the fishermen (anthony & koffi, year 3000)

It was early June, just before the ship arrived, and Anthony sat with his legs outstretched, looking out into the vast expanse of water before him. Fish blew bubbles that floated to the top of the water just below Anthony’s feet. He was expecting Corrine and Matilda soon, but knew they were taking their time. Their falling in love was something that Anthony had noticed only recently, and he was filled with joy at the idea of his childhood friends together. Anthony stood and walked to the end of the wharf.

“Beautiful day,” he said, smiling at the other fishermen.

“Oh, absolutely. I hear the ship is coming from somewhere along the southern coast,” said a gruff-looking fisherman. The southern coast referred to the area that was once known as South Africa. With the fall of banks and country lines in 2502, people from all over the world began to migrate to wherever they wished. Some visited, and some stayed for the entirety of their lives. Anthony’s family had migrated from the area that was once known as Sicily, Italy, when he was only three years old. It was here, in the area that was once San Francisco, that seventeen-year-old Anthony had found his work.

His father worked as a jeweler, and his mother as a painter. The three lived in a beautiful white house just across the bay, looking onto where it fed into the ocean. They owned two dogs by the names of Piper and Charlotte, and let them run in the large backyard. On warm nights, the family spent hours together in the yard, eating dinner, playing games, and laughing together. Anthony’s parents were surprised when Anthony told them what he felt called to do, as they had raised him around so many forms of art. They supported him nonetheless, and were incredibly proud of the selfless and giving individual that they had raised. Maybe the love within his family was what drove him to do what he did for his town.

As Anthony gazed across the bay, remembering his days spent on the wharf with his parents, a large ship began to pull into the bay. It chugged slowly through the water, and Anthony sensed the palpable anticipation in the air. Everyone in the town had been waiting for this day for months, preparing packages of fresh fish and vegetables, blankets, and organizing living quarters. People gathered around the wharf to greet the newcomers. Anthony spotted Corinne and Matilda in the distance, wandering towards the wharf, hands intertwined. He smiled, feeling the connections to the people around him, the love in the air.

When the ship was anchored and docked, citizens that had gathered around the wharf began cheering. Hordes of people began crossing the gangway of the ship, and as each one passed, Anthony greeted them with a smile and handed them a package of fresh fish. People were coming from all over the world- a beautiful woman wearing a blue sari stopped to introduce herself. She wore winged eyeliner and tall combat boots, and Anthony admired the juxtaposition of her style. He loved the hipster cliché of it. Among the people that crossed the gangway, several stood out in Anthony’s eyes. A young man with dark skin and piercing blue eyes stopped to greet him. His ears were pierced in many places, and he wore a silver hoop through his left eyebrow. He introduced himself as Koffi, and stated that he had arrived from the area that was once Ghana. He wore the colors of his family in his clothing, and he beamed with excitement as he looked around. Anthony noticed that Kofif’s eyes nearly matched the sky, and glistened when he spoke.

As Koffi left the wharf with his friends that had traveled with him, he stopped to turn back and look out across the vast expanse of water. He laid down in the grass. He felt everything – the warmth of the sun on his skin, the light breeze that whispered in his ears. He heard the birds as they called to one another. In the distance, he heard the laughter of two young women. This is home, he thought. And he almost loved everything.