The Island of Regeneration

Cyrus Townsend Brady
The Island of Regeneration
A Story of What Ought to Be
Cyrus Townsend Brady
With constantly increasing affection and admiration, I dedicate this
book to my friend, Beverly E. Warner

Chapter I
Whether she had fainted or fallen asleep, she did not know, but of this
one thing she was sure: it had been dark when consciousness left her
and it was now broad day, although the light seemed to come to her
with a greenish tinge which was quite unfamiliar. The transition
between her state of yesterday and that of to-day was as great as if she
had been born into morning from the womb of midnight. Like a young
animal vaguely stirring she drank in life blindly with closed eyes. She
could hear the thunderous roaring of the breakers crashing upon the
barrier reef. Alone her boat had been wrecked in the darkness of the
night before the noise softened and, mellowed by distance, came to her
in a deep, low accompaniment to the sharper and nearer sounds of the
birds singing and the breeze rustling gently through the long leaves of
the trees overhead.
The dry sand on which she lay was soft and yield ing and made a
comfortable bed for her tired body, racked with weary days in the
constraint and narrowness of a small boat. It was hot, too. She had been
drenched and cold when she scrambled on the shore and fell prostrate
on the beach, retaining just strength enough and purpose enough to

crawl painfully inward to where the tall palms grew be fore she lapsed
in whatsoever way it might have been into oblivion, and the warmth of
the shore was very grateful to her.
Incoherent thoughts raced through her bewildered brain; each one,
however, bringing her a little nearer the awakening point of realization.
Then there ran through her young body a primal pang which dispelled
the tremulous and vague illusions which her fancy had woven about
herself as she lay warm and snug and sunny at the foot of the tall trees.
She realized that she was frightfully thirsty, so thirsty that she did not
know how hungry she was.
The demand of the material awakened the animal in her. Her thoughts
centered instantly; they were at once localized on one supreme desire.
Coincidentally her eyes unclosed, and she sat up, blinking in the strong
light. The rising sun, still low on the horizon, smote her full in the eyes
and left her for the moment dazed again. She sat leaning upon her
hands extended behind her back, staring sea ward, saying nothing,
thinking nothing, until a strange sound to the right of her attracted her
attention. It was a sound made by a human voice, and yet it was like
nothing human that she had ever heard. It was a wordless, languageless
ejaculation, but it aroused her interest at once despite her material
She weakly turned her head, and there, standing erect with folded arms,
looking down upon her, was a man. He was unclothed entirely save for
a fantastic girdle of palm leaves about his waist. She stared at him
puzzled, amazed, affrighted. He returned her look with an intent
curiosity in which there was no suggestion of evil purpose, rather a
great incomprehension, an amazing wonderment. There was nothing
about him, save the fact that he was there, which should have caused
any alarm in her heart, for with a woman s swift mastery of the
possibilities of the other sex, she noticed in her vague terror and
wonderment that he was remarkably good to look at. Indeed, she
thought that she had never seen so splendid a specimen of physical
manhood as that before her. In color he was white. Save that he was
bronzed by the tropic sun, he was perhaps whiter than she was. His hair,

which hung about his head in a wild, matted tangle, not unpicturesque,
was golden; his eyes bright blue. Beneath his beard, unkempt but short
and curly, she could see his firm, clean-cut lips. His proportions were
superb. He was limbed and chested like the Apollo Belvidere. In him
grace and strength strove for predominance. He was totally unlike all
that she had read of the aborigines of the South Seas.
Instantly she saw him he naturally became the object of her undivided
attention. There was much in Nature that might have awakened her
interest. She sat in the shadow of great palms; below her hung a long
reach of sand dazzlingly white in the sun. Bordering this was a smooth
expanse of sea, waveless and still and bluer than any heaven she had
ever looked into. Beyond that ran the jagged edge of the barrier reef,
white-crested with foam from long assaulting breakers rolling
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