Shark Tea

Sharon’s Note: Life is strange. Sometimes it’s really, really strange. Warning: Creepy cute ahead.

Kate had decided it was the perfect day for reading. It was her day off, she had nowhere in particular to be, and it was raining. Fixing herself a cup of hot tea, she positioned herself in the battered recliner by the window. She alternately read a few sentences, then stared out at the gently falling rain. With her left hand, she absently dabbed her tea bag up and down in the water.

She was a little excited to try this new tea. It was an odd mixture of citrus and flowers, and they had been giving away free sample packets at the grocery store. There’d been no name on the packet, just a tiny picture of a shark on a bright orange background. 

Watching a squirrel bouncing across the lawn through the rain, Kate tugged on the string of her teabag, and there was a slight resistance when it raised up. Brow furrowed, she continued to pull until the bag raised completely out of the cup. Then she stared.

The teabag spun in the air, and dangling at the end was a tiny shark. Apparently, the package advertised things at life size, because the little shark was only about an inch long. A perfect miniature great white. Thinking that maybe it was some kind of toy, Kate reached for it. Suddenly, the little shark started thrashing, making the tea bag sway.

Unable to withstand the miniscule predator, the bottom of the bag tore. Shark and tea fell back to the murky water below with a splash. Droplets of tea speckled the table and the empty bag hung limply in Kate’s fingers. After a moment, the shark surfaced, violently seizing a piece of flower, then dragged it below. It did this repeatedly, until all the bits of flotsam tea floating on the surface were gone. Two more times the tiny shark circled, only a small triangle of fin visible, before it sank below the umber waves. It did not come back up.

Kate picked of the cup and sloshed it around a little. Nothing happened. After a moment, hoping and afraid that something would answer, she asked to the air, “What the heck am I supposed to do with this now?”

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