In The Middle Of The Night

1023 words - 5 pages

Robert Cormier's psychological thriller In the Middle of the Night takes us on a mysterious journey of revenge; he explores the minds of characters with monstrous thoughts. Orphaned children Lulu and her young brother David were severely injured at a magic show in the Globe Theater on Halloween night when a balcony collapsed upon them. Although Lulu was revived, she dies a spiritual death. She now dedicates her life to revenge on John Paul, the usher who she believes caused the accident of her death. The story shows us that all humans are capable of monstrous behavior.
Lulu is monstrous in her revenge. Since the incident her mind was fixed on revenge against John Paul who, she believes, caused her death experience. David says “She finally looked me straight in the eye. I’m not Lazarus, she said”(48). She did not want to admit that her mind had left when the balcony collapsed because she did not experience the death she was expecting. Lulu’s mind went blank; she didn’t experience the heaven she wanted to. When the balcony fell, David saw Lulu’s face frozen. He describes, “Those blank eyes, frozen in her face, and the smear of blood across her cheek” (43). That’s when David knew that Lulu had died he wanted to know everything, he wanted to know what had happened when her heart stop beating. He waited for her in the rehabilitation center to ask how it was like when she died. Lulu realized while she was dead, there wasn’t a heaven nor hell and began to lose faith in what she believed in. Her mind grew dark and was filled with evil. She had eventually developed her plan of revenge. Lulu takes action by making mysterious phone calls, haunting John Paul and his family. She would call his home every year around the anniversary of her death, making John Paul live with grief for the rest of his life. Lulu wanted John Paul to suffer the way she did, make him feel hopeless, make him feel empty and useless in life. She then decided to torture John Paul by going after his 16 year old son, Denny. She seduced Denny in her plan of murder to get back at John Paul in the worst possible way: making him feel responsible for the death of his son. Lulu is monstrous in her revenge.
John Paul is monstrous in his guilt. The night of the accident John Paul went up to the balcony because he heard noises, which turned out to be rats. He lit a match to investigate. John Paul held the flame too close to the book of matches and the entire packet then caught on fire. He dropped the pack on the ground, and soon the entire balcony caught on fire and fell, killing 22 children. The guilt follows John Paul and haunts the rest of his days. Although he was cleared of any fault in the disaster, his name permanently lingers in the memories of...

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