‘Twin Peaks: The Final Dossier – A Deep Dive Review and Analysis (Part 3)’ is now available on Audio, written by Mat Cult and read by Laura Stewart, exclusively for our Patreon supporters. For just $3 a month you will have access to our full library of Audio content, plus three new uploads every week. To sign up visit our Patreon page: https://www.patreon.com/25YL
Just as it appears Dale Cooper is going through time loops in Season 3, restarting over and over with Phillip Gerard asking him “is it future or is it past” or Lodge Laura whispering in his ear, Mark Frost’s The Final Dossier presents us with a number of repeating cycles: of various inflicted traumas, of darkness and light, and even in the graphic design elements of Tamara Preston’s case file folders.
The tabs of Tamara’s files begin at the top, then middle, then bottom, as case files are presented as standard three-tab manilla file folders. Every three files begin at the top and descend, then the next file starts over again at the top, in a subtle presentation of going back to starting positions.
Sometimes, a grouping of three case files shows complete cycles like trauma from revealed infidelities repeating through generations. In other groupings, we see the progression from one cycle into another, whether it’s a character’s intrapersonal alchemy or their journey from the light into darkness or from darkness into light. The full cycle (from light to darkness to light again) seems to be on a larger time scale so it’s hard for human beings to fully experience, therefore it seems our part in the cycle is usually to move from one of the states to the other.
I concede, the tabs could be a happy accident. But why do I still think these case files are a fractal representation of cycles? Each character, as many readers have noted, does not exist within their file alone. Annie, for example, first appears in the Double R file, is barely in her own named file, and we didn’t find out “how’s Annie?” until two case files later in one titled ‘Back In Twin Peaks’.
Also, characters like Gersten Hayward or James Hurley are not even afforded their own case file, instead are lumped into other characters’ files (in Gersten’s case it’s her sister Donna’s file, and James is in Jacoby’s file). I propose this was purposeful because each cycle of three file folders completes a particular kind of story arc and/or thematic exploration. In other words, each set of three files forms and completes a cycle. Though this is technically my interpretation, I will structure the rest of my book review and analysis in these cycles to illustrate better what I mean.
By the way:
For those of you that read the e-book version (at least on Kindle), these tabs are not there. They were cropped, leaving room for only Tamara’s words. The eBook loses all the classy presentation that was left and it makes each file look no better than an email. Buy the hardcover. Skip the e-book.
Cycle One: Personal Relationships, Both Public and Secret
The three file folder titles are:
- Shelly Johnson
- Hornes and Haywards
- Donna Hayward
This first cycle is about the difference between public relationships and secret relationships, and the damage inflicted on all those involved when the secrets are revealed.
In the first case file, the book’s first triangle of public/secret relationships is introduced: Shelly/Bobby/Laura. Shelly and Bobby were the public relationship. Shelly learned Bobby was cheating on her with Laura Palmer. The pain caused to Shelly by the revelation sent her away from Bobby straight to Leo Johnson, while Bobby found drugs (and even killed a guy in Fire Walk With Me).
When both Laura and Leo died, Bobby and Shelly had a chance to get out from under the pain, back to starting positions if you will, and they chose to start over from a basis of love rather than fear. They married a year later and Becky was born seven months after that. The couple received help from his mother (Betty Briggs) and Norma to get a house of their own and Becky was raised in supportive environment. This in itself is a complete cycle: from light, through a period of darkness, and back to light, with room for another cycle of darkness as well. As all things in Twin Peaks are fractal, I cite this is as evidence to my interpretation.
Hornes and Haywards
The second case file contains another (and more expansive) metaphorical explosion from a public/secret relationship triangle’s reveal: Will/Eileen/Ben. Will and Eileen Hayward were married when Eileen and Ben Horne had a secret affair that as per Episode 29 conceived Donna Hayward. The Final Dossier mentions none of this explicitly, but Tamara Preston was able to ascertain that something untoward happened that night at the Hayward fireplace.
Much as Bobby and Shelly fell into darkness for a time, we see:
- Will and Eileen Hayward divorce within two years
- Will shuttering his practice and opening a smaller practice in Vermont
- Donna Hayward moving to New York and becoming a famous model in the fast lane
- Eileen needing Ben Horne to take care of her financially
- Gersten Hayward being unable to handle much of any pressure
Ben Horne experienced a second explosion that affected him personally; the literal bank explosion that put his daughter Audrey in a coma. She was only at the bank because she was protesting the sale of Ghostwood land by her own father. This will not be dealt with now (just as Dale’s disappearance and Major Briggs’ death in a fire will be dealt with later), as this cycle of case files only explores how the Hayward family deals with the fallout from the metaphorical explosion.
In the third case file, we see Donna move away like her father and sister Harriet (who became a paediatrician), but instead of becoming a healer outright she became a model, got into the fast lane of fame, married a venture capitalist, and got addicted to drugs. All of this, I’d say, in an attempt to outrun the trauma she incurred from the revealed secret that her parentage was a lie.
It took four stints in rehab and Eileen’s death before Donna was able to turn her life around. Just like when Laura (and also Leo) died, the removal of a source of the trauma was an inciting point of change for Donna. From this starting point forward, she stayed sober, divorced her husband, became a regular 12 Step Program sponsor, reconciled with Will, and lived a simple life near him while helping run his practice in Vermont. Donna went through a cycle of darkness into light.
While Harriet overcame the trauma right away and Donna went through a period of darkness before turning it around, Gersten was unable to come to terms with any of it at any point in time. After Eileen died, Gersten’s “inability to cope with everyday living” just got worse and she turned to drugs and dealer Steven Burnett. She dated him before he met Becky and continued to do so after he and Becky married. This formed the third public/secret triangle: Becky/Steven/Gersten.
Why was Gersten’s story in Donna’s case file rather than her own? Because it needed to be included in a cycle of three case files. The Shelly/Bobby/Laura triangle begins this cycle, and the Becky/Steven/Gersten cycle ties this first cycle together.
Shelly gets involved with Leo like her mother did with Shelly’s father.
Becky Briggs got involved in a triangular relationship like her mother did.
Gersten Hayward got involved in a triangular relationship like her mother did.
And much like Will and Ben, and Shelly and Laura, were positive and negative poles of their respective triangles, Becky and Gersten are the positive and negative poles of their own public/secret relationship triangle.
Cycles repeat. They happen organically, go back to starting positions, and repeat.
Cycle Two: How you conduct yourself in business projects your inner self
The three file folder titles are:
- Ben and Audrey Horne
- Jerry Horne
- The Double R
This slate of case files focus on business owners and how they conduct themselves. If they stay true to themselves, business will flourish and it will help people. If they remain entrenched in secrets, their business will damage their community. In The Final Dossier, businesses amplify the intention and state of mind of their owners.
Ben and Audrey Horne
The first case file has Ben Horne dealing with the fallout from the twin explosions in the Hayward living room and the bank with his daughter. He goes through a dark period right away which is when he sells the land to a nameless company that would build a prison on it. He spends the rest of his time up until today dealing with the aftereffects of that sale:
- The irreparable rift between him and Audrey
- The blight on Twin Peaks that the prison became
Repenting these two things, Ben began conducting himself much more ethically, both as a person and in business. He also began helping others, such as paying the bills for Eileen Hayward and Annie Blackburn. Mostly, he is balancing the scales that the prison has tipped towards darkness. The parent company of Ghostwood Correctional Facility is so entrenched in secrets that it is unnamed. And as the pattern goes, secrets breed darkness. And there is no bigger “blight on our land” than the prison. Unlike Donna, Shelly and Bobby, the inciting participant keeping Ben’s trauma alive is the prison and it will not die (therefore releasing him and giving him a chance to reset his intentions). He will be pushing against this darkness for the rest of his life.
Audrey isolates herself after she realizes two things:
- Her protesting and injury did nothing to stop her father from selling the land.
- She was pregnant
She does the work to begin a business, even marries her accountant Charlie in a beneficial financial move, but she also seems to be a victim to the darkness brought upon her as the mother of the Double’s child. This balancing act between the light and the darkness to me says Audrey’s always fighting against her circumstances, though her questionable undocumented period of time after closing her salon implies that (whether she’s fighting or not) she’s trapped in a period of darkness.
Her trauma is both tied to her father, which she seems to overcome by living a simple life and going into business on her own, but also to Dale Cooper’s Double. And as with Annie Blackburn and Harry Truman later on, she could not overcome the trauma incurred by her proximity to Lodgespace, and she remains trapped by it. This seems very much like how her father is trapped by pushing against the prison’s darkness his whole life, except hers is on a spiritual/metaphorical level. This dynamic introduced is very much how Lawrence Jacoby and Margaret Coulson are offering tools to push back the darkness, one in a worldly way and one in a spiritual manner. More on all of this later.
In the second case file, we see Jerry staying true to himself and playing to his strengths his whole life, culminating in his marijuana business rewarding him with massive success. He is social but also prone to lone experiences in nature, has simple needs, enjoys, and loves experiencing his present. As a seeming result, his business naturally helps people’s mental health.
The Double R
In the third case file, we get a history of Norma’s parents and the Diner. Not only did Norma’s father Marty have a secret business, he also had a secret family with the woman who ran the Weary Traveler. Therefore in addition to running his businesses, there’s yet another relationship triangle: Ilsa/Marty/Vivian. When Ilsa discovered this other family in 1978, the family broke apart. Marty left and Ilsa died within six years. Marty was stuck with Vivian, who took out her frustrations on him. He died soon after Ilsa.
As this case file cycle is following businesses and the people who run them, we follow the fallout from the Ilsa/Marty/Vivian triangle here, including the backstory on Annie Blackburn, who didn’t know her “uncle” Marty was her actual father. In its way, this is a repeat of the lie Donna Hayward experienced. Annie was dealt one bad hand after another, including a stepfather (Roland Blackburn) who tried to assault her, a mother who liked her best when she was out of the way, and whose only bright spot of community was the presence of Norma’s kindness.
We also get the entire story of Vivian up to the report of her death; once she ascended to the class she always wanted (by way of finally marrying the right husband for that), she was able to live a quiet life. Tamara Preston asks if she was emotionally crippled early in her life, and passed on her injury to those around her, or are some people just born bad? Regardless, Preston thinks there’s a special place in hell for people like Vivian whether or not she was born with the darkness or succumbed to it, because no one should inflict damage on people the way she did to Annie.
Once Norma, who was conducting business as the owner of the Diner (and putting her whole heart and soul into that), was able to sever ties with Vivian, she was able to remove that last piece of the Ilsa/Marty/Vivian triangle from her life and had a new starting point where she can reset from that initial trauma. She decided to move on and help Annie in every way possible, including giving her a job at Norma’s Double R.
In Ben’s chapter we see how personal atonement follows from acceptance of what he’d done. In Jerry’s we see how changed perceptions are mental as well as physical, and that the right frequency can literally move mountains. In The Double R chapter, we see how at the core of a diner and hotel business they are extensions of the people who run them, and that public and secret relationships extend fractally into the work those people put into the world. Businesses amplify the will of the people who run them, for good or for ill.
Cycle Three: How’s Annie?
The three file folder titles are:
- Annie Blackburn
- Windom Earle
- Back in Twin Peaks
This cycle gives us Annie’s story from meeting Dale to her time in the present, by way of the history between Dale Cooper, Windom Earle and Caroline. While it is here to tell us what’s happened to Annie after the Season 2 finale, these files also show what happens to someone when they begin in a cycle of darkness and continue to move through life colliding with darkness, seemingly unable to escape.
In the first case file, Annie finds fleeting happiness with Dale, who may or may not be bringing previous trauma from Caroline into the relationship. Annie is barely even mentioned. Her story up to her arrival in Twin Peaks was in the Double R, and this file merely sets up the backstory of Dale and Windom as Annie is described in relation to Dale.
In particular, this case file contains Tamara Preston’s angle that Dale Cooper has white knight syndrome that began with circumstances that had him at a young age taking care of his mother, and continued into his romantic relationship with Caroline Earle. Tamara called out Annie as possibly being next in this pattern.
The second case file is about Earle’s backstory and is describing the force that will upend Annie’s life once again.
This file covered Windom’s journey from inspiration to join the bureau, to working in Project Bluebook, to marrying Caroline. He has some issue with Caroline wanting her career over having children, which could imply this is where his hubris began to unravel him (or was he always evil? The question began with Vivian can easily be asked here in regards to Windom Earle). Then Preston covers Cooper’s 1980s serial killer investigation which both culminated in Windom Earle being revealed as the killer, and Earle pushing Cooper and Caroline together romantically like some “deranged, vengeful cupid.” This inverts the pattern, but there is still a triangle formed with trauma incurred therefrom: Windom/Caroline/Dale.
After Cooper and Caroline’s one weekend where they gave into passion, Earle went from “private madman to pubic murderer” as he injured Dale and killed Caroline in attempts to silence the truth that he was the serial killer. This is an inversion of the romantic triangles revealing truth from earlier chapters; instead of an explosion when two parties learn of each other as with the Ben/Eileen/Will triangle, this triangle immediately exploded as Dale and Caroline finally gave into Windom’s staging and the triangle became real. And the explosion was not the revealed truth of the triangle’s reality; it was the revealed truth of Windom as the hidden serial killer.
Cooper went to counseling after these events and made a good go of becoming a better agent and person after this “most difficult lesson of his life,” but Preston talks about his white knight behaviors as likely not purged by this. She spoke of his behavior beginning with Caroline then continuing into how he handled the Laura Palmer case, and suggested Annie could’ve been the love of a lifetime or yet another case of his knightly tendencies at work.
Back in Twin Peaks
The third case file ends the Earle storyline, as well as finally describes Annie’s fate as a Dougie-like state of a character. We get a minor summary of the Miss Twin Peaks portion of Episode 29 before Earle, Annie and Dale go into the Black Lodge portal. Then we get Annie’s serene but non-speaking condition after this. We find out Norma takes on her care in lieu of Vivian’s lack of interest, with funding from Ben Horne.
Annie’s condition after this is almost always completely detached from her surroundings, and seems to be the perfect definition of what Margaret Coulson called a passenger, except for two things:
- One year to the day of her exit from the Lodge, Annie attempted suicide, followed by saying “I’m fine” the next morning.
- Once a year down to that same minute, she repeats “I’m fine.” Otherwise she says nothing.
What is this cycle saying? Sometimes it’s hard to catch a break.
Also, once you’ve been connected to the Lodge, you’ll be pushing against its darkness every day of your life. Unless you give into it.
Cycle Four: Philosophies and tools, in order alchemically
The three file folder titles are:
- Miss Twin Peaks
- Dr. Lawrence Jacoby
- Margaret Coulson
In the first cycle, we saw how public and secret relationships cause trauma that must be overcome. In the second cycle, we see how businesses can amplify both trauma and healing. And in the third cycle, we see how Annie, a product of both a secret business and secret relationship, dealt with the world as she tried to manoeuvre through the darkness she was born into. In this fourth cycle of case files, we see three philosophies that characters can use as tools as they navigate through their own dark cycles.
Miss Twin Peaks
The first philosophy on display, the easiest one, is to fall victim to the power of the darkness. The philosophy is that of the men that Lana “The Widow Milford” Budding ensnares with the supernatural powers of her attractiveness and/or the Owl Ring she appears to give her beaus before they die and leave her money.
Lana is shown repeatedly luring people to her and ensnaring them in a series of short marriages like a black widow in a very appetite-satisfaction kind of way. This behavior is like the one Vivian employs, though unlike Vivian (who wanted to improve her station) Lana is given nearly zero characterization in her case file. I would not be at all surprised if Lana is only supposed to be a ring bearer for the Lodge. She is implied to give it to Dougie Milford during their wedding night, and is with Trump at the time he’s in a picture wearing the ring. We see the appetite and satisfaction of her suitors go asunder, and we do not see the ending of Lana’s life at all. She may as well have been devoured by the darkness literally. No one cares where you end up if you live in a Black Lodge way. At best, you’re referenced as “Tiffany bag trash.”
Dr. Lawrence Jacoby
In the second case file, we learn how Jacoby’s ethical code violations led him to Hawaii to regroup and he begins to heal. I describe his character arc well in Part 2 so I won’t go too deeply into it, but he lives a life of exploration. Suffice to say, he goes on a quest find his purpose and hones a method of intrapersonal alchemy and personal responsibility, then goes about sharing it with people to cope with the darkness he sees encroaching upon the world.
At the end of Jacoby’s file is a miniaturized cycle of Big Ed and Norma finally finding each other after decades of roadblocks, with James’ story running through the middle of theirs. James, like Jacoby, runs into trouble, gets out of town, simplifies his life and then finds peace. He’s both a reflection of the lesson we’re supposed to get from Jacoby, and a reinforcement of Jacoby’s process of finding himself. Preston’s reaction to James’ story also puts Annie’s cycle in perspective; that an innocent person can be a collateral victim to the dark.
In the third file, we get to see the philosophy not as a learned process as in Jacoby’s file, but as it’s already been internalized and lived in Margaret’s life. As I said about Jacoby, most of Margaret’s philosophy is well delved into in Part 2 of the Deep Dive, but I will paraphrase some of her guideposts: No one is helpless, no one is beyond helping. Help those who need it but make sure you help yourself as well so you CAN be helpful.
Summing up the lesson from the cycle of the three philosophies of this cycle, you don’t just live selfishly for yourself like Lana if you want to live in the Light. For that, you must help people as you help yourself. Grow your light. Help others grow their light. Darkness yields to light. Just like Lana’s story yields quickly to Jacoby’s personal accountability philosophy, and Jacoby’s philosophy alchemically evolves into Margaret’s spiritual message.
Cycle Five: What Happened to Cooper?
The three file folder titles are:
- Sheriff Harry Truman
- Major Briggs
- Phillip Jeffries
This cycle became mostly plot-focused, and it shifted into having the readers interpret things on our own. We got case study after case study of how characters dealt with their trauma. We saw what happened when supernatural darkness set upon them. We were given a given path that leads to intrapersonal alchemy. And now, we are given Dale Cooper’s scenario within this established framework.
Sheriff Harry Truman
In the first file, we get a quick rundown of the kind of good man Harry is. We also get the idea that Harry could’ve overcome the betrayal by Josie. That’s not what seems to have broken him. It was Dale’s disappearance that did that.
I propose, much like Annie’s catatonia after her time in the Lodge, Harry’s proximity to that Lodge portal messed with him and invited a permanent darkness over his life.
There isn’t much to this file. I believe it was included because we needed to see Dale leave willingly into the Lodge.
In the second file, we get the scenario of the fire at Listening Post Alpha that was probably a cover for Briggs’ escape from the Double. From there we get the intersecting paths of the Double and Briggs over the next 25 years as the Double tries to get coordinates from Briggs to find one of two things:
- the monster (that we know as Experiment Model)
- the grand central station of Lodgespace junction points
We don’t get much perspective on the Major himself. He seems to be the keeper of coordinates more than a character, but he is most definitely a force of good versus the Double, who we hear about by way of his expansive criminal empire. Again, the Double is running a business that amplifies his intent much in the same way as the Horne brothers in the second cycle.
The Major is, however, an obvious force of good.
In the third file, we get a look at how Phillip disappeared in a similar manner as Dale. We also get the impression that Phillip was the best of the best, but that at some point he became what he was investigating rather than investigated the phenomena.
I suspect these three case files are supposed to make the readers ask three successive questions:
- Where did Cooper go?
- Could he be strong like Briggs and fight his shadow from Briggs’ template of how to do it?
- Or was Cooper’s path that of Jeffries, where he turned from one of the best agents into the thing he was investigating?
We are shown Dale’s path between entering the Lodge in Episode 29 disappearing again at the end of Part 17, and then we are shown how Major Briggs fought against the Double’s darkness, and Jeffries became part of the timeless sea he was investigating. And we are asked, which character’s template did Cooper use as he dealt with the Lodge. Was Dale able to fight back against the dark like Briggs, or was the darkness just going to take him down and unstick him from time?
Cycle Six: Drink full
The three file folder titles are:
- Ray Monroe
This final cycle sends us off into the weeds as we explore what happened to Phillip Jeffries. Whichever character’s footsteps (Briggs or Jeffries) we decided Dale Cooper followed, this cycle prompts us to ask the same kind of question about the reality and darkness within Twin Peaks.
“I’m not gonna talk about Judy.” This is the only verifiable fact around the Phillip Jeffries scene in Fire Walk With Me, except for the carving of “Joudy” into a wall in Buenos Ares. These verified points happen on both sides of Phillip Jeffries entry and exit points in the movie. This connects Tamara Preston to Sumerian utukku mythology. Which leads us to the conclusion that BOB and Judy are likely two of these utukku, possibly the ones that can end the world as we know it.
Tamara Preston has this to say:
“So what do we do with this information? How does it change the focus of what we’re looking at here, if at all? What concrete leads was Jeffries onto? Are these just the insane ramblings of a man who, as you well know, swam in a sea filled with extravagant and esoteric conspiracy theories? A sure sign that he lost not only his way but his mind? Or, do we calmly sit with this information and see whether and how it fits into what we already know? In other words: do our jobs.”
In the second case file, we get a minimal amount of Ray Monroe backstory as he is just a goalpost for the Double to find. What information does he have? The location of his likely employer, Phillip Jeffries.
We also get information on the original state of the Dutchman before it is untethered from time by fire, not unlike how Major Briggs himself was. Also just like Briggs, Preston makes a case that Phillip Jeffries found access to the same metaphysical portal system. She proposes the Double is looking for Jeffries to gain access to this place.
Then Preston makes a case that Jeffries is a person outside of time who no longer is able to know when and where he is. Which sounds a lot like Dale’s point of view at the end of Part 18, but is an unmentioned parallel here.
In the third case file, the showdown in the sheriff station happens similarly to how it does in Part 17, providing us with the documented disappearance of both Dale and Diane.
Preston looks into Dale’s first disappearance and discovers how microfiche and police reports declare Laura Palmer is not dead. Or, more to the point, they declare her disappeared rather than a dead body.
I think the town is looking away from what really happened, as every single person Tamara asks about Laura says exactly the same slow measured response after fogging over: “Yeah that sounds right. That’s how I remember it.” But that’s for Part 4 of this Deep Dive series. As of now, I have to work with the narrative structure of these cycles.
What seems to be happening is the darkness is literally descending over Twin Peaks, from its residents to its documented facts. To solidify the darkness, we are presented with the story of Sarah Palmer, heavily implying that her darkness (and therefore the darkness that befell Laura and then Audrey, Annie and Cooper, to name a few) began in New Mexico. And it’s arrived in Twin Peaks strong as ever.
It also seems that the darkness is trying to infiltrate Tamara Preston herself. In her own words:
“…my own thoughts about every one of these events are growing fuzzier and more indistinct the longer I stay here, creeping into my mind like a mist. I can feel a kind of mental lassitude physically advancing on me. Something’s wrong.”
She goes on to say she doesn’t know if the “something wrong” is with her location, or herself. With this question, I am again reminded of her question made of Vivian: was Vivian emotionally crippled or just born bad? In this context, Is Twin Peaks where the darkness has infiltrated, or is it within Tamara Preston?
Another way to frame the question, and the more traditionally accepted way to ask it: Is Tamara Preston becoming untethered from her original time and place just by staying in Twin Peaks?
Whichever answer, Preston will do her job: calmly sit with this information and see whether and how it fits into what we already know. Because she’s a Blue Rose Task Force Agent. And it’s her turn: will she become unstuck from time like Jeffries and Cooper, or will she push back against the darkness like Briggs, Jacoby and Margaret?
Tamara’s own cycle
The three items in Tamara’s cycle are:
- Interoffice Memorandum
- The dossier itself (formed by the Leo Autopsy Report and 18 case files)
- Final Thoughts
This quote from Interoffice Memorandum summarizes a concept related to the mission statement of this book:
The pace of change is extremely hard to perceive at close range–it’s virtually invisible day-to-day–but viewed from a distance, it moves like lightning. The trials and trivialities of daily life, I’ve concluded, act on the mind as a kind of local anesthetic, numbing us to the relentless passage and ravages of time. I’ve also learned–a humbling admission, to be sure–to view this effect as a kind of mercy.
Per how Tamara reacts within all the files in her new dossier, I suspect this anaesthetic that numbs us to the passage of time referenced above is the opposite of the foggy “uncanny penumbra” clouding her understanding of events at the end of the Today case file. In Cooper terms, the penumbra would be the Double of the more merciful aspects of time.
This darkened change of perception may be illustrated best by this quote from Final Thoughts:
Along the way, as we struggle to come to terms and comprehend why this strange fate has befallen us, time becomes no longer our ally–the spendthrift assumption of our youth–but our executioner.
Instead of falling victim to time, and instead of accepting that fuzzy new timeline of events from the final cycle of her dossier, she chooses to fight against the darkness as I’ve described in Part 2 of this Deep Dive. As Ben Horne does against the prison’s effects. As Audrey does against the darkness enveloping her life. Instead of accepting “truths” at face value, she looks through the darkness in search of enlightenment.
In a way, Preston went through an alchemic evolution from the beginning of this book to the end as she understood more and more of Cooper’s journey between his disappearances from Twin Peaks. And I suspect by now, she has a heart of gold. She is tuned to a different frequency than the darkness of alternate events that descended on Twin Peaks, and she went through that darkness literally by plane into the light where she will likely find some enlightenment about the truth of Twin Peaks’ situation while she sits with all of this information and sees whether and how it fits into what she already knows.
I could go on. I could explain exactly what I mean by the darkness and malleable truth, and the state of reality that describes exactly how “Laura Palmer did not die” is a falsity rather than a new reality, but I’m not going to do that to you here. That’s for Part 4.