By George S. Karagiannis
The other night I dreamed of a catastrophic, gloomy and dystopian vision of my future; I found myself jammed on my living-room armchair in front of my rusty TV box, with ponics unwillingly sprouting from my limbs, head and belly, as if I had been transforming into an ever-growing tree.
It initially started with sticks popping out of my skin like cacti thorns, but soon a colony of tender wood sticks germinated from my dermis and small branches with blooming leaves covered my naked body.
Tree pulp, stuffed in my throat almost suffocated me to death. My lungs were filled with seeds I wanted to sneeze out, causing harsh respiratory spasms and muscle cramps. I became a gargantuan vegetable occupying my entire house, still being unable to control the unmanageable growth, swiftly turning me into a Sequoya.
At some point, my branches broke the windows and embraced the whole house from the outside, my legs were turned into abysmal roots, penetrating the floor and reaching down to the lower floors and even deeper into the soil. My head produced so many stems heading above that they tore apart the ceiling and rendered me access to the sunlight, allowing me to accelerate growth through photosynthesis. Random shrubs were growing here and there from various parts of my body, as if I was giving birth to a plant progeny.
My nervous system was fully developed and sensitive; I could feel almost everything I touched with my branches or other tree parts. Astoundingly my branches had already grown multiple eyes and primitive sensing and kinetic apparatuses. After tearing down and reaching above the rooftop, I was that tall I could use my manifold eyes to take a glimpse of the whole city, spanned amphitheatrically.
I got petrified from what I had witnessed.
To my nightmarish surprise, the city had tuned into an endless plant graveyard, thousands of houses expanded beyond like a colossal plantation facility. Other people had, as well, transformed into gigantic trees and expanded their green kingdom everywhere they could, turning the still life city landscape into an irrigated agriculture. Humans could not but destroy anything resembling civilization, like buildings, cars, even roads to deploy their sprouts, as if they were legendary kraken infesting Viking ships by embracing them with their tentacles, dragging them down to the bottom of the ocean. I judged that given the very quick pace of the evolution, Earth would have soon been solely occupied by a huge plant biomass.
After waking up in the morning I felt so thirsty that I could hardly swallow down the mucus that sat upon my lips. I had so strong a fever, it literally got me down to a lethargic mood. I could feel the mop of my hair being so stiffly stacked on my skull, because my night sweats gave it a buttery texture.
I clumsily rushed to the kitchen to gulp down more than seven or eight glasses of water in a row, with a façade of greediness. I tried to keep a normal rhythm of breathing so as not to collapse on the floor due to my unbeatable urge to throw my guts up.
Then, I decided to move outside, on my patio, and rest a bit. That dream was so scarily vivid, that I found myself in need of taking some time off my routine. Fortunately it proved to only be a nightmare!
But, for some reason I couldn’t understand, I so desperately needed that blinding Sun that very moment; I closed my eyes and tried to focus on miniature sounds coming from birds on trees, here and there. Such a beautiful symphonic piece, they mastered!
Quite oddly, a small bunch of birds flew over and sat by my shoulder. Very strange and unusual indeed; I thought birds were afraid to even come by humans. They stood there on my shoulder for quite a moment. I didn’t harm them! I didn’t want to…
I felt like housing them!
It had already begun.
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George S. Karagiannis was born in Thessaloniki, Greece at 1984. He finished the School of Veterinary Medicine and is currently a PhD student at the University of Toronto in Canada, studying the molecular mechanisms of cancer metastasis. He began writing in an amateur level at around mid-2011 and completed several flash and short story pieces; he is currently in the 'painful' process of publishing them. He is also an abstractionist/surreal artist and his blog can be found here: http://abstractsur.blogspot.com/.