August 10, 2010

A part of me wishes I was rather dead than stuck in this after-life, if that is what this is. I had no idea any more. I had been living in a completely different world, an unimaginable reality, for the past five days twelve hours and twenty-nine minutes.

Zenya, Fred and I had landed on this island in the middle of nowhere on 6th August, 2010. Since then there been no stopping of weird situations we have run into. There has been no sign of a search party for us. Neither has there been sightings of cost guards or navy ships patrolling the seas who would’ve have spotted our distress signals. But there have been ships nonetheless, anchoring a little away from the island for the past five days. Pirate ships, two, to be precise, carrying animals and beasts on their ships. None of the animals that we were able to spot from the island seemed even vaguely familiar to any animal one would normally see or know about.

The ships seem to lower their anchor a little away from the island and send a few members of their crew via boat ahead into the sea, to nowhere apparently. The crewmates were sent with one animal with them. The first day they took a blue and black feathered bird with them which resembled a kingfisher, only ten to fifteen times bigger in size. The next day they took it again. But on the third day they took a giant lizard. These pirates have some suspicious ritual ceremonies in the sea.

The ritual is repeated every few hours, even at night. Fred had been quite scared at the thought of being captured by the pirates and had us restrict our distress signals to the part of the island completely invisible to the pirate ships. Zenya suggested we move our campsite into the forest, near a small waterfall which was our only source of fresh water on the island and was the highest level above sea on the island, letting us have the whole view of the land and the water around it. With ample amount of food growing around us and a high-level hiding spot from the pirates, we were good till we could find help or till the help found us. Zenya kept an eye out for any resources she could find from the wreckage of the ship we arrived on while mapping out the whole island, Fred took the responsibility to keep an eye out for the pirate ships and report us anything unusual- which was pretty much everything -and I was in charge of gathering food and finding sturdy materials to build us a temporary shelter.

Surviving had kept us busy. That, and hope to escape this unknown sea. But it was all wavered yesterday when suddenly Zenya disappeared from the island.

Yesterday, while hunting for food from the sea, I had been distracted by a family of crabs on the farther end of the island that was hidden from the pirates’ view. They were stuck on this only rock near the shallow waters as if clinging to it with their life. All I could see in them was our supper that might last us more than a day. I had completely forgotten that I was supposed to go back to our campsite and give an hourly report. It must have been nearly half an hour past our meeting time when a loud shriek somewhere from the  island made me dash back to our safe ground.

Fred was out of his breath while I was nearly on my knees as we reached our spot. I couldn’t even bring my lungs to breath out a “What was that?”. It was Fred who went first. “It was one of their crewmates.” He had seen a boat leave one of the ships again into the sea ahead. This time they had taken that black beast of an animal that we saw the first day. Fred described it as ‘a really slender jaguar with long shiny fur and golden streaks rising from its head and going till the end of its back’. He said the animal was relatively quiet this time and stood in the middle of the boat as it went to the same spot as before. The jaguar had looked down into the sea as if examining something and then pointed further away into the sea where the boat was brought to a stand still and all but one man of the crew had dived into the water. That man had taken out a dagger to attack the animal. “But the furry jaguar got him first.” No wonder the shriek sounded like someone dying.

Fred had taken me to his post to show me the spot where the boat still stood, probably waiting for the divers. Another boat had joined them and it seemed to have been carrying the captain of one of the ships. This man had a strange symbol on the back of the large leather overcoat he wore and no one dared see him eye to eye except for that black beast standing right in front of him. The captain had said something that had initially angered the beast -a quite beautiful beast I must add- who had the treacherous man under his paw. But later he had given away the traitor, who was tied down and thrown into the cage that was housing that black beast earlier. It had looked like a mutual understanding had been reached among the captain and the beast.

When we headed back to our campsite we couldn’t find Zenya. We tried searching the whole island but there was no trace of her anywhere. Our worst fear was that she had been discovered by one of the pirates. Worse still was the fear that she had died somewhere we did not know.

We had been searching for her the whole night. We still haven’t found her. It’s getting dark again. Did she abandon us and go to the pirates for help? Or did she fell off a cliff somewhere and is lying unconscious.

Zenya you stupid little girl! At least give us a sign that you are still alive! I can hear her saying “You dumb archaeologist! Still writing that stupid journal of yours?!” in my head. If only I could find you right now. “Colin?” like she says when she gets worried about me.

Wait. She’s here. She’s here in front of me! I ask her where did she disappear to? She tells me to finish my journal. “You’ll have to see it to believe it.” she states. She has that sparkling glow in her eyes that she has when she discovers something on the excavation sites that was not known of before -something she can read and write about for the very first time. What did you do Zenya Galanos?

Image Credits: SoupAndButter on DeviantArt


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