As You Rise

Sunlight flecked off of the shallow waves, glittering from the near-golden sand beneath. The only sounds came from the gentle rush of the water- no birds, no boats.

There was nothing on the small island but sand.

He awoke with a sigh, and sand ran from his chest in small, glittering rivulets to meet its larger mass. His sand castle must have fallen down in the night, the sand wishing to be close to him, and he shook a bit of it from his hair, his limbs surfacing from their coverings. He took his time sitting up, lying on his back for an undetermined amount of time, his eyes slowly crossing the expansive sky that stretched above his barren oasis, straying for a handful of seconds on the few puffs of clouds he could see. Eventually his gaze found the horizon, the morning sunlight warming the side of his face. Silence and water threatened to send him to sleep again.

But there was much to do.

He got to his feet, sighing tiredly as he treaded down the dune toward the sea, wading out into the shallow water to stoop, splashing the cool, salt water on his face and rubbing the sleep from his eyes. He raised his arms above his head for a stretch, then splashed back to shore, golden sand collecting on his previously bare feet, warm and soft.

He glanced back toward the water as there was a distant splashing, and he caught a glimpse of a rainbow-colored fin. A slender arm emerged from the waves in a salutation; a mermaid that he may or may not have met, but certainly knew who he was, and he smiled, cheerfully returning the greeting.

And then he was left to his dunes again. How much of his home would he take with him, today? How much dream-sand would grace the rest of the world, tonight?

Someday, he knew, as he looked out over the twisting fingers of the tiny, barren island, the world would be covered with gold.