Heart Shaped Shells From The Devil

April 19, 2011
The wet sand at the waters edge was refreshing after I had hurried across the burning dry sand. The sun was directly overhead making everything hotter than usual. I stood there for a moment, looking back up at where I had dumped my bag and kicked off my flip flops. I could see Madison, my third oldest sister, follow behind Alison, my fourth oldest sister. They dropped their stuff by mine and started laying towels out and setting up the bright blue umbrella. Madison’s blonde hair hung straight down, her bangs pinned to back, and sunglasses covered her eyes. I knew she had makeup on, she never left the house without it. Alison who is only 2 and half years older than me, has darker blond hair, but is still pretty like Madison. Her hair was left natural, pretty curls, which she had back in a ponytail on top of her head. A bright red headband gripped her head, holding strays back. She, too, had on sunglasses covering her makeup, like Madison, she never went anywhere without. I wore makeup, I’ll admit, but I wasn’t as serious about as the two of them. They were closer in age, only about a year apart. Maybe I would get more crazy about my eyeliner and mascara as I grew older. I waved to them then started walking along the edge of the water, letting the waves come up to my ankles, my head down, searching. I never looked for anything in particular, just something. Once I found a giant sharks tooth which I kept in my room, and a big Auger, which is a long narrow shell, coming to a point on one end, and swirling to a little opening to the other end. Sometimes you’ll find a sea slug in them.

“Hey! Riley! No wondering to far away, we don’t want to stay long,” Madison was yelling at me from where she was laying on her stomach on her towel, tanning. She and Alison only cared about tanning and being beautiful, and I guess I do too, but at least I like doing some other things too.

“Whatever,” I called back, not caring if that made her mad or not. I dug my toes in the sand searching for buried treasure. I looked out into the sea, lifting up my big sunglasses for a better view. Seeing nothing but a few sail boats, I let them fall back into place and walked back in the direction of my annoyingly beautiful sisters.

My other two sisters, Zoey and Nicole, were at the house. Zoey at age 20, sleeping, and Nicole, 18, watching TV with her boyfriend, Drake. Madison is 17 and Alison 16, me stuck at age 14 being the baby of the family.

Finding no valuable shells, I sat down in the mushy sand, letting the waves surround me, but not more than 2 or so inches deep. I watched a few shells tumble in the small currents, coming forward with the waves, falling back when they pulled back. I was mesmerized by this little cycle, I barely heard Madison calling my name.

“Come on! We’re leaving!” I stood up and brushed the sand off my butt.

“Why? We just got here,” I asked hurry up to them and slipping into my flip flops.

“Alison thinks she got burned on her back.” Madison pointed to Alison who was hurrying to the steps over the dune to the street, which our house sat on. I picked up my beach bag which was sadly empty since I found nothing. I followed Madison over the dune steps, and onto the street, where the temperature was hotter since the ocean breeze was blocked by the tall dune. I climbed the deck steps, up to the second story where our front door was. Alison was already inside, I could see Drake lounging on our sectional and Nicole cooking eggs in the little kitchen.

I went to my room, which I didn’t have to share with anyone. Everyone but Madison and Alison shared rooms, but they were fine with it. I pulled my cover up off and tossed in the hamper and changed into some blue jean shorts and a blue and white striped tank top. I left my room, stopping before I turned into the kitchen/living room area, listening. Madison and Alison had either gone back outside or to their rooms, and Drake and Nicole were giggling softly, whispering. I slapped my feet loudly on the golden wood floors, announcing my arrival, and started searching for a snack. I glanced at Drake and Nicole. Drake’s eyes were focused on the TV, and Nicole was glaring at me, a silent “go away” look. Giving up on my search I obeyed and went down the hall to the office. Shutting the door behind me I picked up the phone off it’s cradle, and listened for the dial tone. Instead I heard Zoey and some other girl talking. Setting down the receiver quietly, I felt frustration boil up inside me. Can’t call, can’t eat, can’t watch TV. My sister’s were driving me crazy. I was like a sorority house who bad manners. My mom wouldn’t be back from her business trip for a couple of weeks, which was typical of her.

The office door opened and Zoey stuck her head in. Zoey long curly blond hair the nicest of all my sisters looked at me standing there by the receiver.

“Were you listening to my call?” She asked hugging the receiver to her chest so her friend wouldn’t hear.

“No, I was going to make a call, but I heard you talking so I sat it back down,” I said stepping away from the desk and walking towards her.

“Ok, thanks,” she left the door open for me but disappeared back in her room with the only cordless phone in the house.

Back in the living room, I slipped on a pair of flip flops which I knew were Alison’s and glanced at the staring Nicole and Drake.

“I’m just going to Freddie’s.” I said sliding the sliding glass door open. The cool ocean breeze reached up here over the dune’s and it felt nice on my skin.

“Hey, leave that door open a little,” Nicole called. She must have felt the breeze from heaven, too.

I walked down the street, turning at the public pool, which was crowded, and passed the park, which was empty. I crossed the high way, which was pretty empty, and walked along the sidewalk till I got to the little shops. I stepped inside the cool, almost to cold, shop called Mina’s. Mina, a 25 year old woman with dark hair and a heavy Spanish accent, sold bags and jewelry she made. Mina was nice and I enjoyed chatting with her on my way to Freddie’s where I would probably find some of my friends.

“Hi Mina!” I called waving to her behind the counter. The shop was cramped with spinning racks only half filled with bags, and jewelry racks only half filled as well. Tourist loved Mina’s shop. She didn’t have sky high prices and everything she made was beautiful.

“Hello, Dakota,” she said grinning at me. Her teeth were brilliant white and straighter than any teeth I had ever seen.

“I was just on my way to Freddie’s, thought I stop by, like always,” I said leaning on my elbows on the counter. She had a new bag she was working on in front of her. She was knotting loose threads around the edges, and straightening the thing up. It was a pretty teal and black paisley print and I knew it would not stay in shop for long. Where ever Mina got her fabric, they were pretty cool. Many were exotic patterns and color schemes. Her hands were swift and her eyes sharp. She swore upon her grave that she would make jewelry and bags till she couldn’t move her fingers any more.

“Dakota, look what I find today, jogging on beach,” she said turning around and rummaging through her own bag, a giant purple one with beads around the edges. She pulled out a shell, cream colored with streaks of coopery brown. An average shell, so I thought, until she handed it to me. Nature had made a natural heart. The shell’s edges were rounded smooth, so smooth no man could have done it.

“It’s so beautiful, Mina,” I said admiring it. “You should make it into a necklace.”

“No, no.” She shook her head and wouldn’t take it from me when I tried handing it back. “For you, for collection.”

I had told Mina of my collection, showed her a piece or two before.

“Really? It would make a nice necklace,” I said looking at the shell.

She just grinned and shook her head. A customer entered the store and began browsing the racks. Mina playfully shooed me away. I tucked the shell safely away in my pocket and left the store.

I felt the shell in my pocket. I headed towards Freddie’s, but worry creased my brow. My heart shaped shell might break. I turned on my heel and hurried back up the street, I was going to have to hurry, if I still wanted to catch any of my friends at Freddie’s. I hastily looked both ways and darted out onto the highway. Maybe the look was a little to hasty, because squealing breaks made me scream.

It was black. Really, really black. I heard voices. There was Nicole’s, and Zoey’s voice. I strained my ears, but fell deeper into darkness. I let it swallow me up. Swallow me whole. The first thing that came into view was my heart shaped shell. I forced open my eyes, only to snap them shut again. It was so bright. It took me longer than it ever had taken me in my life to adjust to the light. All white. White walls, white ceiling, white floor, and white sheets. It smelled… clean. I figured I was in the hospital. Those squealing breaks had squealed not to hit me. To late for that. My room was empty. The shades were shut, but it was still bright in here. My side hurt, and my legs ached. I pulled the sheet up, adjusted my riding up hospital gown, and noticed the big bruise on my left hip, and the bruises and cuts on my legs. I tried lifting my left arm, super sore. I remember the shell. Glancing around I couldn’t find it. The door opened and a nurse walked in.

“Oh, good your awake. Your sister’s will be glad to hear that.” The nurse left again, and soon a stampede of foot steps knocked down the door, well opened it at least.

“Oh, Dakota! I’m so glad your ok,” they all were saying this, over and over, trying to hug my gently.

“My shoulder,” I moaned as they bumped it repeatedly, no one listened.

“You were out cold all day yesterday,” Zoey said. “Out so very cold.”

“Where’s my shell?” I asked. They all looked at each other, confused.

“Mina gave me a shell before I was hit.” I said, frustrated. Nicole yanked open a closet door and pulled my clothes out, the ones I had been wearing.

“No shell,” she said tossing them back in.

My shell, worth getting hit by a car, was gone. Gone! Just like that.

“It can’t be gone,” I growled, getting angry.

“It wasn’t there, I can’t make it appear. Besides it was just a shell,” Nicole crossed her arms, being her normal butt-head self again.

“It should be,” I felt like crying, but I don’t know why. Nicole was right, it was just a shell. I felt my lip start trembling and I felt stupid, dumb, weak, alone, for no reason at all. I had my sister’s, my mom was probably coming home early now because of me, I had my friends, and Mina, but it swept me away, down a long dark path. I stopped talking, only to Mina did I talk. I didn’t go to the beach anymore, I didn’t smile much either. Depression they call it, is so much more, sometimes it’s unavoidable. I felt terrible all because I lost a stupid shell. I was slightly glad the shell was gone, because I probably would have still fallen under this spell, and instead of talking to Mina, I would have talked to the shell. How pathetic.





Post a Comment

Be the first to comment on this article!

bRealTime banner ad on the left side
Site Feedback