Dueling Islands, Part 4.

A dark, cold and moonless night had fallen on the islands. Ian sat shivering with his back resting on the coconut tree, desperately thinking of a way to get home. Surely, Steve must be doing some thinking of his own, he thought.

Suddenly there was a flash of orange and yellow light from Steve’s island. Ian turned to see what was happening and saw that Steve had built himself a small fire to stay warm. He also noticed that Steve was holding something on a stick into the fire and at the same time, something smelled quite good.

“Hey Steve,” Ian called out, “how’d you make your fire?”

“Wouldn’t you like to know,” Steve replied.

“Can you at least tell what you’re making?”

“If you must know, I’m making s’mores.”

“Steve, I must have one.”

“Earlier today you said you were going to kick my ass.”

“Give me a s’more and maybe I won’t.” Ian begged.

“That’s hardly reassuring,” Steve sighed.

Ian watched as Steve finished toasting his marshmallow and placed it on a piece of chocolate sandwiched between two graham crackers to complete his s’more before devouring it.

“How’d you get the stuff to make your s’mores anyway? I don’t remember you bringing anything along.” Ian said. “Wait, wait, don’t tell me. Wouldn’t I like to know. Right?”

“I think you do know,” Steve replied. “Ian, how did you get your coconut cream pie?”

“Well,” Ian recalled, “I was imagining making a coconut cream pie with all the coconuts I had and before I knew it, there was one in my hands.”

“Same here. I imagined a banana split and it appeared before my eyes. That’s how I got my fire and my s’mores.”

“Now it’s starting to make sense,” Ian said. “Steve, I don’t think these are ordinary islands.”

“Islands that read our minds and fulfill our innermost thoughts,” Steve added. “Ian, I think we just found our way home.”

“Let’s get going, then.”

Both Ian and Steve closed their eyes and shared one final thought with their respective islands. Then the tops of the trees began spinning like propellers and the islands themselves began slowly rising above the water. When they were high enough in the sky, Ian and Steve were able to fly towards the mainland and back to their homes. Upon landing, the islands became permanent fixtures in their front yards, seamlessly blending in with the rest of the palm trees.

A few minutes later, Ian called Steve at home.

“Just making sure you made it home okay,” Ian said.

“I made it home fine,” Steve replied. “I’m just having a hard time believing what we went through today.”

“Same here. I think for our sake, we should keep this adventure of ours a secret. No one will ever believe a word of it.”

“Agreed. This will be our secret.”

And they never said another word about the mysterious islands now residing in their front yards.

The End

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Dueling Islands, Part 3.

Steve was awakened by a most pleasant smell. He sat up to see Ian seated in the shade of his coconut tree devouring some food.

“Hey, Ian!” Steve shouted. “What are you eating?”

Ian stopped eating and cast a wary eye on Steve. “If you must know, I am having coconut cream pie.”

Steve could not believe his ears. “Say what? Coconut cream pie?”

“That’s what I said.”

“How’d you get coconut cream pie out here in the middle of nowhere?”

“Wouldn’t you like to know!” Ian retorted before returning to his pie while Steve watched with intensifying hunger before he sat down in front of his banana tree to ponder how Ian suddenly got hold of a coconut cream pie.

A few minutes of silence followed before it was shattered by Steve’s booming voice.

“Hey, Ian!”

“What now?” Ian turned to see what Steve was up to this time.

“HUBBA HUBBA!”

Steve was holding a plate bearing a large banana split complete with vanilla ice cream, chopped nuts, chocolate syrup, whipped cream and a cherry on top. Ian’s mouth dropped open.

“What’s that?” Ian asked.

“What do you think this is? It’s a banana split, dumbass!” Steve snapped.

“How did you get a banana split out here in the middle of nowhere?”

“The same way you made your coconut cream pie. I figured it out.”

“Did you?” Ian asked. “Wanna trade?”

“Yes, LET’S!” Steve shouted.

Ian and Steve sent their desserts flying towards each other. The coconut cream pie slammed into Steve’s face while the banana split splattered on Ian’s face. Then followed a rare moment of delight as the two men stood tasting the remnants of desserts on their faces.

“This isn’t bad,” Steve said.

“Say what?” Ian asked.

“I said, this isn’t bad.”

“I can’t hear you.”

Then Steve looked at Ian. “That’s because you have bananas sticking out of your ears.”

“Say what?”

Meanwhile the sun was beginning to set. It would be dark soon, very soon.

To be continued…

Dueling Islands, Part 2.

Ian slowly opened his eyes to a clear blue sky. The sun was shining and the breeze calm. Then he noticed he was on a tiny island with a lone palm tree at its center. He looked around and saw a second tiny island just few yards away, also with a palm tree along with someone familiar resting in its shade.

“Hey, Steve!” Ian shouted. “You okay?”

“No,” Steve shot back. “Let’s see, what did I want to do today? Oh yeah, go to the Watering Hole, play pool, drink iced tea and watch sports on TV. But no, we had to go on your stupid little boat ride and look where we are now! Separate islands in the middle of NOWHERE!”

“Sorry,” Ian muttered. “I wasn’t expecting it to end like this.”

“Says you,” Steve fumed. “Had we done what I wanted, we wouldn’t be here right now! Never mind me, let’s do what YOU want! Hey, this is your world and we just live in it, right Ian?”

“Steve-”

“You know what you are? You’re a self-centered, egotistical buffoon!”

“That does it. I’m coming to kick your ass,” Ian snarled and began walking in the water towards Steve’s island. Suddenly he had to retreat from the sharks seen swimming nearby.

“What’s the matter, Ian?” Steve taunted. “Afraid of the widdle fishies?”

“Shut up,” Ian replied as he reclined in the shade of his palm tree. Then his eyes became heavy from the morning’s trauma and he fell asleep.

A short while later Ian was awakened by a pleasant fruity smell. He looked towards the other island and saw Steve eating something.

“Hey, Steve!” Ian shouted. “What are you eating?”

“A banana,” Steve grumbled.

“A banana?” Ian repeated. “Where’d you find it?”

“Where else?” Steve snapped. “My banana tree.”

“Cool, can you throw me one?”

Steve became furious. “Why should I throw you a banana from MY banana tree on MY island?”

“Because I’m HUNGRY!” Ian roared as he stomped his foot. Suddenly a coconut dropped on his head. Ian looked up and to his delight saw a cluster of coconuts hanging from overhead. “Never mind, you have your bananas, I’ll have my coconuts!”

“Coconut?” Steve asked. “I haven’t had a coconut in years. Want to trade a coconut for a banana?”

“Sure, HERE!” Ian screamed as he threw a coconut so hard that it flew over Steve’s head and splashed into the water far out of reach. Steve retaliated by throwing his banana peel at Ian’s feet.

“Is that the best you can do?” Ian taunted before retreating to his shady spot. Then he slipped on the banana peel and stumbled headfirst into the coconut tree to send an avalanche of coconuts on his head to knock him out cold.

“Yes,” Steve replied.

To be continued…

Dueling Islands.

This whole thing started out rather innocently, if not stupidly. With his friend Steve visiting for the day, Ian decided to take him on a boat ride in the canal near his house. Problem was, it really wasn’t a boat, but a floating platform for boarding one of the other boats floating in the canal. Still, according to Ian’s way of thinking, if it floats, it must be a boat.

Ian and Steve stepped on the platform and Ian untied the ropes before pushing the platform off with a long broomstick handle he brought from home. Gently the platform drifted along the canal to carry its two passengers on a most soothing ride.

“What do you think, Steve?” Ian asked. “Pretty relaxing, huh?”

“Yes, it is,” Steve sighed contentedly, “so how far are we going?”

“Don’t worry about that,” Ian replied. “We’ve got all day.”

Soon the platform drifted into a vast waterway with swift, choppy waters. Waves were splashing onto the platform to leave Ian and Steve soaking wet. At the same time Ian lost his broomstick handle to the deep water, leaving him with no way to steer.

“We’ve gone far enough, don’t you think?” Steve shouted. “Turn this thing around and let’s go home.”

“I can’t!” Ian shouted back. “I lost my broomstick!”

“WHAT?” Steve screamed as he hung on to the platform for dear life.

Faster the platform drifted across the waterway as it made its way towards the open sea. There it met giant waves that threatened to tear it to shreds. The dark, threatening clouds above didn’t help matters either as a terrible storm ensued. Ian and Steve hung on the platform as best they could before a monster wave rose and punched the platform into splinters to send the two friends flying into the water.

Amid the chaos, Ian closed his eyes and saw no more.

To be continued…

My scary Flash movies.

I once had a web site with a section devoted to stick figure deaths, cartoons and assorted animations. The most popular of these animations were my scary Flash movies that were my contributions to the screamer craze that swept the Internet at the time. My site has long since been gone since those days but someone has found a way for my scary Flash movies to live on.

It’s come to my attention that there’s an entire site devoted to screamers, and I happen to have my own page there with links to my scary Flash movies. The links themselves point to a copy of my old site on archive org. I’m not affiliated with Screamer Wiki but I do like the idea of my animations living on this way.

The only screamer I didn’t make is the one titled “Scary”. That one came from a different site. All the others are of my own creation and will join you in your dreams tonight.

Sweet dreams.

My cousin Raminta.

I have wonderful childhood memories of visits from my cousin Raminta, who is an accomplished pianist. Her late father, my Uncle Jurgis, was choir director at a Lithuanian church in Chicago. She, along with my late grandfather Vladas, sang in that choir, which would record several albums of traditional Lithuanian folk songs. I think it’s safe to say she came from a musical family.

During one of her visits to Florida, Raminta brought along some of her friends who were musicians themselves. There was Michael, her boyfriend who played violin, Patras the flautist and Dirk the singer. One night they gave a concert in my parents’ living room with my neighbors in attendance. It was a magical evening indeed.

There is one moment from this visit that I will always remember. I myself was taking piano lessons and was practicing “The Entertainer” by Scott Joplin one afternoon when Michael came along and played the same piece on his violin. I’d never heard “The Entertainer” on violin before and was impressed with how easily Michael was able to play it.

The only problem we had was deciding where everyone would sleep. Our house had three bedrooms and eight people, so my parents had to make modifications as to who slept where. I slept in my sister’s bedroom while some of the visitors slept in mine. After they all left, I was about to fall asleep in my own bed for the first night in days when suddenly I saw something glowing on my nightstand. My heart was racing as I reached for the light, and after the light filled the room, I saw some glow-in-the-dark vampire teeth left behind by one of the visitors.

The last I heard from Raminta was years ago when sent us a copy of her album featuring her piano music accompanied by a singer. There is also some instrumental music for violin and organ respectively. A little bit of everything. I really enjoyed hearing the album and consider it a quality production of the highest order. I still love listening to it.

I see Raminta has her own web site and from reading her list of accomplishments, it looks like she’s been very busy performing and teaching her craft. I’ll have to get in touch with her again and relive those fond memories I now possess.