Lion’s Heart Volume I: Hailey Miller


Your feelings are inchoate
You are just learning needs
You’re abundant with your words
But know not what you mean—
But that is okay, you are too
You are not often piqued
There is so much for you to hear
And see and feel and speak!
And in your veins, the fear is dull
The anger, only meek.
You are pusillanimous
The air is running thin
There’s not much you cannot do
And yet you shake and spin
And all the world is calling out
For you to dance again—
But there are two things that you know
And two things they do not
In your veins, the fear runs cold
And now, anger runs hot.
You are slowing; you are weak
You choke with every turn
You cannot see acts anymore
And it brings you concern
There is so much you do not know
And things you can’t discern!
And even if there’s nothing there
You cannot shake it off
For in your veins, the fear runs cold
And anger, always hot.
You are without bravery
You can’t find your own feet
And you have lost your footing
You’ve gone in far too deep—
But you can’t retreat now and here
Let your blood itch and sing
You take with you your cheated pride
Watch the rest boil and sting
For you know something that I know
And something I do not
In your veins, the fear runs cold
But anger, is it hot?


Your breath is shallow and uneven in the dark house. You had woken up a few minutes ago, you think, finding yourself lying upon the bed on which you had fallen asleep. You are not quite sure why you have awoken- you do not feel rested, nor had your dream met its apex. You are simply awake.
You have a feeling of foreboding creeping near you, forcing its way into your chest. You quiet your breathing further to listen, but hear nothing.
You cannot see anything either, but you know something is there. In your fear, you are paralyzed.

You hear its footsteps, now; it is closer, and if you focus you can see a spot that seems to flicker in and out of existence, and at last, you understand what is happening. You scramble for a way to escape, to pinch yourself or shut your eyes, but you can’t. You are paralyzed.

The figure is by your feet now; you can see it more clearly but not clearly enough in your blurry vision. You can feel its breath on your toes, but you aren’t sure it breathes. You want to flinch away, to pull your feet back, but you can’t. Your breathing quickens even as you try to calm it.
Panicking only makes it worse.

You try to squeeze your eyes shut, once again, in the effort of escape, but you know it will not work. You had already tried once before; every time a ringing sound fills your ears, the static increasing until it is unbearable. So you stop. You are not even in control of the skin on your eyes.

A hand settles upon your forehead, claws along your cheek. It pulls you out of rationality and into a panic as it stings.

Usually, it will glower over you, bring you fear, make you unsettled. On occasion, it will claw at your legs, or try to pull you down.

Today is different; today, it touched your face. Today, it is sitting next to you, on your bed.

Or…not sitting? It is hard to tell. It has a body, but it doesn’t, and it has mass, but no weight. It is mist, but solid.

So it doesn’t have a shape, not really, but to you it looks almost human. Its head—if you could call it that—is completely smooth, free of all facial features, free of hair. It has no face. The whole of it is blurred, as though your eyes couldn’t seem to focus. It hums with a sort of energy,
but makes no noise at all as shifts and flickers in fast, shaky movements, as though it is a glitch.It has teeth now, but you don’t know how you know that; nothing appears to be on its face.It lingers near you awhile, basking in the power it holds over you. Simply sitting, simply stealing the breath from your lungs as your heart pounds with useless adrenaline that you will never be able to use.

Hours pass, or perhaps it is minutes, or even seconds. Time is not the same here; you can’t tell. All you can do is wait and hope to wake up.

Suddenly it moves, and it tears into your calves and rips at your flesh. You cannot move your face to scream. You only endure.

It’s just a dream, you assure yourself.

It is only a dream.

Hailey is an author who draws her inspiration from her experiences, dreams, and her altogether ridiculously active imagination. She also writes articles for The Lion’s Roar. She doesn’t know what else to say for her bio, so she’ll leave it at that. Enjoy!