Posted by: Kathryn Hulick | May 19, 2011

A Land Away

Photo by Tommy Wong, Wikimedia Commons

It was a sunny day speckled with clouds and caressed with gentle breezes; the perfect day for swimming and diving and chasing seagulls. One big gray one tried to eat Anu’s egg salad and pickle sandwich, but she shouted at him with her biggest voice, holding her sand shovel out like a magic wand, “I will turn you into a pickle!”

Two little boys wearing identical swim trunks laughed and held up their own shovels. “You’re a pickle!” “No, you’re a refrigerator!” “Well you’re a pickle-head!”

Anu smiled and ate two more bites of her sandwich, eating around the outside in a circle like she always did. There wasn’t much time for eating–she had castles to build. And then she would find a mermaid. And then find every spotted stone on the beach and pile them all together.

“I’m building a castle,” she told the boys, and walked back toward the tower. She knew they’d follow.

“I’m going to dig a moat so deep that you’ll fall in and no one will ever find you again!” The boy with darker hair teased his brother.

They worked on the castle while clouds drifted overhead and waves sparkled and something small and beady-eyed watched them from the waves.

“She is perfect,” said the largest water-pixie, who wasn’t much bigger than a seagull’s beak. “She has a weapon already.”

“Not the boys? They show more aggression,” said the second pixie, swishing her silver tail. The dark-haired boy had pushed his brother into the moat, splashing Anu’s tower.

Anu stood up and put her hands on her hips. “Swimming in the moat is not allowed! It’s full of angry alligators and sand-snakes that bite!”

The boys backed off, looking around for snakes.

“You’re right. She’s the one.”


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