Bum bump -- bum bump -- bum bump. This is what Cliff experiences next. There is a sound like pounding on the walls -- can you call them walls? they look cold and wet to touch. He can move his limbs, this is good. This is good, he thinks. Then he is not so sure.
Across town Calvin is in the back of a police car.
Dr. Klein is not sure what to do next. Lauren is gone and I am gone. We were never there. The world closes up around our bodies and we become something that can never be spoken or imagined.
So he turns toward the light. The computers are emitting waves at irritating frequencies, it makes his skin itch. I am too late, he thinks. The dream machine has clearly been altered. But how? I thumb through the notes but it is like hieroglyphics, Cliff's writing, and I can't tell what is idiosyncratic and private from what I simply do not know enough to comprehend. I look back at Cliff's body. He looks dead but there is smaller machine displaying his heart rate, which is fine, good even. But he's like a dead man. He won't talk. I should kill him but I won't. I need to know what he did, and then I need to undo it.
The cops lets him sleep it off in the jail in the morning Calvin is out, blinking at the winter sun. He moves like a deep sea diver through the subway station. People's faces open up with a touch of his eyes. Everything feels Too Much.
At the end of a hall, if you can call it that, is an opening and past that the walls narrow considerably and Cliff has to wiggle belly-down through some strange wet stuff. It's vicious, like hair-gel. It doesn't smell. In fact, nothing does. Cliff realizes this as his head suddenly feels like it's being drilled clean through and one eye goes out and then the other and then they both come back. The walls keep beating, massive muscles, carrying him through a chamber like someone's giant wet heart.