In another circumstance we learned one more aspect of levitation. Not only can a victim be levitated, the persons initiating the act, though totally unexpected, can also be levitated.
One afternoon while walking though the alley behind our town’s clothing store I came upon a broken mannequin in the dumpster. It goes without saying that such a treasure could not be left to the wasteland of the city dump. Even at thirteen I knew the uses for it had to be almost limitless. Just the act of carrying it over to Darold and Harley’s home drew enough stares to confirm my thoughts.
Darold and Harley squealed with delight at seeing my find. But the initial excitement was soon replaced with quiet contemplation on what to do with it. Beads of sweat dribbled down furrowed brows. We were obviously overwhelmed with the possibilities.
Harley’s eyes finally lit up. “I know! We can put a rope around its neck and hang it from a limb along the road going into town. I bet we could get at least one car to drive in the ditch. Then every time we see that car drive by we can say we caused all the dents.”
Both Darold and I were totally disgusted with such a scheme. Obviously a little common sense had to be used, and Harley certainly wasn’t using his. Like we told him, why waste the whole body on just one prank. I mean, we had a head to use, the one hand that wasn’t missing, and two legs. That added up to four body parts to use to scare the crud out of at least four different victims. Try to compare that with a few lousy dents!
“Let’s saw the parts off,” I recommended, “then put a little red paint on them to look like blood. In the mean time maybe we’ll figure out what to do with them.”
In total agreement we scrambled off to their father’s workshop, mannequin in tow. In the midst of transforming our mannequin into a bloody pile of severed parts we came up with an idea for our first victim. Claude Debbervell. He was a kid in our class who had a natural nervous disposition to begin with. And having been in his home on numerous occasions, we knew its total layout, namely where his upstairs bedroom was located. Our plan was to camp out at our favorite fishing hole in McCallister’s cow pasture, then in the dead of night sneak over to Claude’s house, knock on his bedroom window until he woke up and came to the window for a look. Then, while crouched down out of sight, we would thrust up a severed body part. Needless to say we chose the head for this occasion. With a stick shoved into the blood painted neck, and a trickling of bloody paint dribbling down it mouth, there was no doubt we would levitate Claude good.
On the fateful night we spent several hours around the camp fire holding our sides in futile attempts at staving off the pain from laughing as we took turns visually vocalizing in color by Technicolor every conceivable reaction Claude might amuse us with. Of course every vision perceived went off without a hitch. In retrospect we should have spent at least a few minutes putting together an alternative plan just in case any minor flaws arose in the original.
Time quickly past by, and it was time to leave for Claude’s home. Though we all looked forward to our caper, the walk over to his house in the dreary darkness of night became a little unsettling. The night and its sounds seemed to swallow us up. And soon our giggles became less and less frequent, and took on a nervous edge. Once at the house, a gusting wind eerily moaned across the darkened windows. We nervously glanced around as we climbed the rose ladder to Claude’s bedroom window.
Once on the roof, Darold gave us last minute instructions. “Now we have to do this quick,” he whispered, not near the fun in his voice as earlier, “and then get the heck out of here before Claude’s parents have a chance to see us.”
“Yeah,” I replied, a slight quiver to my voice, “we’re going to scare the bejesus out of Claude.”
We crept along the roof to Claude’s window. Darold then knocked on the glass until he heard rustling inside. At the first sign of someone approaching, he thrust the head into view. Because we were already feeling edgy, the agonizing wail that came from inside brought our hair follicles to full attention. It didn’t sound at all like Claude, or anything human for that matter. But we figured we had simply scared him into another dimension of vocal qualities. What ever the reason, we just had to see how high Claude had been levitated. In one quick motion we rose up and peered in. Instantly we were eyeball to eyeball with a horribly pale and wrinkled face. Its mouth was wide open, revealing toothless gums. Our bulging eyes slammed wide open as we matched the goolish face scream for scream. It then levitated and did a backwards somersault over the bed, its skinny white legs kicking air. We, in turn, levitated backwards out into mid air before crashing down into the bushes below. I heard later that with all the screams, Claude’s parents did their own fine job of levitating out of bed before scrambling up the stairs to stop what they were certain was a murder in progress….
Darold, Harley and myself were banned from Claude’s home for a considerable period of time. It was all so unfair. Not that visiting Claude’s home was high on our list of priorities. But we looked at ourselves as being unfairly judged in an innocent prank that contained unforeseen circumstances that were beyond our control. After all, how were we to know Claude’s grandmother was visiting from back east, much less sleeping in Claude’s bedroom? And except for a persistent facial tic and intermittent cackles for no apparent reason, the nerve damage had subsided enough for her to return home. Adding to our disappointment was the fact that Claude slept through the entire incident. And my mother’s public burning of the mannequin parts to show the neighbors she was still in control of her child was totally overreacting. But I decided, along with my observations concerning my expanding knowledge of the laws of levitation, it was in my best interests to keep my thoughts to myself.