A BALI STORY

The Beginning

The sun lays heavy on your brow. Sweat beads and drips down your neck like condensation on a glass of ice water during a hot summer day. The dark sand, a greyish brown, makes the heat inescapable. With the tide in, you sit at the water’s edge, allowing the shallow waves of the warmer-than-you’d-like waves and gentle breeze to offer you small cooling reprieves. You wetsuit looks out of place on a beach in Bali, the warm water leaves nothing to complain about, but you wear yours like an off duty scuba instructor with your legs covered and the top folded down. You’d like to take it off completely, but you learned your lesson the hard way just days ago; it’s always better to be prepared.

            “Today’s the day,” you tell yourself. “His shipment will come in on the Ricky Fast Boat from the Gili islands at noon. Jahat needs to get shut down. He needs to pay for what he did to my family.”

            A whistle blows a hundred meters down Seminyak beach. Lifeguards casually walk into the surf, waving adventurous tourists inland to avoid the strong waves. You look at the red flag with the black skull and crossbones with the word Danger written on it posted in the sand.

            “People never pay attention to the signs,” you comment to yourself.

            More whistles blow and more lifeguards signal for the people at play to come closer to the shore. The strong undertow challenges everyone that heeds the warnings, as people slosh against the outgoing waves while they march to the beach. The same undertow, however, grabs ahold of a reckless Australian who pretended not to hear the whistle.

            Wave after wave crashes over him. The foam and spray conceal his body for a few moments, long enough for the lifeguards to think everyone is safe. But you guess otherwise.

            The storm that covered the planet just under a week ago made you one of the gifted, granting you the ability to communicate with water. You shudder at the embarrassing moment you realized your ability, and consider it rather apropos since you live on an island, but you’ve seen the news stories; the floating girl in Times Square and her message to all the gifted people around the world on-line, the mysterious creatures that have been sighted, the unexplainable elemental accidents, and the unbelievable miracles coming true every day. You know that you don’t want people finding out about you.

            “Does a soul struggle in your embrace?” You ask the ocean.

            “Many do,” it responds.

            “One near me?” You reply politely despite its less than helpful response.

            “Yes.”

            “Does this soul need my help?”

            “Only yours will extend his life.”

            Your watch chimes 11:55 AM. You scan the ocean for a twenty-passenger speedboat with green and yellow stripes. You spot it on the horizon, coming in fast.

 

 

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