Think of a Happy Thought

by Russ

Tinkerbell leant back against the trellis which lined the south wall of the Japanese garden and fumbled for the small box she’d stored in her bra. Removing a single match, she struck it, held it to the end of the self-rolled cigarette between her lips, sucked the smoke deep into her lungs, and exhaled with almost ecstatic relief.

The silence was the most beautiful thing she had ever heard.

Letting herself slide to the floor, she closed her eyes. Even the scratch of the briar against her thighs wasn’t enough to spoil the glorious calm that befell her, though it did serve as a reminder to replace that stupid green ‘dress’ Peter had always insisted she wore with something that actually counted as clothing.

She also needed to book in for a tattoo or ten, she thought, opening her eyes to see the wasteful expanse of virgin flesh on her arms. Nobody could stop her now.

Looking up, the free fairy could just about make out the top of the cliff which marked the north edge of the garden. At first, she winced as she remembered the jarring jabbering noise which had been her constant companion for what felt like her entire life. Right up to the moment she’d stepped off that cliff a few minutes before.

A smile stretched across her face as she recalled her final act before that step.

Lowering her eyes to look straight forward, she let herself gaze into the empty eyes of the body in front of her. The boy, no older than nine, lay supine and splayed, the leafless trunk of a small tree entering his back and leaving his stomach. His intestines coiled around the exposed wood like tinsel. He had been the one who wouldn’t shut up about trains.

Immediately to her right, another child lay at the edge of a large rock. His limbs were concertinaed beneath his torso while his head appeared squashed into itself like an airless football. It was the first time Tinkerbell had ever seen this boy not banging on something in a rhythmless fervour. Blood was pouring from a hole in his skull, creating a crimson flow onto the ground below. Tinkerbell stretched out her right arm to run her fingers through the bloody sand beside the rock.

A weak croaking sound interrupted the stillness. It was Peter.

‘What happened?’ gasped the perennial adolescent, his voice not as shrill as it once was now it gurgled through the blood in his throat.

Tinkerbell. turned left to see his body snapped in two over a memorial bench, his limbs immobile below the point of severance in his spine.

Taking out a small corked vial from where it had been stored in an unstitched seam of her dress, Tinkerbell looked into the fading eyes of the boy who would never grow up and shrugged innocently.

Lifting her wrist to use as a surface, she tapped out a line of the cocaine she had, a short time before at the top of the cliff, told the Lost Boys was the fairy dust they needed to fly.

Just before she told them to jump.

‘Here’s to finally getting some peace and quiet,’ she thought to herself as she sniffed up the powder in a swift and practised motion.