Adventure Fiction Fantasy

“We’re running out of time” cried Watson to June from across the raging river. June was standing on a boulder that was just barely unsubmerged on the river’s edge as the rapid waters splashed all around her. She looked upstream and gasped as the image of giant fallen tree logs came into view around the river’s bend. The logs carried such force and momentum, June knew they would take out anyone and anything in their path. June and Watson were on opposite sides of the fast-moving river and they both knew they only had moments before the logs would pass through and destroy their canoe that had gotten jammed in the rocks along the river.

Watson grabbed a heavy rope from his backpack and quickly tied a big knot at the end. He lassoed it over his head several times before throwing it in June’s direction. The first attempt only made it halfway across the river. June was starting to panic and screamed, “throw harder!”. Watson used all his might to throw the rope to June again, and this time, it made it! June grabbed the rope, tied it around her waist and jumped in the water to swim across to Watson. The water was cold, and the current was fast. Watson pulled as hard as he could on the rope to help June to safety and June used all her power to swim across and fight the force of the water. As June approached the shore, Watson grabbed her hands and dragged her up the riverbank to safety. It was just in time for them both to look up and watch the logs smash their canoe into smithereens on the rocks along the river.

Shocked by what had just occurred, June and Watson sat on the riverbank in silence for several minutes. Finally, Watson broke the silence, saying to June that she should get into some warm, dry clothes so she doesn’t get hypothermia. June agreed and slowly began to do so. She had to wear Watson’s spare clothes as her backpack had washed down the river. 

While June was changing her clothes, Watson took inventory of the items in his backpack. He had a sleeping bag, a backpacking tent, one more change of clothes, a backpacking stove, cooking pot, enough dehydrated food for 2 days/nights, a headlamp, a first aid kit and some other basic camping essentials. Watson knew him and June had to find their way to safety or get rescued soon before their luck ran out. He had no radio with him or any way to communicate with the outside world. They were on their own.

Watson thought the best idea would be to follow the river downstream, in the same direction they had been headed in the canoe. June agreed. Without their maps to guide them they did not know how far away they were from the next camp or area of civilization. They did have a compass with them though and they knew the river was headed south. After eating a little bit of food, June and Watson headed on their way, walking along the edge of the riverbank.

They walked and walked for what seemed like an eternity. It was mid-day, and the sun was beating down on them. The humidity was making their skin sweat and the mosquitos were out for an afternoon snack. Neither June nor Watson were feeling like good company. Both were feeling quite miserable; hot, tired and a little bit hopeless about the situation.

Just when June was about to break the long silence in conversation, Watson stopped dead in his tracks and yelled out “Look!”. June looked up and saw Watson pointing ahead of them. He asked June, “Do you see that?”. He was referring to the shimmering light way off in the distance. Like the sunlight reflecting off a piece of shiny metal. Both wondered for a moment if they were starting to get dehydrated and delusional. Could it be a mirage? They both took a couple small sips of water from their canteen out of precaution. After standing still for several minutes, studying the distant light, they agreed to adventure toward it together.

Still walking along the river’s edge, they gravitated toward the light like a shiny coin that you can’t take your eye off. As they got closer and closer, they saw a waterfall appear in their view. The most beautiful, majestic waterfall either of them had even seen. The mist from the waterfall wisped against their hair and faces, it felt so cool and refreshing in the afternoon heat. Upon further viewing, June and Watson noticed that the light they had been following was coming from behind the waterfall and shining through it, casting a magnificent rainbow over the water. They also noticed at this moment that the waterfall cascaded into a lagoon which appeared to also be the rivers end. “How could this be?” Watson asked June. “Rivers don’t just randomly end, and waterfalls randomly appear,” said Watson. Suddenly, he felt both scared and confused. June could see Watson’s facial expression had changed quickly from joy to concern and then she too felt uneasy. What did this mean?

With feelings torn between curiosity and confusion, June and Watson discussed what to do next. With the dwindling prospect of being rescued or finding civilization before nightfall, June and Watson decided they would explore the waterfall and potential refuge for a good night’s sleep. They had to make their way around the lagoon to the base of the waterfall. They figured they could take shelter within the rock area behind the waterfall or perhaps if they were lucky a dry cave.

Upon approaching the waterfall, a plethora of scattered boulders lay before them. Many of them wet and slippery. June and Watson carefully stepped their way across the boulders toward the falls. On one of the boulders, Watson almost slipped and fell into the water. As he was regaining his balance, he looked down and noticed that the sand and moss that rolled off the rock during the scuffle, were creating a bright aquamarine glow as they hit the water. It was so peculiar. Watson stood there on the boulder, looking around him for another object to throw in the water. Within arm’s reach he was able to grab a handful of small rocks. One by one he tossed the rocks in the water, watching and waiting for the glow to appear. It happened every time. He yelled to June to quickly join him. Once she was close to him, he threw in another rock so she could see the color changing magic with her own eyes. “It’s beautiful” she said. Watson agreed, but quietly wondered what it meant.

They decided to keep going forward on the rocks and start to make their way behind the backside of the waterfall. As they got closer, the forceful pounding of the water on the surrounding rocks and lagoon was so incredibly loud. They could no longer hear each other; they could only hear gushing water. Watson safely led the way for him and June to get to the perimeter rock ledge that they could follow behind the waterfall. They had to hug their backs against the rock wall and shuffle their feet slowly along the slippery, narrow ledge. Hearts beating fast and holding hands, June and Watson began moving.

Before they knew it, they were behind the waterfall and the rock ledge was no longer narrow. It expanded out like a stage beneath the arch of the falls. It was a stunning site and so quiet compared to the roaring sounds they experienced on the other side. June and Watson hugged and rejoiced for having made it safely. As they took a moment to evaluate their surroundings, they noticed there was a cave like opening in the rock wall. Through the opening, they saw the bright ray of light that was beaming through the waterfall. The beam of light that had cast the rainbow across the lagoon and the light that had drawn them in this direction. Like before, they were drawn to the light immediately. Their curiosity and desire for it grew by the second. June and Watson made their way into the cave, quickly moving in the direction they thought the light was coming from. Watson yelled to June, “I think I see where it is coming from. I think it is at the top of these rocks over here.” Watson scrambled up a steep set of rocks at the edge of the cave. He approached a small hole in the wall where the light seemed to be coming from. He bent down and covered the hole with his hand. Then uncovered it, then covered it again. He could see the light beam on his hand. Then he decided he was going to look through the hole. Just as he put his eyes in front of the hole, the cave began to violently shake and rumble. Rocks and stalactites started to crumble and fall from the ceiling. June screamed and Watson tried to stand up but couldn’t. In that moment a bright, blinding light flashed before their eyes, engulfing the cave.

June’s alarm went off and she slowly sat up from her bed, rubbing her eyes. What a strange dream she thought. Just then the telephone rang. She answered, it was Watson. “Hi June” he said. “What a lovely Saturday it is. Would you like to go for a canoe trip down the river with me?” he asked. June delightfully said yes and began packing her things for their grand adventure.    

July 16, 2022 02:05

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BA Eubank
14:26 Jul 16, 2022

Love the ending.


Nicole H.
21:11 Jul 21, 2022

Thank you!


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Kendall Defoe
14:27 Jul 21, 2022

And people wonder why I have mixed feelings about the great outdoors (a strange thing for a Canadian to say). Great to read this...and is there a potential sequel?


Nicole H.
21:10 Jul 21, 2022

haha, I hadn't considered a sequel, but I could see how the plot alludes to one.


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