The plan was relatively simple. Since the home they rented was of newer construction, shifting it away from the soon to be built highway was easy. Water and electricity had been cut off that morning. The house would be lifted a mere inch off the ground using a set of hydraulic lifts, and then a specialized laser would sever any pipes. The house would then be slid 40 feet towards the creek than ran behind the home, and running water and power would be reconnected that afternoon. It was certainly an inconvenience for him and his girlfriend, but the little money the government had provided them for their trouble was worth it.
They held hands, sittings out on the back of the small cliff that overlooked the creek. It wasn’t much of a view- the creek was more of a drainage ditch than anything, but any amount of nature that could be had in a city was something to be cherished. There was a chill wind, typical of the bay climate, but the sun was warm. It was nice being off from work, and in still in love after 7 years of dating.
There was a subtle tremble in the ground as the house began its shift. They watched as it slowly lumbered towards them, but after few feet the house grinded to a stop. A pipe may not have been severed properly, or maybe there was snag in the wiring. He pondered it for a bit when he heard her mouth a silent scream. The land they sat on, fresh earthy dirt patched with deep green wet grass started to crumble. She tumbled, falling down 30 feet into the creek, landing on her back with a splash.
It was a decent landing, particularly for someone as uncoordinated as her. As the ground continued to split, he found himself on back, still clinging to the edge. He would have been able to inch back up the cliff, carefully dispersing his weight not to disrupt the loose earth. However, the snake blocked his path. It had emerged form a deep cut in the ground, the largest snake he had ever seen. It was a dark emerald color with a thick neck and triangular head. Its scales glistened in the sun dazzlingly. He weighed his options as it rose above him, poised to attack. Whatever action he took would have to be quick and decisive. Jerking from his back he turned to face the fall.
The quick turn woke him, and instead of facing the creek he saw his pillow. Traffic hummed along Oak Street, busy even at night. She looked younger in the dream, and as sleep faded him he knew the exact moment years before she had looked that way.