The Selkie Wife: A Short Story Inspired by Celtic Folklore - Chapter 2

Updated on November 21, 2018
JenniferWilber profile image

Jennifer Wilber works as an ESL instructor, substitute teacher, and freelance writer. She holds a B.A. in Creative Writing and English.

Source

The Selkie Wife - Chapter 2

Conall opened his eyes. His entire body ached and he didn't know where he was or what had happened. He tried to get to his feet, but he didn't have the strength to move. As he became more aware of his surroundings, he realized that his clothing was torn and he was completely drenched. Wet sand covered every inch of his body. The sun was straight above him in the sky, and he knew it must be mid-day already. How long had he been unconscious? What happened? And why was he laying on the beach?

Conall looked around and noticed that he wasn't far from the lighthouse. Suddenly his memories came flooding back to him. He remembered the storm the night before, the lightning that struck near the lighthouse, and the waves crashing down against his boat. And he realized that his Mairenn was gone.

Despite the pain, Conall quickly attempted to get to his feet. If he made it to shore alive, perhaps Mairenn did as well. If there was a chance that she was still alive, he had to find her. His knee gave out and he fell back into the sand. But he would not give up. It was his fault for taking her out in the boat in the first place. He had to find her.

After some struggle, Conall managed to stay on his feet. He made his way up and down the shoreline, however slowly, calling out Mairenn's name. "Mairenn!" he cried out. "Where are you?" He knew in his heart that she was still alive, somewhere. She had to be. Or perhaps he just couldn't deal with the fact that she was gone. He continued his search for hours.

The sun was beginning to set and still there was no sign of Mairenn. But still Conall could not give up. He knew she had to be somewhere. How could he have washed ashore while she was still lost at sea? What kind of cruel-fated joke was this? He knew that somewhere the sea gods were looking down on him laughing. They provided the young fisherman with his livelihood, what was stopping them from taking away his life, or the only thing in his life that really mattered?

Not that he even believed in the gods or supernatural beings anyway. Even Conall knew that it was all a myth devised by their ancestors in simpler times, as a way to explain the storms and the unpredictable nature of the sea. No, he realized that it was all myth when he was just a boy after his father was lost at sea. Conall's father had been a good man. He had been a fisherman, the family trade, and had always worked hard to provide for his family. There could be no just reason for the gods to take him away from his wife and young son, just as there could be no just reason for them to take Mairenn away from Conall now. No, there were no gods. And Conall was alone.

Conall walked down the shoreline a little farther, though his efforts were in vain. He had already been up and down the shore more times than he could count. The rising and falling of the tide seemed to mock him; the same tide that brought him to the shore and safety. The same tide that failed to bring back Mairenn.

His legs were getting tired and he had to find a place to rest. He found a boulder at the edge of the water and sat down, facing the sea. The waves splashed gently against his legs. The same waves, he thought, that had been so deadly the night before. He stared out into the sea. Somewhere out there, he knew his Mairenn was still lost at sea. There was still a chance, no matter how small, that she was alright, and for the sake of his sanity, he couldn't let go of that small glimmer of hope.

Source

After a time, Conall noticed a spotted seal on a boulder not too far from where he sat. Conall watched as it stared back at him. It had a certain familiar sadness about it. Or perhaps Conall was only projecting his own feelings onto the animal. He couldn't help but watch it, if only to take his mind off other things.

A few moments later, the seal jumped into the sea and swam away. Conall stood up from the rock to watch as it disappeared into the darkness of the night water. At that moment, Conall realized that Mairenn was gone forever. Conall laid down next to the boulder. He wasn't sure if he would ever get up. Perhaps he would just lay there on the shore until the tide came in to deliver him to Mairenn.

Questions & Answers

    © 2018 Jennifer Wilber

    Comments

      0 of 8192 characters used
      Post Comment

      • The0NatureBoy profile image

        Elijah A Alexander Jr 

        4 weeks ago from Washington DC

        Now you are demanding I return just to know what is next, Jennifer, so you have me hooked, I'll be waiting.

      working

      This website uses cookies

      As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, letterpile.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

      For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://letterpile.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

      Show Details
      Necessary
      HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
      LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
      Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
      AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
      HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
      HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
      Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
      CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
      Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
      Features
      Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
      Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
      Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
      Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
      Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
      VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
      PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
      Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
      MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
      Marketing
      Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
      Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
      Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
      Statistics
      Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
      ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
      Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)