Thanatopolis was a smallish man with thick glasses. His left eye was large, possibly because the glass lens was thicker on that side. His right eye appeared to be smaller and "lazy"-- its gaze occasionally wandered toward the ceiling as he spoke. He ushered Ted into a copious chair of many movable arms, levers, and gears. It was deep and plush like a barber's chair, but more multi-purpose, as if it were designed also for dentistry and hypnotherapy.
"Let me see the teeth." he said briskly.
"The teeth are fine." Ted said. "I've come about the dream. I told you that on the phone."
The doctor waited silently until Ted opened his mouth. He leaned close to Ted's mouth, shining a small light around inside to examine the teeth.
"Close." he said. "It's clear it's not your teeth, not an infection in the mouth causing the dreams. With your permission I would like to give you a mild sedative. This will help you relax and remember your dreams more clearly. Then, just tell me everything you remember."
He pushed a small cup of water and a pill in front of Ted's face.
"What is it?" Ted asked.
"Something like sodium pentathol, but milder," the doctor said. "Completely harmless."
Ted studied the doctor's face, the one eye bearing down on him, the other distractedly glancing above, then he put the pill in his mouth and washed it down.