with Michael Miller
Well, Michael and I sat down to write our second genre mash-up. Instead of placing the original Ghostbusters in The Shining’s Overlook Hotel, we chose to work with the hugely popular, always hilarious Deadpool and placed him in the dreams of Nancy Thompson, main character of Nightmare on Elm Street, to help banish the infamous Freddy Krueger. We have yet to determine what our third series installment will be, but since this was, again, very fun to write, we’re very much planning on creating more! If you’d like to check out our first genre mash-up on The Shining and The Ghosbusters, feel free!
Dead. Dead, dead, dead. Tina had died first, and then Rod next. Everyone thought Rod killed Tina and then hung himself, but Nancy knew better. It was the man who did it, the man with a red melting face, knives for fingers, and a maniac’s eyes, the man who had been stalking them in their dreams. Fred Krueger had been his name in life. He had been a child killer who got off without punishment and had been murdered – indeed, inflamed – by a brigade of angry parents. Nancy had to admit, their motives were admirable. They had only failed to consider one thing: that the demon man with the black hat and the dirty green and red striped sweater would find a way to live on, in the dimension where dreams rested, and avenge his death.
But tonight was the night. Nancy did not really have the luxury of feeling the sadness that follows the deaths of people you love. There was a vague emptiness lingering somewhere in the back, dark corners of her being, but her minute to minute existence was an exercise in staying awake and avoiding Freddy. She knew, though, that she couldn’t avoid him any longer. So she was going to fall asleep on purpose, fall asleep, find him, let her boyfriend Glenn wake her up, pull Fred out of the dream, and destroy him. It wouldn’t be easy, she knew, but her insides burned with the raging fire of someone who had seen needless deaths chalked up to the malicious man-devil. She was putting an end to this, now and forever.
There was a light, rhythmic tap on the window. Glenn must have climbed up the rose Trellis to enter her bedroom directly instead of going to the front door. Nancy wasn’t sure why he would do this; didn’t he see the black steel bars that her neurotic mother had had installed on the house’s windows and doors in a state of chaotic panic? Nonetheless, he was entering through the side of her house.
“Ka-Powwww!” Suddenly the window burst open, accompanied by a blinding yellow-white flash and the thick, choking presence of dense, intrusive smoke. Nancy was, for a moment, too stunned to think clearly, but she noticed that the bars her mother had installed were gone. Shattered shards of what was once her window lay strewn about on the floor, a little garden of glass ready to bite whomever entered. The force of the explosion shattered the window frame and reverberated through the walls, leaving the dry wall around the window cracked and flaking. This can’t be Glenn, can it? Nancy asked herself, for she’d never known Glenn to be the type of guy to play with explosives, and anyway what reason could he possibly have for blowing up a chunk of her bedroom?
“Glen, Glen, is that you?” Nancy called out to her boyfriend with a degree of hesitation. She could sense an undercurrent of panic in her voice.
“Oh no, he’s dead,” said a tall, well-built man with a tight red and black uniform that covered his body and his face. His eyes looked like big black bug eyes with little puddles of white that made his masked face unusually expressive. Two sheathed Katana blades formed an x on his back, and the belt on his suit was embellished with countless pouches and holstered guns. “Like, really dead,” he emphasized. “He is sooooooooo dead. It was like an Old Faithful of blood across the street. It was just gushing and gushing up from the mattress and spraying alllllll over the room. Yikes. But, I know you need help. I also know your parents are useless one note characters and your teacher Ms. Shaye won’t be any help in a situation like this for at least thirty years until Patrick Wilson and Rose Byrne’s kid gets into trouble. But don’t worry, that’s why I’m here!”
Nancy was speechless for a moment. Then she uttered, with uncertainty, “Are you….are you Spider-Man?”
“No that’s…c’mon, that’s a little rude. Right? I mean he’s not the only person who can wear a red mask. People are always saying how I’m derivative (let’s not even bring up Deadshot)… Okay, anyway I’m the Merc with a Mouth, the Sassin’ Assassin, Fox’s only hope of keeping their X-Men franchise relevant now that Hugh Jackman’s retired. I’m Deadpool!”
“Okay, so…Glenn’s dead, and you blew up my window. What do you want? Why are you here?”
“Wow that’s deep. I wasn’t expecting to get so existential. Do any of us really know why we’re here or what we want out of life?”
“No, here. In my room. Why are you standing in my room?”
“Oh, okay, that makes more sense. Stick to the matter at hand Wade. I’m here to help you take out Freddy Krueger. I know you’re planning on pulling him out of your dream to ensnare in a bevvy of traps that’d make Kevin McAllister swoon but I really think it’ll be easier if I just jump in your dream with you and we take care of him there. What do you say?”
“Okay, that all sounds good, but how do we manage to get you inside my dream?”
“We jump in your bed and fall asleep together. The big question is whether you want to be the big or the little spoon. I see pros and cons to both. If I’m the big spoon I’m not sticking you with my katanas as we snuggle BUT it also means I’m breathing in your hair all night as I try to fall asleep. It’s hard enough not to smother with this mask on. What do you think?”
“You want to sleep together?! I’m FIFTEEN years old! That’s inappropriate!”
“Listen, ‘Nancy,’ Hollywood never casts teens to play teens. Heather Langenkamp’s twenty so we’re good to go. Plus, we’re just going to cuddle as we doze off. Everyone knows if you have sex in a horror film you’re totally gonna die. You know what? I’ll be the hero and be the big spoon. So are you ready to head to snug-snug town and get our cuddle on?”
“How does our falling asleep together lead us to sharing the same dream?”
“Listen…it’s best not to overthink this. It’s only their second piece of fan fiction/short story they’ve written. They aren’t 100% sure of how to balance all this. But trust me, it could be waaay worse. You should see some of the fanfic I end up in online! Gah…it gets weird. Anyway, bed?”
“What the hell is wrong with you?”
“So much, but we’ve got bigger fish to fry.”
In a matter of seconds, the large, strange man in the red suit was snuggled up under Nancy’s sheets. Even through his mask, Nancy could tell he was looking at her expectantly, like he wanted her to jump in bed. God, this is so uncomfortable, she thought. The thought of cuddling with the big red guy made her miss Glenn even more. On the other hand, she considered the possibility that his bizarre plan might actually work. He was a weird, awkward guy to be sure, but he did have a thick, tough suit that shielded him like armor, and a array of sharp things attached to his body. Perhaps he was just the person she needed to defeat the insidious Freddy Krueger.
After some consideration, Nancy inched slowly toward her bed, eyeing her new bed-mate uncertainly. She definitely was not changing into a night gown with him in the room, so she would have to sleep in her clothes. No matter; comfort was the last thing on her mind right now. She sat at the edge of the bed for a moment, and her new, unusual superhero friend moved to the right a little to make room for her. Gingerly, she crawled under the covers while her body hugged the edge of the bed to avoid touching his hulking frame. But Nancy was exhausted. She had been awake for seven straight days. In a matter of seconds, she fell asleep.
And when she awoke, she was standing in a dark, murky basement full of tanks and tools, a dismal place that looked like a grand boiler room marking the entrance to hell. The air was thick and humid, and clumps of fog dotted the musty, stale atmosphere. She had seen this place before, had been here in previous dreams. She knew she was in that endless labyrinth of basements and boiler rooms where the fiend Freddy lurked, and as she anxiously anticipated his arrival, she looked to the left and saw that her new superhero friend was standing beside her…masked pulled up a little to eat a chimichanga.
“Really, now?” she asked with evident disbelief in her voice.
“You dream the way you wanna dream, I dream the way I wanna dream.” Looking past Nancy with perplexed, squinting eyes, Deadpool continued, “Sooooo this is a period nightmare then? Huh. That’s a little gross. But, hey, whatever’s on your mind’s on you mind. It’s not my place to judge. I think I’m prepared. The Avengers and X-Men are always making fun of all the pouches I have in this outfit but I have to have tampons or pads in one of them. Don’t worry, we’ll be good.”
Nancy was about to ask Deadpool what he was talking about, but she instinctively followed his gaze instead. To her chagrin and disgust, her eyes settled on a pallid, ghostly version of her once-best friend Tina. Tina stood upright, completely still, with stoic, sad eyes. Nancy could see her agonized facial expression even through the series of jagged cuts on her face and body and the streams of seeping, vermillion blood that soaked her skin everywhere and partially obscured the small, familiar frame of her old friend. Tina looked like some demon’s bloody bride, unhappily disturbed and risen from the dead to warn Nancy about the formidable power and wrath of her groom.
Then, the sound of high, shrill scratching – like nails on a chalkboard, or like the knife-clad fingers of the murderous demon – began echoing through the decrepit dungeon. Nancy turned her head and looked all around the room, because she couldn’t tell where the scraping originated. Without much thought, she began to move forward, but as she inched closer to Tina, a sharp knife pierced through her friend’s raised corps, slicing Tina’s body in half and spewing blood everywhere. Nancy looked through the blood and saw, behind the dismembered body of Tina, the distorted, maniacal face of her irrevocably burnt, blistered foe, who seemed to step through Tina’s collapsing body like he was performing a bit of magic, and moved toward her with his arms stretched out in front of him.
“HOLY FUCK! That’s a little messed up man. Okay, so you’re into cutting people, that’s, well, that’s a little kinky. Alright, I’m in. But we need a safe word. I like to use ‘panda pants.’ Thoughts?”
Freddy paused for a minute with his mouth agape, and looked from Nancy to Deadpool and then back at Nancy. “Wait, why are you dreaming of Spider-Man?” Freddy asked.
“…fuck you,” Deadpool replied.
“So you brought this red goon to protect you, huh Nancy? Well I’m sorry to disappoint you, but these knives can pierce though anything,” Freddy bragged as he waved a hand full of knife clad fingers in front of himself ostentatiously. “I’ll kill you both, each with one of my hands, and then your bloody corpses can live here with your friend Tina to greet my next victims.”
With ninja-like rapidity, Deadpool grabbed one of the many holstered pistols on his hips. Nancy hardly had a chance to notice the gun before Deadpool aimed it at Freddy and shot a quick three rounds in Freddy’s crater-filled face. Blood spurted everywhere as Freddy’s still body fell, face forward and inanimate to the ground, like a department store manikin that had been pushed over from behind by a mischievous eight-year-old.
“How have none of you thought about dreaming of guns before this? You’re public school kids. You should be on top of guns right? Isn’t that why we’re supposed to be scared enough to support shifting tax dollars for school choice, to stay away from those public schools with their guns, knives and drugs? Anyway, with slicey-fingers taken care of, let’s get to dreaming in style.”
The barrage of basements evaporated without warning, and Nancy found herself seated in an ornate Gondola riding down a placid stream in the warm spring sunshine, surrounded, on the shore, by red and pink bunches of roses that intercepted the long, verdant blades of grass. Nancy realized the melodic chirp of birds in the air shortly before she realized she was holding a tattered copy of “Goodnight Moon” and reading it aloud slowly to Deadpool, who was reclined on a Gondola seat across from her. A tall woman who Nancy vaguely recognized, with regal silver hair and a stern, knowing face, stood at the Gondola’s helm, rowing while she softly sang the lyrics “Dance to the Music,” a song Nancy recognized by Sly and the Family Stone. Nancy laughed when she saw that Deadpool was wearing Spider-Man pajamas with footies and back flaps, but then looked down and sucked in a sort, astonished breath when she saw that she was wearing the same pajamas. Matching Spiderman pajamas, really? She thought.
“What’s going on, where are we?” Nancy asked with a tinge of anxiety in her voice.
“We just saved the day! Freddy’s dead so I figured we’ve more than earned a little break in the best possible dream. See, it’s the perfect balance of comfort with our footie pjs and Goodnight Moon, elegance with a gondola, and raw, unstoppable sexual arousal with the incomparable Bea Arthur – best known for her generation defining roles as Maude on All In The Family and Dorothy on Golden Girls. So now we just float, read…and see what happens. Mmmm…yow wow!”
“Okay, this is worse than before. Seriously, I think I liked it better when Freddy Krueger was chasing us.”
No sooner had Nancy uttered those words than the fiend emerged from the water beside the boat. “Well you’re in luck doll. It takes a lot more than a few shots to kill Freddy Krueger.” With a swift movement, Freddy’s arm was wrist deep in Deadpool’s chest. He quickly pulled out Deadpool’s still thumping heart, and admired the red, lumpy organ in his hand for a minute. He flipped Deadpool out of the boat, into the cold, cerulean water, and cackled, “So much for your superhero savior. As you know love, once I kill you in the dream, you die in real life.”
Before Nancy could respond to Freddy’s taunt, the Gondola disappeared and Bea Arthur vanished back into the florid land of mid-80’s television. While Nancy was rather relieved to be out of that sticky Gondola situation – she had never liked Goodnight Moon, anyway – she was unnerved to find herself in a dark corner of her backyard, surrounded by clumps of twisted, gnarling trees. The trees in her backyard had never seemed threatening to Nancy before, but now it seemed like they might come alive at any minute and strangle her in their suffocating embrace. The sky looked darker than the darkest shade of black Nancy had ever seen, like she could just drift up into it, be consumed by it, and disappear forever. And then, an icy, foreboding wind came from the east, wrapping itself around her and portending hellish things to come. Nancy’s backyard had never been so uncomfortable, so bleak, so utterly terrifying.
She took a moment to adjust to her surroundings, and reassured herself that although her backyard had turned into a darker version of a Van Goh painting, it was still just her backyard. Nothing there could hurt her except the devil man, the child killer who stalked her when she slept. Her eyes scanned the murky landscape for him. She expected him to run toward her by the side of the house from the front yard, but he was nowhere in sight. Suddenly, she heard a resounding “THUD” behind her, as if a heavy but lifeless corpse had just fallen from above, out of one of the odious trees. Before she had a chance to turn around – for she knew, immediately, who created that thud – she felt cold metal touch the bare part of her shoulders that was uncovered by her night shirt. The sharp, slender knives of the demon’s left hand lightly pressed into her skin, which was warm and damp with perspiration.
Nancy had never been so close to Fred Krueger, whose singed flesh stunk like the rot of death. She was so shocked by the nearness of him that she stood dead still while he wrapped a long right arm around her waist and pulled her even closer to him, so that her backside was uncomfortably pressed up against the living dead man and her forehead touched his face. The closeness of Fred Krueger provoked a near-inexplicable disgust that sent a spasmodic shiver through Nancy’s entire body and made her feel incredibly nauseous.
“Miss me, darling,” he hissed maliciously. And then, without warning, she felt something cold, like the skin of a snake, rub against her cheek, and she realized, with abject terror, that Fred Krueger had licked the side of her face. The utter, horrific disgust Nancy felt when she realized Krueger’s tongue had touched her skin gave her incredibly strength, and she propelled herself forward. Her body easily broke his grasp, and she ran across the lawn, putting some distance between her and the serpent before she turned around to voice a confident response, a self-assured battle-cry.
“This ends tonight, Krueger! Your reign of terror is over. I’m finishing what my mother started,” she shouted, and in that moment she felt tremendous assurance in the words she was uttering. She was so enmeshed in the moment, the fight against Fred, that she didn’t have the ability to feel fear.
“Ahhh, so young…so confident….” Fred crooned. And he laughed a sickening laugh.
Nancy was about to respond when she paused. While before she had been unafraid, she now thought she might be slowly losing her wits, hallucinating that which was not really there. Amidst this nightmarish landscape, with a serial-killing spawn of Satan taunting her from across the lawn, she thought she heard the faint echo of a poor a cappella rendition of pop radio music.
“In the middle of the niiiiiiight,” Deadpool sang as he zipped down the slide attached to the ghoulish version of her childhood swingset on the other side of the yard. “I go walllkin’ in my sleep. Through the mountains of faith. To the river so deeeeeep. I must be searchin’ for somethin’, somethin’ sacred I lost. But…oh, wait, here it is.” Deadpool stopped to pull a knife from a sheath strapped to his ankle before throwing the knife at Freddie Krugger where it imbedded in the center of his head with a thud.
The creature yelled… “Bastard! You better keep those knives and guns close by, because when I get ahold of you, I’ll, I’ll…”
“Deadpool!” Nancy cried, shocked. “How…? I saw him kill you!”
“See, that’s the thing Nancy. Ol’ Freddy here didn’t do his homework. You should really know your adversary before you tangle with them. Me? I know this guy’s a pervy, mouth-breathing, poor excuse for Wolverine cosplay. But he had no idea that I don’t kill so easily. In addition to my winning charm and an ass you can bounce a quarter off of, I’ve also got a healing factor, capable of fixing any wound. So, like Peter Jackson’s Hobbit movies, I just keep going and going and going and going looooooong after you think I should be finished.”
“Healing factor, ha!” Freddy interjected. “The healing factor is nothing but a challenge, a fun game for Freddy,” Krueger proclaimed with a cackle as he twisted the knife lodged in his forehead to wrench it from his face, sending a thick stream of blood down his cheek.
“Did he really just use a third-person point of view to talk about himself?” Nancy turned to Deadpool and asked.
“It might seem a little awkward for his character, but again, this is only their second shot at fan fiction. Don’t get too hung up on a little weird tonal shift when generally speaking, their choice of third person partial omniscient viewpoint has been working for us thus far,” Deadpool replied.
“What are you blathering about?!?” Freddy screamed.
“Oh, just the finer points of literature, one of many things you don’t get,” Deadpool assured him. “Another entry on that list would be the ramifications of us knowing we’re dreaming. That makes this a lucid dream dickwad. As literally the only thing I remember from Psychology class, I can tell you a lucid dream means we can control what happens. That’s why I wanted to come in here with Nancy – to trap you in some killer dream within a dream shit.”
“Oh, like Poe!” Nancy added.
“What…no. What are you talking about? Like Inception.”
“No, ‘dream within a dream’ is from Edgar Allan Poe.”
“You’re telling me Poe stole lines from Inception?!? No wonder Lenore left him. He’s a plagiarizing, no talent hack! I just always presumed she left him because he was waaaay too into a whiney emo phase. Can you imagine how many dates they had that ended with a trip to Hot Topic?? ‘Nevermore’ is right. I don’t blame her for bailing on that. Anyway Nance, I’m starting to get tired of this guy and we want to be sure to wrap things up before we hit the end of our readers’ attention span for amateur fanfic so why don’t you let ol’ Uncle ‘Pool take charge of this dream? It’s time to jump into my subconscious for a little…scene change!”
In a flash the deep, navy sky faded into a light baby blue and white amalgam. Her backyard turned into a sea of wavy lines that dissipated slowly, and in its place a barrage of stimulus sprang up around her. The sun was out, and Nancy found herself on top of a verdant, oddly familiar hill, next to a picnic pavilion, with carnival sounds illuminating the otherwise silent background. In the distance she spotted a bright pink Merry-go-round near an old-fashioned Ferris Wheel. The shining silver and red carts of a car on a vintage wooden rollercoaster zipped by her, and as she turned to look at the hill behind her, she saw paratroopers dipping up and down in the distance, and a conglomeration of other carnival rides. Without rhyme or reason, there were balloons, red balloons, floating everywhere. Without counting, she intuitively knew the mountain air held 99 of them, 99 red balloons, floating in the summer sky.
Without really knowing what to do first, she stumbled toward a small picnic pavilion surrounded by shrubbery which looked humble compared to its ornate surroundings. As she entered the pavilion, eight red heads turned slowly around to look at her – including one that was only a head, and was flying around with the help of a helicopter blade – and eight identical sets of black little bug eyes, just like the eyes of her superhero friend, looked at her and squinted.
“You’re Deadpool’s friends!” She shouted excitedly, for she instinctively knew who they were.
“No shit,” replied Kidpool, and the eight nearly identical red people looked away from Nancy with disinterest and continued doing what they’d been doing before she entered. Headpool was zipping around the pavilion air, flirting with Lady Deadpool. Kidpool threw a frisbee for Dogpool to catch, then joined Dinopool, Duckpool, and Kangapool in a game of four square. Pandapool appeared to be immersed in the works of Fyodor Dostoevsky. Nancy began processing their bizarre reaction to her greeting, when she detected a sound apart from the noise made by the carnival rides.
Let’s start at the very beginning,
A very good place to start,
When you read you begin with A, B, C
When you sing you begin with….
Nancy ran toward the music and practically leapt with excitement as she yelled “Do re mi!” That’s it! She thought. I knew this hill looked familiar. This is the hill that Maria sings on with the Von Trap kids in The Sound of Music! With frenetic delight, she ran toward the music, hoping to exchange words with the talented Maria. As she ran west, with the din of the carnival sounds fading as Maria’s voice grew louder, she started to run through a group of older gentlemen wearing clothes from another era, and stopped abruptly. A proud man who looked a little like a walrus and had a wide, expansive mustache, stopped, bowed down, and shook Nancy’s hand.
“Well hello young lady,” he began. “Who might you be?”
“I’m Nancy,” Nancy replied.
“Hello Nancy! My name is Chester. Chester Arthur, that is.”
“Chester? As in, Chester A. Arthur, one of the do nothing presidents?!” The words slipped before Nancy could evaluate whether or not they were the best words to use for the occasion. Still, she was amazed. She was meeting the 21st U.S. president.
“Do nothing?” Arthur responded in a huff, “Well, my word. Where did you hear a bunch of hogwash like that? Never mind. Let me introduce you to my friends. Gentlemen, come hither,” and he beckoned five men toward him. But when he realized that they were all enmeshed in their work, he lead Nancy around to each man and introduced her individually. In that way, Nancy got to shake hands with Grover Cleveland when he took a break from flipping hamburgers. Benjamin Harrison was especially amicable toward her as he diligently set up a salad bar full of deep green lettuce and a variety of fresh vegetables. She also met Rutherford B. Hayes, James A. Garfield, and William McKinley, who were trying with some frustration to set up a tetherball court. In her excitement, Nancy forgot to guard her words, again.
“That’s strange. History calls you guys America’s do nothing presidents, but you all look like you’re working really hard to me!”
“What was that? Do nothing president? I guess keeping the nation on the gold standard was nothing…” McKinley began to mutter defensively.
“Never…nevermind,” Nancy replied abruptly, “I was never good at history anyway. I’m just honored to meet a group of American presidents. But can you gentlemen tell me, is that Fraulein Maria from the Sound of Music singing in the distance. I mean, I guess that was before your time…”
“Oh! You mean Miss Andrews,” Hayes interjected. “Our good friend Julie is handling the music for another,” and he paused, and looked at his watch, “for precisely another three minutes before Survivor takes over.”
“Survivor, like, the band?”
“Yep!” proclaimed Benjamin Harrison.
“Hamburger?” asked Grover Cleveland, as he pushed a plate her way.
“Oh what a lovely idea, but, well, I really must meet Julie Andrews. I’d love to catch the end of her song before she stops playing,” Nancy gushed. But the do-nothing presidents were a chatty bunch, and before she could disentangle herself from this cheerful band of former American leaders, Do Re Mi faded into the distance, and suddenly deep, cutting guitar chords replaced her music, but coming from another direction, the East. Nancy paused to listen to the music.
“Yep,” responded Chester A. Arthur. “Would you like to get closer to them to listen to their music?
“Oh, absolutely, but…is it a long walk?”
“Walk, ha! Silly child. I may be from the 1800’s, but I know the value of good, modern transportation.” Arthur looked toward the sky and whistled. Immediately, a fluffy, inviting cloud descended from the sky, and Chester A. Arthur jumped inside. “Hop in!” he beckoned Nancy, “This cloud car will get us to Survivor in…how do you modern folks say it….in a jiff…jiffer….”
“Oh, I think you mean a jiffy,” Nancy replied. That’s not really modern, she thought to herself, but she was hesitant to correct a former president, even if he was a do-nothing president, especially because he was so nice. So she hopped in the cloud next to him, and they drifted across the hill full of carnival rides, back past the pavilion full of Deadpool’s family, and closer to the music’s location.”
“That song sounds familiar, but I can’t place it,” said Nancy.
“Well young lady, then perhaps you should more closely study your classical music. Right now, Survivor is playing Tchaikovsky’s Swan Lake for us. Quite a lovely piece, if I do say so myself.”
As they got closer to the music, Nancy spotted a pool of blue. As they approached the pool, Nancy realized there cloud had parked next to a medium-sized indigo lake dotted with swans of all different colors – turquoise, violet, pink, and the like. As the swans flitted about this way and that, Survivor soulfully played Tchaikovsky’s timeless melody from a large, sturdy raft that was toward the middle of the lake but floated back and forth, gently pushing the swans out of the way as it floated.
Amid the peculiar scene Nancy heard Deadpool calling her, “Alright, playtime’s over. Let’s bring this Nance-Nance Revolution to a head and send this striped s.o.b. back to hell like you wanted.” Suddenly she found herself pulled back to the grassy area outside the picnic pavilion. Freddy, standing in front of Deadpool, seemed to be noticeably shaken as the odd amalgam of carnival/family reunion/barbeque/rock ballet played out around him.
“Aww..what’s the matter?” Deadpool cooed to Freddy. “You don’t seem to do too well when you’re not the one controlling the dream. Poor baby. Is it too much stimuli for you? At least I don’t have you in a car that looks like my costume. That’d be lame. If you think this is rough, you better hold on to your crusty hat because it’s about to get a whole lot weirder.”
Suddenly, the ground began to tilt. Before she knew it, Nancy was still standing on the ground, but she was upside down. Cool, she thought, as she watched a row of camels march by slowly, carrying the hotdogs and hamburgers grilled by the do-nothing presidents on trays on their backs. Nancy couldn’t help but realize that each individual camel wore its own hat, a beach hat, a hat with a flower on the side, an old fashioned bonnet, on so forth. Bears on unicycles were moving around in rhythmic patterns holding drinks, and little blue Smurfs were raining, moving up from the sky toward the ground, singing “It’s Raining Men” in high-pitched voices. When Nancy looked closer she realized that they were dancing as they sung. She turned her head to the right. In a corner, Donald Duck and Daffy Duck were having a heated argument about the necessity of a duck wearing a shirt to be considered respectable. This is an argument I do not want to get involved in, Nancy thought to herself. She looked toward the pavilion, now upside-down, and saw Freddy with his knees shaking clinging to one of the pavilion’s pillars to remain steady.
“You think this is bad?” Deadpool asked. “This is nothing. Let’s take things up another notch.”
Suddenly Nancy was seated on top of a giant needle on a humongous record that was spinning steadily in outerspace. Cream’s “White Room” was playing loudly as stars shot different ways, leaving hazy, diagonal lines all over the sky. Nancy watched as Deadpool walked easily toward Freddy; he was unfazed by the spinning ground beneath him. Freddy, though, was tripping all over himself. He stumbled, fell, and struggled to get back up as the record spun around and around and Cream crooned psychedelic tunes to the sky.
As Deadpool strode towards Freddy he removed his mask, dropping it to the ground beside him. Nancy gasped. She didn’t know what to expect from the true identity of her superhero but it certainly wasn’t this. Deadpool’s face was a mix of scars, scabs, and burn marks just like Freddy’s, his head almost entirely bald save a few tiny tufts of hair sprouting out at random locations.
“I know,” Deadpool said locking eyes with Freddy, “like looking in a mirror right? The only difference is you’re not the burned, scarred asshole who’s gonna do all the killing in this dream tonight. It’s me. By the time I’m done with you, you’ll be begging to blink out of existence. That Freddy vs. Jason sequel will look like a thoughtful Oscar-worthy paradise compared to where I’m about to send you. You have only scratched the surface of the chaotic hellhole that is my mind. Let’s see how you handle going in knuckles deep.”
With that Deadpool grabbed Freddy’s left hand and drove the monster’s claws into the center of his own head. Freddy jumped, and an expression of horror overtook his countenance as he began to more closely experience the inner workings of Deadpool’s mind through a sort of osmosis. He frantically fumbled to dislodge the claws from Deadpool’s forehead. Blood spurted everywhere as Freddy violently wriggled himself free. He sighed with exhaustion and his shoulders slumped. Then he looked at Deadpool and Nancy.
“I guess you win. Twenty seconds inside that head makes an eternity in hell seem like a welcome reprieve. I’m getting out of here and going back where I belong. At this point, it will be sweet relief.”
“Alright. We’ll send you there the same way we did the first time,” Nancy shouted as she materialized a torch and threw it at Freddy. With that, Freddy submerged in flames as his screams pervaded the dark sky.
“Wow, like mother like daughter huh? Nice shot.”
“It’s over,” Nancy said breathing a sigh of relief. “It’s really, finally over. I only wish Glen were here.”
“Don’t worry,” Deadpool said, placing his hand on Nancy’s shoulder. “He’s gone to a better place. He’s going to make a CRAZY amount of money playing a pirate with ambiguous sexuality. Granted he’ll have to spend some time with scissors for hands first but it’ll be okay because it will be just weird enough to give him an artsy appeal but not so weird that it scares away mainstream audiences. Plus, had you stayed together, you would have had to deal with the pain of him leaving you for Tim Burton later in life. Anyway, we still have a little bit of time before we wake up. How do we celebrate our victory?”
This time it was Nancy who willed the dreamscape to change and as the blurring world came back into focus once again she and Deadpool found themselves by a pond. “Look!” Nancy cried. “Paddle boats! I’ve always wanted to ride in a paddle boat!”
“NO CHANCE,” Deadpool said with certainty.
“What? Why? They’re just paddle boats. It’ll be fun. After everything we’ve done tonight how can you possibly object to paddle boats??”
“I have my reasons and I REFUSE,” Deadpool said as he unsheathed the dagger from his leg once more. A quick poke to Nancy and himself and they were shocked awake, finding themselves in Nancy’s bed once more as the sun was just beginning to rise. Deadpool yawned, stretched, and rose from the bed.
“Well kid,” Deadpool said as he began to pull his mask back on, “it’s been fun. And now that I woke you up it’s time for me to go-go.”
Nancy reached up and stopped Deadpool before he could lower his mask over his face again. Giving him a quick kiss on the cheek Nancy said, “Thank you. You’re nothing like him. You know that right? No matter what you look like under this mask you’re a hero. You saved my life. You saved the lives of so many people.”
“Well, if anything we’re heroes. You’re the one who went all David Berkowitz and set that dude on fire. That was pretty badass. Take care Nancy. Let me know if you ever decide to do a sequel. Maybe we could go to Crystal Lake or babysit with Jamie Lee Curtis or help Tim Allen save Christmas or something. It could be fun.”
“Maybe, but first I feel like I’d like to sleep for a few days. Can you do me a favor and leave through the hole you already blew in the wall? I’d rather you not cause more structural damage to the house,” Nancy said with a smile.
—With apologies to Wes Craven as well as Cullen Bunn, Brian Posehn, Gerry Duggan, and Joe Kelly.