look to the sea.

There were always warnings. Black and stark and bold-faced like a plague upon the county; in the pub, in the schools, in the marketplace, wherever terrified eyes would look for ungodly comfort in the dark times. Mothers shielded their children against their breasts and warned them, heat in their voices, to never go and play in the surf. Fishermen blessed their ships and said their Hail Mary’s before going out to sea. At night, when the sprinkling of constellations came forth, the county’s citizens kneeled before their beds and prayed to a being who could not save them.

The bold-faced warnings remained like a sickness in their mind: Give her your blood and she won't take your pale flesh.