing on the problem to solve. Which is likewise a red flag to me.) If the goal really is to make the relationship a little unhealthy, then I think you can be more deliberate about it.

Or, if your intention really is for these two to have a very sweet and healthy relationship, I'd like to see Zeke trying harder to meet her equally in emotional vulnerability--or giving her subtle and prophetic warnings about that past... it really depends I think on what your goal is in the long term.

As for the descriptions of the dream, I remember you mentioned you came out of a poetry background. I think, since dreams are not really meant to make a ton of sense action-wise, but instead can be incredible evocative and emotional, that you can actually pull back on the step-by-step actions here. I don't think you really need to describe exactly what happens in the dream. You can be really poetic and try to more evoke the feeling of danger, and lean into the vague-ness and disorientation that I think a passage full of poetic device would help you achieve.

Anyway, that's my two cents. Hope this helps.


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76 Reviews

Points: 7936
Reviews: 76

Wed Aug 30, 2023 12:16 am
cookiesandcream123 wrote a review...

Heyo, ariah347!

I stumbled upon this chapter while looking through the Green Room, so, I wanted to stop by and leave a review! :D

Now, I am a tad bit underaged, so I had to skip the part that got intense but it's alright XD. I still really enjoyed the parts that I read, and I'm curious about their relationship! So far, it seems Abigail is happy with Ezekiel.. but based on the dream and the book's prologue...hmm.

Firstly, though, I love all the titles you have for each chapter. They're very beautiful and creative! Though, was there a reason you stopped including the novel's title (Reflecting Hearts) in the past few chapters? Personally, I think it helps clarify they're part of the same book.

Now onto the story. >:D Abigail's dream was certainly interesting. To be honest, Ezekiel scares me XD. I'm not sure why... Even without the dream and prologue, he gives off the aura of a big, strong guy who'd tower over Voldemort. I'm probably just being childish, but... *gulp* oh well. I hope he's not deceiving Abigail or anything!

I recognize where we are, Ephemeral Beach. Our only witness is the moon and stars shining above.

I really like your writing style and descriptions. They're beautiful and concise, and it's clear you have lots of experience with writing.
I also like the name of the beach, in the quote above. Though I wonder if it's foreshadowing something?

“A sea of people could surround me, the entire solar system, a thousand sunrises, and I would only see you.”

That was very poetic. Nice, Ezekiel, haha. ;) (Though his way with words terrifies me even more-)

I think one thing I would've liked to see more of were clues about their characters, especially Abigail. That being said, I've only read this chapter and the prologue, so that may be why I'm unfamiliar with them. I do wish we saw more of Abigail's personality and heard more of her thoughts, though. I was curious how she felt after her dream. Did she ever feel a spark of doubt? During their conversation, was she reminded of Nightmare-Ezekiel at all? It seemed like she forgot about it (at least in the parts I read). Maybe she could've felt doubt... or felt it fading by the end of the chapter.

Lastly, this isn't about the story, but I'd suggest posting shorter chapters if you can. In the GR, many of them are labeled as ~15 min reads, which could be daunting to readers, even if it's not actually that long. On YWS, every ~1000-1200 words is labeled as 7 min reads. I don't believe pictures add to that; I'm not entirely sure though. Still, I hope that helps!

Great job on this and have a good day/night! :D

cookiesandcream123 says...

OH ONE LAST THING- I think you accidentally posted the ending of Ch. 9, but not the whole thing. Only a couple paragraphs showed up when I clicked on it.

Have you met a cow or another large animal?
— Liminality