Wind gusting, thunder crashing, walls of water on every side. I awoke with a sudden jolt, and the sun shone without a cloud in the sky. Faintly the memory of the storm from the night before took shape in my mind. I remembered that my crewmates were thrown overboard by a devastating wave. The same must have happened to land me on this shore. I surveyed my surroundings, typical sand beach with a dense tropical forest a few yards from the water. Being washed up with nothing but the clothes on my back I started to wander aimlessly down the side of the beach, scanning hopefully for a kind of shelter or anything to help my dire situation. Exhausted, I laid down and drifted in and out of sleep. The days seemed abnormally long and the nights seemed short. I tried to gauge the time from the shadow cast by a signpost. It was odd to see a signpost with no sign on it. Trying to figure out time proved to be too hard. The thirst set in and in desperation I went into the woods looking for any source of refreshment. After what seemed like miles of walking I stumbled upon a shack that looked as if it had been abandoned for years. The sign on the door was poorly written but the message clear, “What seems to be true usually is”. I sat and pondered this. Starting to feel dizzy and with my head throbbing, I took shelter within the shack. It was poorly lit and I couldn’t see well as my vision turned black and I collapsed. When I awoke the sun was shinning still and I had a better view of the room. Gold and jewels covered the walls; billions of dollars in riches covered the floor. Overwhelmed with joy, I stuffed my pockets with as much as I could. I left in search of water using a large ruby to mark the trees so I could get back to the shack full of riches. After a few hours of walking I found another hut, like the one before. Just like the other hut it had a sign on the door, “Greed will be the death of an honest man”. With an ominous feel in the air, I looked inside the shed. Inside contained yet another surprise, a room full of supplies including a boat and the necessities to return home. There was a note on the boat that said, “Take only what you need to survive”. Overwhelmed with joy yet again by my fortune, I began to prepare for my return trip by bringing all the supplies through the woods to the beach. The task was long and tiring but seemed to be easy when carrying the boat and supplies, as if a hundred able men were helping carry. When I got to the hut of riches I filled a bag at a time. This proved harder, as if some force was weighing down the bag. After two or three trips I stopped to drink some water and eat a bit of my food. I did this at least five times and it seemed almost too necessary. Finally the boat was covered in treasure, and I was ready to cast off. I drifted off to sleep to be rested for the long day ahead of me. I awoke to a gentle breeze and the sounds of the ocean. Today is the day I’m going to be rich, I thought to myself. I pushed the boat into the ocean and hopped in. Once the island was out of view. The blue sky turned ominous and gray. Thundering black nothingness replaced the once fluffy white clouds. Out of nowhere a storm appeared. The calm waves turned into fifteen-foot swells that almost engulfed the boat a dozen times, until one hit the boat and cast me off into the ocean. The force of the wave had knocked me out. When I awoke I felt sand underneath me, and with a horrid feeling, I surveyed my all-to-familiar surroundings. I was on the same cursed island. A few feet away the signpost I saw before held a sign this time. I sank to the ground with hopelessness, the words echoing in my head and tormenting me, two words constantly playing through my head, “Death awaits”.
April 18, 2011