Twinkle, Twinkle, "Killer" Kane
William Peter Blatty
Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub
First published 1961
Hidden away in a brooding Gothic manor in the deep woods is Center Eighteen, a secret military “rest camp” currently housing twenty-seven inmates, all officers who have succumbed to a sudden outbreak of mental illness. Have the men truly lost their minds, are they only pretending to be insane to avoid combat, or is some more sinister conspiracy at work?
Desperate for answers, the Pentagon has placed a brilliant Marine psychiatrist in charge of the base and its deranged occupants. A man of deep faith and compassion, Colonel Kane hopes to uncover the root of the men’s bizarre obsessions. But as Center Eighteen descends into chaos, Kane finds the greatest challenge may be his own buried demons. . . .
The basis of an acclaimed 1980 film (also known as Twinkle, Twinkle, “Killer” Kane), William Peter Blatty's The Ninth Configuration is a thought-provoking, blackly comic journey into the heart of madness—and the outer limits of belief.
Well, you’re bloody well out of your mind! She had acutely sensitive hearing, Hud! Like me, your adorable astronaut! The file, Hud, read it! Read the file! Read the file!” Kane glanced down at the page. “Out loud, out loud! It’s part of my therapy!” Fell had moved to a window where he watched the two men silently. Kane looked to him and he nodded. “Very well,” said Kane. “Sit down.” Cutshaw sat. Putting an arm around Kane’s neck, he leaped nimbly onto his lap. And froze; waiting; staring deep
miscast—one way or another. Being born into this world: that’s the ultimate miscasting.” He paused and seemed to be brooding over what he had just said, feeling for his thoughts with gentle, surgical fingers. “I—think that’s what drives us mad. I mean—if fish could survive—actually survive out of water—they would go mad.” Kane looked up at Fell. “Do you know what I mean?” “No. But maybe I’m drunk.” Kane picked up the missal, sat down behind the desk. He put the missal into a drawer and slid it
it! How did you get it, Bemish? How?” “I wouldn’t dare tell you that,” said Bemish. “Mighty Manfred would kill me!” Then he whipped the hammer deftly out of Captain Groper’s grasp and instructed him, serenely, to “Kindly stand aside.” “You little—!” Groper had lifted his arm as though to strike at Captain Bemish, and, at this, Kane intervened. “Captain Groper, I am shocked—shocked at your behavior!” “But he’s—!” “Later we can discuss it, Captain. But presently, you’re dismised.” “Listen—!”
madman. He’d known all along they would find him out; that sooner or later the tape would unsnarl. Meantime, what was it he’d hoped to accomplish? Kane rested his head on top of the desk, straining to remember; and slept for ten minutes; deeply; heavily. Kane dreamed. It was disjointed, wildly jumbled. And in places, contradictory. First, he was in Korea, someplace far beyond the Parallel, kneeling over a body, a dripping wire still in his hand. The enemy (enemy?) was in the habit of a
head, as the car screeched away. Then he reached for a cigarette, looked to the men tormenting Groper. On his face there was no expression; it was a fixed and graven mask. But in the eyes there was movement: subtle greenish flecks spinning in a whirlpool of brown. “Attention!” bellowed Groper. “Dammit, attention! Attention!” “I want my Ho Chi Minh decoder ring!” pouted the inmate wearing the face guard. “I sent in the box-tops! Now where in the hell is the freaking ring!” “Whoever he is behind