I made up the conversation with Malcolm
about the lodge. I dreamed the lodge itself, though, vaguely, filling in the
details. And I know that Deirdre became
better equipped after this point–at least for awhile.
I had the nightmare about the fingers–a
narcoleptic flash dream on a job where I typed so much that I did myself some
damage. But eventually you will see that
it has relevance for the story, too.
As for the half-skull rock, that
boulder exists in the waking world, in the general vicinity of Poway,
California. It would doubtless look like
even half a skull only to imaginative and slightly morbid children, however. It used to be a landmark in our drives
through the countryside. Now it broods
over yet one more suburban neighborhood.