The light surrounding her was brilliant. She raised one hand to covered her eyes to keep herself from being blinded while keeping a firm grip with her other hand to anything solid so she wouldn’t lose her balance. The gentle rocking was nice at first, but soon became loathsome.
Karra always dreamed of a life at see. The exciting battles of good vs. evil. Pirates vs. Patriots. The search for hidden treasure, but also the beauty in the peace it held out as well. No noise beyond the waves of the sea. No lights except for the sun by day and the moon and stars by night but, like any dream, reality is nothing like what anyone expects it to be. This was not what she had in mind.
The past two weeks were enough to push her past her breaking point. She was alone. In the middle of the ocean. No land in sight. As the old saying goes: she was up a creek without a paddle; or in this case a sail.
Karra leaned back and closed her eyes, picturing that she was on a beach rather than stranded in a tiny life raft. The sound of the ocean always helped her to relax before, but this was probably going to change that.
Not knowing what else to do, she got up and took account again of her emergency supplies. She had a silver blanket, a flare, first aid kit, raft repair patches, a knife, fish hooks, 12 packets of water that were 4oz each. She had already gone through 16 of them; one per day. There were 15 pouches of rations left. She only allowed herself a half of one a day. She had no idea how long it would be before someone found her. She desperately fought off not using the word “if” in this context. Positive thinking was hard enough as it was.
She grabbed the knife and pulled it out of its pouch just enough for the sun to catch the sharp blade. This was what she would do while the sun was out. She would flash the sun she caught out across the ocean in hopes that someone would see it and rescue her. Plus what else was there to do.
After what was probably about an hour, Karra began drifting off to sleep. She fought it, but soon sleep won out. She was startled awake by the sudden shift in her raft. It felt like something had just slammed down in the middle and was trying to tip her over.
“Easy there. We didn’t get any response from you when we called over.” A man was kneeling beside her gently holding her wrist.
“I…” Karra coughed out the spider webs and dust that had accumulated in her voice over the last week without speaking. “I didn’t think anyone was going to find me.”
The man helped her to sit up.
“Are you able to stand?” He asked. When she responded with a nod, he slid next to her and put her arm around his shoulder and helped her to her feet.
They took a few steps over to the tiny raft that was tied to hers. She could barely keep her feet under her, but the man was solid and didn’t let her fall. He helped her into the boat, which was solid under her feet compared to the flimsy raft. She sat down on one of the seats, almost forgetting what it was like to have some solidity under her.
The man sat on the back bench and started the motor. He left the raft tied to them and, within moments, had them turned around and heading to a larger looking sail boat. She saw five faces of all ages looking back at her with concern and joy.
For the first time since this nightmare began, Karra knew it was going to be ok.