I keep dreaming about the Tiger Girl. Every night, the Tiger Girl. And every night the same.
The first night I dreamed of her, she was part of a particularly exciting lineup. There was a dream about being in college and getting back together with a bunch of kids I’d known in high school. There was a road trip dream. One of the dreams involved running through fields, and a snapshot of me looking good in jean shorts (which has never happened, even when I was thin and young, and my legs weren’t all veins and fat deposits). But in the middle of all that, there was just one flash that didn’t match up to any of the other things: the Tiger Girl.
She was humanoid, female, and dressed in some kind of mech suit (which looked a lot like this one). She was being lifted out of an industrial vat, and liquid dripped off of her. The suit seemed newly formed, glossy and perfect, airbrushed to perfectly resemble a tiger’s coat, down to the detail of each individual piece of fur. I could see that her body was rigid, like a doll, arms pinned to sides, legs straight, ankles together, only I couldn’t exactly see the ankles because the mech suit legs matched up almost seamlessly from knee to ground. In fact, I would have thought that she was a doll, except that as the camera zoomed to take in all of these details, the last shot was an extreme closeup of her perfect human face, pale as porcelain, settling at last on dewy brown eyes. She winked at me. I woke up in a panic.
Every night since, she’s in my dreams somewhere. I don’t remember seeing anything new; perhaps it’s just the same view, over and over. All I know is that I’m having trouble sleeping, and as soon as I wake, my mind blames the Tiger Girl. A few times I’ve been on the cusp of understanding what this is all about – is she a bad omen, or a good one? Does she mean something to me? Is she a story, waiting for me to write her? But nothing has wormed its way out of my psyche just yet.