Saltwater slips from the ends of my hair as I surface. The ocean is warm, sunlight reflecting off the choppy waves. My arms and legs move in tandem while I circle and twist and soak in the essence of the sea. I squint at bright blue sky, a seagull busy overhead, calling to his friends in search of their next meal. I’ve drifted further out than planned, although the shore is still within a safe distance. A shout echoes from the beach but I ignore it. It’s just my friends playing some ridiculous game I’d given up on earlier in the afternoon.
Then a wave, much larger than the others, crashes over my head, drags me deeper into the unknown. I cough, fight for breath, struggle to regain my composure. But there’s not enough time.
Another crash and I’m sucked in a whirlpool of dazzling azure. I punch, clench my fists to grab onto something, anything, that will give me relief from this liquid prison. Light reflects above and I push against the current to find it. It grows dim.
Wait, what? I push again, battle towards that light. But I’m further away.
The light is getting darker. I’m sinking. Why am I sinking?
Then, another light. Below me?
No, this can’t be. But people get turned upside down in the ocean all the time. That’s what must’ve happened.
My lungs scream obscenities so I scramble towards that light, the one that I think is below me but I know must be up.
My face breaks through the water, blessed air filling my body. I suck in another lungful, allow my muscles to relax.
Another slap of water to my face. I glance up. The sky is purple.
I blink. Yep, it’s definitely purple. A soft lavender.
With a spin, I find the land. My heart pounds inside my chest. It’s not the land I left just moments ago. This one holds no friends. A beach of ebony sand, dotted with primitive huts I’ve never seen. I gag as I glance around once more.
I’m alone but I’m not home.
There’s only one question left to ask.
Where am I?
©Laura L. Zimmerman 2018