“Look over there,” he yells, pointing at an outcropping in the rocks.
She shields her eyes from the sun with her hand. “What is it?”
“There’s a dark, mystical cave in there.”
He pulls the boat up on the beach and cuts the engine. “Just a minute,” he says as he jumps out to tie down the boat. Once he’s confident it’s secured, he reaches a hand out to her.
“Why, thank you sir,” she says playfully.
He winks, the corner of his mouth up in a smirk. Hand in hand they run off to the cave.
“Oh, it’s misty in here,” she takes a deep breath.
“There’s a hot spring in the back.”
The cold air from the ocean mixes with the heat from the hot springs making the air humid. His fingers tangle in her knotted, frizzy hair. Their bodies quickly covered in mist.
“How’d you find this place?” She looks around, amazed.
“It’s my secret,” he tries to charm her by claiming the magnificent cave.
Again he tries to pull her in for a kiss. Just as he leans in, she turns away to run to the hot springs.
“Hey,” he yells after her, “wait up. It’s dark. You need the light to see where you’re going. There are…”
“Ouch,” her screams interrupt him. She sits and grabs her foot, her bikini barely hanging on.
Quickly he runs to her and bends down at her side, “are you ok? Let me look.” He grabs her foot and shines a flashlight on it to see a deep cut on the side.
“I didn’t know the rocks were so sharp.” She tries to fight the tears that are threatening to spill over. Her foot is throbbing in pain.
“Let’s go wash it in the hot springs.” He helps her up, keeping a hold of her, he helps her sit on a smooth rock at the edge of the pool. “It is pretty hot, so put your foot in slowly.”
She nods and does as he says. The water feels soft. It wraps around her foot like velvet. She eases her foot into the water feeling immediately comforted by it.
“Does that feel okay?”
“Mmmm-hhmmm,” she moans.
He sits down beside her, smiling. She looks so serene; all he wants is to kiss her. He brushes her hair away from her neck and leans closer. He can taste the salt on her skin, his lips brushing lightly on her neck.
“Mmmmm,” she moans again.
Taking her moaning as approval to his advancements, he kisses her neck moving up to her jaw bone. He kisses her slowly, making his way to her lips. He is curious if they are as soft as they look. He looks up at her. From the corner of his eye, he sees something moving in the water. Not sure what it is, he turns slowly to look at the water. He shakes her arm to get her attention, but she doesn’t move. He looks at her again and sees her eyes are still closed.
“Maia,” he shouts. She only moans in response. He looks at her, confused, before looking again at the water. The stuff in the water is black and has wrapped around her foot.
“Maia,” he shouts again, panic in his voice.
She sways as if in a trance. He grabs her arm putting it around his shoulder to try and lift her out of the water. The black stuff begins to move up her leg slowly. He pulls on her with all of his strength but the black stuff holds her in its grip.
He reaches behind him for where he’s dropped his emergency pack. “Shit,” he mumbles, stretching as much as he can to reach it. “Maia, please,” he pleads with her, “please wake up.”
The water begins to sparkle and the black liquid moves more quickly up Maia’s leg, now up to her thigh. He takes her arm off his shoulder and holds her hand. It is enough that he is able to reach his pack. He fumbles through it until he finds his fishing knife.
“Maia,” he whispers in her ear, “Wake up Maia. Please wake up.” He pleads, shaking her only just slightly.
“Arrggg,” he groans in frustration when she gives no response. He holds the knife tight, knowing he must get the black stuff off of her. He looks at it closely and sees that it has attached itself to Maia’s cut foot. He takes a deep breath to steady himself. “Okay, okay. Cut it, grab her and run.”
He wipes the sweat off his brow with the back of his hand. He stabs at the black liquid three times. Moving quickly, he wraps his arms around her waist and tries to pick her up. He falls to his knees as the liquid holds strong. The liquid, now up to her waist, touches his arm and he screams out in pain.
“No, no, no,” he screams. He stabs at the black liquid over and over again. “Let her go.” He yells desperately.
The liquid moves quickly, now up to Maia’s breasts.
Frantically he stabs at the water. Tears fill his eyes, making it hard to see. He loses his footing and falls into the water. His arms begin flailing trying desperately to break the surface. He can see Maia sitting on the edge, the black liquid up to her jaw.
She opens her eyes and looks down at him beneath the water. Her eyes seem to sparkle and she smiles. Slowly, she slides into the water.
He flails and kicks, his lungs running out of air. His pleading eyes stare into hers as she brings her face close to his. She is completely covered in the black liquid, her body sleek and smooth with it.
She holds his face and brings her lips to his. Without hesitating, he parts his lips for her. She sucks out the last of his air; his eyes open wide in shock.
She can see the fear in his eyes. “Don’t be afraid Dylan,” she caresses him with her voice. “I am Maia, Goddess of water.” She smiles at him sweetly. “Thank you for bringing me home.”
His kicks are futile. He has no air or strength left. The hot water relaxes his muscles despite the screaming in his brain.
“And you Dylan,” she taps him on the tip of his nose, “Will be the God of water.”
The light around them starts to fade as Maia pulls Dylan into the depths of the hot springs. Going deeper than he would have ever imagined; to a secret world beneath the cave.
(c) Rachel Rennie 2015