You are having a vision. A psychic premonition, if you will. Do not panic or worry. Inhale deeply and relax.
Let me help explain what you are seeing and feeling. There is an odd sensation of being out of yourself. You are not the expressive and conscious form of yourself; at this moment you might be more, or less, than the sum of your parts. This experience will not add up, but don't worry about that at this time.
Moving upwards and outwards you are aware of a teeming mass of life below you. It's a city that's spread out before your sight, just like any other: buildings, parks, cafés, and pubs. People go to work, go into town, go out to play, fall in love, fall over drunk, have children, have good, bad and plain crazy moments. Yes, this is a city just like any other.
But you've just realised that you know different.
Is this your first vision? You can now sense the underside of events: the emotions and thoughts, scenarios and agendas. They flow and flood underneath the surface of every scene. Sensation! Sensations! They rise and overwhelm. You are drowning in millions of strands that pull at your ego and threaten to rip you apart. Strands of awareness and knowledge that lie in the heart of emotion: everyday, everybody, everything, everywhere, everlasting and for evermore. You are everyone.
And now I bring you back. Try not to lose yourself. It doesn't matter if you've done this before or if this is your one and only flight on mystic wings. You know that's not an ordinary café. You know that's not a normal bookstore. You know the people walking around aren't all human.
You see, no, you feel the presence of a tall figure in a tattered black coat and black gloves, whose even tread in dark alleys causes the damned to run. Blessed boots and tormented mind, this one walks on a knife-edge of good and evil. It runs through this being. Recoil in shock that you can't quite explain.
Let's move on from that particular enigma.
There are some bright lights in this city, people who stand out. There's one now -- green eyes and red hair with a pure white streak. She's blind, Susie, no, Susan, ah, Sarah MacAllister, white stick and white streak. There's her constant companion -- the name comes easier to you this time. Iain Mach, a gifted seer and sometimes insane. Correct, they are psychic. Just like you. You're doing well. I'm impressed by your insight.
You also know they're not alone in this city: a circle of mystics surround and help them and you know they need help. Daniel and Anders to the rescue, that's the bookshop owner and his assistant. You saw their bookshop earlier. There's the Muse; she's infamous in this world and very powerful. She's had her eye on Sarah for a long time. Details about them slip from you. Cavendish is also a mystery and his name gives you a shiver. He's buried in his books and hard to see. But what do you expect? Mystics looking at mystics. They know, better look elsewhere.
Your gaze moves through the streets. There's a Busker playing, he stands out bright and multicoloured then he abruptly vanishes. Your sight shifts again. It's so hard to focus on the people you see. It takes work and practice. Concentrate, because the feelings are rising again. Emotions and events are out of control and if only you could see them. Think, please! There's something going on in this city and maybe you could help, if you knew what. Focus. Focus harder! Try again; don't let it all slip away.
So many live here: angels, demons, psychics and seers, and the others. It's safe. Long ago the highest angel and demon made it safe. They aren't allowed to fight. If you want peace from the everlasting war between good and evil, you live here; you stay in the city. Over the centuries their numbers grew. But something happened, no, not right. Something will happen or might happen and you can't see what. An agreement is in question and fights are, will, might break out. Enemies invade and so many lives hang in balance. You're shaking now. Please try to calm down. Inhale, and again. Breathe out slowly.
There's Sarah; you saw her earlier, being led about. Now you see her struggling, fighting, running and being overwhelmed. Demons brawling, angels fighting, mystics getting mad, getting munitions and getting even. We've woken up on the wrong side of the world today. Will we wake at all tomorrow?
There's Iain on his motorbike. He's yelling to Sarah, 'Up there!' They both stop and to your horror, they look up at you. She looks directly into your eyes. You realise she can actually see you, although she is blind. She can see you. She can see the supernatural, the mystical, the metaphysical and the existentially elite. So choose your fate while you can because for the moment she can see you and you can see her.
Then you're out of control; you're losing yourself again. Iain's insanity has caught us finally -- I don't know if I can save you this time. Images flick past as pages on a book caught by a hurricane of pure thought.
You see Daniel with a gun pointed at Sarah and Iain; Anders sending pictures with his phone, an untrustworthy man with a cigarette working dark magic; Sarah battling for her life, screaming in pain; a being from heaven tortured; a demon in a party hat; a beautiful woman with a bowl of bright moving water; fake devils with plastic horns; Iain in a bright circle of runes; little demons with sticks; an older man searching through books and scrolls; Sarah and her friends laughing in a pub, and always the dark figure. Running through every flash of thought is the knife edge figure. Shot through every image is the darkest red. Will everyone pass into the shadows, diminished and tormented?
You don't want to know if it's blood. You don't want to know of a dark horror, creeping over flesh that can't control it and can't contain it forever. The battle for a soul begins in a city spinning rapidly out of control.
Yes, the city again, always the city. Your vision jumps up and settles again. The city is shown in all its splendour, good and evil merge into grey.
But this hasn't happened yet. Such is the way of premonitions. Sarah still has her sight and Iain is still sane. Peace holds over the city just now.
I can sense that you want to know more about me. Is that wise? I could be a demon in your head, an angel on your shoulder or the monster under your bed. I see you; I know who you are and where you live. But you don't know me. You don't even know if you live in this city. I didn't let you see everything: what do you take me for? I may have distorted the images and the truth. All right, I'm probably not an angel.
Be more careful next time and pray you don't walk the streets of Dark Red. Your mystic sight is fading and you feel reality start to reassert itself. Inhale deeply and look up at the place in which you began.
Is the world as you left it?