Nate Mitchell wakes and his mouth is dry. He reaches out for the glass of water beside his bed. Turning the clock around he reads 4.14am.  Turning on the bedside lamp he sighs knowing that not only will he not be able to go back to sleep but his 9am appointment with his Doctor, is going to be as pointless as the rest. In 2011 he was driving home from work, at the crossroads at Maybury, a van driver suffered a fatal heart attack and smashed into the side of his car. After months of lying in a hospital bed and endless tests they eventually explained that his spine had been shattered beyond repair. That he would never walk again. Anne had left him not soon after, he had already bought a ring but never had the chance to tell her how he felt.

Something brushes against his arm, looking down a small fat spider falls from his wrist onto the duvet, he brushes it aside and almost calls his support worker Clive. He has been feeling very down the last few days and a talk with Clive often makes him feel better, even if it is only for a while. Something touches his face. As he raises his hand, two more spiders fall away and scurry off into the dark. Without wishing to panic but starting to feel concerned, he swings his legs out of the bad and starts to pull himself into his wheelchair. The bedside lamp is not very bright but throws enough light onto the floor for him to make out the patterns of movement. There are hundreds of spiders, crawling over each other. As they surge up and over him, he feels nothing until they reach his waist, when he becomes aware of the scratching, itchy movements of their legs. He swipes at them with both hands in a terrible panic but they pour over him, more and more. There is a shock of pain in his arm and a tiny drop of blood just below his elbow. Against all logic and reason he is locked with all his muscles in a terrible spasm as a hundred mouth start to feast.

Nate Mitchell wakes and his mouth is dry. he panics for a moment and gets out of bed and turns on the bedroom light. Anne throws her hand over her eyes. “Jesus Nate!” He turns off the light and walks back to the bed. Climbing in beside her, her pulls her in close. “Sorry, I had a nightmare.” Anne reaches around to put her hand on his thigh. “Poor baby. Now sleep.”

It takes a long time for Nate to relax enough to sleep and when he does, he dreams of spiders.

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