Well, this was new. He was lying down, on his back, he realized after a moment. He did a quick mental check—yes, two hands, two feet. He could move everything. He did not seem to hurt anywhere, and the wetness on his face tasted like sweat, not blood.

As the ringing in his ears quieted, he found that there was nothing much to hear, just a little wind. Slowly, carefully, he rose to his feet. My God, that’s a lot of sand! he thought. His knapsack was still with him. He opened it and inspected the contents—his Swiss Army knife, a comic book, the gift for his grandmother, two bottles of water, and the sandwiches his mother had packed him. His mother loved to make sandwiches, and he figured he had supplies for at least 24 hours. He closed the knapsack, shouldered it, and took a deep breath.

Confident that he was not going to die in the next few minutes, he set about the serious business of figuring out where the hell he was.

This story has no comments.