via Daily Prompt: Deplete
The peace was broken by the shrill alarm of her cell phone. Elizabeth sighed as she felt her muscles tighten up. Her work phone. Couldn’t ignore that one.
“You’re needed at Oceanside beach.”
“This is my day off.”
“You know our department is depleted. ”
“I’m at the beach. Where is it?” she nodded then hung up, rummaging through her bag she found what she was looking for. Jeans and t-shirt with flip flops was going to have to do for professional attire. She shrugged into her clothes, topping it off with her shoulder holster and badge. Packing up her towel, she made her way toward the pier and the crowd of people she could see in the distance.
She noted the police SUVs on the beach with flashing lights. Uniformed officers had partitioned off the scene with yellow crime scene tape. The body lay in the middle of it, tide was still out, but she would need to work fast. She looked around and saw the CSI team was already taking photos to preserve the scene as best they could. A man in jogging shorts and sweat-soaked T-shirt was speaking to another officer. Elizabeth looked back at the victim. A girl. Young. Naked. Kelp and sand crusted in her long dark hair.
A pang of grief hit her, but she grimaced and suppressed the emotion. Focus. She walked up to the scene and ducked under the tape. Younger than she thought, maybe still in high school? Body unmarked. No sign of struggle. CSI handed her a pair of gloves. She pulled them over her hands then squatted down, gingerly picking up the girls hands and examining her fingers. Nothing. Clean. Too clean?
She looked up and met the light-brown gaze of the jogger. Her heart jumped. She frowned. Did that really just happen? Annoyed with herself, she shook her head. Ain’t nobody got time for that! She looked away to compose herself. She was going to have to speak to him.
He came down the steps to the beach at a jog; so familiar with the path, he no longer had to think about where to place his feet. His gaze was drawn to the horizon where sea met sky. Breathtaking. Deep breath. Salt. Kelp. Laundry detergent from his freshly washed T-shirt. The view never got old. The tide was out. Screeching seagulls. Sand pipers poking into the ebbing waters, looking for snacks. Thank You. He whispered the prayer.
To his immediate right was the pier, a few old men fishing off it. He remembered at time from his childhood being there with his dad when a fisherman had caught a small hammer head shark. He smiled at the memory. To his left in the distance he could see the power plant; that way looked relatively empty and he chose to run that direction.
He stretched, then set off down the beach at a jog until his muscles warmed up. His Nikes slapped the wet sand in a comforting rhythm. He gradually increased his pace until he was sprinting down the shore. Heart pounding, blood pumping, breathing measured. Every muscle in his body felt alive.
His morning run was suddenly disrupted when he tripped over something on the beach. His ankle twisted and he heard a crunch as he fell forward. He rolled onto his back and sat up. What he saw caused him to yell, but it came out as a gasp. Horror hit his brain and shot adrenaline into his system, causing him to feel cold and nauseated simultaneously. He scooted backward in the sand, then reached for his phone.
“911. What’s your emergency?”
via Daily Prompt: Froth
The prisms of light glinting off the water nearly blinded her as she stepped onto the beach. She slid her sunglasses off her head and over her eyes. The waves rolled in to the shore gently, white froth visible. She took a deep breath. Salt. Kelp. Her toes dug into the warm sand and she wriggled them happily. The grains still clung to a remnant of moisture from the early morning tide. Sea gulls called to one another. She had the beach to herself. She adjusted her bag on her shoulder and turned her head to the right. She spotted the pier in the distance. She looked to the left. Then she found it. The perfect spot. She trudged slowly across the sand to her favorite cove. She set her bag down, reached in and pulled out her suntan oil and the large floral beach towel, unfurling it to settle on the sand. She sat down and looked out to sea. A naval ship in the distance. A cloud or two. Dark blue waters, bright blue sky. Gentle breeze. She opened her suntan oil, the fragrance of coconut wafted about her. The tension left her neck and shoulders like water down a drain. It was going to be a wonderful day.
The work out began. It started off ok. But soon she was wheezing, and having a hard time even keeping up with Kat, the overweight team member who had to modify the work out. Half way through the work out, she was gasping for air, got dizzy, and felt like she was going to puke. She paused the Cardio Fix and shuffled into the kitchen for ice, plopped down in the chair and applied the ice to her neck and pulse points in the hopes it would help the nausea disappear and feel better.
It’s pretty sad when I can’t even keep up with Fat Kat. She thought. Then she felt guilty that she nicknamed a probably very nice lady. At least Kat was doing the work out, right?
Knowing her limitations and accepting that next week would be better she got up, found her headphones, put on some jazzy music and modified the plan. She walked for 15 minutes in the neighborhood. It’s ok to modify, she told herself. Don’t give up. You’ll get better if you keep going.
The box came yesterday. She carefully pulled everything out. She rinsed the containers and labeled them. She calculated her caloric intake and was surprised by how much she would be eating. She read the instructions. How am I going to work out EVERY day? She wondered. I’ll try. She decided.
She then went to a birthday party and gave herself permission to eat cake. Tomorrow would start “the Fix.” She felt positive about it all, and set her alarm for 6:30am.
When the alarm sounded at 6:30am, she turned it off. At 7:00am she rose, made her coffee and debated. Should I lay in bed and check messages while my coffee brews, or pop in the DVD of the day? She looked. It was Cardio Fix. She chose bed and messages.
When her coffee was done, she poured herself a cup and went into her office to read her Bible, as was her habit. Why was it so easy to keep some habits up, but so difficult to keep/establish others?
Proverbs 13:4 (KJV) “The soul of the sluggard desireth, and hath nothing: but the soul of the diligent shall be made fat.”
I’m tired of being a sluggard, she thought.
Proverbs 13:19 (KJV) “The desire accomplished is sweet to the soul: but it is abomination to fools to depart from evil.”
Hmm. Diligence=healthy soul.
Redefine “fat” and “sweets.”
This is my goal, she thought, Strong body, fat soul.
She walked to the closet and put her gym clothes on.