Cody Morgan is one of the lead protagonists of the 2016 movie Before I Wake. Cody is an orphaned child with the gift to make his dreams appear in real life while he is asleep. However, his nightmares become just as real and have taken lives.
Early Childhood Edit
Cody has always had this gift, even when his mother, Andrea, was still pregnant with him. Often times, he would create butterflies, as he loved butterflies (even creating them before he was born to present to his mother). His mother was a very kind and caring mother, but during his toddler years, developed pancreatic cancer. The last time he saw his mother, she was very changed in appearance and visibly weak and unwell, as the chemotherapy treatments were not successful. Andrea died when Cody was 3, presumably not long after she tried to mutter the words "I will always be with you."
With this image of his mother, Cody believed the "Canker man" took his mother and it never left his memory. With the monster forever ingrained into him, this began to manifest into his dreams, usually not too long after new foster parents would take him in. Cody has been through at least three sets of foster families and has lived alone in an apartment after reportedly being abandoned in it.
Known Fosters Edit
The Youngs Edit
One of the foster families that took Cody in before the Hobsons was Whelan and Katie Young. Like all of his foster situations, Cody's dreams began with the dreamy and bright multicolored butterflies and ended in nightmares of the monster he believed took his mother. When this nightmare came to him, the monster took Katie, leaving Whelan to feel afraid of and vengeful toward Cody, and the feeling only grew as he kept bringing her back in dream form, reminding him of her death. As a result, Whelan attempted to kill Cody by shooting him, believing it to be a "favor" because he, like Cody, didn't want anyone else getting hurt. However, his plan failed, as a sound alarmed him and he attempted to shoot at whatever made it, waking Cody up. Since then, Whelan has remained in prison.
The Hobsons Edit
Jessie and Mark Hobson wanted to adopt a child after their son, Sean, died. After gaining approval from the orphanage, they adopt Cody after hearing about his life (minus the dreams) and being spoken highly of by the agent, Natalie. The first night of Cody living with them, Mark sees a butterfly and tries to capture it in hopes of showing it to Cody, knowing how much he likes butterflies. However, after Cody awakens, it disappears. The second night, along with the butterflies, Cody makes their son come back, but inanimately, as he has only seen the photo of the family and only knowing Sean's appearance. He admits to his gift and apologizes to his new foster family, feeling that bringing Sean back to then have him vanish when he woke up was insensitive.
The couple, now knowing about these dreams, try to use Cody as a vessel to let them even just temporarily have Sean back, and show him an old Christmas video. Like clockwork, after Cody falls asleep, the Christmas tree is there surrounded by the bright butterflies and Sean appears, now speaking and re-enacting the video. The fourth night, however, Cody begins to have nightmares again, but the entities remain for a short period while he is awake. While Sean is with his parents and whispering "I am awake, why is this happening," the Canker man tries to get Cody. This prompts Cody to try going without sleep to avoid hurting the family but becomes visibly more and more tired, even taking micro-naps in his classroom.
Jessie, seeing how the sleep deprivation is affecting Cody, gives him a sleeping pill to try letting him catch some rest. The Canker man returns, and as Mark tries to wake Cody up to stop it from attacking, he is unsuccessful, and the two are left to fend for themselves. Mark gets taken by the monster and Jessie gets knocked unconscious and injured, but remains alive. Cody calls 911 in fear of losing his foster mother and admits Jessie drugged him to fall asleep when he is asked by police. This causes the orphanage to take Cody back, as they suspect he was abused. In the end, however, he and Jessie reunite.
Release from the Canker man Edit
After being taken back to the orphanage, Cody went 2 nights in a row without sleep. As this worried the staff, including Natalie, they injected a tranquilizer into him to get him to fall asleep, as he was fighting too hard to sleep otherwise. Meanwhile, Jessie had visited the hospital where his mother died and signed for her files and collected the bag of belongings she left behind, which were locked away in a filing cabinet. In the bag, she finds Andrea's journal describing how much love she felt for Cody and how proud she was of his gift, as well as a blue butterfly-shaped pillow she had put with Cody's stroller, presumably what she used to cope through cancer and chemotherapy. Jessie goes back to the orphanage with Cody now asleep and having a nightmare. The people who the Canker man have taken are cocooned in branches and sticky chrysalises along the wall, and Jessee sees eyeless, soulless versions of her and her family; one image of the nightmare even includes her son reenacting his death. She finds Cody asleep and is thrown out of the doorway back into the hall, facing the Canker man, who screeches to charge at Jessie. She then takes out the blue butterfly pillow, causing the monster to slow down until it reaches a complete stop to look at it and becomes docile. Jessie gives it a hug as it gets lower and lower to the ground until it becomes Cody in dream form. She whispers to him to release all the people, and as he does so, the dream suddenly becomes beautiful as all the victims were let out, but still in dream form. Jessie picks up an unconscious Cody to take him home, almost being stopped by Natalie, who ends up just watching the two walk out, not moving from her spot.
Rehoning his gift Edit
After Jessie tells Cody everything she learned about his mother, including her love for him and that he has nothing to fear anymore, Cody not only feels safe enough with her to call her "mom," but his dreams no longer manifest evil. Instead, he goes back to his butterflies, even then and there forming a butterfly right before her eyes that he, too, would be able to see, but rather than the blue butterfly, he changed the color to light green.
- Cody wakes up to grab a can of something to drink from the fridge the night he dreamed of Sean. From what it looks like, Cody is grabbing a Mike's Hard Lemonade, which is what Jessie drank just before she saw Sean. Jessie and Mike are too in shock to notice what he'd grabbed.
- Cody dreamed of people taken by the Canker man as eyeless because the life was drained from his mother's eyes last time he saw her. The loss of eyes is symbolic of the loss of soul and liveliness.
- The change of color from blue to light green in the butterfly is also symbolic of his change in outlook. Where he once saw his mother was gone, he found a mother in Jessie. He presumably changed the butterfly to her favorite color.
- Cody may have some psychic powers, as no one told him how Sean died, but he somehow knew how.