The Shining

Part One. Prefatory Matters Chapter 7. In Another Bedroom


Danny awoke with the booming still loud in his ears, and the drunk, savagely pettish voice crying hoarsely: Come out here and take your medicine! I'll find you! I'll find youl
But now the booming was only his racing heart, and the only voice in the night was the faraway sound of a police siren.
He lay in bed motionlessly, looking up at the wind-stirred shadows of the leaves on his bedroom ceiling. They twined sinuously together, making shapes like the vines and creepers in a jungle, like patterns woven into the nap of a thick carpet. He was clad in Doctor Denton pajamas, but between the pajama suit and his skin he had grown a more closely fitting singlet of perspiration.
"Tony?" he whispered. "You there?"
No answer.
He slipped out of bed and padded silently across to the window and looked out on Arapahoe Street, now still and silent. It was two in the morning. There was nothing out there but empty sidewalks drifted with fallen leaves, parked cars, and the long-necked streetlight on the corner across from the Cliff Brice gas station. With its hooded top and motionless stance, the streetlight looked like a monster in a space show.
He looked up the street both ways, straining his eyes for Tony's slight, beckoning form, but there was no one there.
The wind sighed through the trees, and the fallen leaves rattled up the deserted walks and around the hubcaps of parked cars. It was a faint and sorrowful sound, and the boy thought that he might be the only one in Boulder awake enough to hear it. The only human being, at least. There was no way of knowing what else might be out in the night, slinking hungrily through the shadows, watching and scenting the breeze.
I'll find you! I'll find you!
"Tony?" he whispered again, but without much hope.
Only the wind spoke back, gusting more strongly this time, scattering leaves across the sloping roof below his window. Some of them slipped into the raingutter and came to rest there like tired dancers.
Danny... Danneee...
He started at the sound of that familiar voice and craned out the window, his small hands on the sill. With the sound of Tony's voice the whole night seemed to have come silently and secretly alive, whispering even when the wind quieted again and the leaves were still and the shadows had stopped moving. He thought he saw a darker shadow standing by the bus stop a block down, but it was hard to tell if it was a real thing or an eye-trick.
Don't go, Danny...
Then the wind gusted again, making him squint, and the shadow by the bus stop was gone... if it had ever been there at all. He stood by his window for
(a minute? an hour?)
some time longer, but there was no more. At last he crept back into his bed and pulled the blankets up and watched the shadows thrown by the alien streetlight turn into a sinuous jungle filled with flesh-eating plants that wanted only to slip around him, squeeze the life out of him, and drag him down into a blackness where one sinister word flashed in red:
Part Two. Closing Day