“You are going to be my wife.”
Those were the words that could have ruined my life.
They keep telling us that there is no way to get off of Triangle Island. That’s why I’ve lived here my whole life. But, if we truly couldn’t get off of it, how did we get here?
Triangle Island sits upon the North Atlantic Ocean. Our most famous tourist attraction is the famous Bermuda Triangle, but no one expect us has been able to see it, because apparently no one knows where we are.
Whenever I look out to the shining waters of the sea, I see boats. Big ones, too. They must be carrying so many things, but then I hear loudness. Screams, shrieks. And then, they just disappear. The Triangle has struck again.
I honestly think we have some magic spell over us that makes out island invisible. Why would they do that, you ask? Because it is horrible here. If you’re a girl.
Male civilians here get to pick there spouses. And we have no choice in the matter. My mother always told me that we were only born to create, and that I shouldn't think anything other than that.
I understand this. I hear axes hitting against wood, and it reminds me of Bow.
Bow is the chief of this island. Or, more the son of the chief. He has to marry to become a chief.
Everyone on the island knows him. So, all the girls know what an awful fate it would be to marry him.
There is only one word to describe him. Mean.
He is the meanest, cruelest person I have ever met in my lifetime, and probably my past lives. He hunts our rabbits for fun, and likes to tease the little ones. I’ve heard rumors he’s looking for a partner, and it’s no surprise that he would want a wife early on in his life.
The island does not give us much resources. Plenty of fruit, fish, and strange plants though. We use what we can to make medicine and food, but it is not enough. More and more people are dying every day, and most of them being younger. It didn’t use to be like this. We had plenty of different blends of herbs, golden apples from every tree.
Then, the storm hit. One of the biggest we have ever gotten, and just like that, we were out. Out of everything.
The weather has been so odd sense then, we have made shelters and food storage. We are all worried about what is going to happen.
I was only three years old when the storm hit, but I can still remember how cold it was. I am currently twelve year old, but in less than a month, I’ll be thirteen. I like to think that I am already that age.
I’ve heard the people on the boats wear strange things, like short skirts and glasses that are pitch black. Here, we simply get the cloth we can and make shawls, ponchos, and long gowns.
Although, I like to make crowns out of flowers and weeds around out garden that I can wear. It makes me fill like a nature guardian. Which I’m not sure what it is, but it does sound important. I heard it being used in a book.
“Willow?” Ah, yes. My name is Willow. I sometimes forget that, since there are so many words out there in the world.
“Yes?” I don’t recognize the voice speaking. I’m in my own home, (it’s more like a tent,) so I don’t see any reason on why someone would be bothering me.
“Someone has chosen you.” I drop the charcoal I was drawing with. I’m so very young, and I have never met any of the boys on the island my age before.
I turn around now, and see who stands before me. I have only seen paintings of him, but it truly was him. The chief!
Everybody just calls him chief, and only a few people know his real name. A true honor, to be standing in front of him.
“Oh!” Is all I manage to get out of my mouth. I bow quickly, embarrassed with myself.
He chuckles quietly. “Sorry if I startled you.”
“No, it’s fine. I’m sorry for you to see me like this, in my work clothes and such. I was just finishing my work for my school studies.” I swipe my hands on my apron.
“Well, I must get to the point. My son, Mount, has asked for your hand in marriage.”
Mount? As I know of the chief has twelve sons and two daughters. The chief has had numerous wives and mistresses, Bow being the son of his current wife, Sunny.
It is quite hard to keep track of all of them, so I think it’s okay I forgot his name. Or what he looks like and how he speaks. I’m sure he is nice. At least, I hope.
“Is he here with you?” I ask, curious as ever.
“No, but he is waiting for you at his home.” He answers immediately. It seems the chief is getting impatient, which is making me very nervous..and uncomfortable. I should stop asking questions and meet the man I will soon marry.
We walk a short distance, and I soon realize that Mount lives close to my tent. He must have watched me every morning as I fed the stray cats and milked my goats.
I have never met my parents. The people of the island say I was born sent from up above, from one of the gods. As my beauty and smarts are hard to find. But, I doubt this information to be true and believe my mother died during child birth, my father leaving soon after due to the fact he could not raise a child on his own.
Coal raised me, an old man that died a couple of years ago. Since then, I have lived on my own.
Every birthday I have, my neighbors give me fresh milk from there cows, and baked goods of all sorts. On my tenth birthday, a letter arrived on my doorstep and goat. The letter described on how they wished me a very happy birthday, but it was signed “Anonymous.” I wonder if it was Mount who sent the strange gift.
“Here we are. I have business to attend to, so I’ll see you later.” The chief said as he left me at the door, and then left.
“Ah, you're finally here.”
The door in front of me was suddenly open, and standing below it was a boy. At least the age of 15. The thought disgusted me that I would marry such an old man, that could die any day. Did he not know my age? I’m only twelve, and although my birthday is soon, it is so unsavory.
“You are the one called Mount?” I may still have a chance at freedom, if this is not Mount.
“Yes.” He said. “You are going to be my wife.”
I flinch at the sound of it, but there is absolutely nothing I can do. The “boy” that stands before me has dirty blonde hair, his skin tanned so much that you can tell he spends most of his time out on the beach. A small beard is growing on his chin and cheekbones.
“How old are you?” I say, sternly. My mind is spinning just like the leaves around us.
“Soon I will be seventeen years old. In fact, our birthday is on the same day. It’s almost as if the gods wanted us to be.”
He hands me an invitation to a private wedding, where it will only be us and the preacher. All I can do then is to run. I give him a small bow and, indeed, run to my home.
I sit on my porch and listen to the birds sing. They are much more joyful then me at this moment.
“Ah, you poor miss.” Aunty says, walking over to me. She is my close friend and neighbor. She likes giving me flowers. She must have seen the whole thing happen. She is quite old and her real name is Poppy.
“In all of my years, I have never seen such a thing. What a courageous young man to do this. But, do not worry dear,-” She says, patting my back. “-You will be a very nice and great wife for him. Your children will be proud of there mamma.”
It was then where I realized I would have to have children with this man. The thought made me shrivel in fear.
“Aunty, do you think I can get away?” The idea of running away from your man, or the island, is unheard of and disrespectful. But, I am desperate.
“You should not ask things like that. Be careful, miss, you could hurt yourself or others.” And just like, my only hope gets up and walks away.
I know one thing for certain, I have to get away. But, not right now. Not here. I am on an island, so I must get off using a raft or boat of some sorts. The only problem is that I have no idea how to get one or build one. I must take this slow.
Fishing boats lay at the south end of the island. Once it turns dark, I will go there and take a boat.
I go inside and fill my basket with plenty of food and supplies to last the long trip to the other world. I gather clothes and cloth, as well as my charcoal and drawing board so I can entertain myself.
After that, I go to the script shop, and buy a boat manual using the rest of my coins. When I get home, it is close to the dark hours.
I put my book in my basket which contains my things. Before I can go to bed and sleep the hours I can get in, someone enters my tent.
The sound of the zipper alarms me, but it is only Mount. I still do not want to look or talk to him though.
“Isn’t a little un-proper to enter a ladies door with addressing yourself?” I say. He ignores me. “What are you still doing in your clothes? Shouldn’t you be in your night wear?” He says, walking into my living room.
“Well, I was actually about to-” I see him snoop around my home, looking for something. “Have you ever dated before, Willow?” Him saying my name does not feel good.
“No. Commoners like me usually aren’t allowed to speak to boys, unless they are neighbors or school partners.” A man like himself should probably know this.
“I just thought a woman like yourself would find someone, regardless of any rules.” An interesting conclusion, this man has found.
I ignore his mean remark. “I’m hardly a woman.” I say, wanting him to know.
“I think you are plenty mature, if not I would have not picked you.” He said, grabbing a plum from my bowl and playing with it.
“You flatter me.” I say, sitting on the floor.
“What were you planning to do tonight?” He asks, coming to sit next to me.
“Sleeping?” I respond, confused by his question.
“Hm. Well, I’ll be going now. I’ll see you tomorrow.” Or will you?
After he gets back home, I run out. Scared that the night hours have gone ahead of me.
I make it to the shore, the crickets chirping all around me. I put my belongings on the boat, and push into the water. Our handmade boats are small, but steady.
I raise the sail, and flip throughout the chapter of my book, seeing what to do next. Once everything is in order, I rest. Letting the water take me beyond this corrupt place.
The ocean waves are calm, in this time of day. But soon, they will rise and the water will become more angry.
But, I have other things to worry about. I am approaching the Triangle. We believe that the triangle is a warning, if we leave the island. I just hope that is not true.
The thing is huge, and reaches out far beyond the island. From what I can see, it’s water swirling round and round. Over and over again. It’s more like a circle than a triangle.
But, I can’t worry about the names now. The triangle is pushing my boat towards it, and from I have seen that is not good.
Suddenly, a huge wave crashes down, hitting me. It’s like a flash of lightning. Goes by so fast, and you’re eyes are paralized afterwards.
It was almost like this. Expect the feeling of drowning. I have never really been in the deep end of the ocean before, so I have never experienced this painful burning in my lungs. It suffocated me. My eyes started to burn from the water, and I could no longer see or breathe. I started kicking my legs frantically and swaying my arms back and forth. When I finally got to the fresh air, my boat was gone. But, so was the swirling circle.
Was it a gift from the gods? I could see land. And it wasn’t my island at all. It wasn’t like anything I experienced before. The sun was shining so brightly, and I could see so much sand on the beach in front of me.
I swam and swam until I got there. People were all around me. Some wearing polka-dotted wear, others wearing big, floppy hats. Swaying over there eyes.
After my excessive amount of time in the water, I coughed. Then breathed in the fresh air. I can’t believe I got off of that island.