A nightmare. One of those ones that seem like a long involved film with progressively worsening twists & turns but when you wake up seem fairly simple & vague.
I was traveling with a theater company on a cruise ship. I was not part of the troupe but K, an old friend of mine, was. She was telling me about a man who was romantically pursuing her, that she was afraid of him, and felt that he must be crazy.
There was a very bad person on board the cruise ship who had cut off a single hand on two different people (I found one -- a horrible amputated hand, that had been hidden somewhere. It was a man's hand, sort of small, hairy-knuckled and ugly; it didn't look like the hand of any man I know). K thought that the man pursuing her was the hand amputator. I was trying to help her escape from him, but also trying to find out if it really *was* him. And, just like a movie, the hand amputator turned out to be K herself. She tried to amputate my hand.
But I still wanted to help her and, knowing that people become bad because they've been treated badly, I wanted to help her get past whatever abuse in her past had led her to become so evil. It was all tritely psychological in that I had to bring her back, in her mind, to the situation in which she had suffered so much that she became the one that hurts others, so that she could confront her abuser & get beyond it.
The therapy was kind of odd. I was covering her forehead as best I could with my hand, trying to protect her from a woman who was attempting to pour molton metal onto her forehead. Then the woman insisted to me that she would not hurt K, that it was only a kind of baptism, that she would only drop a microscopically tiny drop of red hot liquid metal onto K's forehead. I stupidly agreed, because I felt I should trust the pourer; and again, just like in a cheesy horror movie, the woman pouring turned out to be the crazy one and started pouring the molten metal onto K's head. It was horrible. K was screaming in physical and emotional pain and I had failed to protect her and had only, out of my naivité & inability to just leave things alone, made things much worse than they had been.