This was meant to be our honeymoon. This was meant to be a happy time and not something like this.
We managed to reach the police but the sea is too rough and they say they can’t do the five miles from the main island in this weather. They won’t be here until the morning. They told us to just “hang in there.” I think they also didn’t take us very seriously.
Tori is sitting in the tiny wardrobe behind me. I just pray that the doors and shutters hold. I don’t know what this thing can do but it looked strong. The last time I heard it it was scratching the wall as if it wanted to climb on the roof, but I think it failed.
We saved for this holiday for two years. Two years! We both wanted it – the tropical island, all for ourselves.
This place looked as beautiful as in the prospectus. There is nothing here except this hut and a small forest of coconut and palm trees and of course the beach to all sides.
The boat brought us here around noon. The chefs stood smiling in front of the round hut with two bottles of champagne and a feast of seafood and fruits.
We sank in the beach chairs and they served us food and champagne until we were barely able to move. The whole time there was no noise except for the clicking of spoons, the small generator that supports the light and the water pump and a single power plug, and of course the waves. Those damn waves.
The chefs were meant to stay until the evening but they told us that the weather report wasn’t very promising. I guess not even 40k is enough to find a place with guaranteed good weather. They gave us the choice – either they would stay overnight on the beach or they would prepare dinner and leave early so that we had the island to ourselves.
We told them to leave. Why the hell did we tell them to leave?
A moment ago I heard the thing scratch the wall again. Now it is again circling around the hut as if it is looking for a hole or a weakness. There are the wind and the crashing waves but still I can clearly hear the crunching footsteps on the sand.
The island is tiny. There is no place to run. There is only this hut and not even a knife or paddle or just anything that could do as a weaon.
The chefs left around 5pm. Until then Tori and I had managed to walk twice around the island. Tori kept saying how serene it all was and how beautiful the white sand and the tiny seashells were.
I had expected birdsong. I’m not sure if the website or the prospectus said anything about birdsong, but for some reason I had imagined that tropical islands would have beautiful singing birds. This one is just quiet.
When the chef’s boat left we just arrived back to the hut. They left a large cooler with champagne and caipirinhas near the beach chairs and two platters of cold food in the hut.
We thought they were just lazy and found a good excuse to leave early but now the waves are really high. I can hear how dangerous it would be to be out there on a boat.
When they left the sea still looked calm. That’s why we went for a swim. Tori went first into the water and i was right behind her. She walked until just her head was visible above the surface.
Suddenly she turned around and stared at me. It looked as if she was holding her leg. A moment later her bikini bottom floated past me and we both grinned like actual newlyweds.
I really don’t know how long we were in the water. Maybe an hour or two or even three. When we got in the water was clear enough that we could see our feet. I chased Tori around with the threat of tickles. Then we just floated for a bit. Then we tickled each other again.
The sunshine went by in a flash. We noticed the light decreasing, then a momentary red shimmer appeared on the horizon on the horizon and a moment later the whole world seemed just a shimmering gray.
In the darkness the waves sounded larger and more menacing. Tori grabbed my hand. I pulled her closer and we swam back towards the beach.
She was the one that stopped us. Tori pulled herself loose and said that I should stop swimming and look up instead.
The stars were stunning. Breathtaking. So many and so clearly visible. Even I was able to make out the milky way. Tori showed me all the star signs.
A wave splashed over us and broke our daze.
Only then I noticed that my legs were getting cold. Tori said the same about hers. We had drifted a bit further out so we stayed close to each other and swam back towards the grayish shape of the island.
That’s when we heard the splashing water. It didn’t sound like a wave. First I thought it was maybe just a coconut or piece of wood being thrown from side to side, but it wasn’t. It was coming closer, far quicker than we were swimming. Tori heard it too. I swam faster and so did she. I pulled slightly ahead of her. The beach was nearly in reach, my feet not far from the ground below.
She screamed. Her scream didn’t even last a second before it was drowned in the water. I just saw her hands. I threw my body backwards and grabbed her right hand right before it was pulled below the surface.
I tried to swim backwards, but I was pulled down too. Through the darkness I saw Tori’s leg kicking after something that was darker than the water. I still held onto her hand.
I felt the water in my mouth. I felt her panicked movements. Something just went through my body, a shiver or muscle spasm. I pulled with all my strength and then some more. I pulled and she kicked and suddenly the pulling stopped. Tori quickly swam upwards and I did the same.
My head broke back through the surface and i tried to take a deep breath. A wave threw water in my mouth. Somewhere to my right Tori was coughing.
That’s when I realized it wasn’t over. I coughed and breathed and at the same time already swam towards her.
Between her coughs her voice was shaky.
“Something pulled me down! It grabbed my leg! I think I kicked it!”
We swam with fast strokes back to the beach. Just when the water was got warmer the splashing sound appeared again, further away but quickly coming closer.
When my feet finally touched the ground I started a desperate attempt at running. Tori swam right past me and I rushed back into a swimming motion.
The thing was closely behind me.
Tori stumbled out of the water and my knees finally hit the sand. I pushed myself back onto my feet and ran the rest of the way out of the water in huge jump-like steps.
The splashing behind us stopped. Only the waves were audible. We ran until we reached the first palm tree.
We looked back and in the white light saw the foaming waves. They were rolling towards the beach again and again. Their strength seemed to increase with every swing. They broke on a large black stone near the beach. The wind was getting stronger too.
At least nothing had followed us out of the water.
“What was that?” I asked.
I held Tori in my arms.
“The thing that grabbed me felt like a hand,” she said. “Like a huge cold hand.”
I didn’t say anything. I wanted to say something to reassure her but I couldn’t speak anymore.
I had seen the large stone move.
With every wave it slowly crept towards the beach, like a large stranded dolphin that was working its way in the wrong direction. We retreated further towards the center of the island which, in turn, was closer to our hut.
Its skin reflected the starlight but otherwise it was just black. It slowly seemed to crawl out of the water. Tori was already running back, but I saw it get up. It looked like a large gorilla with far too broad shoulders.
Since then we are in this hut. We managed to close and lock all the shutters and wedged the door shut.
We don’t dare to speak and I just sit next to Tori on the floor and type quietly.
It’s been at least five or six hours. Most of the time I still heard it walking or moving or trying to open the windows, but now it has stopped outside the front door. I’m not sure if it is standing or if it is sitting or whatever else it might be doing.
It’s still a few hours until the police arrives.
And all I know is that it didn’t leave.