Peter stared down at the little, lifeless creature in his hands. Her light had glimmered, then faded, and now all that was left was a dull, cold husk.
Clutching Tinkerbell to his chest, Peter Pan dropped to his knees and wept; the grief manifesting in one heart-wrenching, mournful wail.
The boy tried to bite back the sobs, but he wasn’t only grieving for his lost fairy; he was also grieving for himself.
How would he get home? He couldn’t fly. He just knew that he couldn’t. Not now; not after having his mind filled with dark, dreadful thoughts by that lunatic sitting behind him.
Michael had been sobbing on the floor at the end of his brother’s bed, but when he heard Peter’s desperate cry, he had looked up, and realised the boy had not gone; had not left him.
Wiping his nose with the back of his sleeve, childishly, Michael got to his feet and tentatively approached the weeping boy.
The child grew still, but did not turn or look around; he kept his eyes cast on the fairy corpse he still held.
Michael grew a little confident, ‘You can’t fly now, can you?’
He sounded smug, not needing an answer, and it made Peter’s anger rise up,
‘You killed her!’, he screamed, standing and turning to face the man. Michael looked like he had been slapped. ’You pulled off her wing… and put her in that jar… it’s your fault!’
‘It wasn’t me; it was you!’, Michael yelled, his momentary upset at the boy’s words, gone. ’You must have stopped believing.’
‘Of course I didn’t!’ It was Peter’s turn to look outraged.
Gazing back down at the body of his loyal friend, the tears welled up once more, and Peter sat down heavily on the edge of the window seat.
Michael knelt down in front of him. ‘Don’t worry, Peter… we can play a game!’
His voice was suddenly so full of excitement, Peter looked up and stared at him in disgust. Michael seemed not to notice.
‘What shall we play? Hunting grizzlies? Fighting pirates?’
Peter continued to stare at the man for a moment, then returned his attention to Tinkerbell. Michael’s eye twitched in irritation; perhaps jealousy. Standing up and moving forward, he went to snatch the fairy away… but Peter grabbed hold of his hand, pushing it away.
‘NO! Don’t touch her!’ The scuffle between them didn’t last long. Michael soon prized Tink’s corpse from the boy, and dashed from the nursery with it.
‘NO!’, Peter screamed once more, running to catch up with the man as he hurried down the stairs and into the kitchen.
‘Give her back!… Please!’ The boy desperately tried to grab the fairy, but Michael kept pushing him away.
Reaching the sink, Michael dropped the tiny body into it and turned on the tap, which blasted into life with violent ferocity.
Peter’s scream, then, was even more desperate and pleading than the last. But it was too late. All the wretched child could do was lean against the sink, and look down into the plug hole’s black depths. She was gone... forever. Just like Wendy.
Tears, again, streaked Peter Pan’s face… then he felt numb.
’You can play with me, now, Peter,’ Michael’s voice was calm… creepy. Peter couldn’t think; he didn’t know what to do. ‘It will be fun.’ Peter did not move.
‘Let’s go and finish the Indian ceremony...’ Michael gestured towards the hallway, but Peter still did not respond.
The man grew frustrated, and grabbed the boy by the wrist.
Peter immediately flew into action, passionately trying to resist Michael’s grasp as he was pulled towards the stairs.
‘Let go of me, you murderer!’
Michael ignored the yells, and kicks, and punches, and dragged Peter back upstairs, wrestling him into one of the abandoned bedrooms, and pinning him down on the bare mattress of the bed.
This room was gloomy, despite the daylight outside; it was quite small, and all it’s windows were pasted over with sun-aged newspaper. As in the rest of the house, bits and pieces were strewn about, and Michael grabbed up some rope from amongst the clutter, with which to tie Peter’s hands.
Once bound, Peter felt Michael release him, and the room grew still and silent.
‘Thank you for not leaving me, Peter.’ Michael whispered, eventually, ‘I knew you wouldn’t go.’
Peter managed to sit up and turn just in time to see the door slamming shut behind Michael as he left.