Figurehead

This is a fairy tale written in the style of the Grimm Brothers. 

On the crashing waves of open ocean, the dangerous water off the coast of Chile mourned. 

The ships rose and fell. Hidden beneath the decks of a decrepit ship, a handsome young Captain prepared is drink. The clean lines of his haircut scratched the palm of his rough hands as he ran his fingers along the side. He sought nothing. To him, treasure meant nothing. No nation could claim his loyalties. He only loved the his ship and himself. At the bow of the small craft lingered the dirty wooden figurehead of a thick woman admiring the water crashing into her. Her glass eyes caught the dim moonlight. Unlike him, she longed for things. What would she do with occupied lands or exploited treasures? Nothing.She longed for life. She longed for feeling. 

The captain traveled empty lengths of the Pacific Ocean with the figurehead, experiencing every new inch by her side though never acknowledging her presence. She was his invisible companion. The Sea would hear herwish desperately to see the world throughhis eyes, or feel anything other than the pain of the cold water beating her.

The Sea in her mercy listened.  The Sea decided that her waves would gently lift up the figurehead and wash her up board of the deck. At first, the Captain panicked at the body of the sturdy girlnude on his  home, unsure of how she arrived. He marveled at her lack of beauty, the fat of her lower belly spreading below her,  deciding to allow her to stay. At first she marveled at the magic of their unlikely friendship,  they quickly fell into a tragic love that only the darkness of the sea could spur. The roughness of her dry fingertips rolled over the callouses of his arms and shoulders, promising to never forget its feel. 

Lying undressed on the deck with the man she loved, the figurehead would listen to the swishing undertow as the captain recounted his travels along a coast of a country he couldn’t stand but couldn’t abandon.It was his home he said, but he never felt at home.

She asked him what he had named the ship. For the first time he could not reply.

She asked him what he had named himself. For the second time he could not reply. 

She him if she had a name. He shrugged. 

They lived in this union for a short time. They felt inseparable. He dreamed of taking her by the hand and guiding herthrough the sands of an odd coast on the other side of the ocean. Let’s stop there, she said, viewing the foggy coast of Isla Negra in the distant horizon. The cool dusk air dragged a shiver up her spin and the Captain pulled his coat tighter to his body. 

No, he said.

Why not, she asked. 

I hate when you ask questions, he said. 

Then what should I do, she asked more quietly, missing the grainy feeling of her wooden body. She had wanted to feel, but she didn’t want to feel this. 

Go home. He replied. The handsome young captain lowered himself from the deck to the room below. She watched him leave, feeling the stiffness of her tight shoulders and constricting lungs turn to wood once again. The Sea attached the figurehead to her rightful position on the bow of the ship allowing the the waves to warp her figure and tear away her appendages . And thus, for she was punished for her longing.

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