The Late, Late Show

by David McKenna

Camilla and I watched a movie, then we were the movie. A man wandered in a decrepit house, or in a dream of a house, which had wallpaper hanging like shredded flesh and little mounds of filth and a madwoman with a butcher knife creeping from room to room with fear or murder in her heart, it was hard to tell. The woman killed the man, but he came back. She killed him again. There was no way for the man to stop replaying this scene until he was outside, walking in the sunlight. But walking in the sunlight turned out to be the dream.


Camilla shuddered. I said there, there, it's only a movie. I held her close. I woke at dawn and she was gone. I went to the bathroom and heard footsteps, and there she was in the doorway, screaming at me. How could I write such things? Who was I? She'd crept downstairs and hacked into my computer account and read my old e-mails to ex-lovers.

I pushed past her. She kicked me and scratched my face. I hit her and she fell down the stairs and came back with a butcher knife. She killed me but I got back up. Or I dreamed that she killed me and I got back up. We went back to bed together. But then I woke and she killed me again, so I got up and went outside and walked in the sunlight. There was no point in exhausting myself, in beating myself up over what went down in previous scenes.

It was only a movie.