Saturday, June 25, 2016

Chapter 1, Shipwrecked

***WARNING!!! My stories often contain strong language, sensitive issues, and, at times, other content that could be construed as offensive. Beliefs and viewpoints of characters are not necessarily the beliefs and viewpoints the Author holds in true life.***

What they say is true. What doesn't kill you makes you stronger. I'm living proof of that.

My name is Lynette Butler and I'm living my own version of "The Blue Lagoon." At least in the movie, Brooke Shields had hunky Christopher Atkins to keep her company and provide her with...entertainment. Me, I'm here all by my lonesome.

How did I get here? Well, that's a long story. It all started when I went on an ocean voyage with my fiance, Jason. We'd just gotten engaged and wanted to take a nice, relaxing trip together before the chaos of planning our wedding consumed us. Little did either of us know that it would be our last trip together.

The storm happened so fast. People were screaming and panicking as the ship rocked and rolled like crazy, stoned fans at a rock concert. The ship sustained irreparable damage. Jason and I were thrown around like kernels in a popcorn popper. To make a long story short, we were thrown overboard but nobody seemed to notice as the ensuing chaos elevated. Jason saved my life by helping me keep afloat. By saving mine, he lost his own due to fatigue and a belly cramp that sent him under the relentless waves. I tried to save him but the waves carried me away. I really don't remember much after that. I remember going under myself and when I woke up, I found myself here, wherever here was.

I knew Jason was dead and part of my heart died with him. He died to save me! How could I live with that? How could I live without him?

I had very little hope that anyone was looking for me. I had nobody in my life but Jason. My mother was dead and who knows where, or even who, my father was. She died in childbirth to have me, and I was raised in an orphanage run by a wonderful man simply known as White Wolf. I adored him and the monks and was terribly homesick for them when it was my time to go out into the world. See, it wasn't the type of horrible orphanage you often hear about; it was a home where children were loved, taken care of, and protected. I suppose the best way to describe it is that it's similar to the place that Aunt T had in the old Twilight Zone episode, "The Bewitchin' Pool." White Wolf was our Aunt T and oh, how we all loved him!

I met Jason right after I'd finished school. He was the rich boy in town and his snobbish mother hated me. She felt I was in a class beneath her only son, so she did everything she could to try to break us up. Jason, to his courage and my delight and relief, stood by me and gave his mother an ultimatum. Either she accepted me or she'd lose him. Since then, she tolerated me but there was no mistaking the hatred I'd see in her eyes when she let it show at times when Jason wasn't looking. I'm sure Jason's mother blames me for her son's death, so there's no way she'd ever initiate a search for me. She'd be glad to see me dead.

I'm not dead but for a long time, I wished I was. I was alone and stranded, having lost the only person, other than White Wolf and the monks, who truly loved me without question. I would have welcomed death at any second.

I almost got my wish. During my ordeal, my leg was gashed. I was in such a state that I didn't care for it properly and even ignored the pain. Out here, infection can set in quickly and that's exactly what happened. I got sicker and sicker, and I baked from both the sun and a high fever. I was in and out of consciousness and most likely delirious at times. When I was next aware of things, I awoke drenched in sweat and lying in a bed.

I was lying in a bed! 

I noticed even more differences before my eyes popped open. I blinked at my surroundings, noticing that I was now in some sort of enclosure. There was a roof over my head, some sort of port-a-potty thing nearby, a fridge and stove in the corner, and a table beside the bed. I must have still been in the same location since I could smell the salty ocean and hear the waves crashing on the beach. Still, this hut or whatever I was in hadn't been here before. Was there someone else on this God-forsaken island with me?

My eyes turned to the table, my attention seized by a piece of paper neatly folded on it. I picked it up, realizing I'd been mistaken; instead of one sheet, there were two folded together. I gasped and nearly dropped the papers when I saw my beloved Jason's handwriting.

Dearest Lynette,
     My heart breaks at the thought of you being here alone, but the benevolent spirits have told me that it is fate. I love you and wanted nothing more than for us to spend the rest of our lives together and grow old with each other. Again, the benevolent spirits told me that this was not to be. As unfair as it seems, things happen for a reason and I must accept what destiny has in mind. 
     I cannot be with you in physical life but know that I will live in your heart forever. A part of me will always be with you, and I'll remain alive to you every time you think of me. Know this too, my darling Lynette. Death is not the end. I am all right where I am and so must you be. You must fight to live. It will be very trying, but take courage, my love, and know that things will get better. I need you to live, Lynette, for if you die, then I die within you. I can be at peace with the benevolent spirits if I know that you will live and make a life for yourself no matter where you are.
                                                With all my love,

I held the letter against my heart, rocked back and forth, and sobbed. "Oh, Jason! You have to help me understand why this has happened. If I am to lose you and be confined here, I need to understand why." I traced my finger over his name, caressing the signature I knew as well as my own. He wanted me to live and to not give up. He'd saved me, valuing my life over his because he loved me. As much as I wanted to scream and beat my fists against my chest in protest, I knew I had to honor what he wanted and try to make the best of the situation. I had to resign myself to being a castaway and live...without him.

With shaking fingers, I picked up the second sheet of paper. My jaw dropped as I read

Dear Lynette,
     First of all, let me introduce myself. My name is Mathilda Blankenship Kelly. As you are a witch yourself, I'm sure you must be familiar with who I am. I'm writing you this letter to inform you that I'll be offering you some assistance in your plight.
     I'm sure you don't exactly know where you are, so let me explain. You are in a place called the Isle of the Midnight Sun. It has also been called the Isle of Woe. It is surrounded by its own form of magic. Therefore, if you tried to escape by teleportation, you will find that kind of magic blocked by the magic that serves the island. You can perform other magic but unfortunately, you will not be able to escape by magical means.
     As I have said, I'm writing to you because I'll be offering you some assistance. I cannot take you from the island, for it is your destiny to remain here for a purpose. Even I do not know what that purpose is, but I am confident that eventually, that purpose will reveal itself to you in time. What I can do, however, is bring you little things to help you survive and to pass the time. I will be visiting you shortly, for there is much we must discuss. 
     I won't reveal much in this letter, for it's best that we talk face to face. I'll reveal something, however, and that something is that it was I who erected this enclosure and settled you here. You surely would have died of exposure, if not fever, had you remained directly in the sun. That was to be avoided, so it was necessary to get you out of danger. I also used my magic to save you from the infection and get you on the road to recovery. What you need now is plenty of rest to regain your strength.
     I will see you soon.
                                  Mathilda Kelly

I was truly and utterly speechless. Of course I knew who Mathilda was; she was the most powerful witch in the multiverse. I'd always wanted to one day stand in her presence but never thought it would happen. I'd actually get to meet her. Strange that it took me getting marooned on some sort of magical deserted island for that to happen. "Well, Jason," I said aloud. "They sometimes say life's a beach but this is rather ridiculous, don't you think?"

I flopped onto the bed and waited for something to happen.

Author's Note - Thanks goes to Shafer249 for letting me borrow White Wolf, his siblings, and his sire whenever I need them. He was not pictures, so he'll get an honorable mention.

Witch Mathilda can be seen in my other stories, "Forever in Time" and "Another World." Links to those stories are in the sidebar on this blog.

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