Short Story: The Last Tree

Hi there! I’ve finally managed to find enough of a break from revising for mock exams to do some writing. Hope you enjoy!

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It’s a long time since I’ve been here. I have weathered tempests and storms since then, seen my boat rock on waves a hundred times my height. Seen lightning strike the sea and felt static crackle through my hair. Clung desperately to my vessel as winds whipped round me at untold speeds, throwing salt in my face and seaweed at my clothes. But I’m here now.

This place is hard to find. It’s the only place, really, the only landmark on the endless sea. The only land. Full stop.

Although it’s not land, not really. Just the tree.

The last tree.

I’ve been trying to get here for a while. I thought that there might be other people here, but there aren’t at the moment. I haven’t seen any people for years. I wonder what might have happened to them, out on the ocean waves. I thought I might find answers here, but no.

I’ve been here for a few days now, and I can tell that the place wants me to leave again. Although the sea is always calm here, little waves have been nudging my boat away. A friendly dolphin tried to push me away from the tree, but I paddled hard, and it gave up. I wonder how it’s still alive. Do its roots drink salt? And how, how does it stand here, on the calm surface of the sea, the only earth-bound thing I’ve ever seen since… Well, the only earth-bound thing but me.

I don’t want to go back out there, back to the storms and the sea. This place, this lagoon protected by seemingly nothing, this calm place, how does it work? I think perhaps it’s the tree protecting it. But I’m not sure.

The sun is setting, and I know it’s time to leave. Orange light is spreading across the sea like candlelight on a mirror. Time to journey back out into the wide, wide ocean, paddling my little boat. Maybe I’ll see someone this year. Maybe not. I’ll come back to the tree when I can.

If I can find it again.

But, you know what? I’ve had an idea. I’ll leave my diary, right here, in the branches of the last tree. And hey, maybe, if someone comes, if they do, they could write me a note. That would be nice.

Well then. I suppose this is goodbye.

If you’re reading this, write me a note. Tell me how to find you. I’ll be back when I can. No promises though.

– A lonely seaman


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