Ellen grew quite inattentive and even a little unbalanced mentally. It could have been
explained by the insomnia she was suffering from.
“That’s because of the dream that is haunting me every night,” she would say.
Every single night she would dream about the same scene. There is a wedding celebration in a house. The house is full of guests and each of them is wishing greetings to the bride and the bridegroom. Then, the bridegroom asks the bride to dance. While dancing the bride suddenly faints and dies. Ellen was not able to make out the faces of the bride and the bridegroom, but she remembered a scarlet rose on the bride’s wedding veil.
The dream would have the same ending every night. She would feel dizzy every time she started to think about it. She was afraid that if she continued to remain in such a state she wouldn’t live till her wedding day that was supposed to be in a month.
“I am thinking about you all the time. I feel that something is wrong. What is the reason for that? Does it have anything to do with Nick?”
Lora was worried sick about her friend. They had been friends for a long time. Lora always confided in her friend. Unlike her open–hearted friend, Ellen was much more secretive. Of course, she trusted Lora, but still she would never open her heart to people easily. She was always cautious and the cautiousness could be felt even in her relationship with her fiancé. Curiosity swelled within Lora, but as she knew Ellen’s character she tried to contain herself.
“You know, Ellen if you just get it off your chest you will feel better.
Tell me what’s the matter with you?”
“Nothing. I just don’t get enough sleep and I am in low spirits because of it. That’s all.”
“But you have been in low spirits for a long time, you seem to be having problems. Okay, don’t talk about it if you don’t want to. I am not curious. Let’s talk about Nick and about your wedding . Are you already prepared for you wedding day?”
“I have a terrible headache. Could you leave me alone now, especially as Nick is going to be here soon. I will call you back later. I am sorry.”
It didn’t hurt her.
As she was her close friend she knew that when she makes up her mind to tell her about it one day, she will do that.
“All right I am off. I have some things to do as well, if I am still your bridesmaid?”
“Of course you are my bridesmaid, you are my only close friend. Go and get yourself with the wedding preparations.”
They kissed each other and Lora left.
“I should put it out of my head. That’s just nonsense. I shouldn’t be so sensitive. It’s just an idiotic dream and nothing more than that.”
She felt relieved of inward constraint.
“Perfect! Nick is going to be here in a few minutes and I should be cheerful.”
“Look what I have for you, darling.”
Nick held out a small jewel box with a brilliant necklace in it.
“Oh, my God, Nick. I don’t know what to say. It’s dangerous to wear such a thing. It’s so beautiful.”
Nick was shining with pleasure.
“Do you like it?”
“Like? Is it possible not to like it?”
“My main present is to follow. I want it to be a surprise.”
But the dream would repeat again and again. She would wake up frightened in the morning, but as their wedding day was approaching and she was usually busy she would forget about her dreams by day.
In the evenings she always tried to busy herself with something and then go to bed late. However she would dream about it again and again. A wedding, many guests, the dancing bride and the bridegroom and the death of the bride. However hard she tried she still was not able to make out their faces.
she would even take some tranquilizers before going to bed, but they didn't help.
Perhaps she needed a higher dosage. She was afraid to increase it herself, and at the same time she thought it was too trivial to consult about with the doctor.
“Today is the last day of your freedom. You will be mine tomorrow and we will be together all the time. I look forward to tomorrow.”
“Yes, you are right. Everything will be over tomorrow.”
“What do you mean, darling? I don’t understand.”
Suddenly she burst into tears and told him everything. Nick treated her fears as a psychologist.
“You are just nervous because of our forthcoming wedding. You want it so much and this explains your nervous dreams. Everything will be okay, believe me. You will laugh at those dreams tomorrow I am sure.”
Ellen called Lora to ask her to come to her place. She wanted to ask her for some advice concerning her wedding dress. Something was wrong with it as she thought.
“I don’t see what’s wrong with it. All tucks are in the right place. I think everything is okay.”
“I was sure something is wrong with it. I thought it doesn’t look well.”
“I think it’s fine. Look at me.”
She held the dress to herself to show it better.
“You see? It’s fine.”
“Yes, I think it’s all right, thanks you have calmed me down.”
“You know, I am going to get married too. I have met Den. Our affair started suddenly. In a few days we are going to have a wedding.”
“Why didn’t you tell me about it?”
“You’ve been absorbed with the wedding plans and the general things that you had no time for me. I will introduce him to you at your wedding. it’s a pity that you can’t be my bridesmaid you are going to leave immediately after your wedding. I will have to think about whom to choose for my bridesmaid. I wanted you so much to be one.”
“Is it possible to be each other’s bridesmaids I never heard about it.”
“I haven’t heard that either. I just wanted you to be my bridesmaid and no one else. All right, I will choose somebody eventually.”
She was waiting for the last night before her wedding with terror. She wasn’t able to sleep .She was trembling all the time and drenched in a cold sweat. When one pill didn’t help she took another one. Then, she stretched her hand mechanically for the other pill.
Some time later she began to fall asleep eventually.
“I am sorry there is nothing I can do. She died a few hours ago.’’
Lora was shocked by her friend’s sudden death.
They had agreed that on her wedding day Lora would come early in the morning . When Lora came to her place she kept knocking at her door in vain. She decided to summon a doctor and call the police. She would never think of what had been awaiting for her here in Ellen’s house.
“She took all the pills from the box. Look, doctor there is only one pill left.”
Lora told a detective about Ellen’s haunting dreams . She was sure that those damn dreams led her to suicide. Nick shared her opinion. He blamed himself for not paying serious attention to Ellen’s state. Who would ever think that it would come to such an end.
Some time later Lora was celebrating her wedding. Of course it wasn’t celebrated as pompously as she wanted it to, but still they had a lot of guests.
Lora was looking fantastic and she was shining with happiness. Den was never tired of looking at her.
“I will drink to you, honey,” she said to Den. He embraced Lora and they whirled dancing.
Apparently the champagne got into the larynx instead of the throat. She began to cough but it didn’t help. Den swayed and swayed her in the dance. He thought that the joy and the dance took her breath away, but Lora wasn’t able to breathe and she fainted.
“ Lora are you okay? What’s wrong?”
He stopped to move suddenly trying to take the beautiful wedding veil with a scarlet rose from her face. One could hardly make out any features of Lora’s livid blue face. That’s why Ellen was not able to recognize her in her dreams. As for Den, they didn’t know each other at all.