genre: fantasy (mystery & drama)
She walked along the beach, head ducked and hands shoved deep in her jacket pockets. The wind whipped about, pulling her hair and waving it across her face in ticklish teasing. She’d given up the attempts to keep the lip-tingling tendrils from sweeping across her face.
The rocky beach seemed to go on forever, but in her loneliness she didn’t care how far it went, because there was no end in sight for her. Life seemed to have dealt her every possible blow a person could endure without dying.
She scoffed at the thought of it and lifted her face to stare at the horizon.
“Yes. I’m a country song,” she said into the wind.
Her words seemed to spiral around her and then disappear across the expanse of ocean. The self-deriding smile she wore melted into the deep creases of a frown and not even the restful sound of waves slapping the shore could bring her comfort.
Her steps slowed until she halted and her head slumped back down.
Something out of the ordinary caught her attention. She bent over and reached under the edge of a water-saturated, bark-less log left as dejected and forlorn on the beach as her.
She rubbed the side and peered into the semi-opaque glass wondering if there was a message in the bottle. An inkling of hope lit in her chest as she imagined some love note, or cry for rescue, or any manner of crazy story might be captured inside the bottle.
She tipped the bottle up and examined the top. It had a small cork placed in it but with enough outside the neck to grasp. Unable to resist, she pulled the top out, but instead of a celebratory popping sound coming from the bottle an intense whoosh of air escaped, followed by a loud crashing, as if the entire ocean was bottled up inside.
Her heart hammered in her chest and she dropped the bottle, stumbling backward away from the onslaught. But it was too late. She’d unleashed something beyond imagining.
The wind whipped about her in an ever-growing circle, pulling her clothes, pulling her hair, pulling her closer and closer to the bottle.
Her scream was lost in the gusts so even she could not hear her cries. In the next instant she was pulled from her feet and swirled with the currents of air. The pressure grew intense and her insides felt compressed.
It was her last cry before she disappeared into the bottle.