Stranded!
continued with his lobster trap.

"I'd like to go down to the waterfall again."

He gave her a surprised look. They hadn't gone back there since she killed the baby pig. It was by unspoken understanding that they not go back there.

"Why?"

She rubbed her elbows. "It's so hot. I'd like to stand under the waterfall." She wanted to bath...wash everything away.

"No."

He turned back to the lobster trap and continued weaving the strong vines through the structure. At first Oceans didn't think she'd heard him, or maybe she thought he'd add more. But he didn't.

"What do you mean, no?"

He glanced up at her. "I'm busy, babe, can't you see? I'm going to be working on this most of the afternoon. Then I'm going out for wood."

"By yourself?"
     
    "Well I can't very well expect a woman that just had an ab-...miscarriage to help carry heavy wood. You should rest, at least until your cycle is over."

Oceans stared at him silently. But Marshall had already returned to his task. Reluctantly she returned to the hut.

***

Marshall had kept himself very busy since the day he helped her into the forest to squat amongst the rotten leaves and dirt to eject his dead baby. Though he knew that he should see things differently, maybe even be grateful that there wouldn't be another person doomed to the Island—he didn't feel that way at all. What he felt is that he was supposed to protect them...and he hadn't. He certainly hadn't protected Oceans from having to do this thing that he could see she didn't want to do. He hadn't protected himself from the resentment and sadness he felt at her decision to do it...and he certainly hadn't protected the little fetus created from an act of love that now was forever to fester in the earth of a lone Caribbean island.

So all he could do these past two days was to try to turn his brain off and to not think about how little control he had over the things that could devastate him. Sometimes he wondered if it would not have been better to have been alone. He didn't want anything to happen to Oceans, it's just that she held so much power over him. Her actions brought him joy or pain.

For the next few days he never spoke unless it was to ask her to eat, drink or if she needed help to relieve herself. When he left her to sleep in the hut he roamed the beach or filled the jugs and carried them back to camp, repeating the trip over and over until there were no more water jugs to fill. Then he had to think of something else to occupy his body. He made rope from vines, and then patched the roof where it had grown threadbare. He did whatever he could find to keep himself from having to be in the hut with Oceans.

He loved her. But he thought that he might hate her a little, as well.
     

 
     
    ~Month 6~

Ocean's counted the scratches on the piece of fiberglass. She could barely believe that it had been six months on the Island. Time had stood still for them. Marshall was so different from the man that had stepped onto the small jet plane. Now his skin was a nut brown and his hair was bleached to nearly white and hung to his shoulder blades. He'd resisted cutting it since it could be held back out of his eyes with his trusty piece of parachute string. His body was chiseled perfectly. His hands and feet were toughened by his labors and did not seem the same hands that had pressed the keypads of his calculator, or scribbled figures into a record book. He definitely wasn't the same man that had worn an Armani suit and had dined on a Cesar salad and a glass of pinot before boarding a doomed plane.

Ocean's transformation was no less severe. Her rounded figure was now tight and wired with muscles. It was a rare day that she didn't have to climb, pull, drag, or lift item after item. Her short curls were now long braids that she tried to maintain, redoing them on a weekly basis. In her thirty years, Oceans had seen the loss of her parents, the abuse of a man, the feel of loneliness...but it took this Island to remove the joy

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