Moving On

The boy laughed carelessly, the bubbling noise spiralling up into the sky. He rocked back and forth in his seat; hand clapped over the straw hat perched on his head. Around him, chaos reigned as breakfast proceeded. He looked around the small kitchen, at the six people who had followed him to the ends of many seas. His laughter faded to a simple grin that spread across his face, and he turned, looking out the window at the horizon where the sun was rising.


The navigator called to him, pointing out the dark, misty shape looming in the horizon. It was a speck in the distance, but he had never seen such an exciting speck before. The navigator smiled and patted him on the shoulder, leaving him to gawk at the swelling island. The reindeer and sniper howled in anticipation from the crow's nest, happily announcing the appearance of the island. He couldn't wait.

The sea that they were currently sailing on was made from diamonds. The water gleamed and sparkled in the crimson sunlight, reflecting, in thousands of drops, the red sky. The sea was blue, bluer than imagined possible. The blond cook was preparing yet another meal, admiring the strange yet magnificent ingredients that came from the very sea they drifted on. The navigator pored over her world map for the tenth time, confirming the name of the island that they were approaching. She had to be sure, of course.

The ship groaned suddenly, and wood splintered. The navigator rushed out of her room, only to be flung backwards as a wave of water came crashing down on the deck of the ship. A green haired boy, bandana wrapped around his head, leapt over the side of the boat, swinging out with a sword, hitting the surface of the water with enough force to propel himself upwards. The dark haired boy charged up to the scene, clutching his soaked hat in his hands, open mouthed at the spectacle. The ship screamed again, and a man flickered into vision raising a black sword. He flickered and disappeared again, as the green haired boy attacked him. They fought and the ship swayed violently. Scowling, the boy swung his head again, and yelled at the navigator. The navigator nodded and the cook released the sails, speeding the ship on to their destination. They were so close.

They were running frantically up the beach of the island, the ship barely held together by creaking wood by that time. The boy risked a look backward, watched the two figures circling each other in the air, the thin ringing of steel against steel humming faintly in his ears. He disregarded them and concentrated on his path, as well as the clattering footsteps of his other crew members beside him. His first mate would not lose.

Birds screeched and dropped from the sky in a flurry of feathers. Talons and beaks of glittering steel raked harshly against flesh and the sniper took them down with an explosive pellet. But there was more. The reindeer called out to them to stop but they were driven by the will of the island and they paid no heed. And there was always more. A smoke pellet enveloped them and the sniper and reindeer were separated from the sprinting group. Heading forward, the boy decided that he no longer needed to look back.

Mines erupted and the boy tripped. Stumbling amidst the stinging fumes and uneven ground, he heard a scream. The navigator screamed, a long and reedy scream, blood streaming from where her legs used to be. The cook wasted no time on being by her side, before another mine reduced him to a black piece of cloth and fragments of a tie. The navigator screamed again. But he kept running.

There was just another pair of footsteps by his side, a clicking sort of sound where heels were involved. There were people waiting now, with rifles and cannons. Hands sprouted everywhere, strangling, choking and clearing the way. Rapid fire ensued from the confusion. The bullets bounced harmlessly off him and he heard a whisper just by his ear as the accompanying footsteps stopped. "Thank you for giving us all our dreams."

He was alone now, racing towards a building. He entered it, heading up the stairway. It was the only possible route after all. It was just ahead of him, and right now it was all that mattered. The end.

There was a single window and he stopped briefly, eyes uncontrollably skimming over the entire island. He was quite high up in the tower already and he could see the entire island, and the sea beyond. He could make out the ship on the coast, and the sea seemed calm now. The birds were flying over the trees, having finished their job, and heading towards wherever they roosted. The mines and gunfire had stopped now. And a silence waited. And he knew. They were all gone.

He kept running then, vision blurred, and his breath scraped within his lungs roughly. He could see the steps before him, grey, and unending. He could see an older boy tied to a post, and the glow in his eyes of a demon hunter. He could see a head of orange haired, blood oozing down her arm; clawing at the ground. He could see a long nosed boy, running down a slope, legs shaking with fear, but holding courage in his heart. He could see a blond kicking him out of a kitchen and pulling him out of the ocean. He could see a reindeer, staring at him from behind a door, waiting in the snow, alone. He could see a woman, leaning against the wall, sprawled loosely on the floor, all her tears mixing with the gravel that crumbled and fell around her.

A whistling noise hissed from the walls and arrows filled the corridor. A scrap of straw and a battered red ribbon fluttered in the air.

The silence still waited, covered in layers of dust. The waves climbed the white sand stained with red again and again. The world moved on.