Loorne - Terror of the Sea

    Sand, splashing water, the smell of saline, and marine life permeated the beach where I normally worked.  However, this day was different.  This day was a day that I wanted to take for myself, a day where I didn’t wear trousers and have my shirt buttoned up.  A day where I could sit out here nearly naked without anyone looking on this part of the beach and be content with myself.  All that I brought with me was an umbrella to sit under, a few towels to keep myself dry when necessary, and enough food and refreshments to last me for the day.  What I didn’t anticipate about my plans was how far the water would reach me and how little time I would have before everything I had planned was swept away.e sun had started to set and the water had already started to rise.  Instead of making plans to head back up the beach towards my vehicle, I thought that I would play chicken with the water.  I wanted to let it come up to my feet and almost sweep me away, that way I could have my fun of running away from the water and back up to the shoreline.  What I didn’t expect was for a large wave to come crashing in my way.  A massive wave that could have fooled me for a tsunami came rushing towards the shoreline.  I barely opened my eyes as the water had come up to my feet, thinking that it was almost time to leave.  I wish that I had been paying attention.  More than that though, I wish I had given myself the proper time to escape. 

            In a second, the wave crashed into the shoreline, pulling me and all of my stuff out to sea.  I tried to swim upwards towards the surface of the water, but something kept dragging me down.  The current was pulling me away from the surface, away from the light.  Everything began to go dark and so did my ability to hold my breath.  I felt myself starting to collapse and black out.  Had I known that I was going to be dragged down like this, maybe I would have left that beach that day and never returned.  It’s one of the few things now that I wish I could have done.  It could have been one of the few ways that I could have avoided him.

            When I awoke, I was suspended in a membrane.  It resembled a lot of the jellyfish that I studied as a marine biologist back when I worked on the surface.  I tried to grasp at it, but it stung when my hand reached out to try and break free.  It was one of the strangest experiences.  I couldn’t see the surface, but the seafloor around me was illuminated with lights from all directions.  There were glowing sea animals everywhere.  Coral, sea anemone, jellyfish, sea cucumbers, and fish were all around me, all of them glowing beautiful colors.  Unfortunately for me, this was the last time that my vision as a human would maintain its typical shape.  Worse still was the being that confronted me at the bottom. 

            He calls himself “The Elder One”.  He has sat at the bottom of this ocean for ages and controls the ecosystems at the very bottom of the sea.  He is what helps them to breathe life into the rest of the world and is believed to have been the gatekeeper to when life all began.  His myths in legends and tongues from around the world have existed long before I was born.  Our own scientists theorized of how life originally began and thought of the various sea life that existed millions of years ago that we believed to have gone extinct.  Well, “The Elder One” claims to have been from when complex life first began and resembles a being unlike anything I had ever seen before in person.  It resembled an Ammonite but had the ability to contort its appendages to the shape of whatever suited it.  It communicated through vibrations in the water as it placed its appendages on the membrane I was trapped inside of. 

            “I have brought you here for a reason, child.”

            I maintained a sense of terror and wonder at the figure that was suspended in the water before me.  Even more terrifying to me was how I was able to breathe despite no air being available to me.  I mustered up my voice to ask why.  “Why did you bring me here?”

            “You have studied my children for much of your life.  However, your kind have done nothing but pollute and destroy the world in which I have worked so hard to help cultivate.  For that, they must be punished and you, my child, shall be my prophet.  Through you, humanity shall bear witness to me, my creation, and my pain.”

            I looked around in confusion as to what it meant by that, up until I looked down at my arms and realized that they no longer appeared to be human.  My skin was jet black with scales all over.  My hands had become webbed with claws at the tip of each member.  I looked at the reflection of the membrane and saw the new version of myself.  I was no longer fully human.  I had become something aquatic, something foreign to the former person that was me.  I started to panic, trying to look for a way out of the membrane, only to find myself paralyzed in the liquid, suspended by the vibrations from the entity that reshaped me, that turned me into its violent puppet. 

            “You shall no longer dwell in darkness, my child.  Now you must feed on the surface dwellers who have destroyed my world.  Feed on the humans!  Loorne!  Terror of the sea!  FEED!”

            The vibrations forced the membrane open and sent my body swimming quickly to the surface.  I could move incredibly fast.  I swam at what felt like the speed of a car through the water and burst through the surface at the top.  The sky had turned to night, the water was relatively quiet out at sea, and the light of the moon illuminated the surface.  I took in a deep breath, immediately realizing that I could breathe both under water and on land.  The next thing that I realized was that I was incredibly hungry and saw that there was a ship full of people about a mile away.  The moment I saw the ship, something came over me and I felt my body immediately swimming towards it.  It was a fishing ship that had just pulled up its nets.  I made my way up the ship and did my worst.  The men who were all on board stood no chance.  They had nothing to protect themselves but their blades that meant nothing to my skin.  I was as insatiable for bloodlust as my stomach.  I feasted on the corpses of the men after slaughtering them all, having more than my fair share.  After their bodies had been dismembered for myself to have a taste of each flavor of human flesh, I threw their bodies overboard for the animals to have a feast.  However, as my hunger faded, my anger kicked in again.  Because among the fishermen that I slaughtered was my lifelong colleague and friend, Nathan.  He happened to have been on the same boat as the fishermen, as he always does on the weekend, hoping to catch some shrimp.  I felt disgusted when I saw his face after the hunger had left my body and realized what I had done.  I had become a monster, but not one of my own making.

I was no longer hungry.  I no longer wanted anything but to destroy that entity at the bottom of the ocean that changed me.  I realized now that it changed my form, my very being into some beast that would do its bidding and feast upon humans, those that I cared about.  I was left with a choice.  While my hunger fueled me to do these strange things, my strength grew and so did my ability to resist the influence of “The Elder One”.  If I could feast enough to satiate myself, I could fight “The Elder One” and claim my victory over the sea, claim the sea for humans and for me.  So, I made a choice.  I leave this story to any weary man, woman, or child who may come across this ship and read this note.  Flee this sea and take refuge from the beast that is me.  Save yourself from my hunger, my bloodlust, and my rage.  You have been warned of the dangers that lurk in this sea.  You have been warned of the terror that is me. No monsters of these waters are a greater danger.  Heed the warnings of the one known to the ocean as Loorne, terror of the sea.


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