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By Adrian Barnes

Arthur C. Clarke Award Nominee for top Novel (2013)

Dawn breaks and nobody on this planet has slept the evening sooner than. Or virtually not anyone. a couple of humans, probably one in 10000, can nonetheless sleep, and they’ve all shared an identical mysterious dream. A handful of silent young children can nonetheless sleep to boot, yet what they’re dreaming is still a secret. worldwide panic ensues. A clinical truth: after six days of absolute sleep deprivation, psychosis units in. After 4 weeks, the physique dies. in the meanwhile, a extraordinary new global arises and swallows the previous one complete. a global referred to as Nod

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I’m beautiful certain he knew the hot international order he used to be attempting to orchestrate used to be ‘made up’—after all, he used to be making it up himself—and that the kids within the park weren’t actually demons. On one point. On one other point, he didn’t have a clue. i discovered myself taking into account Moses coming down from the mountain wearing stone drugs and raving approximately a few burning bush, of Jesus in his lonesome desolate tract, checkmating the satan and rising with a project. have been those fantastical revelations easily fibs that become delusions that became permitted truths centuries later? think about Joseph Smith, Jr, the founding father of Mormonism just a century and a part in the past. He’d been a small time salesman and huckster; then someday he claimed that an angel had dictated a brand new ebook of the Bible to him. And inside of no time whatever his spiel used to be granted that specific hands-over-ears prestige we accord faith. Smith tended to appear crazier than Jesus or Moses to many, yet that would be simply because he used to be easily the latest of the final 3 millennia’s worthy of prophets. They have been simply more moderen. Or think of L. Ron Hubbard and Scientology. not anything fairly wacky approximately his visions of telepathic extraterrestrial beings in comparison to these of his predecessors. Scientology may healthy Nod like a leather-based glove. And right here, subsequent in line, stood Charles, considering up a typhoon. He was once taking pages from my negative, unfinished manuscript, yanking out phrases, and utilizing them to call issues. It was once as if he’d been Cain, wandering the earth for millennia prior to ultimately discovering his as far back as a damaged and deserted backyard of Eden, the place every thing were uprooted and thrown approximately by way of a petulant God. And now Cain used to be tidying up the mess, finishing the naming method that have been deserted via his disgraced father, Adam. Me. unexpectedly i needed not anything greater than to move slowly right into a closet, barricade myself there, and dream my Dream without end. How lengthy due to the fact that this drawn-out finishing had all started? 8 days? 9? I’d already misplaced count number. If the Brazen Heads have been correct, there has been purely one other weeks till the our bodies of the woke up their minds into the abyss. How even more insanity might froth up sooner than it used to be over? without doubt there has been merely so loopy somebody may develop into and nonetheless be ready to consume, drink, and stand upright. yes logical styles of association referring to move and imaginative and prescient needed to be maintained. Or so I was hoping. ‘Come with me,’ Charles snapped. i used to be seeing a development. He was once servile after we have been round his humans yet bossy as hell once we have been by myself. I locked the study room utilizing the major Charles had solemnly passed me the evening prior to, as if i used to be too silly to grasp it had dual upon dual. We made our manner down the locker-lined hallway to a door on the a long way finish. A part dozen or so of Charles’ fans have been milling approximately, all engaged in a few type of clockwork activity or one other. One lady, her face obscured via curds of raveled hair, stood hunchbacked in a doorway, murmuring right into a useless mobile phone cupped in her palms. sometimes, she may stab on the keys of its textual content pad.

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