Orion

December 14, 2017

Sometimes at dusk we would see him come out from the hidden interior of his hut. For years we had no idea who he was or what he did until a fateful dare…


“Hey! I dare you to go to that hut...” Greg said, he was new to this island and didn’t know the significance of that hut, “and climb on top of the roof. There was a tree by the roof. I figured I could do it, but would I want to disturb the man inside who we had no idea about except he comes out at dusk everyday? It was a stupid dare, but I can’t just lose like that, so I accepted. The hut was about 100 square meters and you had to swim about 50 meters to get across the manmade channel to Port Icia. So I ran and considered all the legends that have been told to us by our elders. Some say when he goes out at dusk it is to eat. Not normal food but weird concoctions, like blood stew. After considering that I had finished swimming across the channel. I started to climb the tree to get to the roof then I heard a raspy voice “Who’s there, I’ll kill ya!”


I froze.

-


I can’t remember anything until I woke up next to a fire, with an old man in a chair. “Haha, I remember being a kid, so foolish and willing to do anything to win a game of dares,” He looked down at me “Look kid, don’t go risking your life for a game, I learned that when I worked at the channel,” he sighed, and tried to continue, but i stopped him “Why do you go out at dusk every day?”

“Child, I made a tragic mistake when I was workin’ on the channel, and someone died in the process. I visit his grave every day at dusk to mourn.” Taken in by the sudden understanding of the man I had known nothing about for the past 12 years of my life. I wanted to know more so I could quell the wild legends about him, so I commanded him, “Tell me your story!”


“Why?”


“Because I want people to understand you, to stop saying you make blood stew!”


“Let the people-”


“NO, I won’t stand for people not respecting you!”


“Listen, they won’t believe you.”


I sighed a breath of defeat,”I guess you’re right, but I can change my opinion, so tell me.”


He too breathed a sigh of defeat, “You deserve to know, I’m just a little hesitant to tell,I’ve never told my story.”

-


“Today’s Sunday! No work today, Orion exclaimed. “What do you want to do Darren?”
“A game of dares!” I said. Orion and I were working on the channel at that time, and he was my best friend. We were only 16, but our families were pushing us to get a job at the channel because it was a government job and they would pay a lot. Mainly because the government has a lot of money and they want it done quick. So paying more would attract more workers from the poor parts of the Island nation, which were also the strong parts. Most of the money we made would be given to our parents to raise the combined 11 kids of our families, not including us. But I again thought back to the game of dares. For a while the dares were simple. One he uttered would also be the last he ever did. “I want you to hmmmm,”


“What!” I said excitedly


“Jump off the docked boat into the ocean!”


“You got it!” I exclaimed, not thinking about what happen next. So I started running to the dock where there was a massive tugboat whose deck sat off then water about 20 feet high. I got to the boat with Orion chasing me, he was shouting something but I couldn’t hear him through my determination. From what I figured out shortly after the incident he was telling me that that was the wrong boat, which is why I knocked myself out impacting the water. THat and the fact that I tripped on the ledge of the boat,sending me down head first with no form. I can’t remember anything until I was recuperating in the hospital, when they told me what happened to Orion.

 

-

Orion had climbed down the ladder to the water and had been stung several times by poisonous jellyfish that lived in the grasses of the sea floor. He had succeeded at saving me from the same doom, but the doctors could not save him back.

 

-

 

“Take me to his grave.” I said
“I can’t,” muttered Darren, “I’m dying and can’t make the trip, I’ve been dying for a while,” he breathed a heavy sigh, and continued, “you see the doctors didn’t notice I’d been stung once by the same jellyfish that stung him until they were checking me out. By then the antitoxin that they gave me could only extend my life a little longer. And I’m starting to feel it’s effects again,.” He started on a coughing fit,” Could you go there for me?”


“Yes, I will.”


“Follow the beaten path until you see it, it will be obvious, tell him I’ll be with him soon.” I turned to leave but he stopped me and said “What’s your name kid?”


“Orion.”






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