This is the third story in my summer writing project. Missing scene from The Killers.
A Thiller, Killer Night
by Twilight (Dawn)
"Hey, Danny. Back up, will ya. I don't feel like taking a dip." Jim sat on the skipper's bench, leaning back, ankles casually crossed, and baseball cap pulled low over his eyes to shield them from the noonday sun.
"Oh, come on." The boy leaned over the rail farther, making a game out of pulling up the mooring lines and splashing them back into the water, watching the ripples that spiraled out from the center, his small shoulders bunching as he tugged on the thick ropes. "I'm not gonna fall, Jimmy."
The sun beat down on the deck, reflecting up from the choppy water, a row of fishing poles sat untouched in the rigs that held them and a smooth jazz beat bellowed from the old portable radio player.
"Hey, Jimmy?" The boy turned, tucking a few loose strands of jet-black hair behind his ear, wiping his wet hand down the front of his bright orange shirt, leaving a streaky trail of water and dirt. "Do we have to stay here...I wanted to go sailing like we did last time."
"Well...you told your mom you wanted to go fishing." Jim sat up, turning his hat around, moving to check the lines.
The lanky boy glanced at the still poles. "I did...but this is sooo boring."
Jim shot him a quick look; the sad, brown puppy dog eyes and turned down mouth his undoing. "Okay, kid. Let's blow this joint."
Danny ran over to help Jim reel in the lines, stowing the poles under the deck. "Let's go out to the old lighthouse." He ran back to the bow, reaching forward to gather up the mooring lines.
"Let me do that," Jim warned. "Go find some good cruising music."
Danny skipped over to the radio, searching through a stack of tapes and popping out the one in the player. He turned up the volume just as Jim started up the engine and turned them around.
"Michael Jackson?" Jim shouted over the roar of the engine. "You're killin' me here, kid."
Danny shrugged, doing a little spin and moon walking across the deck, sidling up next to Jim as he steered the boat over some steep waves, hanging on to the seat to keep from falling. "Thanks, Jimmy...mom said to make sure I always say thanks."
The day was bright and sunny, huge white clouds billowed over the deep blue sky and the wind was calm, gently blowing the leaves overhead.
Seagulls soared, swooping down now and again, screeching and squawking, picking at whatever they could find on the ground.
A crowd of people milled around the grassy hill were the memorial was held, a few cops in dress uniform huddled together near the gate, talking and consoling the woman standing at the mouth of the pier, her aging face pale and washed out, contrasting sharply with her black dress.
He disembarked, walking carefully down the dock, sidestepping a few people as she looked up and smiled at him, her hands trembling as she passed the jet-black ceramic urn. Jim took it carefully, sliding his arm around her slender waist and walked back to the boat. He helped Susan Choi to board, handing her the urn that held her only sons remains.
"Where do you want to go, Susan?" Jim started the engine and backed carefully out of the slip.
"Let's go to the old lighthouse, Jimmy." She placed the urn snuggly against the seatback and moved to stand by him. "I'll have to remember to call and thank William for letting me use the boat...Danny loved to be on the water."
Jim nodded, unable to meet her bright blue eyes.
They rode the waves in silence until the red and white lighthouse came into view. The jagged rocks surrounding the old house were covered with greening fungus and nesting birds and Jim could see some people playing in the surf and lounging on the sandy beach that connected the path from the shore.
Susan stood, pulling a hanky from her pocket. "I can't thank you enough for taking an interest in Danny. When his father died..." She dabbed her eyes, turning to see the sun low in the horizon. "Anyway, it was a God send to have such wonderful neighbors."
Jim cleared his throat and opened his mouth, but the action was aborted as the words died away and he licked his lips.
They waited for a bit more until the sun was almost parallel with the water line and then she opened the urn, smiling as a few ashes floated up and into the wind.
Jim stood back, letting her have a bit of privacy, but she turned and reached out her hand. He stepped forward and took it, squeezing slightly as Susan upended the container and poured out the blacken contents, she watched with teary eyes as they spiraled up and away, blowing on the breeze. She didn't speak and Jim didn't feel the need to interrupt the silence.
Jim watched as the fine particles swirled and disappeared from even his sight and then she finally turned. "Let's take a ride. I'd like to see the lights of the city."
Jim nodded, moving to take the helm, starting the engine.
Susan sat the lid back on the urn, placing it against the seat and rustled in her purse to pull out a CD. "Can we Jim?"
He smiled, taking the disk and put it in the sound system built into the console. Jim turned the boat back toward shore as the music began to play, listening to the electric beat; eerie monologue and sotto lyrics, finally letting a tear fall and run down his face.
'Cause this is thriller, thriller night
And no one's gonna save you from the beast about to strike
You know it's thriller, thriller night
You're fighting for life inside a killer, thriller tonight'
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