The sand on the private beach is reddish and warm, and he pours water over it so he can fashion it with his hands. He’s been wetting and shaping and forming for some time now. The sun is much lower in the sky, but he’s nearly done. Behind him, he knows, is a colorful beach umbrella and a very pretty woman. He can’t see her, but he knows she’s there because he hears her struggle with the stubborn lock on the cooler and finally open it. She’s pulling things out and arranging them on their picnic blanket, and he can’t remember what she packed, but he knows she included all his favorites, minus the ice cream. It’s too hot for ice cream. They’ll stop on the way home. She promised.
Her gentle voice reaches him and nestles inside his ear, “Oliver, are you done? You have to be nearly finished by now. You been working for such a long time.”
“Yes,” he says. “Yes, I’m done now.” He puts down the arrow he’s been using for the detail work on the face, and steps back to survey his handiwork.
His father’s face stares back at him from the sand, and he’s smiling, pleased. His arms are extended, gesturing either way along the beach, and his long legs reach almost into the ocean. His toes are an inch away from the lapping waves.
He feels disappointed that he couldn’t have built his father farther away from the water, but he needed the muck and wet to do it, so there’s no help for it. His father is there, larger than he actually was in life, and it has to be good enough.
“It’s wonderful, Oliver,” the voice - her voice - whispers in his ear. “You should be proud. Can you come and rest with me now?”
He wants to, but he holds up his hands to show her the red muck. “I have to wash this off,” he says.
“Hurry,” she hums, and trails her warm fingers through his hair.
He turns to the ocean and wades in. It’s cool and refreshing, and he barely has to rub his hands together, the dirt falls off almost by itself. He cups his hands and splashes his face, and the salt smell invades his nostrils.
When he opens his eyes he’s surrounded by blue - the blue of the cloudless sky above him and the water below. The only disparity between them is in their movements. The azure above is still and serene, like a wall of shining glass, and the water at his waist is dotted with light, but troubled by the endless waves that are crashing against his body. The same waves that are coming for his father.
He glances over his shoulder to see if they’ve already come, but he’s too far out in the water now to be sure. He sees a flash of yellow out of the corner of his eye, and a bird circles down and lands gracefully on his shoulder. Her breast is red, and her sharp, translucent claws scratch at his skin as she settles there and then shakes her feathers out against his cheek.
He wades out further until the two of them are just above the waves, and the bird becomes more and more agitated and begins to peck at his cheek as the water closes in. Finally, when the waves reach his chin, she flies off, and he dives below. The water stings his wounds, and he is strangely pleased to feel the pain.
The beach is my worst nightmare, sand is annoying af n the water doesn’t help!! It makes it worse!! It’s all sticky n dirty but idk how 2 explain it 2 my friends without them just thinking that i don’t like the beach bc of being fussy , i just hate the feeling that any part of me is dirty 😞
Here I am once again Surrounded by these unfriendly foes Put to shame by their multitudes Engulfed within their highs and lows Grasping for some balance Swimming head with possibilities Putting things in proper order Falling victim to their hostilities One is attached to every step As more are undoubtedly close behind They taunt us in our nightmares While singular sands of time unwind …
This was taking too long. Pitch was a immortal, ethereal being and considered himself one of the most patient beings in this universe. One had to be to know just the right moment to turn a peaceful night into paranoia filled darkness, when to snap a twig just right to cause a lone hiker to bolt. Yet when it came to his revenge Pitch was growing impatient. He had been cultivating his nightmare sand, training his Nightmares, haunting the dreams of children but he needed to be more than just what went bump in the night he needed to be REAL again. The Guardians however were powerful and every year that power simply grew and grew as the humans uncanny ability to repopulate the Earth like rabbits gave them new believers year after year.
What he needed was an ally. Someone who shared a common interest in the downfall of the Guardians, someone who he could mold, sharpen CONTROL. But who? Many of the dark beings who he would once call upon are gone or in hiding and those who aren’t are too cowardly to face the might of the ‘Big Four’. It had to be someone with a little more umph. He glances down to his old trinkets, gently rifling through them before he fingers just barely trace a wooden medallion. He picks it up, inspecting the ancient Celtic runes etched into the black bark. Miss Fortune? She had certainly been powerful last they met and she’d be more powerful still today if only she showed her face. Not even the Fae knew her whereabouts. Perhaps though he shouldn’t ASK this time. A broad smile covers his face. So much more information was shared over ‘pillow talk’ than in person.
“Useless.” He growled out, moving from the shaking form of the small fae he left in bed, Nightmares coming back to him in droves, sharing what they had found to him. “No. Ugh. Who is afraid of THAT!” Pitch growled out in annoyance, a large, Nightmare approaching him and nudging against him. “Stop! Y-ye can’t!” “I know what ye did!” Oh? Now this nightmare looked promising, the fears of a certain leader of the distributing Leprechauns. “I had no choice!” “You chose to help kill her! Ye chose to kill my mother ye traitor and now I’ll be kind enough to return yer kindness!” Mother? Pitch’s eyes opened from his trance, glancing over at the Nightmare. Miss Fortune had a son? No, wood Fae didn’t have sons, they were all grown from the earth as women. But—one could be treated like family. And if the nightmare held ground—”Find me her son. I’d very much like to get to know him better.” Pitch hummed out, the Nightmares scattering in haste to please their master.
It took several nights of searching the clans to discover what he was looking for. A secluded burrow, etched into the side of a hill, guarded at all times. Meant to keep it’s occupant in rather than anything else out. But they couldn’t stop Pitch. He slipped through the shadows, under the bed and emerged like a snake, hovering over the sleeping form of its’ owner. This Leprechaun was much bigger than the rest but he shared similar traits. The mop of red hair, the cluster of freckles covering every inch of his skin, the sun tanned skin and sharp ears. And then there was the symbol carved into his bed. Old, rustic, familiar and with a grin Pitch knew he had his man. “You poor, poor thing.” He cooed out, reaching out to gently run a hand through Lee’s hair. He could see his dream as the sleeping Fae flinched away from the touch. He was sitting beneath a tree with his mentor, just enjoying the day it seemed. “What lurks in your memory I wonder? Do you even know the day she disappeared?”
With a touch golden sand turned black as coal, the dream slowly twisting into a nightmare. It became blurred, a clear sign of a forgotten memory as the Fae’s form in his dream began to look frantic, searching for Miss Fortune. When found she was asleep but as he rushed to her side she disappeared. Then there was a slap to his cheek and the young spirit fell to the side, unconscious, a small glowing white object picked up from in front of him. “—A tooth?” Pitch muttered in realization, glancing down at the shivering Fae before he quickly submerged into the shadows once more.
The Nightmare King returned to his caves bursting with laughter, spinning in circles with his arms outstretched as his Nightmares came. “I HAVE THEM!” He declared triumphantly, grabbing the muzzle of one horse and pressing his forehead to hers with a wide grin. “Those fools never thought of what they made that day. This entire time!” He let go with a bark of laughter, walking towards his globe as sand came in behind him. It took little more than a thought to bring up sand figures of the Guardians, himself and finally, a Fae by his side. “You precious little thing.” He cooed out, watching as his little Fae turned into a wolf that swallowed the pestering Guardians whole, returning to Pitch’s side like a loyal dog. “He. Will. Be. MINE.”