Linus Linden and the Big Dream

              If wishes were dreams and dreams could come true, sleep would have a much higher value than it has typically been given in this world.  As it happens, there is such a world where the state of things makes dreams very real.  And this is a story from there...

              Linus Linden, of the Linden clan, had been having strange dreams of late.  He had awoken morning after morning to a room that was increasingly becoming rather full of zoo animals.  Perhaps in the room of a young lad who wanted nothing more than a herd of exotic pets, or a young lady who greatly desired a career in zoologyor simply a zoologist’s room for that matter—this would not be that unusual.  But Linus Linden was none of those.  And that made the elephants, the chimpanzees, the zebras, the giraffes, the meerkats and the one lion all the more perplexing.
Usually Linus Linden’s dreams produced small compact things.  A pad of paper, or a nice felt tip pen.  A calculator or a pencil eraser.  He was a bank clerk, and this made sense to him.  In a life full of ordinary days, his dreams had produced nice ordinary things.  That is not to say he didn’t have the occasional curiosity.  There was one night, several years ago, when he dreamed of pine trees and woke to find a nicely shaped pinecone clutched between his long, clerk-like fingers.  And, of course, there was the time when he was a boy where he produced a rather sizable bag of sweets—which he had hid in his closet and eaten one piece a day until it gave out after a year and a half (there was no need, he felt, to be greedy).  But that was as big as his dreams got.  Until the elephants.  Well, actually the lion, the giraffes, and the zebras were bigger than the sweets bag, too. 
If the dreams had only stuck to the meerkats, and maybe only one of the three chimps, that might have been manageable.  But now… now he had a real problem on his hands, not the least of which was finding food before the lion got, well, lionish.  And if it was all going to end before Linus Linden awoke to a hippo staring him in the face, he needed to analyze, and fast.
Linus Linden sat up in bed, leaned his pillow against the headboard, and scrunched up his knees.  With one arm folded about himself, and the hand of the other pressed against his cheek, he sat and thought.
The dreams had begun one day while Linus Linden was sitting at his job, carefully calculating figures.  He remembered the day because something peculiar—more peculiar to him than a room of suddenly appearing zoo animals—happened to him that day.  While engaged in the act of computing, his mind had begun to drift.  Not a lot.  Not more than a hand span away.  But in the most fleeting of moments, he had had a very small day dream.  A day dream where, Linus Linden was shocked to think back on it, he had dreamed of doing something else.
Linus Linden knew what it was he had dreamed of doing because that was simply the start of his day dreams, which had grown bigger with each passing day.  In the first small dream he had thought it might be interesting to write a small story.  Very short.  Nothing special, nothing grand.  Fortunately for his health, the day dream passed as though it were merely a soap bubble disappearing with a gentle pop.  And that, he noticed now, was when the meerkats arrived.  The next day his day time wanderings conjured up a longer story, which seemed to have brought on the chimps.  One story led to the next, bigger and bigger.  So, too, had the animals grown bigger and bigger.
And now… now he was at elephants.  And that meant… yes, it had to… And all at once, Linus Linden changed.  He glanced around his room, and a smile lit his face.  A menagerie, he thought to himself, was no bad thing.  And with the resolve of one who dreams enormous dreams, Linus Linden set about the task of stories.

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