The door to my bedroom opened. “Hey, Fin!” My mother whispered, coming to sit on the edge of my bed. I had been reading a comic book under the covers, but it wasn’t nighttime.
It was 2:00 on a summer afternoon, but I was inside because I was sick with the flu.
It was torture, being sick in the middle of July. Not only did my fever skyrocket, but I wasn’t allowed to swim with Macey and Ben, my brother and sister.
I blinked my eyes blearily.
“Hi, Mom.” I murmured.
“It’s time to take your medicine again, sweetie.” I vaguely noticed the blue bottle of cough syrup she held.
She forced the spoon to my lips, and the minty taste associated only with being sick filled my mouth and slid down my throat.
I heard a faint splash and shouts of laughter from outside, and groaned, rolling over onto my side. My mother pursed her lips in pity, and then went outside to be lifeguard again.
My vision was swimming too much to read anymore, so I abandoned the comic book and just stared at the ceiling.
Eventually, the door opened again, and, expecting it to be my mother with more medicine, pretended to be sleeping.
I stayed like that a few minutes, until I opened one eye to see my golden retriever, Jake, sitting by the side of my bed.
When I opened my eyes he jumped onto the bed with me, and curled up by the side.
I grinned, and hugged him, slipping slowly into a drug-induced sleep.
Suddenly, I was in a tree fort. A big tree fort, and an awesome tree fort, with a refrigerator and a TV and video games.
I was playing one of the video games, a controller in my hand.
I glanced to the side, and there was Jake, suddenly much less dog-like and much more….something else, holding the P2 controller and laughing as my character fell sideways off of the platform.
“I WIN! I WIN! I WIN!” He shouted, hopping around in a circle on two feet.
I groaned, finding nothing strange about this, merely annoyed, like I was when Macey or Ben beat me on this video game.
“I’m bored of video games,” I said. “Let’s go visit Princess Bubblegum.”
“Ok!” Jake said, and rather than descending the ladder out of the tree fort, stuck his legs out the window.
They lengthened incredibly, until his feet were touching the ground, and then shortened again, arriving safely in the grass like a living elevator.
He glanced up at me.
“Well, c’mon, Finn!” He shouted.
I climbed quickly down the ladder, and Jake grew again, this time carrying me with him, and in no time at all we had arrived at Princess Bubblegum’s palace.
“Hi Finn! Hi Jake!” She called when we entered.
“Hey, Princesses.” Jake replied. I looked up, and there stood two girls.
One, tall, thin and pink, with long pink hair, and long pink dress, and pale pink skin. This was Princess Bubblegum.
Beside her was a grotesque purple lump wearing a tiara. That was The Lumpy Space Princess, I knew.
“Like, Hi.” LPS said in a distinctively annoying voice. “Can you, like, do something for us? We’re trying to figure out, uh, which one of us is, like, hot, or whatever, right? And I think that I am, and she’s just like, oh my god no.”
Princess Bubblegum rolled her eyes. “I never said that.” She muttered.
“Finn thinks you’re pretty, Bubblegum!” Jake shouted.
“What? Hey, no I don’t! I mean, I guess, but, I never said that! I mean, no…hey!” I stammered, looking from Jake to LPS to Princess Bubblegum.
Bubblegum turned even pinker than usual, and said, “Finn, don’t you think I’m pretty?”
Lumpy Space Princess’s eyes grew wide, and she threw her arms out to the sides. “I just, like, totally had an idea, or whatever!” She shouted.
“We should have, like, a contest? And the winner is the prettiest, just so, like, we all know, and stuff.”
“Ohhhhh no way. I’m out of here. C’mon Fin.”
We left the Princesses arguing behind us, and continued through the town, where we ran into Tree Trunks, a tiny green elephant.
We went back to her house and told her all about the Princesses’ contest, and she gave us apple pie and shared her opinion on the situation…
….which I never discovered because that’s when I woke up.
“What a crazy dream.” I muttered.
Jake licked my face, and then went back to sleep.