Excerpt from Indian Summer

That night, Marcie dreams of flying. In her dream, she is standing outside the cottage under the maple tree. It’s nighttime; the stars are flickering through the leaves overhead. She still has on the pajama top and shorts she wore to bed. She doesn’t know how she got here, maybe she was sleeping and came outside, but it doesn’t seem to matter. Something is calling her. Something in the water. She needs to find it. Raising her arms up from her sides she rises slowly into the air. She doesn’t have to flap her arms, she simply thinks that she wants to fly and her body rises into the air. Dream flying is just how you imagine it will be—head up, arms out to the side, legs and torso straight out behind. Effortless.

 She hovers under the protecting limbs of the tree for a moment and then glides over the lawn and the boat docks to the lake. The moon shines down on the water beneath her as if illuminating her path and the gentle ripples of the water encourage her onward. Something is telling her to go to James Bay, and her thoughts cause her to turn in that direction.

The dream isn’t frightening. On the contrary, she feels happy and relaxed, but there’s an insistent need to go out over the lake. It is quiet and deserted at first, but then, as sometimes happens in dreams, it changes from night into the middle of the day, and Marcie is flying over sailboats and water sparking with sunlight. She is close enough to the boats that she can hear the wind luffing in the sails and people calling to each other. The boats are rounding a big orange buoy floating in the water. Colorful spinnaker sails that always remind her of parachutes unfurl to catch the wind as the boats change direction and go downwind. Whoosh! A bright orange sail balloons out on the front of the boat directly below her, and Marcie rises higher into the sky. This must be the Sunday Regatta, she is aware of thinking, but she can’t stop to watch. She must go to James Bay. She flies on.

 She rounds Owen Point and enters the Bay. The dense and darkly green trees of James Woods are before her across the bay leading down to the cattails and reeds of the marshy shore. She stops and hovers over the water in the center of the bay. There is something she needs to find, but what? The water glimmers beneath her, and the tops of the trees sway in the breeze. She feels like whatever is calling her is here with her, and the image is just at the edge of her mind, eluding her. If only she could concentrate more on the picture, reach out her thoughts to grasp it…

 Suddenly, the dream ends and she wakes up in her bed in the loft. At first she is disoriented and doesn’t know where she is. The room is dark except for moonlight shining in through the window. It’s still nighttime. Across the room she sees Eric, Drew, and Michael sleeping in their bunks. Marcie leans over to peer at the illuminated face of her bedside clock. Two o’clock. What did the dream mean? What was she looking for? Even now, in her familiar bed, the dream feels eerily real, and she is a little breathless, as though she had been walking briskly, or—flying? Before she can sort it all out, fatigue washes over her in a wave. She rolls over onto her side, pulling the quilt up around her shoulders, and promptly goes to sleep.