At the sea they would become whole again. At the sea they would grow. At the sea they would settle. They longed for the air of the ocean, both fresh and fetid, the scale of sudden weather transforming them likewise. A breath, of sorts. They would find that shack again, by the pier, barely large enough to sleep in. Damp with mist. Sand ground down into the wood. Sand in everything else. And by some circumstances, a tragedy or a lottery, they would be gloriously marooned. The sea would creep up on them, rising, until the surface of the earth returned to a state of mythical flood. Strange new animals would appear when the waves receded. The land would be scrubbed and revitalized. There would be absolution. They would walk out onto the new planet, relics themselves, knowing that when they pass, the old world would be gone forever. And good riddance, they would cheer, now free from antediluvian constraints. To the sea, they chanted, back to the sea.