I could feel his hands around the stone. Could hear him intoning the words. Deep in my sleep, my dream self began to repeat the syllables as the svart-alf called me to him.
No. Not this time. I will not go. Something was amiss. I had the strong feeling that I should not visit his chamber this night. There was no reason for my sudden mistrust. I have placed myself in his hands many times before without harm. He taught me how to sleep off my migraines, and helped me with a close friend. But now, I am almost to the point of panic.
Dream or no, I was not going to his chamber this night.
The pull on my dream self was like the gradual addition of tiny lilliputian ropes. Each syllable added a silk thread to the net. Individually fragile, collectively unbreakable. I wrenched myself away with fierceness. Biting my tongue to prevent myself from repeating the summoning chant. I could feel most of the net around me rip away, but I was still caught fast.
I could feel him catching his breath at the sudden resistance. The stone danced in his small dverg hands for a brief moment. He fumbles and almost drops it. I realize my sight is not showing me the face of the man holding the stone. I only assumed it was my dverg friend because it was he that gave me the stone I carry here.
“Come, come to me. I will not hurt you. Surely you know me.” He whispered the words to the stone he carried, the link carrying them to my ear. His phrasing was not what I was accustomed to. The pace of his speech was not the same.
I spoke back to the one holding the stone, “Speak my name, then. And I will come to you.” I wrench further away, the few spell threads remaining dig deep into my flesh. “Say my name, and the name you gave me. Speak them, and I will come to you.”
I did not wait for him to speak, but began speaking my own chants against the remaining spell threads. He implored me to hold still that he may speak the names, but I did not stop my thrashing. It was quickly apparent, he did not know the kenning that my dverg friend calls me. Nor did he know my dverg friend has never given me a name to call him by. I can feel him tightening his fingers on the stone, trying to call me by sheer will alone.
He begins his chants anew, but I am now quite aware and lucid. I remember all that I am in the dream worlds and shift form in the shredding net. He is no longer trying to coax me to him, he is applying great will and magic against me. But I know who he is not. He has no right to that stone. How dare he try to mimic my friend. My anger and will combine to burn away the last stubborn spell threads. The efforts he pours into the stone dissipate before reaching me.
He knows he has lost. I am unattainable. I can hear him bellowing his rage. My sight of him is now restricted to just his hands holding the stone, and even then, much detail is lost. But I see and feel enough to know my suspicions were correct. The hands currently holding the stone are not the hands that soothed me.
I consider entering the dverg lands via a different way. I am concerned for the safety of my friend. Who is this that has invaded his chambers? But as I consider it, I feel a different pull on my heart. My svart-alf friend has touched me. I know he is safe, he knows I am safe. The connection lasts just enough for him to tell me to withdraw.
This command, I do abide by. I leave the inbetween and force myself to wake up in my room. I look around a few moments, my eyes studying where my physical stone lays hidden. Nothing seems to have been disturbed, so I lay down and return to sleep.
Normal nonsensical dreams followed. This morning when I woke up, the dream demanded to be written, and so here it is.
Make of it what you may.