Copyright 2013. PATG LLC. All rights reserved.

Chapter 31

Cast Ashore


Under the sea the serpents swam,

In the deeps, churning sand,

One day north, past fish boats’ dock,

Further north, then round the rocks,

Continuing east, for two more days,

Past coral reefs, winding and mazed,

Til all five appeared in reach,

Of an island, south and east,

Wailing, wailing, serpent screech,

Up they rose, above the beach.

The serpents stayed that way for hours,

Until sun set, when all the towers,

Saw a figure emerge from trees,

Dressed in white, billowing sleeves.

Straight to it the monsters flocked,

And bowed before Kamal Kamock.

“Out with her Girloi! Out with her now!”

Bar commanded, serpent heads bowed.

“Give her up, by my command,

Or rot forever in the sand!”

Angry bound to serve Bar’s care,

The Girloi screeched and screamed in air,

And glared at him, and stared at him,

Preparing to achieve his whim.

Behind Bar, beneath the palms,

Groups of soldiers, raised their arms,

As tallest serpent of the five,

Coughed and hacked, and writhed and wrythed,

And bent to beach, head and snout,

Up choking Poepi, spitting her out.

All the Girloi riled and railed

And bent their necks, and thrashed and flailed,

As their breaths washed hot the beach,

Through the gaping jaws of each.

Among each other’s lengths they rolled,

And shot straight up, and landed bold,

Back in ocean’s splashing spray,

Near the middle of the bay.

Their mission met, immediately,

The Girloi dropped back to the sea,

Until the last of all their scales

Departed with their dipping tails.

And in a pile, of spit out slime,

Poepi stirred, first in time,

Since Girloi, swallowed her whole,

And hid her in its gullet hole.

Her armour smelled like stomach gunk,

Stuck with slimy flecks and chunks,

So that her vision yawed and stretched,

And belly emptied, wretch by wretch.

The minutes passing felt like hours,

Until her stirs became more powered,

And she sat up with a start.

Shaking her head, looking the part,

Of someone long been stunned asleep,

But come-to quickly once reveeped.

She squinted hard and looked around,

Meeting boots in sandy ground.

Wet and dazed and feeling worse

Poepi spoke, raspy and terse.

“Where are my friends? Where is my sister?

Tell me man! Tell me mister!”

Then she stood up next to Bar,

Slopping slime, parched and scarred,

Pulling slow her sword blade out,

Intent to kill without a doubt.

Yet as she tensed to make her strike,

The leaves on trees behind Bar spiked,

And flew apart with thrashing speed,

As if to stop her coming deed.

And then a carriage came about,

With clacking wheels and drivers shout,

Finely made, fair and smart,

Beautiful to Poepi’s heart.

Poepi peered, to see within,

While Bar smiled, a mischievous grin.

Stepping backward wild and wary,

Holding sword, in menacing carry,

Poepi stood to stand and fight,

Armor now reflecting bright,

As morning rose and quick fled night.

She knew that she was not a soldier,

But her ordeal had made her bolder,

And now that her adrenaline,

Was pulsing pulsing through her veins,

She hunched and peered out with a sneer,

Her anger overcoming fear.

And her bangle, still a dangle,

Gave her courage full to strangle,

Bar or Giant or Serpent team,

If harm had come to Perlameen.

Suddenly, her sword hand slashed,

Wild eyes flashed, grim teeth gnashed.

Wet hair hung at point to ground,

Hard eyes squinting, mouth lips frowned,

Breath expeezing, wheezing wheezing,

In and out, both bosoms heaving, 

As other hand began to glow,

Thrumming energy, green and slow.

From where it came she did not know,

And did not care so long as so,

It gave her strength to find her sister,

And Giant or man could not resist her.

It also seemed that flecks of blue,

Were fighting fighting, to shine through,

Out of her entire skin,

From pulsing glowing cover thin,

That expanded like a bubble,

From her body, toiling trouble.

The soldiers tensed and they commenced,

To strain their weapons, for they sensed,

That she should not to be trifled with,

Strong and lovely, tensed and lithe.

Just as she knew that they would clash,

And exchange blows and armor crash,

A loving voice called from the carriage,

Poepi! Poepi! Don’t disparage!

Then Bar quick acted, thoughts distracted,

To see Poepi’s arm redacted.

“Stand down now, and step away!”

He said, and soldiers quick obeyed.

“What trick is this?” Poepi asked.

“No trick at all!” said Bar and tasked,

His wrist to open carriage door.

A jeweled slipper stepped to shore,

And then a second, even more,

Laid with gems than one before.

“How can this be?!” Poepi gasped,

And dropped her sword, and stumbled back,

Falling down, unsteady splash,

Into the sea, which could not wash,

The disbelief from Poepi’s face.

For there dressed in the finest lace,

In golden gown, with silver weaves,

On the breast in cross palm leaves,

With studs of rubies, and of jade,

And diamond silver, finely made,

Stood Poepi’s sister, Perlameen,

Looking happy and serene!

Poepi’s parched red lips hung down,

Without a breath, or smile, or frown,

She wildly wondered if what she saw,

Was a mirage, or a flaw,

Of her senses, skewed all five,

Seeing Perla there alive,

And also stately, grand and regal,

A princess of the land and seagulls.

Her shaking hands reached out to touch,

Her sisters hands, which like a crutch,

Steadied Poepi as she rose,

Then pulled her tight, then pulled her close,

And Poepi also did the same,

And cheek to cheek, gasped her name.

“Perlameen! Oh my Perlameen!”

Poepi whispered, disbelieving.

And at that moment tiny hands,

Of Perla’s Pixie, lit to land,

On Poepi’s shoulder, and did embrace,

The teared left cheek on Poepi’s face.

Poepi laughed and then she cried,

As did her sister at her side,

And smiling at the pixie faerie,

Poepi’s heart beat grand and merry,

But then the pixie flew around,

Searching Poepi up and down,

Looking, longing, poking, peeking,

For her pixie sister seeking,

And finding that she was not there,

Her happiness became despair.

In Poepi’s brain this made her think,

Of her Pixie, and of blink.

She saw the wolves, and lived again,

The grim demise of her old friend,

And of her own small Pixie’s spurn,

Who left her and did not return.

Repressed tears came rolling out,

Her fears, her losses and the bout,

Which took her from the elves and Smith,

Amid the serpent monoliths.

She could not speak to tell their fate,

Her sadness, bearing too much weight,

But gently kissed the little pixie,

Who’s tears of grief fell openly.

Then they all hugged tight as ever,

And into carriage stepped together.