Wednesday, 17 July 2013
This is part 6 of a work in progress. Click to start at the beginning or read the previous installment.
Annie's boy. Tom who knew of keepers and guarding the sea. Who listened carefully whilst his father whispered of night sailors who followed the stars. Who found their way by compass like the one he held in his palm.
He had never before found anything like that. Knew when he retrieved it from below the hall dresser that he wouldn't tell his Mum. Slipped the silver roundel in the stuck-fast velcro pocket of his shorts.
And the holidays began. Of bikes and sturdy trees. Sandcastles, wading and skimming stones on the beach. A moments run from home to sea.
And the sun warm and gold. The wind dropped and the water resembled that of a mill pond. It seemed to Tom that all around him life took on a brighter note. Like colours and light turned up a notch. He swam, he ran, he climbed - he shone - somewhat brighter than before.
As if the roundest, smoothest pebble could be called to hand by the mere desire that it should be his own. As if tide crept closer only to cool his hot and weary toes. Tom - that summer - believed magic was his own. But if the compass wielded magnetic power at all, there was another over whom it had little control.
Adam - week off, week on. Tom would have given the beach, the sea, the world beyond, to have his Father stay home. Like the other Dads, of the other boys, the rest of the length of the shore. And maybe that's why Adam brought Mackie home. A westie pup. And Tom - and Annie - fell in love.
And Mackie wouldn't leave his side. Annie paid for a red leather collar with a name tag at the neck. A silver fish - on which Tom in the town store, insisted. It looked good they agreed. Reminded Annie of something else, slipped from mind. A trinket she expected - from the gift shop by the beach.
The dog suited Tom, she loved the days when the three of them walked. Tom always had a plan, a place to go. He had settled well. They made a brave pair - small scruffy dog and her freckled boy with the new-found glow.
To be continued... You can read the next installment here.
I'm writing my mini-novel a tiny bit at a time. You can learn more about #SummerOfWords and find out how to join in here.