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Jason Aves, still mourning his mother’s death and trying to prove himself to his father, leaves for his senior trip. But, while his classmates head to Ft. Lauderdale, Jason opts for solitude. With his mother’s stolen ashen, he takes off for the quiet shore-town of St. Mary’s, then ferries over to Cumberland Island. There he meets Anastasia, an enigmatic girl who speaks of magic and sees deep into his secret pain.

After I wrote this story, I submitted it to a few of the major magazines that were active at the time. Most sent me a form letter rejection, but there was one that went on to say they were “going to pass on this one…” but were forwarding it to on their senior editor for further review.  I got a few notes on what they liked about the story and that they were looking forward to seeing more from me.  Alas, I never submitted to them again. That was back around 2001, as I recall.

More recently, in early 2017, I learned that there are those who want to rezone and develop Cumberland Island. I pray they never do.

The historical aspects of this story are true. The elements of fantasy and magic are also true, in the sense that this beautiful island evokes a peace and serenity beyond words. This story was born from my desire to pay homage to a place that has brought me much joy and great memories. It reflects the wonder I’ve felt every time I’ve visited, first with my wife and later our sons.

It’s a love story, with a dash of history, some folklore, and magic at every turn, I hope you enjoyed this tale of love, loss, and redemption. This is how Cumberland Island speaks to me. Oh, and if you ever get the chance, do visit the island. You will remember the experience forever.