I woke up with a start, my arms flailing wildly in some odd late reaction. My eyes darting back and forth, memories quickly flooding me. The storm had caught us by surprise, heavy winds and high waves tossed us to and fro, driving us into the jagged rocks. A lump had formed on the side of my head, my last recollections were of a fallen beam catching me off guard, the rest was darkness. Gathering my wits, I rose to my feet and scanned the beach. Debris had washed along the shore, but no sign of the other crewmen. I began walking along the shore, determined to find survivors. I searched the better part of the day for any signs of the missing sailors without any luck. The sun was close to the horizon so I began gathering wood from the nearby jungle. I set a make shift camp near a rocky cliff, my back to the wall, easier to defend. The military training had been ingrained in my head, my every action autonomous. Striking the flint near the tinder, I had a fire going before long and settled in for the night.
In my search for the others, I found a few coconut trees scattered along the island and had gathered a few fallen ones. The hatchet I carried at my hip was a godsend, opening one of those would have been nigh impossible without it. I drank the cool liquid and tore off the coconut flesh in relish. Eating and drinking my fill, I lay back on the makeshift palm leave bed, and drifted off to sleep. The next morning I rose with the sun. I broke my fast on the remaining coconut and began my trek into the jungle. Fortunately it wasn’t as dense as the woods back home and the going was easy. No sign of the others, I assumed the worse, lost at sea. I looked to my own survival at this point. My first priorities were the basic necessities, a reliable water source, food and shelter. Before long I came to a clearing and began to setup camp. A small waterfall fell over a rocky ledge into a bubbling pool of water. Ripe bananas hung from the surrounding trees. I smiled to myself at the dumb luck I had stumbled upon. Climbing one of the trees, I knocked off a bushel of the bright yellow bananas. A loud roar pierced my revery , leaving me frozen in place. A massive silverback Guerilla burst into the clearing. I had seen one once before at the zoo but this one was fully grown and would have dwarfed the underfed domestic. The branches creaked under my weight, a snapping branch all but shouted my location to the massive brute. It’s eyes glared at me from the middle of the clearing. Raising up on his legs, he let out another deafening roar and beat his chest with massive fists. I jumped down from the tree and sprinted through thicket, panic and adrenaline giving me speed I had never known. Fear drove me on as the trees crashed behind me, the Guerilla in furious pursuit. A root seemed to reach up and grab my foot as I crashed to the forest floor with a thud. The thought of some cheap slasher film where ‘the girl always falls before the masked killer gets her’ crossed my mind. The massive beast loomed over me, it’s fists clinched high overhead as it stood to thrash me. I blacked out mercifully before the blow came.
Days and weeks passed, I built myself a fort of sorts against the cliff wall. I spent the better part of an afternoon fashioning wooden stakes into the ground to deter any wildlife that might come my way. I never wanted for any food, the sea was full of fish and crab while the trees held luscious fruits of all kinds, I lived contentedly like this for many months before I sought out the grove again. I crept much more stealthily this time, hiding in the jungle foliage. I’d watch the Big Guerilla and his mate, studying them at play and in everyday life. I began to envy their companionship, longing for interaction of any sort. It had been almost a year since I was shipwrecked, I felt the madness creeping within me. One day as I was watching the two guerrillas,as I spent most of my time doing these days, the big male darted off into the jungle, leaving the female Guerilla to her business. I waited what seemed like a good chunk of time, the male hadn’t returned. Summoning up my courage, I plucked a banana from a nearby tree and walked calmly into the clearing. The female spotted me right away, my light steps apparently not so quiet. I held the banana in my outstretched hand, hopefully a gesture of friendship. She didn’t look threatened, just curious as I approached slowly.
The tell tale roar from the jungle burst the revery. I dropped the banana and ran as fast as my legs could carry me, dodging trees and vines in my mad dash to safety. Memory of the last beating I received propelled me to great speed and agility as I nimbly darted through the jungle. When I finally reached my staked “fortress”, I crashed onto my palm leave bedding, my breath short and ragged. I lay like this for a while, processing what had happened. I didn’t despair however because in that moment I knew one thing to be true; she had reached for the banana.
Months passed, I would go to the grove everyday, waiting for an opportunity for the big silverback to go off as he often would. I’d try and try again to interact with her, but the big male possessed some sixth sense that told him when I was close by, forever blocking my advances. Most of the time I would get away unscathed but I took my beatings as well. I had spit out a few teeth after one encounter and had to jam my dislocated shoulder back in place against a palm tree. I was walking along the beach one day, thinking of ways I could rid myself of the Guerilla to be close to her. I knew she wanted me, the way she looked at me with those big, beautiful brown eyes were telltale enough. Perhaps if I fashioned a spear or some sort of trap I could injure the big guy bad enough to drive him off for good. As I was walking I saw a lone body had washed up on the shore. I sprinted over and pulled the girl up onto the sand and rolled her onto her back. The CPR course I had taken in college came into play, the rescue breathing and chest pumps quickly had her spluttering water and gasping for breath. I handed her my coconut flask I had fashioned and drank deeply. She looked around, then at me. She thanked me profusely. I studied her a bit. Her dress was badly torn and barely clinging to her body anymore, her breasts threatening to spill out at any moment. Her blonde hair a shiny almost platinum color. She caught me staring.
“I can’t thank you enough for saving my life. I’m in your debt” She said. Her voice became very quiet, almost sultry. “If there is anything…I can do for you… Just say the word”….
I thought for a moment, looking away from the girl. And that’s when It clicked. I got up from where we were sitting. A sense of urgency rushed into me.
“Come, come with me.” I said. I started jogging excitedly. Finally! This is the moment I had been waiting for, I thought. “Quickly! I need you to distract a Guerilla for me!”