San Borondón Island

📅 Published on November 28, 2020

“San Borondón Island”

Written by Irving Crane
Edited by Craig Groshek
Thumbnail Art by Craig Groshek
Narrated by N/A

Copyright Statement: Unless explicitly stated, all stories published on are the property of (and under copyright to) their respective authors, and may not be narrated or performed, adapted to film, television or audio mediums, republished in a print or electronic book, reposted on any other website, blog, or online platform, or otherwise monetized without the express written consent of its author(s).

🎧 Available Audio Adaptations: None Available


Rating: 9.67/10. From 3 votes.
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There are some things that you struggle to bring into your life. Then there are the things that you do your damnedest to eradicate from your existence.

My name is Miguel Ramirez. My friends call me Chico de la Perdición. You heard that right. “Doomguy.”

As long as they say it respectfully, I put up with it.

Nicknames can be such a double-edged sword. I got the name because apparently I shrug off bullets and tear my enemies apart with my bare hands. I guess there’s an American video game with a guy matching that description.

The other side of the coin is that I myself feel like I am very much doomed. What I said about things that you try to get out of your life? Violence is one of those things. Violence shaped my childhood. My mama got it if she didn’t keep quiet when she was told. I got it if I didn’t stop crying when I was told. Mama and I both got it if she ever tried to defend me for crying because I was just a baby, and I would get it for causing drama.

So yeah it was one of those upbringings. I tried to cut the violence out of my life, I really did. But it turns out that violence is in my DNA. If a cake mold is dented, every cake made in it is gonna have a dent, right?

I could choke it down, I could bind it up into submission for a short while but it always broke free. So like the man that raised me, somebody somewhere at some time was going to get the back of my hand. It was usually the people that were around me the most, which of course was my wife and kids. The world doesn’t have much use for violent people other than throwing them in prison and farming them for government money or sending them off to fight and die in wars dreamed up by powerful men in suits.

So if you’ve read the newspaper in Spanish sometime in the last 20 years, you probably read about me. The soldier that charged headlong into gunfire, took a hailstorm’s worth of rounds, and still kept fighting? That was me.

The Spanish soldier that caught a grenade as soon as the enemy threw it and threw it back to him? That was me.

The off-duty soldier that was seen wrestling an automatic firearm from an active shooter at a mall, using it to shoot out both of his knees and then ramming the barrel down his throat? And then pissing on his worthless little bitch body? And looking into the surveillance camera and laughing about it?

That was me.

I’m no war hero. I’m just a violent man. I’m a wildfire in the hands of people that have philosophies about controlled burns. So I’ve been stationed where I can’t really tear the planet apart with my bare hands.

I’m on a patrol ship, El Rayo. It combs the waters around our base nested in the Canary Islands. Yes, the Canary Islands are right on the doorstep of the continent of Africa. But The Canaries are the property of Spain. Our installation, Las Palmas, reminds the world of that fact daily by directing our little slice of firepower in regular patrols.

We mostly get to bust drug shipments. El Rayo landed an impressive haul of cocaine in 2013. Google it.

The whole idea of using people like me to stop people like pirates and drug runners is the equivalent of throwing a vicious dog to a bigger vicious dog. Let me tell you, I love tearing some pirates apart. Not because they’re bad people but because I can get away with it. Who are they going to run and tell? The police? There’s nothing funnier than the sounds they make when you try to pull their bottom lips up to their eyebrows. Or queue up your favorite music and bash their faces into the floor to the beat (Rammstein songs get really messy).

We were on patrol just outside our perimeter when the radio lit up with an alert that pirates had just ambushed a cruise ship and taken hostages and valuables. Stupid, rich tourists. The pirates in question were moving just a little too swiftly so we would have to move to intercept.

It didn’t take long for us to get a visual of the pirate ship. It must have been in their service for a while, since it had survived long enough to look like it came out of Willy Wonka’s sphincter after six years of doing acid. All the parts were mismatched, borrowed from whatever other ships they had been cannibalizing over the years, and it was clearly having trouble moving in a straight line. I smiled to myself. Time to terrorize some terrorists. After, you know, making sure the hostages were brought in safely.

Their propulsion was loud and prone to sputtering. Did someone try to deck out that tin can of a ship like a speedboat? Oh, man, was I counting on having fun. We started tailing them and gaining. There were pirates on the back of the ship and they had one of the hostages with them, apparently using her as a means of deterring us.

We closed in enough to see that they were holding on to a rather smoking hot chick like she was a talisman. They must have noticed that I wasn’t looking at them the way most leopard seals look at penguins. Fun fact: Leopard seals love to brutally toy with penguins before killing them. Ork, ork, baby.

The more we closed in, the more the pirates shouted to someone inside the ship and the more the ship did its best to keep the oversized propeller facing us. Their morale was ebbing. I could see how crystal blue the girl’s eyes were. She was damn gorgeous, even with how her fear contorted her face. Was that a thong? When this would be all done and over with I was gonna–

Their ship must have hit some turbulence causing it to pitch forward, which caused everyone in back to struggle to keep their balance, which fed the chick over the rail and into the blur of a propeller.

Those pirates wore their “Oh, shit” faces like a uniform as the propeller topped the water with pink foam.

The rage went straight into my veins and I acted first and fastest, raising my rifle and firing off a couple of bursts. The sudden gunfire caused another episode of footing fumbles. As one pirate began to go over the side of the boat, another comrade reached out and grabbed his arm. One of my rounds tore through the back of the first pirate and maimed his savior at the shoulder so that one staggered back and painted the cabin with the blood jetting from his shredded meat, and the other fell into the propeller blade clutching a severed arm.

All sets of shaking arms grasped for their slung weapons.

“How to Speak Spanish, Level One! Eat shit and die, bitches!” I roared while pulling the trigger and salting the pirates. The bobbing of the waters messed with my aim, permitting them a window to return fire. A few rounds dusted off our hull near my feet.

I was blind and deaf to the voice of reason as I took a running start and launched off our deck and sailed to theirs. I caught one of them in the throat with my hand and pumped a few rounds into the others. Pirates are adorable when a landed bullet doesn’t kill them right away.

I cut all of them down, littering the deck with their rag-swaddled bodies and I went down into the engine room and found the fat navigator. I put a mop handle as far into him as it would go before popping a single round in his head.

I was still mad. I came back up and saw that one of them wasn’t completely dead, apparently paralyzed from the waist down and trying to drag himself over to a rifle. I started stomping his head.



“Is what happens –”


“When you kill a girl–”


“I had my eyes on!”


Pulverized skull fragments crunched under my heel like eggshells.

I finally felt better.

I found their radio and I called my ship.

“Rayo Actual, this is Ramirez, please copy.”

“There’s another ship, you moron!”

“Pardon, sir?”

“You just got done mauling the decoy! There’s another ship with at least half a dozen hostages! They’re hauling ass due West!”

Okay, I was mad again. I got back to the Rayo and that was about as close to turning on a dime as a ship that size ever got.

My commanding officer wouldn’t look at me when I got on deck with him.

“They’re moving too fast for us to bring in reinforcements. We either catch up with them or you’re getting court-martialed for whatever happens to those hostages.”

“Yes, sir.”

The “real” ship was a speck on the waves in the distance. They must have saved the good hardware for that ship with the way it was traveling. So they turned my future ex-wife into salsa and then they outsmarted me. I was going to record myself skinning at least one of them and then upload the whole thing to YouTube. One-upping my ego and my libido in one day is unacceptable.

We chased them as far as we possibly could until we started passing the seventh island. It had been a minute since I had taken my geography class, but I was pretty sure that there were only seven islands in the entire archipelago, and past that there was nothing but open ocean. As fast as their little ship was, it didn’t have enough fuel to motor all the way across the globe.

We were gaining on them just in time for a strange fog to start rising up from the waters. It entered my mind that they were planning on flanking us in the limited visibility, but they never did. We steadily and surely gained on them to the point that I was starting to wonder if they even had a plan. I mean, if they were going to just let me get on board and crush their skulls with my bare hands, that was fine by me. But I never met a pirate that was on my S&M level.

We got close enough that I could start to read some of the numbers painted onto the side of the boat and the back. It wouldn’t be long before I could personally hug and kiss all of them.

I was so focused on keeping my eyes on the boat that I didn’t notice how quickly the sky had grayed over with thick clouds that had the texture of sunbaked earth.

Their boat gradually slipped away like a shadow. They were replaced by the silhouette of a shoreline.

I don’t know if it was a trick of the fog but as vegetation and other shapes emerged, there was just something not quite right about the place. The shades of green were a little off. The shapes of the leaves were a little strange. The overall growth and the trees seemed like something out of a storybook. When the peculiarities of the oncoming land got past me, the next thing I noticed was that the enemy ship was just plain gone.

“Hold your horses,’’ my commanding officer said. “We need to make sure we don’t have a physical view on the hostiles anymore. If they were really carrying hostages then they couldn’t have gotten that far. Hey, Ramirez. You’re heading a team to check out the land and so is Santiago. Try not to kill any hostages.”

I was starting to question if there were hostages. They should not have been able to find a place to park their ship and get reluctant cargo onshore that quickly. We formed our teams, and my boys and I went left and Santiago and his went right. Left-hand path, I mused to myself.

It occurred to me to do a radio check before we went any further.

“Rayo Actual, give us a radio check.”

No answer.

I turned to look at our ship and found that it was very much gone.

“Rayo Actual, please copy.” Nada, of course.

“The captain abandoned us!” one of my men said. Any other day I would have slapped him and told him that there’d be no such nonsense talk, but I couldn’t argue. What I wanted to know was how he had gotten the ship outta dodge so fast. No. We weren’t abandoned. Something was happening that we just couldn’t explain.

I listened for any trace of the sound of the Rayo’s engines. I heard a humming, but it wasn’t coming from the waters. It was coming from the land.

“You hear that?” Torres said, scrunching his eyes.

“Yeah.” I headed towards the sound, which was hard to pinpoint. It seemed to be coming from all around. Still, it was definitely inland. Navigating the turf was difficult due to how dense the foliage was. One of the guys took out a machete and raised an arm to strike, but he jumped back with a yell.

“What’s your problem, soldier?” I barked. I got my answer without his help. The thicket of leaves he was about to bushwhack had not only winced away from him, but the leaves were individual eyes. Hundreds of them. Each of the leaves blinked and rolled around and flitted from the machete to me to the rest of the party.

“I think I’m tripping,” Torres said, perspiring.

“Nope, afraid not,” someone else said.

“Excuse us,” I said to the greenery as we pushed it aside and stepped in among it. I’ve rammed my whole fist down pirates’ throats and I was apologizing to plants.

We found ourselves in a clearing that was so psychedelic, we questioned how many music album covers from the ‘70s were actually photographs from this place. Not only did leaves have eyes, but there were other rudimentary appendages among the flora. Faceted tulips, like gemstones, would ingest flies with their whip-like tongues. The flies were also bright and varied like gaudy metal jewelry. There was a paved pathway of turquoise brick that shimmered with alien radiance.

“Well this is depressing,” Torres remarked.

“What, too much color for you?” I said.

“Everything is the same ugly shade of rust. And it doesn’t look like anything has grown here since the beginning of time.”

All of us exchanged looks.

“The ground is covered with flowers of colors I didn’t know existed, not just one color. I could do without the weird corkscrew trees,” said Morales.

One by one we told what we saw and wondered why nobody else saw the same thing.

“Do you guys see that?” I nodded to the source of the humming. The sound was coming from two crystal pillars that seemed to have been formed naturally, reaching up into the sky where two red gargoyles perched on top of each.

“I mean, you don’t see a McDonald’s or anything?”

Everyone confirmed a visual on two crystal pillars. When we neared them, we confirmed we saw two FLOATING crystal pillars… each were hovering seven feet off the ground by no visible means.

I was about to reinforce to my fellow soldiers that until we were able to reestablish contact with the captain, that I was next in command. This very thought must have moved one of the gargoyles on top of the pillars to assert its own dominance. A fireball the size of my head was hurled down and obliterated Morales like a landmine. I looked up and saw their lashing tails, looking like smug cats that got the drop on some baby bunnies. Well, these bunnies had bullets.

“Put fire on those bastards!” I shouted to my demoralized men. The gargoyle I peppered with rounds seemed more annoyed than harmed. It dropped like a bolt of crimson lightning and dashed Torres to the grass. It swatted at his head with bear-like paws and got a firm grip.

It was bad enough that the thing tore off Torres’ head in one clean jerk with the spinal column still attached. The part where I had to stop and stare for half a second was when it turned the head to us and Torres’ eyes were frantically bouncing around, terror etched in his severed features. He tried to scream, an impossible feat without his lungs.

The demon wrapped its purple tongue around Torres’ head, all the way down to the end of his spine. It made a point of ingesting him slowly.

I regained myself and tore into the beast’s face with death rays of lead. It danced back, fell over, and evaporated. I ducked just as the other demon tried to take off my own head with a broad swipe. I rammed the butt of my rifle into its piggy snout and it tried to blink the stars out of its glowing yellow eyes.

Ortega, my last comrade standing, fired into the beast’s ribs from its left. It howled and grabbed him by the face and threw him into a tree well over twenty yards away, the sound of disintegrating vertebrae echoing. I emptied my magazine into the thing’s head, which put it down after it staggered in a few side-steps while swatting at the empty air.

So I was alone. Ortega’s tree massage was the last thing he felt. Torres was effectively renamed Alpo and Morales was a heap of charred flesh and bone.

I noticed that the turquoise road had regular installments of floating crystal pillars with guardian demons on top of them. The land swelled into a great hill where the road climbed up to… a golden cube? It was as big as a mansion and it hung in the sky.

I radioed out to try and contact the captain again. I tried to radio the other team. Nothing.

Just like that I was isolated. I felt more alone than I did when the pirates dropped the chick in the propeller.

“You look lost,” said a voice.

The fact that the source was a half-way cute chick was the only thing that saved her from a brain full of bullets. She had long features, seemed too tall. And too pale. Her hair was limp and her gaze was lazy.

“Oh, wow,” she said like it took effort to be surprised. “You’re too strong to be a sacrifice. Are you here to claim the island?”

“Kid, I have no clue what you’re talking about.”

“You know where you’re at, right?”

“I’m stranded on an island that shouldn’t exist because we were chasing down pirates, and everything we’ve run into so far has tried to kill us.”

She bowed her head. “I see. Well, I can help you with the part of things trying to kill you if you keep close.”

She walked, almost floated, over to the road, right underneath the next set of crouching demons perched on pillars. She paused to look back at me.

“They like you, doesn’t mean they like me,” I said.

“Just come on,” she said.

I followed, but I showered her in questions. She only cared to answer a few.

“The pirates knew what they were doing. They didn’t vanish and neither did your captain. You disappeared from their sight as soon as you set foot on the island. You were meant to be food for the island as a sacrifice. But you’re clearly not made out to be a standard meal.”

“Me? Food?”

I shoved my rifle in her face.

“Shoot me and you learn nothing and get nowhere.”

Good point. I resumed following her.

We passed set after set of crystal pillars, their demonic gargoyles sizing up both of us. I flipped off every one of them.

She was leading me to the giant golden cube where I could then see steps suspended in the air that were made of something glossy like marble.

Inside it was empty except for some sort of sarcophagus that had facets like a complicated geometric shape. It put me in the mind of Tutankhamen’s tomb rendered on the first PlayStation.

She touched it. The cover floated into the air.

Inside was an emaciated, shriveled, and yet still living copy of her, looking as if it were taken from one of those World War One photos of bodies piled into mass graves.

I was hit by a blast of dust, urine and sweat.

The body opened its eyes and looked at me.

It moved its hands folded over its frail chest, revealing a cavity, much like some books hold a cut-shape for a firearm or a small safe.

There was a black cube in the space, and like a distant star, a violet eyeball blinked inside of the cube. The voice that came out of that frail throat was much deeper than anything I ever heard, as if the vocal cords hadn’t been used in eons.

“The island needs a heart. Hearts wear out. If you take my place, I get to finally die. Please. Set me free.”

“What’s in it for me?” I said, predictably enough.

“Other than immortality? You get to have your way with the pirates. After all, they’ll be your worshippers.”

I thought about it. I paced in circles. I went up and down the floating steps outside the celestial golden tomb. I went into the woods and masturbated.

Without that little bit of biological pressure swaying my faculties, I made a decision.

I found out that the captain hung around the island for days after we “vanished” from his sight. After repeated radio calls, he just gave up. I didn’t blame him.

I found out that the pirates had broken open a new jug of rum and forced a lot of it down the throats of their hostages, who they sacrificed on the lower deck of their ship, slitting their throats and mixing their blood with their drinks.

As the new heart, or “God” of the eighth island, I learned that such sacrifices didn’t do me a damn bit of good. I wasn’t as easily impressed as the last God. I was practical. Their shit either fed me or it didn’t. They did their little sacrifices and even sang a few primal hymns they thought I might like, but… what a joke.

I got them all. As soon as they dragged a batch of hostages to me, I made lifeboats out of coral and I coiled tentacles around those pirates forged from every last horrible element of jellyfish, stingrays, and porcupines and I pulled them down to the icy base of the island. And when their flesh couldn’t take it anymore and their souls made a run for it? Oh man, that’s when the real fun began.

Pirates are so cute, especially the superstitious ones, when they try so hard to appease you in your grand cosmic mightiness, like you’re some sort of big dumb cow that can be offered feed as if were the key to the universe, and then you dream up a little hell for them so personal and so isolated, that not even the devil can hear them scream. And they cry to you, “Why, Lord, why?”

And the only answer they get is “Because you cockblocked me!”

I am Miguel Ramirez, and I am the God of San Borondón Island.

Rating: 9.67/10. From 3 votes.
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🎧 Available Audio Adaptations: None Available

Written by Irving Crane
Edited by Craig Groshek
Thumbnail Art by Craig Groshek
Narrated by N/A

🔔 More stories from author: Irving Crane

Publisher's Notes: N/A

Author's Notes: N/A

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Copyright Statement: Unless explicitly stated, all stories published on are the property of (and under copyright to) their respective authors, and may not be narrated or performed, adapted to film, television or audio mediums, republished in a print or electronic book, reposted on any other website, blog, or online platform, or otherwise monetized without the express written consent of its author(s).

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