Perchance to Dream

A Short Story by Michael J. Foy

Author of Ghosts of Forgotten Empires: A Cord Devlin Adventure



This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents either are the product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously, and any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, business establishments, events or locales is entirely coincidental.

Published by Alternate Reality Press

A subsidiary of Publishing Search Solutions


Perchance to Dream

Copyright © 2017 Michael J. Foy



Cord watched the blue horizon slowly move up and down through the balustraded wooden railing as the tall ship lazily floated toward nowhere. A warm breeze ruffled his hair while he lounged in his hammock amidships. Looking up at the white puffy clouds, he spied the pirate vessel’s tall spars reaching to try and converge on the same point in the sky yet they were perfectly parallel to each other. An optical illusion, thought Cord. He’d seen pictures of tall skyscrapers appearing to lean into each other as they were photographed from a camera pointing straight up from the street.  But as if to voice their futile efforts, the timbers creaked and groaned.


Reflecting on this, Cord heard the sound of heavy footfalls approaching him. Whoever was making them must be one gigantic dude, he mused without concern. Turning his head he understood why the footfalls seemed so heavy. An Apollo astronaut dressed in full gear including a bulky backpack approached him. Cord could not see the man’s face since the visor was blacked out. In perfect modern English, as opposed to pirate lingo, a voice emanated from a speaker on the man’s suit.

               “The captain would like to see you.”

And then came a beep. The same kind that came after the Apollo mission’s communications between Houston and the lunar module.

Rather than argue, Cord swung his legs onto the deck from the hammock and followed the astronaut to the front of the ship.

On the way, Cord happened to glance over to the starboard side to see Senator Mitch McConnell and Speaker Paul Ryan in their business suits. They didn’t acknowledge Cord’s glance since they were busy prodding President Trump, resplendent in his tent suit and long red tie, onto a plank with the use of some well placed sword thrusts. Trump grudgingly yielded ground as he walked further out on the plank over the water.

There’ll be some nasty tweets tomorrow, thought Cord.


Not being totally conscious of his walk, Cord nonetheless stood outside the Captain’s cabin. His astronaut escort motioned him in whereupon Cord opened the door and stood in front of the large captain’s table covered in old fashioned nautical charts. No surprise there. But beside the captain’s desk, further into the room, stood Miss Naughton, his fifth grade teacher and for at least a year the love of his life. By what quirk of the space time continuum can she be here, he thought? It’s impossible. Yet there she was, stunningly beautiful, without having aged a day. Why she chose teaching over modeling was always incomprehensible to him. Cord’s dad, after seeing Miss Naughton in a class photo, attended a parent/teacher meeting that year. For some reason he’d never been to one before or since.

All that aside, Cord stood paralyzed. Well, almost paralyzed, that is, since Cord’s body achieved a definite reaction. It was a reaction it couldn’t have had as a prepubescent when he was in her 5th grade classroom.

“Cord Devlin, did you do your math homework?”

That jarred Cord out of his libido charged reverie. He was about to say, no, Miss Naughton but she motioned him over without waiting for the answer while holding out a piece of chalk. He walked over and took it from her.

“Why don’t you complete the equation on the board,” she said as she pointed toward a blackboard behind the desk. Funny, he didn’t remember seeing it there before.

Cord looked over the figures on the ancient teaching tool. Whatever was up there, it wasn’t long division. The space was filled with enough integral signs and symbols to have made Einstein wet himself. Confused, Cord looked back at Miss Naughton. She just stood there slapping a ruler onto her palm. The pose just made him want her all the more.

“Well, Master Devlin?”

He looked back at the board and found a space in the lower right corner with an equal sign awaiting an answer. With as much false bravado as he could muster he walked up to it and chalked in a zero. Then he put the chalk in the tray at the bottom of the board and turned around to await his teacher’s reaction.

Incredibly, she looked pleased. Walking over to the desk, she sat up on it and crossed her legs. While letting her hair down she kicked off her high heels and then put out her hand in an invitation for Cord to come over. He took one step and instantly woke up on the couch of the National Security Agency’s in-house counselor. The doctor was there to monitor and ensure the mental health of the newest recruits. The man had a stupefied look on his face as apparently he was taking notes on whatever Cord was dictating during his dream therapy.

“Mr. Devlin, I’ve never…”

“Ah, shut up,” interrupted Cord. “Why’d you have to wake me up then?”

He got off the couch, grabbed his jacket and slammed the door as he left the room. The counselor was left with his mouth open. Cord, hoping he had discouraged future sessions, managed a smile as he left the building.



  1. Lei Lani Lucero says

    and nary a reference to Star Trek… I like that Cord is branching out in his semi-conscious thoughts!

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