Under The Lighthouse
Thank you for coming with me. I don’t think this story wants to tell itself, really, I…
Then you tell it. Was this where he fell?
No. Yes. Really, he jumped…Donnie…he made his great escape from here.
And this is the first time you’ve been here since then?
Yeah, a year ago. A year and a day…today.
So you came here to…
To see if I could get to the other side of this…to find an answer, peace, healing…no…I don’t know. The …last time I saw a ribbon slide through the wind it tangled in a branch. I thought that’s…how he’d look, torn to pieces on the rocks, draped over stone. But…he wasn’t there.
Well...where was he then?
I’m not sure. Vanished, slick as a well turned phrase. That’s something he used to say…He could be magic with words, as if they were an itch in his brain he needed to share. Full of words, full of ideas, fearless, but…easily swayed, impressionable.
No…no, the opposite, really. If he believed something it became a religion for him. I think it occupied time and space. Like God. His gift was convincing us his dreams were real…and sometimes…his nightmares.
I’ll never forget his great revelation that virgin blood could make him levitate…
You mean-drinking blood?
Yeah. They sent him to see a psychologist after he bit this girl on the neck. He…said over and over as they led him away ‘I need to drink girl’s blood,’ ‘I need to taste blood.’ He left school for a long time…but eventually-
He came back?
As if it was all a dream. He would say he was wrestling to express his ‘vampire avatar’…his nightmare, Lugosi, Dracula…self. He was convinced, obsessed and very…unapologetic.
And you think this is how people overwhelmed with stress shed their skin? Fantasy?
Maybe. I’m not sure…I don’t believe the obsession ever left him. From nine years old on it…possessed him.
And then we came here because he said he heard a legend that things-anything-tossed from the top of the tower were misplaced, lost, transformed?...I don’t know, but we came here and lobbed a few quarters over the rail of the lighthouse. We couldn’t see exactly where they went…they drifted off course and we lost them…even in the glint of an overcast sky they…vanished.
So, what did Donnie do afterwards?
He fixed his eyes over the railing, hesitated a second, told me how close the ground seemed…then he smiled. ‘Watch this,’ he said, ‘I’m magic.’
And he jumped. And I…froze.
And that’s when he vanished? Like the coins?
Try telling that to the police. After the world snapped into place I reported the …particulars.
And I was called everything from a prankster to a killer…to delusional. Questioned, grilled, released and ignored.
They said he cleared the spit of land beneath the lighthouse and landed in the bay…washed out to sea…sucked under the waves.
And you have your…doubts?
I…think he believed himself somewhere else…he wished himself away.
I have a confession to make.
I’ve heard this story before. A little differently, of course. But very much the same.
Wha…really? I just met you, how…
Do you think we’re here, at the ‘scene of the crime’ by accident? Really?
Who told you…
Donnie did. He flew to my window…after he left here. To…convert me.
He stole virgin blood from you?
No. Actually, I ‘stole’ it from him. We were…close, after the fact.
My G…You were lovers?
He was half right. Virgin blood can do wondrous things…because desire is greatest before fulfillment, most potent and …delicious…
Would you like closure? Fulfillment?
You possess the same desire…I smell it.
The ground looks closer…
Would you like to fly?