A nightmare is a disturbing dream associated with negative feelings, such as anxiety or fear that awakens you. Nightmares are common in children but can happen at any age. Occasional nightmares usually are nothing to worry about. But when it turns into regular then for sure, there’s something wrong with you!


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Emma’s eyelids fluttered shut as she succumbed to the weight of exhaustion, her breaths evening out as she slipped into the realm of dreams. The transition was seamless, a gentle drift from one reality to another, like a leaf borne on a tranquil stream beneath the moon’s silent watch.

The dreamscape embraced her, a forest clearing bathed in an ethereal glow that seemed to emanate from the very earth itself. She stood alone amidst towering pines, their trunks standing sentinel around her, ancient and unmoving. The air was crisp, tinged with the resinous perfume of sap and soil, a natural incense that filled her lungs with each inhale.

Above, the leaves whispered secrets to the night sky, a delicate rustling that was both calming and unnerving in its persistent hush. Emma took a step forward, her feet sinking slightly into the mossy ground. This place, it should have been a refuge, echoing the peaceful solitude she craved after days filled with unending noise and demands.
But something was amiss.
She could feel it—a prickle at the nape of her neck, a cool breeze that seemed to carry with it the ghost of a warning. It was as though the woods themselves were holding their breath, waiting for something, or someone, to shatter the stillness.

Emma’s heart began to keep a staccato rhythm, echoing the unease that curled tight in her stomach. She tried to quiet the rising tide of apprehension, to listen to the soothing lullaby of the forest, but it was no use. The sensation of being watched grew stronger, a pressure on the edge of her vision, an expectancy that made her want to whirl around and confront whatever eyes dared to invade her sanctuary.

Yet there was nothing—no tangible presence, no figure lurking between the trees. There was only the forest and the unsettling certainty that she was not alone. Emma’s hands clenched into fists at her sides, her nails digging into her palms as she fought against the instinct to flee from this unseen observer.
“Who’s there?” Her voice was a whisper, barely audible above the symphony of the nocturnal wilderness. The words hung in the air, unanswered, dissipating like mist into the darkness.

A shiver traveled down her spine, and she wrapped her arms around herself, seeking comfort in the familiar gesture. But comfort remained elusive, chased away by the penetrating gaze of invisible watchers. Emma knew then, with a clarity that was almost painful, that this dream was not going to be the haven she sought. Instead, it had become a stage for some unknown dread, hiding just beyond the periphery, biding its time in the shadows.


(3 – 4)

Emma’s breath came in quick gasps as she delved deeper into the heart of the woods. Her eyes, wide with a mix of fear and determination, darted from one unsettling sight to another. The trees, once benign sentinels of the forest, now twisted grotesquely, their bark warping into sinister faces that leered at her from every angle. Branches, gnarled and knobby like the arthritic hands of ancient beings, reached for her with an almost sentient intent. She ducked and weaved through the arboreal labyrinth, feeling the brush of those wooden fingers grazing the fabric of her jacket, tugging at strands of her hair.

“Keep moving,” she muttered to herself, her voice a thin thread of sound amidst the growing cacophony of whispers. The shadows, no longer content to be mere spectators, danced with glee between the trunks. They whispered secrets meant for the dark corners of the soul, secrets that promised to unravel her sanity thread by thread. Emma clenched her teeth, refusing to heed their sibilant voices, yet they seemed to slide under her skin, cold and unbidden.

With each step, the darkness grew denser, as if swallowing the scant moonlight that dared to filter through the canopy above. The familiar scent of pine was now a distant memory, replaced by the musty odor of decay. A fog crept along the forest floor, rising like the breath of some slumbering beast, obscuring roots and rocks that threatened to trip her fleeing form.
“Focus,” she urged herself, even as her heart pounded against her ribs like a caged animal seeking escape. The fog thickened, drawing a veil over the world she knew. It was disorienting, this mist that seemed to pulse with a life of its own, wrapping around her until she felt it pressing against her lips, her nostrils, threatening to fill her lungs with its opaque embrace.

Panic clawed at her throat, demanding release in a scream that she stifled. Emma couldn’t afford to lose herself to terror—not when every instinct screamed that something unspeakable lurked within the enshrouded gloom. She picked up her pace, legs pumping with renewed urgency as she sought to outrun the night that chased her heels.

Her mind raced, tumbling over thoughts and fears, but always returning to the singular need to escape, to find a way out of this endless, twisting woodland. But the forest was relentless, a living maze with no apparent exit, confining her within its suffocating grasp. Emma pushed on, propelled by the primal fear that whispered of dangers unseen but deeply felt, a fear that kept her running even when hope seemed as distant as the stars veiled by the night’s cruel shroud.

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