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  • Writer's pictureLaura L. Zimmerman

Flash Fiction Friday: The Ocean


Photo by Kris Guico on Unsplash

Saltwater slips from the ends of my hair as I surface. The ocean is warm, sunlight reflecting off the choppy waves. My arms and legs move in tandem while I circle and twist and soak in the essence of the sea. I squint at bright blue sky, a seagull busy overhead, calling to his friends in search of their next meal. I’ve drifted further out than planned, although the shore is still within a safe distance. A shout echoes from the beach but I ignore it. It’s just my friends playing some ridiculous game I’d given up on earlier in the afternoon.

Then a wave, much larger than the others, crashes over my head, drags me deeper into the unknown. I cough, fight for breath, struggle to regain my composure. But there’s not enough time.

Another crash and I’m sucked in a whirlpool of dazzling azure. I punch, clench my fists to grab onto something, anything, that will give me relief from this liquid prison. Light reflects above and I push against the current to find it. It grows dim.

Wait, what? I push again, battle towards that light. But I’m further away.

The light is getting darker. I’m sinking. Why am I sinking?

Then, another light. Below me?

No, this can’t be. But people get turned upside down in the ocean all the time. That’s what must’ve happened.

My lungs scream obscenities so I scramble towards that light, the one that I think is below me but I know must be up.

I swim.

I swim.

I swim.

My face breaks through the water, blessed air filling my body. I suck in another lungful, allow my muscles to relax.

I’m safe.

Another slap of water to my face. I glance up. The sky is purple.

I blink. Yep, it’s definitely purple. A soft lavender.

With a spin, I find the land. My heart pounds inside my chest. It’s not the land I left just moments ago. This one holds no friends. A beach of ebony sand, dotted with primitive huts I’ve never seen. I gag as I glance around once more.

I’m alone.

I’m alone but I’m not home.

There’s only one question left to ask.

Where am I?

©Laura L. Zimmerman 2018

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