The Plot

(Critical Survey of Science Fiction and Fantasy)

Jeff Johnson, a historical researcher for a Civil War novelist named Broun, meets a mysterious woman named Annie at a publication party for his author’s latest novel. Annie is in the company of a sleep disorder specialist, Dr. Richard Madison, who was Jeff’s college roommate. Broun wants to consult Madison about the meaning of the dreams Abraham Lincoln had before his assassination.

Jeff discovers that Annie has been dreaming of events during the Civil War. He agrees to take Annie to Arlington House, formerly a home of Robert E. Lee and now the site of Arlington National Cemetery. Annie recognizes the house as part of her dreams. She leaves Madison, who she discovers has been drugging her without her knowledge to prevent her dreams. She asks Jeff to help her discover the meaning of her dreams. Jeff agrees, and while Broun is on the West Coast doing further research on Lincoln’s dreams, Jeff and Annie travel to Fredericksburg, Virginia, site of one of the worst battles of the Civil War. They conduct research and proofread Broun’s latest novel.

In Fredericksburg, Jeff discovers that Annie’s dreams match events and people in the life of Robert E. Lee, leader of the Confederate forces in the Civil War. Jeff also seems to be taking on the characteristics of Traveller, Lee’s devoted horse throughout the Civil War period. As Annie’s dreams grow worse, they try to decipher the meaning of the dreams and decide if they apply to the past or...

(The entire section is 498 words.)