A Loop in the Sand

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Horror  |  House: Booksie Classic
Again and again.

Submitted: April 01, 2014

A A A | A A A

Submitted: April 01, 2014





Drip drip. Pinch pinch. I mould the terraces with care. Using my fist as an icing pack, I add more sand to the tower with as much care as a baker decorating his cakes. Three. Two. One. Wait, I’ll redo that one. Done - not! Great works are always revised.

This sandcastle will be a masterpiece.

It must be four or five in the afternoon, or even later. Oh well who cares. The day is not over until the sun sets. Sadly, sandcastles often only survive until dawn when the tide invades. It is my duty to let it fall gloriously. And to let us remember that such a magnificent sandcastle has ever been built. Ya, I need proof for my friends.

Most people have already left the beach by now. Ripples of surfers waddle away with their boards. Pieces of grilled people roll up their towels now that the fire has pretty much died out. A boy continues his own sloppy sand construction just ten steps away. Well this cute little architect is still enjoying himself. His parents better come back soon, it is not safe for a kid to be left unwatched.

With a split twig, I carve texture lines into the walls. Ugh, that was awful. I lie facing the sea with my shoulder in the sand. That is much better. After this face of bricks, I scoot over around the round tower to continue the pattern.

Scratch scratch. Knock knock. I blow onto the freshly cemented bricks. No bad wolf is going to blow the house down. For one, this is a freaking castle. Two, it will have one solid wall instead of many puny bricks. Or is it many grains of sand? But bricks are also, in fact, a block of many grains. Hmm. A freaking castle is a good enough reason.

Hey, didn’t I just go once around the tower already? There are even shoulder trails before me. The walls are blankly smooth until where I started off facing the sea. The lines I drew only come halfway around, although the tracks in the sand shows that I went five hundred and forty degrees around. I ponder with the sea behind me.

Oh I know what it means, I need to concentrate!

I finish up scratching out the brick texture without daydreaming. Phew! Now I need to get some seashells. No sandcastle goes without those pretty things. I stoop past the little boy like a chicken seeking for worms in the ground. Nice, found one of those twisty ones. Oooh, a magnificent shell.. ugh, cracked. Oh, that is one teeny-weeny shell, cute! Yikes, nearly stepped on that shattered cola glass. My collection sits clattering against each other as I hold my shirt out as a pouch to contain them. Now where is that blue shell, I am pretty sure it was here!

A shell buffet. All you can take. It does not matter if you cannot decide whether to take it or not, it can be sorted out later. It is not like leftover food that gets ditched and you that get charged for wasting. So I sweep the beach, leaving only the cracked shells and trash. A beautiful but cracked shell. A shattered cola glass. Soon, there is nothing much left to take, and still I have not found the blue shell I spotted earlier in the day.

My neck burns from bending over too much. I have not added to my collection over the last thirty steps I took. Another magnificent but cracked shell. Another shattered cola glass. I stop. A pop runs up my spine as I stand and arch backwards. Click click. Crack crack. Something feels wrong. The cola glass is very familiar.. 

How could that be, it is ridiculous.

Up ahead is a sudden chain of shell clusters, which among one of them - is the blue shell! I pick it up triumphantly. With this treasure I am ready to return. Ha, patience! If it weren’t for my endurance I wouldn’t have gone this far and found this darling. But it does not seem like I went very far at all.

Past the shattered cola glass.
Past the magnificent-but-cracked shell.
Past the boy and his sand pile.

Poke poke. Prod prod. The shells embed into the sandcastle with a soft push from my finger. Meanwhile, I ponder.  How could that have happened, I am sure I passed more than one cola glass.. The sky is already purple from the blue night creeping towards the red sun. I better be quick if I want to snap a photo of my product. But wait.

Not without a moat.
None of my castles go without it.

My fingers close around the bucket handle with anxiety. The air is stuffy but the beach is empty, except for the little boy. Swish swish. Splash splash. The tide and I appoint to meet at the shore. Woosh woosh. Whip whip. The dusk takes over twilight, and soon night will unleash the winds. Pitter pitter. Patter patt- I halt. My heart jolts into a nervous canter. My vulnerable back is exposed to a strong presence. I am being watched. Instinct tells me: Turn back. RUN!

But I tread forth.

As my feet gives way to emptiness, a fold in the sand drops away to reveal a rift. I fall into the distance between the edge and the shore.

There is no pit to crash into.
Just space and gravity and fall.
And darkness and void.

And loop.

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