Saturday, November 5, 2011

Part 10



At first she thought it was a whale, for its size and for the fins that stirred the water to either side. However, its fangs curved down from stiff lips, serrating the outline of its mouth in a way no whale’s teeth ever had. As it came closer, she saw the flicker of more fins and a long tail that undulated through the water. This was no whale, nor fish, nor any creature she had ever seen, in life or in death.  It was huge.

A memory stirred, terror and awe all at once. She had been very small much smaller than she was now, and there had been a horse so tall it had blocked out the sun as it galloped past. She had felt the wind on her face and the tremor of its hoofbeats in the ground, and had cried with fear at the size of it.

This monster was much larger than a horse.

For a moment she clung to the thought that it would not perceive her. The living had not reacted to her when she had crossed overland, or she could not remember if they had. Fish rarely seemed to see her, even when she passed through their schools on her long descent. Perhaps this thing, too, would ignore her and look elsewhere for the source of that thundering noise.

The pearly glow of its skin dashed that hope, moments before it angled the bulk of its head and glided towards her, its one beady eye fixed on her. This was no living creature; how could it be? It, too, was a ghost. A ghost so old that it had never seen the earth she once walked. She should have run- but no, it would only catch up to her, those huge fins churning behind her as its fangs closed in on her tender body.

What happened to a wounded soul? She remembered the cheesy flesh of the disintegrating lost, and felt sick. She shut her eyes, waiting for the inevitable.

The inevitable did not come. She opened her eyes after a moment to find the monster still before her, floating unmoving and watching her with what could only be curiosity. Carefully, Vera backed away a few steps. The creature didn’t seem concerned by her movement. She backed away a little further, a yard or two. The leviathan followed her with a nonchalant flip of its fins, coasting easily through the water and keeping pace. Vera stopped backing up and gave it a careful look.

It was rather lovely, once she stopped fixating on its huge teeth. There were a lot of those. But besides that, the creature was an expanse of pebbly blue-green skin, decorated in speckles and stripes that must have served as camouflage in warmer, greener waters. It was large enough that it could have eaten that long-ago horse in a bite or two, but it didn’t seem hungry now. Death had that effect.

The thing flicked a fin and slowly keeled over in the water, rolling along until it came to rest, still floating, but upside down. It considered her now with its other eye. She laughed. She realized that she had not yet tried swimming. How silly, to spend so long at the bottom of the sea and never consider leaving the ground. She pushed off, kicked a little, and found that she could indeed swim. Quite quickly, in fact. She couldn't remember having been much of a swimmer in life, but now she could cut through the water as nimbly as a fish.

She hovered over the belly of the monster, and it rolled onto its side to watch her. She swam a little higher, and as the murk began to fill the distance between them, the creature followed after her.

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Sorry for the late post, guys! I had some serious brain problems in relation to time zones, and kinda forgot it was Friday for you. Eheh. See you next week!

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