The Nightmare People
is a horror novel by Lawrence Watt-Evans
One hot summer night Ed Smith was unable to sleep. Opening his blinds at 3:00 AM, he thought he saw a monster outside his window. Some nightmare. The next morning, everyone in his building had disappeared. They turned up later that day, or at least some people who looked like them did...
This novel provides examples of:
- Beat Still, My Heart: "Beating" at all is arguable, but the nightmare people can survive having their hearts removed. It is not exactly comfortable.
- Body Surf
- Crowbar Combatant: plan A against the nightmare people.
- Direct Line to the Author
- Eaten Alive: from the inside, in two variations.
- Enhanced Interrogation Techniques: perfectly acceptable with villains who are not really hurt by it.
- Evil Evolves: happens in another dimension before outputting in reality.
- Evil Gloating: lampshaded with a hint of Reverse Psychology Mind Screw as the discussion questions whether it is the heroes or the villains killing time while waiting for the cavalry.
- Genre Savvy: "In the horror movies, people got themselves killed by walking blithely and disbelievingly into the monster's lair. ... he intended to be a bit more prepared, and a bit more careful, than the people in the movies."
- Genuine Human Hide
- Grand Theft Me
- Healing Factor: the nightmare people have clay-like flesh that flows back together after injury.
- I'm a Humanitarian: the nightmare people
- Immune to Bullets: of course the monsters are.
- Implacable Man: shoot them, stab them, burn them: the nightmare people don't care.
- Infernal Retaliation: on a small scale after Kill It with Fire fails.
- Info Dump: a nightmare person explains their entire backstory.
- Kill It with Fire: attempted.
- Kiss of Death
- Lampshade Hanging: "This was like something out of a horror movie." "'It's like something out of a horror movie, y'know?'"
- Made of Evil: the nightmare people
- Massive Multiplayer Scam: considered as an explanation for what is going on.
- More Teeth than the Osmond Family: the nightmare people
- Never Mess with Granny: she explicitly isn't, but she does take down a supernatural monster singlehandedly. Her monster-slaying tactics involve sewing and sauteing.
- No Honor Among Thieves: the nightmare people have no interest in protecting each other.
- No Sell: the nightmare people do not bother fighting back. It is too much fun watching the humans react when their attacks do nothing.
- Nothing Is Scarier: no sound, no scent, and other things putting the nightmare people in the Uncanny Valley.
- Ominous Walk: the nightmare people are fond of them.
- Red Eyes, Take Warning
- Shapeshifting: but only off-camera.
- Sorting Algorithm of Evil: invoked upon reality by the nightmare people.
- Unspoken Plan Guarantee: Ed Smith has a plan that he explicitly refuses to explain.
- The Hunter Becomes The Hunted: in both directions.
- Wall Crawl: the nightmare people.
- Weaksauce Weakness: several. Lampshaded by the heroes.
- You Are Who You Eat