Edward stopped his work when the frogs quit their night-chorus. Someone was prowling about. Outside the walls surrounding his property two teenage boys crept through a grove of palms:
“I’m tellin’ you Johnny, that stone floated like a balloon, right over his head.”
“Okay, but if mama finds out I sneaked out on a school night again, I’m done for.”
“Come on, you chicken; boost me up...”
A few minutes later, the two boys peered wide-eyed over the top of an 8’ coral wall. By the light of the moon, they saw a short man in coveralls standing motionless before an intricate stone machine.
“What’s that thing?” Johnny whispered.
“I don’t know. Keep it down ‘for he hears us.”
The man didn’t move for a long time and Johnny grew impatient.
“He ain’t doin’ nothin’, I’ve gotta’ go... hey... is he singin’?”
A low chant echoed through the night as the man finally broke his trance. He raised his hands into the orans position and slowly repeated a single word over and over.
Suddenly the wheels on the machine came to life and began to turn. A shower of sparks erupted from it and a boulder beside the man shakily lifted into the air. But just as quickly as it happened, it ended. The machine went still, the rock dropped, and the man violently turned towards the boys.
“Who’s there?!” he shouted.
The boys didn’t stop running until they reached their beds.
Satisfied that he was alone again, Edward matter-of-factly went back to his block and tackle.
On December 4, 1951, after 32 years of solitary work, Edward Leedskalnin hung a sign on his front door: “Going to the hospital.” Three days later he met his end, but the mystery and legend of his Coral Castle was just beginning.