This was a genuine night terror (although not as bad as ones I’ve had in the past). I woke in a wordless panic, and frantically shook Ingrid awake to get her away from the death balloons — but I wasn’t able to speak and tell her what was wrong. I didn’t realize it was a dream until Ingrid said, “Greta, are you dreaming?” and even then I stayed upset for some time. It wasn’t until I woke up again several hours later that morning that I was able to see the humor in having a full-blown, “waking in the night unable to scream” night terror about evil balloon animals trying to kill my girlfriend.
I dreamed that I woke up in bed with Ingrid, and there were all these balloons on the pillow next to Ingrid’s head. (The long balloon-animal kind, not the round kind.) The balloons were in a strange configuration: they were very menacing, and seemed to be spelling out some sort of magical runes. I was quite upset, and struggled for a while to figure out what the runes were saying. Then I suddenly realized they were in the form of a magical spell that was threatening Ingrid and might kill her.