A Nightmare on Elm Street 4: The Dream Master — Adaptation Excerpts
Adapted by Bob Italia
Transcribed by Rob Nimmo
Later that night, two paramedics lifted Dan’s stretcher into the ambulance. His leg was bandaged but it was bleeding badly, and he moaned in pain. Alice, shakened but unharmed, climbed into the ambulance and noticed a paramedic filling a hypodermic needle. “What’s that do?” The paramedic turned toward Dan. “Relaxes your boyfriend.” Alice jerked the paramedic’s arm away. “Put the needle down.” “Sorry, Doctor,” the paramedic said sarcastically, “rules is rules.” Alice smacked the needle from the paramedic’s hand. It shattered against the wall. “He stays awake. Those are my rules, understand? He’s allergic!” “Shoulda said so in the first place,” the paramedic grumbled. Alice leaned closer to Dan. “Don’t let them put you to sleep,” she whispered.
They arrived at the hospital where the Emergency Room was prepared for surgery. Dan’s parents were there, waiting anxiously. So was Mr. Johnson. “When do you operate?” Alice asked the doctor. “When does he hit surgery?” The doctor looked at Dan as he was strapped to a gurney. “From the looks of him,” he said, “probably fifteen minutes.” Alice looked at her watch. It was 9:45 p.m. She had fifteen minutes before Dan was forced to sleep. Dan was wheeled away. Alice started for him. But then she was grabbed from behind by her father. He held her back. “Let it be, Alice,” Mr. Johnson said, reaching in his pocket for his car keys. “They’ll help him. Now let’s go home.” “They’re gonna kill him!” Alice shouted. She snatched her father’s keys and ran for the swinging exit doors. “Alice,” Mr. Johnson cried, “get back here!” Alice jumped into her father’s car and screeched out of the parking lot, driving wildly down the street. She gripped the steering wheel. The speedometer was straining. Then she glanced at the dashboard clock. 9:52 p.m. She had eight minutes to do something—but what?
Alice screeched to a halt in front of her house. She flew from the car and burst into the house. Stopping at her father’s gun rack, she grabbed a shotgun and a box full of shells, then ran up the stairs to her bedroom. Tossing the gun on the bed, Alice opened a bottle of sleeping pills and popped a handful in her mouth. Returning to the bed, Alice loaded the shotgun and cocked it. “This ends—now!” She walked to the vanity table and snatched Sheila’s gadget and hung it around her neck. Then she hoisted the gun to her shoulder. The pills started taking effect. Holding her forehead, Alice looked in the mirror. She felt strong and confident. She wasn’t a high school girl any longer. She was the dream master, ancient guardian of the gate of good dreams, ready to do battle with Freddy Krueger and accept her destiny. Alice spoke to her powerful reflection:
“Now I lay me down to sleep,
The master of dreams, my soul I’ll keep.
In the reflection of my mind’s eye,
Evil shall see itself, and it shall die!”
Alice looked at the shotgun. Next to her supernatural image, it didn’t seem like an impressive weapon. “Save it for Rambo,” she said, tossing it aside. Alice looked at the clock on her vanity table. It was 10:00 p.m. Dan was about to be put under.
Dan opened his eyes and saw a strange-looking doctor standing over him. The doctor wore a surgical mask and a pale-green surgical uniform, razor-knives ready to strike. Dan pulled the mask from the doctor’s face. “Krueger!” he shouted in terror. “Well it ain’t Dr. Seuss!” Freddy said, laughing. “No!” Dan cried. “Alice! Help!” Alice heard Dan’s distant cry. She could see the operating room in the vanity’s mirror. “Get away from him!” she roared at Freddy. Then she dove headfirst into the mirror. Alice rolled onto the operating room floor. She scrambled to her feet and looked around. Freddy was gone. Alice helped Dan off the operating table. His wound had healed. “You look great!” Dan said. “Save it for later,” Alice replied. “Come on!” Alice and Dan ran for the doors. Just as they approached, Freddy threw them open from the other side. Dan leaped in front of Alice and confronted Freddy. Freddy grabbed Dan’s fist and pushed him aside. Alice charged Freddy and knocked him over. Then Alice grabbed Dan’s hand and they plunged through the doors. Dan and Alice ran into the hallway. It turned into a huge, rotating cylinder—a kaleidoscope! Dan and Alice careened down the hall and crashed through a wall of stained glass. Suddenly, they found themselves in a church. Just then, Freddy appeared. “Welcome to wonderland, Alice!” he said, laughing horribly. Suddenly, the familiar voices of the Elm Street children began chanting. They were standing in the choir box.
“One, two, Freddy’s coming for you.
Three, four, better lock your door.
Five, six, grab your crucifix.
Seven, eight, better stay up late.
Nine, ten, never sleep again.”
Alice rushed to Dan’s side. He started to flicker like a bad picture on a television set. Then he started fading away. “No,” he murmured. “Alice!” Alice reached for him, but he was gone, his voice echoing throughout the church.
Dan regained consciousness on the operating table. The doctor stood over him. “Relax, son,” the doctor said. “It was rough, but we pulled you out.” “Put me back under!” Dan cried. “Please! Put me back!” The doctor looked perplexed. “Just a while ago you were screaming not to be put under.” “Well I changed my mind!” Dan shouted.
Alice crouched in a fighting position as Freddy advanced, finger-knives flashing. Alice leaped and delivered a perfect kick to Freddy’s chest, knocking him back. But Freddy just laughed. “You think you’ve got what it takes?” he said with contempt. “I’ve been guarding my gate forever!” Alice kicked at Freddy. Freddy grabbed her ankle and pushed her against the wall. She fell and didn’t move. Freddy approached her. He raised his finger-knives, ready for the kill. Just then, Alice sprung to her feet. She reached out and punched a hole in the wall. Then she pulled out several crackling electrical cables. Ripping the gadget from her neck, she aimed it at Freddy. Freddy just laughed. Alice shoved an electric cable into the center of the gadget. It hummed and glowed until a powerful laser bolted at Freddy, hitting him in the chest. The laser ripped a hole through Freddy. Stunned, he looked down. But then he raised his head, a sinister grin spreading across his face. The laser didn’t harm him. Freddy charged Alice and threw her into a wall. She crumpled in pain beneath the broken stained glass window. Then he approached for the final time, ready to strike a death blow with his finger-knives.
“Now I lay me down to sleep,” the children sang, “the master of dreams, my soul I’ll keep.” Alice remembered the verse. “In the reflection of my mind’s eye…” She grabbed a large piece of stained glass and held it in front of Freddy. “Evil shall see itself, and it shall die!” Freddy looked at the glass and saw his reflection. He screamed. Freddy’s body began pulsating and rippling. The souls of his victims were trying to free themselves. “Let them out!” Alice shouted. The trapped souls began tearing through Freddy’s body, erupting in all directions. Freddy’s sweater stretched and ripped apart. The freed souls poured out. Alice watched as the souls swooped around her before streaking out the broken window. “You’re dead, Krueger!” Alice said to Freddy. All was quiet except for a steady wind that blew the remains of Freddy Krueger and his hat down the church aisle and out the door. Finally, the double doors slammed shut. Freddy Krueger was gone.