13 January, 2011

green eyes, red eyes

The island is a small rounded crescent like shape that reminds me of a piece of an orange. It's not very big, only having a population of about 4000. Like a typical holiday island, it has glorious white and yellow sand beaches, warm crystalline water and huge over hanging palm trees. Like other similar islands, it has become a place of luxury resorts and tourism, where the rich come to relax and holiday with coconuts in one palm and their iphones in the other, all the while floating and sun-baking in one of the many large swimming pools dotted around the island. One would expect life here to be a relatively happy place - busy, full of life and yet laid back in every way.
Not so.
Every 100 days or so, somebody goes missing. Every single non-tourist lives in fear of this. They don't count the days of the year like the rest of the world - well they do, but locally, the year is defined by 3 and a half cycles of 100 days. On every 100th day, you will find the towns deserted. Not an open shop. Every person, save the confused tourists will be boarded up in their houses or hiding within the hotels, keeping a close eye on their children and every window and door to their household. No opening is left unboarded. Even toilets lids are strapped down until that night is over. Every man, woman and child will tape over the key holes and every crack they can find in the house before huddling together in their beds with ear plugs in their ears. When the sun finally peeks over the horizon the next morning, the citizens of the island will finally come out with a sigh of relief. They have survived another cycle. In the distance, there will be a wail of grief. Another one gone. Sometimes exactly who has gone missing is undiscovered for days.
No natives have lived or landed on this island for hundreds of years. Natives still refuse to come here and say if the Westerners want to be visited by the evil that lives there, who are they to stop them? The locals now living on the island have never been able to get a coherent story of the island's past. All they know is that there was romance, betrayal and a curse for revenge. That and the 'thing' that visits every cycle is female. A woman with one eye red and one eye green.

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