Day 158: The Island Stirs

May 23, 1916

I’ve been on this island three days now, if it is an island. The floor is spongy. There is no sand. No vegetation. The remains of the ship batter against the spongy rim of this eldritch place, but there are no provisions left with which I can aid my plight.

A medical box caught my eye. Bandages, alcohol, syringes, morphine. Drank the alcohol, injected the morphine, and bandaged myself like a dime novel mummy, wailing imagined Egyptian to phantoms of my past. The dreams came and never stopped.

And the STENCH of this place. I’ve whiffed the titanic musk of beached whales, inhaled the stench of the ocean in the foulest of portside fish markets, but none of that matches the reek of salt and slime and the corpses of all life on this world that is the smell of this lost island.

No land in sight. No sails. I am to die here, haunted by dreams unending, mummified and alone and laughing. Laughing hurts my dry lungs, but I can’t seem to stop. I feel as though my throat is made of grains of salt griding together, sucking it down like rolling pebbles with each gasp. I am to die here. I want to die here.

Why won’t I die?

My mother taught me of purgatory, and I seem to have found it. A place of mirages, starvation, boundless thirst, a high sun that never sets. The bandages do not protect my flesh from roasting, peeling.

The slick, spongy, scaled land beneath me seems to pulse. Or maybe I am sensing my own heartbeat. I’m forcing myself to breathe, and now I’m forcing my heart to beat. Beat with the rhythm of the land beneath my feet. Land…

I don’t know what is happening! I fell to my knees, starving, laughing, and pressed my dry lips to the island floor and jabbed it with my teeth. I’ve gone mad! I am trying to eat an island! But it is an animal, a beast, a creature of the sea! It stirs! It stirs!

And now I am rising towards the sun as the island emerges at last. I have been judged! I do not deserve purgatory! I’m sorry, Mother! I’m sorry I

Today’s three prompt categories were, “Lovecraft,” “You’re on your own,” and, “Island.”

That’s why you don’t vacation on Cthulhu’s head.

– H.

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