There’s a castle at the bottom of the lake like you might find in a fishtank, only this one’s full-sized and full of people walking around like nothing’s going on even though they’re all underwater. It’s a deep lake and you can’t normally see to the bottom of it, but if you row out to the middle on a really clear day and look down you can just about make out the castle and sometimes some of them looking back up at you. One time some of us went diving, pushing our way down and down against the water until the spots danced in front of our eyes but we couldn’t make it down to the castle. Garynisha got sick from it. I guess you can make yourself sick coming up too fast from underwater, and she came up like a cork that last time, nearly all the way out of the water before she splashed down again. She was screaming it hurt so bad and puking all the way back home. They wouldn’t let us out on the lake for years after that, or anyway not without someone watching us, and of course we didn’t feel like explaining what we were trying to do.
This summer though, man, I got a good feeling. This summer’s it for me. I’m going to make it down to that castle if it kills me. It’s been clear for the last couple of weeks and the people in the castle have noticed me watching them. One of them swam partway up and waved at me. He looked really friendly. He had brown eyes, too, which I like. He’s been watching me watching him, I know it. He’ll be waiting for me if I can make it down there. The trick’s getting down far enough. Once you’re there things’ll take care of themselves. Least, that’s the way I figure it. Like I said, this summer’s it for me.