All Twilight characters belong to Stephenie Meyer
Dollybigmomma rocks the beta Kasbah!
Chapter 1 – Some Dreams are Nightmares
This had to be a bad dream. At least that was what I was hoping for. I could have woken up from that, instead of finding myself here, in a real-life episode of the Twilight Zone, where only a dumbass actor of a pilot would actually fly over the Bermuda Triangle. Everyone knew the stories of disappearing planes and ships, so the area was widely avoided. Obviously, our pilot missed that little memo and decided this brilliant maneuver was the answer to avoid a storm. He was going to just swing wide around it and then land us in Florida, where I was going to surprise my mother for her birthday. It looked like the batch of homemade fudge I had made for her was about to become fish food instead.
The whole damn plane started to shake, and then it shot into a nosedive. The pilot yanked the plane to the left, god only knew why. People all around me were screaming, and all I could mutter was, "Great, now I'm going to die." I felt like rolling my eyes at myself. I had nothing to show for my life, including having the good sense to give a damn about dying, apparently.
I silently wondered if my mother would be upset.
We had hardly spoken to each other over the past three years. Would she even notice when I never showed up again? My eyes darted to a woman holding a small baby. I could see tears running down her face as she tried to calm her screaming infant. I wondered if the handsome gentleman next to her was her husband. He sat stoically silent, watching the woman clutch the child frantically to her chest.
He must have felt my eyes on him, because he looked up at me and glared.
I would've pretended to be offended, but I didn't have time. I felt the plane suddenly jolt violently as we hit the ocean surface. I was temporarily jostled, but otherwise unhurt, unlike most of the people surrounding me.
The plane rolled slightly, and the cabin started to fill with water.
I was sitting in coach, last row of seats at the very back of the plane. I watched as people frantically tried to unbuckle themselves. I undid mine calmly and with ease, accepting my fate of death.
My eyes found the angry man again, only to feel sudden panic as reality set in. The woman next to him was not conscious, and the way her head tipped unnaturally to the side made it look like her neck had been broken. The child was still screaming, clinging to her chest, but slowly sliding down her lap.
Water was filling the cabin quickly, and as it filled the man's shoes, something seemed to click in his head. He sprang to his feet and wrestled down a large suitcase before grabbing the baby from the dead woman's lap. He looked at me pointedly and turned, running to the very back of the plane, pulling his large carry-on behind him. I wondered how he'd managed to not have to check that thing, or why on earth he would stop for his luggage. I didn't have time to question him, though, as I jumped up to follow him, and we made our way to the back of the plane. He managed to release the emergency latch and kick the door open.
Suddenly, we were in the water.
An airplane seat only worked as a floatation device as long as you were conscious enough to hang on to it. Only about eight people made it out of the plane, before it sank into the ocean, taking the rest of the passengers with it. We floated on the surface of the choppy water, watching the sky nervously, as the storm the pilot had tried to fly around was now approaching.
My eyes found the angry man again. He was hanging on to his suitcase for dear life. It was floating, and he had laid the baby on top of it, and it was lying on its belly. I watched as the man looked over the baby worriedly. I was sure he had to be crushed to lose his wife, and now he was doing everything he could to take care of his baby in the worst possible situation.
The water began to get rougher. The waves were growing rapidly. One of the other passengers suggested we all try and hang on together. We all agreed to gather around the man with the baby. I think we all silently vowed to protect the baby. We needed to save the most precious thing left, even if we all died doing it.
The waves pushed us higher, and one of the guys saw land. We all started kicking hard, trying to reach it, but making little headway. We were all exhausted. A huge wave hit, scattering our group. I searched frantically, trying to see if there was anyone else around.
I saw the angry man's head bob up. His precious package was in his arms, and his suitcase was just out of his reach. I knew he wouldn't last long. I fought the churning waters and shoved my floatation device at him. I shouted for him to grab it, but I doubted he'd heard me over the wind. It bounced on his back, and he turned to see me pointing at it, yelling for him to take it.
His eyes widened in surprise, just as another big wave hit. He had just enough time to grab onto it, before the wave shoved us further apart.
My body was tumbling through the waves. I wasn't sure which way was up, and I didn't fight to find it. I knew it really didn't matter at this point. Then something slammed into my stomach, knocking what little air I had left in me out. I grabbed on to whatever it was instinctively and felt myself moving upward. Once I broke the surface, I realized it was the man's suitcase. I looked around, but I didn't see him or anyone else anywhere. Another wave crashed into me, propelling me toward the island we had been trying to swim toward. I looked desperately for the others. I didn't know their names, but in the short amount of time we had spent together clinging to life, we had bonded.
I silently prayed that they would make it.
I worked with the storm, only kicking to propel myself when the tide was naturally pushing me that way.
The storm seemed to be moving in a different direction now. We had only been on the edge of it, but it was enough to do the damage. The water was still too choppy to see over the waves. I didn't know if anyone else was still alive.
I hit the shore of an island that would have looked like paradise under other circumstances and crawled up the sand, grateful to just be alive. I looked around one last time, unsure of where I was or if anyone else had survived, and then I just collapsed.
When I finally came to, I thought I could hear crying in the distance. I didn't know how long I had been asleep, but it seemed like dawn was breaking. I must have slept all evening and into the next morning. My body was sore from the impromptu workout. I strained to see if I could hear the crying again. I could have sworn I'd heard it.
I looked around me and spotted the suitcase. I dragged it up higher on the shore, a safe distance from the water. It felt like it was full of lead, it was so heavy. I peered up and down the shoreline, hoping to see somebody, anybody.
There was no one.
Then I heard it.
A baby's cry!
I knew I hadn't been imagining it. I started running towards the sound. It was back a little ways from the shoreline, about twenty yards from where I had washed up.
I tore through the jungle and started moving faster, when I heard the baby start to scream louder. Just as I burst into the clearing, something hit me hard, coming from the side.
For a moment, I thought it might have been a wild animal defending its prey, but after we hit the ground, it made no move to get off me or attack me. I opened my eyes, looking for the baby, and saw it was lying on a large leaf.
Confused, I looked at what was on top of me.
It was the man, looking down at me equally confused. "The baby," I said snapping him out of whatever it was he was thinking, and he quickly got up and picked up the baby, trying to calm it. He looked awkward and worried.
"Can I try?" I asked. He looked at me hesitantly, and then he handed over the screaming baby. "When was the last time he ate?" He shrugged. "Have you fed him since you got here?"
"I don't have any fucking food. There's no such thing as a fucking bottle tree, now is there," he snapped.
I looked around, seeing a banana tree. I pointed to it. "Get a banana for him." He looked confused, and I rolled my eyes. "Get a banana, and I'll feed him!"
He hurried up the tree, and that was when I saw a cut on his leg. I hoped it wasn't infected. We would need to find clean water to wash it.
I realized the baby's diaper was completely soaked and quickly took it off. The baby was definitely a boy, and he seemed to calm down once he was naked.
The man returned and looked at me confused. "Why is he naked?"
"His diaper was wet." Geez, didn't this man ever help with his son?
The man frowned a little and pulled one of the bananas off the bunch he had picked. I hoped it would be soft enough for the baby to eat. I mashed it while still in the peel and then used my finger to feed the mush to him.
"How did you know to do that?" the man asked.
He pointed at the now-quiet baby. I just shrugged. "I was hungry, and my soggy underwear is uncomfortable. I just assumed he was in the same boat." The man seemed to pout at my response. "How old is your son?" I asked.
His head popped up, and his eyes widened. He looked away for a minute then shrugged.
He didn't know how old his son was? What a jerk!
"Well, he's pretty small and looks to be around eight or nine months old, does that sound about right?" He didn't answer. This guy was starting to piss me off. "Why don't you go see if you can find some fresh water? We're going to need it," I said dismissing him.
His eyes lingered on the baby for a moment, and then he turned and left.
I sat with the baby, who was no longer fussing, and looked down at his little chubby cheeks. He looked well cared for. I remembered the way his mother had doted over him on the plane. His eyes were brown, and he had a smattering of brown curls on his head. He looked a lot like his mother. Her hair had been brown and wavy.
I thought it must have been hard for that man to look at his son, who looked so much like his dead wife. Despite his dark-colored eyes and hair, he had light soft baby skin. His father had done well to keep him out of the sun. His cheeks were the only thing that looked pinked.
I heard a rustling in the bushes and immediately took a defensive stance. I was relieved when the man came walking back. "There's a freshwater creek not far from here."
I looked at his leg. It looked like he had cleaned it. The baby had been gurgling and suddenly stopped. I was holding him facing away from me, so he could see that his daddy had come back for him.
Suddenly, a little fountain sprouted, and the man jumped to the side.
"Little fucker. I said I found water, not that I needed some," he laughed as the baby peed, shooting in his direction.
I quickly held the baby away from me, and sure enough, the other side followed. He pooped, just missing my feet.
The man laughed and seemed to be looking around for something. "Man, I wish I had my suitcase," he grumbled.
I had all but forgotten about it.
"It's just over there. I crashed into it during the storm. It was what I used to float to safety."
The man looked in the direction I pointed and ran off after it. I wondered if he realized any disposable diapers he might have had for his son would be thoroughly soaked.
He came running back, smiling widely, and opened his suitcase with a flourish. He pulled out a package of wipes and handed them to me.
I was surprised to find they were dry on the outside. Apparently, the suitcase had been waterproofed.
I laid the baby back on the large leaf he'd had him lying on before and cleaned his behind. "Diaper?" I asked expecting him to have at least one.
He seemed to be looking for something and sighed. "Why the hell would she pack wipes and no diapers?" he grumbled.
I peeked around the inside of the suitcase and saw a bag of cloth diapers and one with some bandanas.
"There," I pointed to them, "Give me those. They'll work."
He smiled, and for a moment, my heart stopped. He was beautiful. He handed me what I asked for, and I placed a cloth diaper under the baby and used the bandana to hold it in place.
He looked back down in the suitcase and looked confused, but then started laughing to himself.
"What?" I asked.
He lifted up a sippy cup. "Alice," he said shaking his head.
That must have been the name of the woman who had died next to him. I didn't understand what was so funny about his wife packing a sippy cup for his son.
The smile dropped from his face, and he picked up an envelope. The name Edward was scrawled across it, and I wondered if that was him.
He carefully opened it, unfolding the letter.
Halfway through the letter, tears started falling down his face. It must have been a letter from his wife, and I wondered what she was saying. That she loved him? Hated him? His lack of child know-how was proof enough that he wasn't a very good father, and probably not a very good spouse.
I stopped those thoughts, as I heard him sniffle. He had just lost his wife. I had no right to think of him that way.
He chuckled softly and pulled a tissue from the envelope he had just opened, wiping his nose. "She thinks of everything," he mumbled.
Once he was done with the letter, he set it down and closed the suitcase again. "I'm going to get some wood," he said before he took off. He came back with a large armload and left again. He stacked the wood between two trees, making a tall and narrow woodpile. He stepped back, seeming to get an idea, and then ran back the way he had come. We had been sitting in a small tight circle of trees. It was no more than eight feet around. When he returned, he stopped and looked at me for a moment. He opened the suitcase and pulled out a metal pot and a Swiss army knife. I looked at him confused.
"I know, right? That's just Alice for you. The creek is just over that way. You'll be able to hear it. Use the pot to scoop some water and put it on the fire I'll have waiting for you. I need to get our shelter up for tonight."
He seemed to know what he was doing, so I went the way he'd told me. When I came back, I was surprised to see his suitcase unpacked, and everything was tucked into a huge duffle bag that must have been folded inside the suitcase. He had cannibalized the suitcase and used the metal framing to fashion a makeshift stovetop. He then used four tall sticks he had found, tying them together with strips of material he'd cut from the suitcase lining. The tops of the four sticks were then tied together like a teepee.
I carefully set the pot on the makeshift stove. It seemed to hold with no problem. The baby was watching me. We both were looking around curiously.
The man came back and stacked up another row of wood. I could see now he was making a wall using the logs. I wanted to help, but I didn't see how I could. I didn't want to put the baby down, because he might crawl away or get burned by the fire.
While the man was getting more wood, I noticed the water boiling and decided to get out the sippy cup and get the water cooling for the baby. When I opened the bag, I noticed a child's button-up shirt. It was too large to be the baby's and much too small to be the man's. When I pulled it out, it uncovered a bag with a stack of bandanas. I was holding the little shirt upside down, when I got an idea. To test it out, I tied a corner of a bandana tightly to the point of the shirt collar and did the same on the other side with another. I used two more to make the straps longer, and then I knotted another two of the bandanas into the bottom front of the shirt. I held up my makeshift baby carrier and smiled.
"What do you think, little man? You think it'll work, so I can help your daddy?"
I heard chuckling from behind me. The man was standing there with a brilliant smile. "Is that what I think it is?" he asked.
"If you're thinking it's a baby carrier, then yes," I answered proud of my accomplishment.
"Well, bring it over and put it on me. We'll give it a go."
I looked at him stunned. "I was going to wear it."
"You'll get tuckered out too fast if you do. Strap him on my back, and let's see how this thing works."
I was thinking about arguing with him, but he was right. Chances were that I would get worn out quickly and wouldn't be able to help him much.
I slipped the baby's legs into the shirt's armholes. I picked him up, twisted the bandanas into straps, and then passed them over the man's shoulders. Then I handed him the ends of the bandanas that were tied under the baby's behind. The man tied them in an "X" across his chest and looked over his shoulder. "How you doing, little man?"
His son patted his back in response, cooing happily. "Alright, the wood is this way," he said leading me out of camp.
It looked like the storm, or one that had hit not too long ago, had torn up a large portion of the jungle. There were several downed trees and snapped branches. He grabbed a long, but not too thick, branch and broke it into four smaller logs by stomping on it.
"Do you think you can handle carrying these?" he asked.
I nodded yes, and he loaded me up.
"Do you know the way back to camp?"
I smiled and turned back down the path he had already beaten down through the jungle. I quickly stacked the logs and ran back to find him breaking up another load. He was doing his best to break them into manageable logs for me. "We could really use an axe right about now, huh?" I joked.
He stopped suddenly and touched the carrier, smiling at me. "I guess I could just make one."
He helped me carry the logs back to camp and stacked them up, all but one.
I took the baby from him and fed him the water, hoping it would be enough. I didn't have any idea where I would be able to find milk on this island. I took a sip from the pot and then passed it to the man. "You need to stay hydrated."
He smiled softly at me, before thanking me and drank it all down. He glanced at the fire that was going down. I threw another log on it and started to go refill the pot, so we could boil some more water for drinking.
"Where are you going?" he asked.
"I'm going to get more water. We need to have it on hand, so we can stay hydrated."
He nodded in return and went back to what he was doing.
When I came back, he held up his branch with a honed rock tied to it. "Where did you get the rope?" I asked.
"Alice," was his only answer.
Apparently, his wife was prepared for anything. I was really starting to admire her.
By the end of the day, we had two walls up and had eaten the majority of the banana bunch he had picked. The baby seemed to be doing okay on bananas and water so far.
He pulled out a featherbed cover and laid it down on some banana leaves he had spread on the ground. He lay down on top of it and patted the space next to him. "We'll find stuffing for it tomorrow," he said sighing then closing his eyes. He had worked very hard today, and I knew that tomorrow would be just as rough.
I had changed the baby, cleaning him up and lay down next to the sleeping stranger, realizing that I didn't even know his name. The baby snuggled on my chest, pillowing his head on my breast as he sighed contently.
I woke the next morning to the thumping of his makeshift axe, and a wet chest. Too bad there hadn't been a pair of rubber pants in that suitcase. I looked over at our fire and saw that it was burning nicely, with a pot of water on it. The baby was still sleeping soundly on my chest. I'd always heard that you should never wake a sleeping baby, and since there wasn't much I could do for him asleep, I let him rest.
The man came back with a load of logs in his arms, and he smiled when he saw I was awake. I put my fingers to my lips and then pointed at the sleeping baby. He smiled and nodded in understanding. The little guy had endured a really busy couple of days and was still tuckered out.
I was handed a banana for breakfast. He filled up the baby's sippy cup first and then set it next to me, so I could reach it when it cooled.
"Breakfast in bed, a girl could get used to this," I joked quietly.
He looked at me confused and then chuckled softly, shaking his head, before he disappeared up the path again.
I heard the familiar whacking start again, and I knew he was going back to work. I drank some water to wash the banana down and wondered if he had an extra toothbrush in his duffle bag. I was also curious to see what else his wife had put in his carry-on. I hoped he didn't mind if I snooped. I carefully slid the baby off my chest and laid him next to me, quickly changing his diaper without waking him, and then I sat up and pulled the duffle towards me.
Everything inside the bag was sealed inside waterproof zippy bags. I pulled out a bag with a large stack of bandanas. Apparently, his wife loved them. I wished I had someplace to set this stuff, not wanting it to get dirty in the sand. I noticed the sharp broken limb ends of the stick wall poking out and decided to tie some bandana ends to them, making a bag-like shelf system to hang from the lower part of the wall. It was only about two feet up, but it was high enough to use comfortably as I sat on the ground. I hung the rope on another pokey stick, and then I pulled out a large folded blue nylon tarp. I looked up and assumed this was what would eventually make our roof. There were several ponytail holders, one of which I promptly used. I also found some soft washcloths, a couple of small towels, and more cloth diapers, along with a bag with a couple of toothbrushes and a tube of toothpaste.
I made another shelf and tucked them away. I dug a little deeper and smiled when I found a big spool of fishing line. We could eat meat if we ever came across a hook. I thought of wandering the beach, looking for lost hooks. I looked a little deeper and found a card with several pairs of hook-type earrings with various dangling décor. There were also some packages of pantyhose.
I made another shelf and set the clothes in it. There were two sets of adult male clothes, two of female, three little baby outfits, and a floppy sun hat.
There were several white sheets, so I made a shelf for just them. In the very bottom of the bag, there were several large packets of seeds. One larger bag was full of tiny seeds. They looked like the grass seeds we'd bought back in Phoenix. I recognized the corn seeds and some that looked like tomatoes, peas, several types of beans, and an assortment of squash-like seeds. I made a shelf just for them.
I tucked the last couple of bandanas into the baby's diaper shelf, and then I picked up the empty duffle bag. I decided I would take the fishing line and earrings and try my hand at fishing, while I gathered bedding and food. We were running low on bananas. There were just enough left for lunch, after I fed the baby his breakfast.
I added another log to the fire and put a fresh pot of water on to boil before I left. I would have left a note, but, well, there just wasn't any point. Besides, I figured I wouldn't get lost, since I could easily hear the whacking of his axe, and I wasn't going far.
I walked back toward the fresh water, since that was what kind of fish I had experience fishing for. I tied the line to the bottom of one of the stiff earrings, letting the decoration hang down like a lure.
I jammed a bent stick into the middle of the spool, making a makeshift reel. I wedged it between some rocks, letting the hook bounce up and down on the surface. The cheap plastic beads were keeping it from sinking too deep.
I grabbed a low-hanging branch and snapped it, stripping it free of any debris. There was a thick dry blanket of moss growing all along the path to the water. I noticed it all over the ground. I smacked it several times with my makeshift rug beater, checking for bugs and snakes. A few small beetles came crawling out, and once they were out, I picked up some of the moss and shook it out before shoving it into my bag for the bedding. I continued doing this for a while, until my bag was mostly full, and I could hear the baby starting to fuss.
I walked back to the camp and stuffed what I had into the bed cover. I gave the baby another cup of water, changed his diaper and started feeding him a banana for lunch, when the man came back with another load of wood. He had the third wall mostly done.
"You've been busy," he said motioning to the wall with the shelves and the lump in the bed.
"So have you," I said pointing to the new wall. I handed him a banana and passed him the pot of water. He thanked me and sat in the shade the new wall provided.
"We have seeds and fishing line."
"That's Alice for you."
"It's as if she knew we were going to crash and would need that stuff."
I watched him as he ran his hand through his hair and let out a sigh. "She did."
He stretched and headed back up the path, leaving me very confused.
A/N: Thanks for reading and please review!