When we last visited the charming coastal town of Collinsport, Maine, Laura Collins, Roger’s long-absent wife, had returned to ask for a divorce and to reclaim her son David. But as her story progresses, it becomes increasingly obvious that something is not-quite right about Laura. She has a peculiar effect on certain people, especially her son, and some very odd and interesting things are happening.
Sam Evan’s painting of a woman amid flames is almost finished. The woman portrayed is clearly Laura Collins. Lines fan out behind her like rays of light or stylized wings. A David-shaped blank spot remains in one lower corner. Everyone who sees the painting is appalled by it and calls it horrible. Actually, I think it’s kind of cool–Sam’s best work from what I’ve seen.
In spite of her opinion of the painting, Vicky feels compelled to buy it and take it back to Collinwood to show the family. When David sees it, he loves it and wants to hang it in his bedroom.
That night, the painting glows and the head of Laura Collins emerges from it until it looms large over the foot of the sleeping boy’s bed. The huge, blonde head does not chant “Tom Stewart killed me! Tom Stewart killed me!” although the floating head of the murdered singer in Tormented is the first thing that springs to my mind.
David awakes as if from a nightmare.
Then things begin to get even weirder.
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