Flash Fiction:  Adrift. Somewhere South by Southwest of the Wall

by LJ Frank

“My eyes were at closed first then slowly opened when I heard the sound. Was it a seabird calling out my name? Or perhaps a Muse? or a Siren?”

“What happened next?” The feminine voice approached me from the distance as if she was walking towards me.

“What happened next?” I repeated the woman’s question. “I found myself lying flat on my back looking up at a cobalt blue sky. There wasn’t a cloud in sight. I felt  the sensation of bobbing up and down with an algae fragrance scent infusing my nostrils. And then the sound of splashing like waves against a boat’s hull. I raised my head. I saw only water.  Endless miles of water. There was no land in sight. I was adrift. A sea gull flew over my head. I thought it was going to strike me as if to awaken my senses.”

“Do you remember at all what type of craft you were on? A raft or a boat? 

“I’m not sure. I think it was a sailboat. When I looked up…I could see the outline of at least one mast. It looked like a sail with ropes that dangled, touching the deck.”

“Were you alone?”


“How long were you adrift, do you know?”

“No, I don’t.”

“Do you recall how you arrived on the sailboat?”

I looked over towards the caressing voice. Her face was closer though still blurry. I couldn’t make her face out…she sounded so very familiar. “No, I’m not sure how I got there. I thought I’d been in a café sipping some wine with a friend I hadn’t seen in years. We spent the evening together. The next thing I knew I was on a boat.”

“Lying on the deck?”


“And you don’t know how long?”

“I…no…no…I don’t know…I just…”

“Just what?”

“I’m trying…I’m trying to think back to the café and the woman I was with, and where we went after that and…well, wait… as we departed the café I recall seeing a newspaper with the headline. Then we started running.”

“Running? Why? What was the newspaper headline?”

It read, Revolución en el norte.”

“Revolution in the North. Anything else?”

“I remember thinking that revolutions are complex. One never knows what the effects will be and where and who will suffer.”

“Do you recall other details?”

“Sometime later vertigo gripped me. I fainted. Asleep I dreamed. I thought I heard voices in the distance shouting my name. It was as if they were standing on a very distant shore waving and shouting trying to get my attention. I don’t know if they were warning me? Or, bidding me safe voyage.”

“You’ve had some unsettling experiences in your journey.”

“So it seems.”

I could feel her hand reach over and touch my face. She leaned towards me and with a wet cloth wiped my face and neck…her thick lips lightly kissed mine. She handed me my wire rim glasses. “Put these on. Perhaps it will help.”

I put my glasses on. I looked up. Some faces and voices don’t belong to each other. Hers did. Her complexion was olive and accentuated with long, black  shiny hair and her almond shaped eyes betrayed a tear…and a smile.

The deck on which I was lying began to move up and down. Water splashed against a hull. It was then I heard the sound again. I felt her hand grasp mine.