I’m living back at my parents’ house and, after everyone goes to bed each night, I step outside, barefoot and barechested, and I fly. I fly over the houses and fields, I fly down to the seafront, along the promenade, gliding quietly through the night sky. It’s an amazing sensation and I land back home exhilarated. It’s also unsettling though, I’m a little more afraid each time I fly. The air is bitingly cold and I can’t wear anything more than trousers or else I won’t take off. I’m a little bit scared of the dark. I worry I will see something else flying too. Sometimes I see macabre, murderous things through people’s windows as I sail past.
One night I am flying only feet above a suburban street when I see a boy watching me from his window, terrified, and in a fit of cruelty I fly right up to the glass and pull an horrific face before disappearing into the air. The next night I see my Mum standing out in the garden looking up. I join her and I see that news of me must have spread, the black sky is full of laser beams, fireworks and flares are sent up to light the clouds and find me out. People are sailing in hot air balloons, desperately waving torches to try and track me down. The sky looks beautiful.
I decide flying is too dangerous tonight so I feign illness and am tucked up in bed. My elder sister comes to see me, she holds my hand and tells me I’ll be okay and for some reason it moves me to tears. I see behind her eyes that she knows something more than she is letting on. When I wake I’m not sure where I am. There are strangers around me arguing with each other, their faces are unkind and I sense their anger will soon be directed at me. I try to snuggle under the blankets but one of the men looks squarely at me and I feel something violent is about to occur. Suddenly my powers get the better of me and I lift involuntarily right out of the bed and in broad daylight begin to hover in front of everyone. People begin to scream and hurl things at me and I have to make my escape. I am hounded into the sky where planes begin to pursue me. I know they mean to capture me and pull me apart and see what I am. I realise I’m alone and so I have to flee. I don’t have a chance to say goodbye.
As I’m flying away to who knows what I hear Judy Collins singing the beautiful, maudlin, epic wrist-slasher, ‘Can’t cry hard enough’, and it so upsets me to hear it that I scream to try and drown it out.
‘I’m gonna live my life like every day's the last
Without a simple goodbye it all goes by so fast
And now that you're gone I can't cry hard enough
I can't cry hard enough for you to hear me now …’
That’s when I wake up for real, and I am screaming the house down, waiting for my boyfriend to shake me like he always does and tell me it’s a dream and that everything is okay. But he doesn’t, and he won’t, because I’m also waking up to the fact that real life is suddenly worse than these strange nightmares I’m having. He’s left me, in fact, hence the bed-hopping, and what I thought was my great love, isn’t. Charlie comes and nuzzles me to see what all the fuss is about and it’s such an innocent and loving act I can’t help crying. I fall asleep eventually with the same bloody song on repeat in my head. I wish I’d never heard it. I wake the next day and I am miserable, lonely, frazzled, pondering that I am one day closer to … what?