I wrote this as several different entries, over the course of several months, in reaction to some things that were happening in my life. I kind of like it except for the ending. The ending sucks. I've since realized that the ending was nothing but an illusion.
It's all a metaphor, of course. I like metaphors. You can hide behind them and still get your point across.
I'm not really sure why I'm combining them into a single entry like this. Probably just boredom.
Chest heaving and heart pounding, he fills his lungs with sweet, sweet air. All of his senses activate at once. He relishes the sight, sound, and smell of his brief surfacing into the world of light. Before going under once again, he uses the last of his precious air to scream out a name. The depths are peaceful, but he knows they will kill him eventually. He begins to sink, smiling.
As his feet touch bottom, he instinctively jumps. He is surprised - these waters had seemed a lot deeper the last time. His head and shoulders break the surface, and once again he gasps for air. A quick turn of his head reveals land, perhaps a small island, off in the distance. He dares to have hope, and once again begins to sink.
As he nears the beach, he feels the rip tide beneath him, trying to pull him back into the depths. He struggles frantically, and finally, miraculously, feels solid ground beneath his feet. The waters, losing their grip, switch tactics. They send monstrous waves into his back, threatening to smash him into the rocks. He continues undaunted. His salvation is in sight, he will not die here. Not on this day.
He scrambles through the water that is neck-deep, then waist-deep, then suddenly he is free. He collapses onto the wet sand and crawls his way to safety.
From the jungle, glowing eyes watch.
The jungle envelopes him, claws at him. He doesn't know where he's going anymore. There is no sense of direction. There is - nothing at all except the sound of the twigs snapping under his feet and the rustling as his trail heals itself behind him. Even the sound of the ocean has become lost in the past.
He runs, as well as he can through the thick brush. Something is following him, some thing has been following him since he left the beach. And it's gaining on him.
Once again a claw rakes his skin, and he cries out. His refuge is not solid - there are small openings everywhere, and it is taking full advantage of them. Sharp talons reach in and grab at him, not able to get a firm grip but doing plenty of damage anyway. He tries to steel himself against the pain, but it always comes without warning. He begins to contemplate the impossible. He doesn't want to die like this, bleeding and cowering in the dark.
The dawn light snakes its way into his refuge, and he opens his eyes to the new day that he thought he'd never see. It is gone, but the deep gashes covering his body tell him that this was no dream - no terrible nightmare from which he has mercifully awakened. Cautiously, carefully, he picks himself up off the ground, pries himself loose from the sticky grasp of his own coagulating blood. The pain is nearly overwhelming, but he does not cry out. He emerges from his hiding place and warily surveys his surroundings.
He is alone, and, to his astonishment, he is no longer afraid.
His strength has been slow in returning. His wounds are healed, but he knows that the scars will last a long time. He wanders aimlessly about this, his island, and reflects constantly how lucky he is to at least be alive - to at least be safe.
He doesn't see it coming.
The tsunami roars in from the West, and sweeps him back out to sea. Back to where he'd started.
The depths welcome his return. The depths are so beautiful.
He opens his mouth to laugh, and his lungs fill with water.
Blackness and silence surround him, seep into him.
He wonders how long it has been. A minute? A day? A million years?
Even the familiar thump thump of his heart has stopped. He ponders this, and reaches his hand to his chest, but he finds that he has no hand, and that he has no chest.
He simply exists, seeing, hearing, feeling nothing.
He waits for something to happen, and wonders if he is dead.
It starts as a tickle. An itch. An inkling of a sensation so faint that he hardly recognizes it. When he finally notices it, this faint ghost of a feeling, it explodes. He suddenly feels his body again, and it is on fire. For a million eternities he has felt nothing, and now he relishes in the pain.
For the pain tells him that he lives. That he exists.
Through the pain, he feels his body rise.
His reawakening complete, his body restored, his pain faded, he begins kicking furiously, driving himself upward. His head breaks the surface, followed by his torso, his legs, and finally his feet.
He continues to rise.
Looking in wonder at the waters below him, he realizes that he is finally free of their grip. He soars, free and safe.
But only for a moment.
For he died in the depths, and he was reborn in the depths. Without their cold embrace he cannot exist.
He is smiling when he evaporates.
It was so worth it.
(July 7 - Epilogue)
Yeah, I know. I don't really like it either. The ending sucks, and so does the writing.
I just couldn't leave the poor guy in pain forever, so I had to end it somehow.
A happy ending was not an option. Never was, really.
I could have done a better job of wrapping things up, but I decided that it would be better to just get it over with.
Anyway, thanks for reading!
As it turned out, I could have let the guy live, but the metaphor would have broken completely down before too long anyway.