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datatime: 2022-09-25 12:30:07 Author:dsjpjvWz

"Are you afraid of it?" he asked.

There was a manta ray sailing across the moon.

The girl was right: It was too early for rum. You're older and wiser and this only compounds the sickness. Or so the doctors had said. Time doesn't heal, Moore thought suddenly, it only makes you forget the name of your illness. And what was it called? There was a medical term for it that Moore didn't remember. The layman's label was much simpler: "survivor's syndrome."

The old man's terrier mutt, perched on top of the fishing skiff's wet-well, had been watching the bone-white squid as they darted and dived, their tentacles tangling together. "You put your nose in there, Coconut," said the fisherman, "and one 'o them boys bite it off sure as I tells you"

The old man's flesh crawled; beside him the dog jumped, yipped.

Strands of weed, as long and brown as a woman's hair, rolled across the reef. His skiff was jostled by swells, and he put a hand on each gunwale to steady himself. He realized he was getting a little too close to the bommies, and he'd had a skiff peeled open before, so he turned his tiller to get away. Across the reef the seaweed swirled, a dance of the morning tides, and the phosphorescence gleamed like liquid emeralds.

"Let me get dressed and I'll walk you down," he told her as he got to his feet, but she shook her head.

Claire looked up, putting the empty cup aside, went to the window, and gazed down. "It's a big one. The men are already talking about it in the taverns."

The mutt scampered away from the wet-well and to the stern, where his master sat with one hand on the tiller of a small trolling motor. "I ought to throw you to the merrimaids," the old man said, feigning disgust.

Strands of weed, as long and brown as a woman's hair, rolled across the reef. His skiff was jostled by swells, and he put a hand on each gunwale to steady himself. He realized he was getting a little too close to the bommies, and he'd had a skiff peeled open before, so he turned his tiller to get away. Across the reef the seaweed swirled, a dance of the morning tides, and the phosphorescence gleamed like liquid emeralds.

"Underwater," he said. "Other than that I don't know."

The mutt scampered away from the wet-well and to the stern, where his master sat with one hand on the tiller of a small trolling motor. "I ought to throw you to the merrimaids," the old man said, feigning disgust.

Superstitions. They was all the time eatin' at a woman, tryin' to get at a man too. Not that he didn't listen hard to the winds and the tides, or believe in the power of Rev. Boniface. But some things-old things his father and grandfather had sworn by a long time ago-he refused to put his faith in.

There was a manta ray sailing across the moon.

Silence. The sea, the breezes whining around broken railings.

The aged black fisherman could clearly see its lines, the ridges along its extended wings, the long, sweeping tail trailing after it. It was a big one, he thought, plenty big enough bait for hungry snappers. As he watched, the wide cloud changed, curled in upon itself, became the silver image of a flying fish reaching for a height its ocean brothers could only dream of. Then the wings melted and it became a man's face with an open mouth. He could see the wide eyes, the cheekbones, the point of a chin. But there was fear in that face, and as he continued to observe the cloud, the look of the thing frightened him. The mouth opened wider, wider, in the outcry of one who has seen a terrible vision but does not yet know what he has seen. He felt the breeze knife through his bones. The mouth, opened as wide as possible, suddenly split from the face and became a separate cloud; now it was no longer a face but something grotesque and unrecognizable, turning in on itself like a maddened beast.

The mutt scampered away from the wet-well and to the stern, where his master sat with one hand on the tiller of a small trolling motor. "I ought to throw you to the merrimaids," the old man said, feigning disgust.

There was a manta ray sailing across the moon.

The old man's terrier mutt, perched on top of the fishing skiff's wet-well, had been watching the bone-white squid as they darted and dived, their tentacles tangling together. "You put your nose in there, Coconut," said the fisherman, "and one 'o them boys bite it off sure as I tells you"

"Hey You leave them be"

The old man's terrier mutt, perched on top of the fishing skiff's wet-well, had been watching the bone-white squid as they darted and dived, their tentacles tangling together. "You put your nose in there, Coconut," said the fisherman, "and one 'o them boys bite it off sure as I tells you"

The aged black fisherman could clearly see its lines, the ridges along its extended wings, the long, sweeping tail trailing after it. It was a big one, he thought, plenty big enough bait for hungry snappers. As he watched, the wide cloud changed, curled in upon itself, became the silver image of a flying fish reaching for a height its ocean brothers could only dream of. Then the wings melted and it became a man's face with an open mouth. He could see the wide eyes, the cheekbones, the point of a chin. But there was fear in that face, and as he continued to observe the cloud, the look of the thing frightened him. The mouth opened wider, wider, in the outcry of one who has seen a terrible vision but does not yet know what he has seen. He felt the breeze knife through his bones. The mouth, opened as wide as possible, suddenly split from the face and became a separate cloud; now it was no longer a face but something grotesque and unrecognizable, turning in on itself like a maddened beast.

There was a manta ray sailing across the moon.

The old man's terrier mutt, perched on top of the fishing skiff's wet-well, had been watching the bone-white squid as they darted and dived, their tentacles tangling together. "You put your nose in there, Coconut," said the fisherman, "and one 'o them boys bite it off sure as I tells you"

The mutt scampered away from the wet-well and to the stern, where his master sat with one hand on the tiller of a small trolling motor. "I ought to throw you to the merrimaids," the old man said, feigning disgust.

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