SELECTED SHADOWS 17

From time to time the light would fade and then he would stop and wait until he could see it clearly, before proceeding.  He carried on in this way for hours but he did not seem to be getting nearer to the source of the green glow.  Drewin stopped walking, sat down on the road and closed his eyes. His feet were sore, his eyes were stinging and his body ached with the cold.  Around him there was no sound, no movement except the gentle strong surge of the sea pushing this way and that.  He rested his head on his knees and fell asleep.  When he opened his eyes he found that he was buried almost up to his waist in sand, and small brightly-coloured fish were nibbling inquisitively at his hair and ears.  He struggled upright and the fish darted away in all directions.  Drewin found that he felt much less stiff and weary, and decided he must have been asleep for a long time.  He looked towards the light, far off in the distance, and set out along the path in the hope of finally reaching it.  After he had trudged for hours with only the wandering shoals of fish for company, the light looked brighter, more blue than green, and it flickered and danced in swirling patterns that confused the eye. Drewin moved forward, his eyes confused by the turning patterns in the light that now seemed to surround him.  His legs carried him into the midst of the confusion then stopped.  Shapes dived and danced about him in the dark, half seen in the hazy blue glow.  He turned to right and left trying to gain a clear view of them, but when he looked they were no longer there. He stepped back but they followed him, coming so close that he could feel the disturbance they made in the water.  Once or twice he felt a cold touch on his cheek and there was a sound that might have been laughter.  He spun round to avoid them, he waved his arms about to fend them off, he shouted soundlessly at them, but it made no difference and finally he closed his eyes, fell to the ground, and covered his head with his arms.  But this had no effect: his tormentors carried on their furious dance.  Feeling around in the dark, Drewin found something solid.  It was a thick strand of seaweed.  Grasping it tightly he suddenly leapt to his feet and flailed blindly about.  The maddening motion ceased and he opened his eyes to see what had happened.  Everything was still and the blue glow was steady.  In its light Drewin could make out eleven figures suspended in the water ahead of him.  Their green and scaly bodies undulated in the ebb and flow of the sea-current and long white hair streamed out behind their pale faces.  They were pointing at Drewin: they seemed to think him very funny.

Beneath the waves

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s