Theyíre going up in a elevator. The elevator from the car park.
Nobody really listened to Jim, or at least nobody who could actually get the damn thing done, when he said they needed more escape routes out of this place. Especially after the siege. What a disaster, what a sideshow, all they needed was cotton candy.
Blair tried to make light of the fact that nobody was listening to the Cop Of The Year pointing out that if Jim had his way it would look like a Vietcong hideout, and then swallowing his words (but Jim could still hear them) when he realised that jungle warfare probably wasnít anything Jim wanted to talk about, period. The kid was, in Jimís opinion, damn oversensitive. He wondered sometimes what could do that to a kid, who could do that to a kid; and whether it would end the world if he locked whoever in a room with his old man. Maybe he could give Steve the goddamn monkey.
Sure, Jim didnít want to talk about the jungle, but sometimes he did, for Blair, no for Blairís research, different thing, it wasnít like letting the kid sleep over in the loft on that futon thing. It looked damn uncomfortable, but then, Jimís slept in troop carriers and jungle floors, so comfortable is relative.
And youíd think the walls of the elevator, as it continues its too slow too close climb, were grey. Theyíre not.
There are little flecks of red in there, a sort of blood-like colour, translucent and opaque all at once.
And Blairís saying something but heís miles away. Might as well be in the jungle.
And there are little green dots in there too.
Blairís beginning to get frantic, somewhere, in another world far from here.
Jimís world is full of dots. Pointillism. He is in an ocean of dots, the green ones are like algae, or perhaps lily pads and heís swimming between them trying to avoid the blood red dots.
And Blairís arms are flailing like heís drowning, but heís not in the ocean with Jim.
Heís so far away, itís as if he was never there. Itís just Jim, swimming, and itís wonderful. There are no elevators here, or jungles, or cops, or robbers, or fathers, or sons.
Itís just beautiful.
And then he suddenly hears Blairís voice, ďCome on, big guy, come back to me, please, Jim, listen to my voice, follow my voiceÖĒ and he doesnít want to, but he does.
And heís back in the world with all its attendant cruelties and he almost weeps for the loss of his Eden. Except he canít, because here heís Jim Ellison, and tears have no more place here than the transcendent joy of the ocean.