Wow. Here we are in the middle of week number two. Pardon me while I pat myself on the back…
The Fabulous Prompto:
You’re walking along the beach one cool and crisp morning when you notice something sticking out of the sand. As you get closer, you realize it’s a bottle with a message in it. You crack the bottle open and read it. What does it say?
Romantic notion. Not terribly practical for spinning off a wondrous tale. It’s going to have a name, a date, a ship’s name, and a most likely location. But my rules allow me to modify the form of my reply.
Gail hikes her flowered skirt and stoops to examine the green glass, knowing it will only be a sand and sea polished shard. There is no hope of it being an entire bottle.
Under closer inspection the piece is completely buried.
The dome of buffed glass rises and sets in an arc through the sand.
Gail carefully fingers an outline around the exposed edge searching tentatively for a safe way to pull it up. The broken edge doesn’t appear and her heart surges at the chance that this could be a whole bottle after all. Scooping out wet sand from the punt she’s digging with less caution now.
She rotates it out from the bottom. It’s heavy and full of sand but whole. Almost whole: the mouth has a chip.
Gail carries in two hands like a sleeping child to the Pacific waves to rinse. It takes a long time to get all the sand out of the inside: she fills it with water and sludges it out, shakes madly, shivers it side to side half sunk. Eventually it emptied of sand. Inside there is something more improbable than a note.
A carved stone.
A carved stone too big to enter or exit the bottle.