Wings Like Lightning

Storm clouds built over the horizon. They roiled darkly, white-blue flashes erupting in their features as they traveled toward the ocean from the western plains. In the village on the coast, people scurried and scampered about, securing important belongings, lest they be blown away in the oncoming gales. As peals of thunder rolled out over the coast, everyone secured themselves in their homes, tying down shutters and blocking the door; all of them hoping to ride out the fury of the storm. All except for a lone fisherman.

This lone fisherman was not exceptionally brave. He was, exceptionally fond of his wife. She had told him that morning to not bother coming back if he hadn’t caught a tuna for their dinner. As the storm approached, the man’s boat sat devoid of tuna. So he stayed out in the ocean to catch one. Soon rain began to beat its frantic tempo on the waves that reached out from the depths beneath him to try to knock him from his boat. As lightning began to strike the waves around him, the man gave up hope of catching the fish.

The wind and the waves beat against him and he clung desperately to his boat to avoid being hurled into the sea. He prayed to the gods and as he did he looked up. Circling in the sky was a massive beast. Wiping the spray of the waves from his face he craned his neck to see it better.A giant bird flew over the seas in wide loops. As it opened it’s jet black beak to crow, a massive roar of thunder sounded. At once, it dived toward the ocean it’s talons, each one twice the size of a full grown man plunging into the churning water.  And it rose up into the air, a small whale calf writhing in its clutch.

The fisherman watched awestruck as the bird flew back toward the shore, waves of rain beating of its blue, red and violet plumage. Opening its beak again, a wave of thunder passed, crying out the beast’s triumph. Electricity arced off one of its wings striking the ocean. As the behemoth passed out of view, the tumultuous storm lessened until a gentle rain was left pattering in a gray-green sky. Waves lapped gently at the sides of the fisherman’s boat.

As he piloted it ashore, people began to emerge from their houses. His wife came running out to greet him as he tied up his boat. A small crowd gathered as word spread that he had been out in the torrential downpour. People murmured with reverence as he recounted the encounter with the bird of thunder with wings like lightning. No one questioned him as he was known to be an honest man. Perhaps most fortunately of all, the splendor of his tale caused his wife to forget all about the tuna she wanted.

Apropos of: Arathania


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