Dream III

Eric Lee Gardner’s

Theater of Dreams Blog & Short Story Series

Cinematic Expressions of Unconsciousness©

“Action Spy Thriller – Rescue Mission, Mad Scientist, Exploding Balloons!”

I chose this as Dream III for two major reasons.
This dream is one of the biggest, most detailed dreams I’ve ever recorded in my journal. Every facet of the dream was vivid and real, within the context of my imagination.

The fact that I could remember so much of this dream when I awoke and how I was able to type so much of the details, makes this one of my very best dream journal entries.
Secondly, I have always been a huge fan of action, spy, thriller movies. The appeal of being a covert operative, sneaking around, using gadgets, taking out enemies, and being the consummate super-agent is universally appealing. At least it is appealing to me, ever since I was young.
As a boy in New Hampshire, after church, while the adults talked inside, my friends and I would run through the woods outside. We played our versions of James Bond or the A-Team for what seemed like hours at a time.
In Jr High, my friends and I would run through the Vermont woods in the middle of the back nine of a golf course, just beyond my backyard.

Between two long fairways, we would hunt each other like special agents, super soldiers, and assassins. Our weapons were mostly homemade from wood and spare parts from my Dad’s workshop.
In High School, my Cape Cod friends and I tried to relive our youth one time and ran around my property and backwoods with toy guns and wooden knives.

This didn’t last long, something happens when we get older, playing outside and running around is replaced by different interests and lack of imagination by most people. In the end, we just felt silly. At least our failed playtime was a good laugh.
I have never had a lack of imagination and I have always enjoyed playtime with my kids. Keeping our sense of adventure, youthful optimism, and most of all, our vibrant imaginations is key to remaining young at heart.

I’ve never had trouble maintaining any of these.

Sure, life can be hard, downright PAINFUL most of the time, but underneath the layers of adult patina, I have the heart of a young man and the vivid imagination of the kid who ran through the woods so many years ago.

For more about my years playing with Star Wars toys as a young boy, see my profile page.
These days I pour all of this into my writing. I have extensive lists of stories I plan on telling someday. I have several books in the works and I enjoy writing, anything, all of the time.
Writing allows me to share my innermost thoughts and opinions, expand my imagination through characters and infinite worlds, and most of all, the written word allows me to exercise my mind and soul. Writing as an adult can be traced back to every hour that I played as a child. These days I play with words and create new worlds.

Dream Journal Entry 49 of 724

Date of Dream: 06.28.17

Dream III


Tonight’s dream was a story dreamt in multiple parts.
The First Part of the Dream was a member of a team of skilled CIA-type spies and special forces operatives for the U.S. Government.

We were infiltrating an office of a company or government building in a foreign land.
I and my team were there to steal intelligence to use in our fight for freedom and liberty against all who dare oppose it on the world’s stage. We were patriots, highly skilled and highly trained operatives working for the American people.
It was very much an action-spy-thriller type dream, very cinematic in its presentation and execution.

Every scene of my dream felt like a polished Hollywood action spy thriller. However, by the end of the dream four of my teammates were captured by the foreign government, imprisoned, and tortured.
Woke at 7 AM.

Part 2 – Occured when I went back to bed at 7:30 AM the same morning.
The second part of this dream picked up a couple of years after the events of the first dream.

Four of my teammates are still being held in a foreign prison and after all diplomatic efforts have failed, I and my other remaining teammates plan on sneaking covertly into the enemy country and then breaking them out of the prison. We each volunteer for this rescue mission and commit ourselves without the support and backing of the US Government.

Only the President of the United States knows our plans and he alone gave us the operational go ahead. Like us, our brave president does not want our best soldiers and spies, brave Americans, to be held and tortured by our enemies.
We sneak through the outer perimeter defenses and reach the inner walls of the prison complex.

However, like an onion, the building is built with layer after layer of defenses and walls to keep people out and in at the same time.
We concoct a plan and use air ducts, back stairwells, unused hallways, taking out prison guards and support staff along the way. Part of our team finally makes it to the sub-basement of the prison building.

From there two of our team will run surveillance and disable any guards or security.
The rest of the team stays on the roof waiting to help with exfil. I and one other teammate make it to the prisoner level and hide in the dark corners of the back wall of the dimly lit commissary, where the prisoners eat their meals.
I soon realize that I do not see our four teammates.

Our provided intel proved that they are still alive. Plus the foreign government holding our teammates continues to boast about having them in their captivity.

But as I look across the cafeteria I realize that I no longer know what our four people look like anymore. It was rumored that the prison administrator was a mad scientist, who tortures enemy combatants by changing people’s appearances, literally changing their faces, bone structure, and all. It now seemed that our worst fear had been realized. Our teammates no longer were recognizable to us!
The two of us on this level, which was near the bottom of a ten-story prison complex, ducked into the supply closet and stole the uniforms of two guards we dispatched earlier. We looked like prison guards and went forth to find our four teammates.
Since it’s been a couple of years, the scars on their faces have healed and all signs of the plastic surgeries have faded, leaving behind a room full of strangers.

Upon the poor advice of another team member, I attempt to stand in the middle of the room and announce a series of code words that only our teammates would know and could respond with proper challenge responses.

However, this is a poor idea, if they responded amid the room full of other prisoners and guards, not to mention cameras, then their identities would be immediately revealed and mine as well. Instead, I look like a crazy person and risk my reveal from the outset.
Switching course, I go from table to table and challenge each group, looking for signs and eyes, speech patterns, and mannerisms. I finally find our prisoner teammates and we make a hasty escape for the rooftop when the end of dinner bell rings.
We did make it to the rooftop, where our exfil was waiting for us. But instead of an easy exfil, jumping onto our waiting helicopter, we were greeted by a confusing mix of conditions and circumstances all hell broke loose at once!
Much to our shock and dismay, we were greeted by massive, eight-foot-wide in circumference, floating balloons, attached to the railing with thick ropes, on each of the four corners of the rooftop.

They were marked with skull and crossbones and we figured that they were filled with an aerosol explosive compound. In addition, as we’re running along the edge of the roof, there is a railing to our right and nothing but a ten-story fall beyond said railing.

On our left, there is an eight-foot-high wall, like a long hallway, where one side drops off far below. We were running ducks in a row!
As we’re running down the rooftop makeshift hallway of death, the open sky is above us, and snipers and gunners are shooting at us from the middle towers that watch over the entire area. 50 caliber bullets zing by us, taking our parts of the railing and big chunks of the wall.

Flying concrete and dust is everywhere and more dangerous to our progress than the bullets that were making swiss cheese out of the wall between us the guard towers. Our doom seemed imminent and we had little chance going forward to our exfil, much less going backward into the hornet’s nest of the building.

(Remember, this is a dream…)

Suddenly a parade of costumed animal performers, led by a school teacher in bright garb, walks by us on our left, going the opposite direction.

The teacher and little children are unphased by the hellacious war zone they were prancing through. Shaking our heads in disbelief, my teammates and I keep going, remaining low and using what remained of the concrete wall to shield us from the incessant stream of bullets haling down from on high. We finally get close to making our escape, our exfil helicopter waiting at the end of the roofline, and then it happens…
The Prison Administrator detonates the two of the skull and crossbones balloons behind us, followed by a series of concussive explosive charges along the very roofline we were running down. The entire side of the top of the building goes up in a huge ball of fire and crumbles into the floors and the ground below.

Our waiting helicopter exploded and fell into the courtyard below, setting off a mushroom cloud of fire and smoke taller than the prison building.
The explosions were coming straight toward us from our old exfil site. The far side of the roof no longer existed, we all stop and look for someplace to go in the mass chaos.

As I was brought up the rear of our escape party, I had just enough time to turn and run in the opposite direction before the explosions reached me. My efforts to elude the coming explosions worked and I lunged and grabbed onto the railing by the far corner of the rooftop.
One of the last detonations broke free the piece of railing to which I clung with all my might.

Above me, one of the floating balloons was tied, and up I went, pulled up into the sky by the massive black balloon. When the railing was detached from the roof, the prison administrator could no longer set off the explosive gas inside the balloon at the other end of the thick rope above my head.
At that point, it was as harmless as a massive helium circus balloon, my own hot air balloon escape craft. Craft is a gross overstatement, as I clung to a rusted steel bar, to which a thick rope was the only thing keeping me from falling hundreds of feet to my death.
As I floated away into the cloudy sky, I could hear the maniacal laugh of that prison administrator from one of the open windows of a lower level of the prison building. He watched me float away, as my entire team was either caught in an explosion or cut down by the relentless hail of gunfire.

As I held back my rage and tears, I realized that I was not safe, higher and higher I floated into the sky above me, to my inevitable demise. It was not the time for emotions, I had to figure out how to survive this unlucky and unwelcome balloon ride!
Soon I was floating high above the city, rapidly ascending through the low lying clouds, I hadn’t noticed how dark the sky was, how dark the clouds were. To make matters worse, violent storm clouds were raging in the higher atmosphere.

Intercloud lightning danced above my head and lightning bolts rained down upon the city below. The rain was light, but the storm’s energy was building and its winds were swirling, carrying me right into its path. If an errant bolt of lightning hit my escape balloon, chances were it would explode, quickly ending my escape and my life.

balloon escape
balloon escape

Higher and higher I flew, floating toward only one possible outcome, I would be struck by lightning and killed instantly. If not, my strength would give out and I would fall to my death. Or on a similar note, the balloon could pop at any moment from the strong wind shear and I would drop out of the sky.

Gravity would take care of the rest. Any of these scenarios continuously flashed through my mind as I continued to climb higher and float further over the city, then over the suburbs and soon to be the countryside beyond the city limits. Miraculously I the balloon never popped and I never let go.

More impressive was that lightning had not struck me, my metal bar, or the balloon, yet.
Instead, I wound the six feet of rope, between me and the balloon, around the piece of railing, which provided a less slippery grip. I was also right under the balloon, so if lightning did strike, it would not have hit me.

The flash exploding balloon would be instantaneous, painless. Now I know, if somehow I survived the explosion, I would have still probably fallen to my death, but at least it would not have been as a burnt crisp of meat.
I continued to float out over farm and pasture land, the rolling hills of cow and sheep grazed fields, my balloon finally hit a leafless tree and the tips of the sharp limbs popped it.

Luckily at this point, I was only about ten feet off the ground, somehow the balloon just popped. I landed with a hard thud, on the soft wet ground by the trunk of the tree.

I passed out from the fall, or maybe physical and mental exhaustion. Hours later I woke, contacted the nearest CIA station to request a pickup at my location. Several hours after a special ops team tracked and found my homing beacon, other than some superficial burns and several lacerations, I survived.

The helicopter ride back to the nearest Air Force base was painful in every way, most of all emotionally. I lost every team member, every friend I had in the world that day. No metal or purple heart could replace the brave men and women who died at the hand of our enemies.


Woke up at 11:06 to my alarm. Within minutes of walking, I spent the next hour or so feverishly typing this dream. I didn’t want to miss a single moment or let it fade from my memory.

Real-Life Dream Influence

Expanding on my introduction to this very long dream journal entry with what could have influenced this dream sequence is easy and I’ll keep it brief. Through the years, I’ve watched a lot of action movies and TV shows about spies, covert missions, secret agents, and the like. After science fiction and fantasy entertainment, the action spy genre is a close second favorite of mine.
Here’s a list of some of my favorite Action, Spy, Thriller, Adventure Series, and Movies, in no particular order.
What’s with all of the “J” Names?

  1. James Bond Movies
  2. Alias TV Show | Jennifer Garner: J.J. Abrams
  3. Jason Bourne Movies
  4. Jack Ryan Movies & New Amazon Prime TV Show | Harrison Ford: James Earl Jones: John Krasinski: James Greer
  5. Mission: Impossible Movies | J.J. Abrams: Tom Cruise: Jeremy Renner: Josh Holloway
  6. John Wick (Sometimes over-the-top violent “Fun” begins with the letter ‘J’ )
  7. Tom Clancy – The Man. The Legend. In Word. Game. TV. & Film.

NOTE: Every Dream in the Theater of Dreams© – A Dreamer’s Journal contains the original notes, typed moments after waking from each dream. Every dream in The Theater of Dreams is original, contains zero embellishments, and is only based on what could be remembered upon awakening. All Dreams, stories, and concepts are solely owned by Eric L Gardner (ElGardner) Copyright © 2021 ALL RIGHTS RESERVED®

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