Unlike most evenings at the Met, the musicians’ lamps in the orchestra pit had been extinguished so that, as the Met’s great gold curtain rose to reveal the scrim used for Das Rheingold, the auditorium would be in total darkness with the exception of the theatre’s red emergency exit signs.
Like a distant rumble from the deep, the orchestra’s double basses began to play the low E flat which signaled the start of Wagner’s opera. As a series of filmed projections evoked images of sunlight breaking through the waters of the Rhine, Brad’s eyelids began to feel heavy.
Why was Kevin at the opera, he wondered. And who was that ridiculous old bag sitting next to him?
The policeman’s thoughts began to blur as the light bleeding through the scrim revealed Wagner’s three Rhinemaidens scampering about the darkened stage. Whoever had designed this production had done a spectacular job of making the entire area look as if it were truly underwater. With so many tiny slivers of light darting back and forth, the effect was absolutely miraculous.
But for people like Sergeant Carson, it was also dangerously hypnotic. Within moments, the detective’s body had slumped in the chair. His head tilted backwards and, by the time the first Rhinemaiden opened her mouth to sing, Brad was sound asleep, dreaming of Kevin’s soft touch.