Candy Island Vacation

A bag of sour gummy worms brightens up a dreary day inside by turning you into a cartoonishly big candy dragon. Mature.

You're sprawled on the sofa In the living room, staring up at the white noise of the ceiling. You haven't bothered to unpause the 'lo-fi beach vibes' video you had playing on the TV. Past the sliding glass door, the rain comes down like radio static. Nothing to do outside, nothing left to do inside. Your phone doesn’t have anything better to offer, so you sling it over the edge of the couch and let it fall to the carpet. Then you look down, grab the big bag of sour gummy worms you bought, and haul it over. Might as well, right? You peel it open, grab a couple, and toss one into your mouth.

Mango-pineapple. The taste hits harder than you expect. You take a moment to savor it as it saturates your tongue. It's been a while since you last had sour candy, but you don't remember it being quite so engrossing. The next worm you try is some kind of purple flavor, and while it's just as delicious in its own way, it doesn’t captivate your senses like the mango-pineapple did.

While you eat your handful of worms, the grass outside your apartment gets swallowed by rising water. Inside, the bookshelves creep taller and taller along the walls. The coffee table lists to one side; two of its feet sink a half-inch into the carpet.

You pop the last sour gummy worm into your mouth. The pineapple tartness and cloying mango sweetness are a perfect fit. Your eyes drift shut and a smile falls across your face. How long has it been since you just enjoyed some candy?

Your hand dips back into the bag and lifts out another handful. You pinch the gummy worms between your teeth and pull them from your fingers two at a time. Your thick tongue slips out to slurp the gummy worms between your glossy pinkish lips. A bead of drool rolls down your pudgy cheek. You brush it away with your shoulder.

Okay, yes, you know you're eating more than you should. You know you should stop after this handful. But this is the first time that you've felt nice in weeks. This is a splash of color among all that gray. You can't give that up because you're worried about a little too much candy.

You’re about halfway through your latest handful by the time your top ceases to fit all the way down over your belly. That little sliver of stomach above your waistband widens into a fat slice of the rising dome of your gut, as round as a beach ball. As it stretches, your taut skin turns smoother and yellower. You’d be alarmed if this all didn’t feel so pleasant. Your belly has the heaviness of a weighted blanket, the squishiness of a stress ball, and the coziness of a warm bed.

As strange as this is, it’s the best you’ve felt all week. A pleasant buzz swirls around your head, keeping you draped out on the couch. As a gesture of encouragement, you unbutton your pants and wiggle them down around your hips.

While you eat, water laps against the other side of the glass door. The rain slows to a stop, but the soft noise coming from outside continues—now rising and falling, cresting and receding, in a gentle rhythm. Sand pours out of the TV screen, spilling from the picture of the beach out onto your real carpet. The coffee table tips so far to one side that all the remotes and controllers on top of it slide off and vanish into the floor. Your phone is half-submerged and steadily sinking.

When you pull your next big handful of gummy worms out of the bag, you see that your fingers are fat and orange and covered in sugar-crystal scales. Yet that doesn’t stop you from mashing your round, bulging nose into it and taking a big bite. Several gummy worms dangle from your glistening plush pink lips, until your forked tongue squeezes out of your mouth and slurps them all down.

You can’t ignore it any more. Yes, your cheeks are puffing up all soft and orange and scaly. Yes, your nose has flumped out into a stubby snout with wide-set nostrils. Yes, you have to reach up about a foot higher to bring your hand to your mouth, thanks to the broad yellow scales stretching out your neck. And yes, you’re bloating up bigger and rounder and tighter all over, from the swelling bulge of your broad belly, to the burgeoning thickness of your hips, to the heavy breasts squeezing against your struggling top.

But you’ve got a tipsy smile plastered across your face. Why is any of that a problem? Doesn’t everyone like a pear-shaped body with a big bouncy tummy? Aren’t full, round snouts the cutest kind? And who wouldn’t want plump lips and bright, shiny scales?

You can’t imagine why you felt conflicted about any of this—you’re looking more beautiful by the minute.

Maybe you should slow down on the gummy worms, though, considering how woozy the sugar rush is making you. On the other hand, the more you become yummy, squishy candy, the hungrier you get. And you’re really really hungry. Maybe just a couple more handfuls.

The bookshelves clunk against the ceiling of the living room, then begin to creak and strain, eager to keep growing. Soon enough, the whole ceiling breaks free as the shifting shelves hoist it higher and higher. The overhead light grows brighter and warmer as it recedes into the sky. The sliding door vanishes, letting the water rush in only to break against the thick sandbank now covering your floor. The outside wall dissolves into the water, revealing the sparkling blue sea beyond. Gentle waves now lap against the sand, while half-sunken pieces of furniture jut up out of it like flotsam strewn across the beach.

You’re less worried about what’s happening to your apartment than you are about where the bag of gummy worms has gotten to. All that shifting means it’s no longer sitting by the foot of the couch where you left it.

You think, I’ll just roll over and find it, but doing so is much trickier than you’re used to, now that you’ve got a huge pineapple-yellow gut bulging out from your midsection and splaying your stout thighs apart. With some pushing and shoving, you tip yourself onto your side, then slosh down onto the sand, balanced on top of your stomach like a yoga ball. The shock sends a tender jolt straight up your spine, as well as opening up a split across the front of your top. You don’t bother trying to peel it off. It’s going to take care of itself in a minute or two.

You find the bag of sour gummy worms hiding around the side of the couch. Just as you pull it over and lean back onto your knees, there’s a surge of pressure against the small of your back before your tail bursts free. It shoots out into the air, then falls under its own weight and slumps lazily across the couch. Its rudder-like girth shoves your legs apart, pushing them into a wide- hipped crocodilian stance that feels surprisingly natural.

Of course, your pants don’t survive that, and your top doesn’t hold out much longer—but now you’ve got cute yellow polka dots splashed across your fat flanks, and that’s just as good, if not better.

Above you, the ceiling is gone, lost in the soft blue sky, leaving behind only a few wisps of clouds and the warm summer sun beaming down at you. The bookshelves bend and arch as shaggy fronds sprout from their tips. Your living room—or is it now the beach?—stretches bigger and bigger. All the walls are gone, either sunken beneath the sand or swallowed up by the vines and palm trees and thick flowering bushes sprouting up opposite the surf.

You shift your weight back onto your clawed feet and heave yourself off the ground. Then your head starts to spin, your claws slip out from under you, and you land heavily on the sand with your legs cocked out to either side of your belly. That dizziness wasn’t just the sugar rush; you’re also several feet taller than you used to be.

Looking down at your hands, you wiggle the pink webbing between your claws. Then you rear back, reach up to your face, and run your fingers over your large round snout and the plump, inflated pink lips that dominate the front of it. Your cheeks now squish up against the corners of your eyes. You crane your long neck around to look over your shoulder give your tail a few flicks to see how it thrashes back and forth.

Without even thinking about it, you know exactly what you’re becoming: a candy dragon. A sour mango-pineapple candy dragon, and by the look of it, an aquatic one too. You don’t know how you know that, or how you know that candy dragons are even a thing. It’s just obvious.

Not only that, being a candy dragon feels like the most natural thing ever. It’s hard to imagine what it would be like without a great big belly, or a fat snout, or a powerful tail. Your sense of balance adjusts easily to your bottom-heavy body, and your sense of scale sizes up so quickly you’re a little surprised to see the couch looking so small next to you.

You know you’re not supposed to be a candy dragon, in the same way you might know the name of a relative you’ve never met. You know it as an abstract fact, but it feels so good to be huge and soft and bouncy and sugary and orange and yellow and super-duper hungry for candy. And now, you’re finding that if you start thinking too hard about human stuff, the kinda stuff that would make you anxious or worried or stressed out, those thoughts dissolve into sugary tingles in your head before you can even finish them.

You stare off into space for a few moments with a dreamy grin. Gosh, it feels so much nicer when all that bad stuff just drifts away. Maybe you’re not supposed to be a candy dragon, but you could sure use a candy dragon vacation.

Speaking of being hungry, you’ve got a craving for more sour gummy worms. You pull a huge fistful of them from the bag, able to grip even more at once thanks to your webbed claws. Little rings of color dance around your eyes, which light up when you see how many mango-pineapple worms you grabbed. That’s your favorite flavor! Wait, no—that’s your flavor.

You drag your thick-forked tongue across your lips, then open your mouth wide. Strings of sweet saliva dangle between your blunt white fangs. With a big chomp, you snap up the whole fistful at once. Your cheeks puff out as you work your jaw up and down. Your teeth are designed for eating candy, and they tear through the gummy worms with ease.

You’re so hungry you swallow it all at once. A fat bulge squeezes down your throat, stretching out your scales on its way to your stomach. Once it gets there, a prickly feeling washes all over your body. Little pink fins sprout along the outsides of your arms and legs while larger ones rise like sails along your back: one between your shoulders, one at the base of your tail, and one out at the very tip. Where another candy dragon might have horns, you sprout two crests of long spines, forming a pair of pink-webbed frills more suited to your aquatic environment.

What used to be bookshelves are now yellow-green candy palm trees, casting shade across the sunny beach. Up past the beach, a lush jungle rises up, dense with multi-colored foliage bearing candy fruit in all sorts of flavors. Off in the distance rise purple passion fruit peaks, cut by a misty waterfall or two. Here and there along the shore, rock candy outcroppings poke out of the raw sugar-sand. One of them even looks a bit like a coffee table. The waves washing up are rich and blue and crested with white foam. The breeze blowing off the sea smells like blue raspberry and marshmallow.

The candy-island paradise before you fills you with an urge to explore, but you can’t set out on an empty stomach, and you’ve got plenty of gummy worms left to finish off. You could keep eating handful by handful like you’ve been doing, but your sugar-soaked dragon brain has a better idea. You hold the bag in both hands and shove your snout into it, slurping and chomping and swallowing indiscriminately.

Wave after wave of gummy goodness turns your thoughts to sticky syrup. It makes it super hard to think about serious stuff, but why would you even want to? You’re a candy dragon, you’re supposed to be silly and bubbly and giggly. You try to think harder but your eyes start to spin, swirling through a rainbow of tropical colors. You’re pretty sure you weren’t always a candy dragon, but it’s so hard to imagine what else you could have been. Your big belly, your delicious flavor, your shining scales and your pillowy lips—they’re all so important to who you are!

Your hands start to squish and knead your soft belly scales, running up and down the sides of your gut. With each gulp, you bulge all over, bigger and rounder and plumper. Your burgeoning body pushes up little furrows in the sand where it’s shoved aside to make room.

All your senses feel as if they’re glowing. Colors spill over into one another, sounds dissolve into tinkling in your ears, and every shift of your body comes with a pleasant shudder. You lap up the last dregs of powder in the bottom of the bag with your tongue. Your claws clutch your stomach tightly. You lift your head from the bad just in time to swoon and topple over onto your back with a heavy thoom that rustles the palm trees. Your eyes roll into your head, your tail flops frantically, and you arch your back as—


An explosion of sticky pink goo splatters the inside of your head. Your hand slide off your belly and fall to your sides, coated in thick pineapple syrup. Your jaw falls open and your tongue tumbles out onto the sand with a soft splut.

You bat your eyelids a few times before your eyes can focus again. Their colors are now locked in: slit yellow pupils, surrounded by concentric rings of green and orange. As you push yourself back up, your head sways dizzily and you can hear the the fluid inside sloshing between your ears. You let out a tipsy hicc-giggle and grin.

Oh glosh, that...whatever that just was felt so good! You can’t remember exactly what you were doing, but you definitely remember how fantastic it made you feel. Come to think of it, you don’t remember much of anything right now. Like what you were doing this morning, or how you got here in the first place.

Well, no reason to worry about that—all that matters is having fun and eating candy!

Behind you, the couch twists and grows into the air. The armrests shoot up, the cushions unfurl into thick canvas, and by the time you turn to look, all you see is your cozy hammock, strung up between a pair of small candy palms. The thought of a nap sounds pretty inviting after all that fun you had...but a swim and a snack beforehand sound even better!

You wade out into the warm blue water until it’s up above your chest, then dive under and give your tail a firm whip. You shoot forward, kicking up sand in your wake. Just beyond the surf, the ocean teems with as much colorful candy life as the island itself. Gummy anemones suck in their tentacles as you pass by, jawbreaker clams peer out of their layered shells, and schools of translucent red fish flutter through the branches of lollipop corals.

Swimming is an absolute delight. Sure, bouncing around on land with your big dragon belly feels perfectly natural, and why wouldn’t it, but it doesn’t compare. Swimming is effortless; you just think about where you want to go and swoosh, there you are: twirling around as you drift through the candy reef, kicking slowly with your feet, arms folded behind your head. The sun ripples down against your big belly and tail, both practically weightless under the water.

You almost doze off right there, but then you spot a large fish lagging behind one of the schools, pale white instead of red like its fellows. Candy-predator instincts crackle across your skin. In a swirl of water, you shoot off toward your prey.

The school scatters, but your eyes stay locked on the white fish. You follow right behind it, flaring and flattening your fins to guide you through the water, lashing and snapping your tail to drive you through the quick zig-zagging turns. You’re right behind it, so close you can feel the flapping of its tail. You kick forward, dip your snout underneath the fish, and then push upward as hard as you can.

The fish bursts from the surface of the water, flopping frantically. Just as it hangs in the air, about to fall back down, you come surging up after it. Your jaws snap tight around its midsection. You tumble once, almost twice in the air, then crash back down into the water with a tremendous splash of marshmallow foam.

A minute later, you’re crawling back up onto your feet on the beach, your catch still clutched in your mouth. You stagger for a moment as you get your land legs again, then lumber off toward your hammock. You stop at one of the big palm trees along the way and whip your tail around to give the trunk a firm thwack. A couple bright green coconuts tumble down onto the sand. You pick up one of them and carry it back with you.

Holding the edge of the hammock in one hand, you heave yourself up and tumble down into it. The sudden strain of your weight makes the palm trees sag toward one another.

You lift the fish from your mouth by the tail, then gulp it down in three big bites, chomping your way easily through its soft, chewy body. The piña colada flavor makes the tip of your tail flutter eagerly. You’re a sucker for anything that tastes like pineapple; after all, every candy dragon has a special place in her heart for her own flavors.

You heft the coconut in your hand and crunch a hole through its hard candy shell with the side of your mouth. Sticking your hand through the hole, you fish out the straw and little paper umbrella inside, before slurping down the lime-flavored fruit punch.

All the fresh sugar makes the gooey pink syrup in your head tingle. You’d play with your belly some more because oh sploosh does it feel good, but the sun is so nice and warm and the breeze is so soft and cool that you’re already halfway asleep.

You stretch out your arms and legs, then lie back in your hammock and gaze up at a single cotton candy cloud drifting through the blue. Your eyelids droop, then slide shut.

The sound of the waves rocks you to sleep, and you dream of exploring your candy island without a care in the world.

At least, until you wake to hear a distant voice calling out along the beach.

You let out a big fang-filled yawn and lift your head up like a periscope. Off over the ocean, the sun is setting, painting the clouds in delicious pinks and purples. You listen to the waves for several seconds before you hear the voice again, echoing down the beach: “Hello?”

Ooh, a visitor! How exciting. You can’t remember the last time someone came to visit Candy Island.

You swing out of your hammock and land on your feet with a thunderous thud. Thanks to your nice long nap, and all the yummy sugar from your big afternoon feeding frenzy, you feel even more loose and bouncy and energetic than before. With a smile stretched across your your soft cheeks, you go stomping off up the beach, falling in step with the familiar boi-oi-oi-oing of your belly bouncing from side to side.

Before long, you spot them: a small figure wandering down the beach, stumbling through the sugary sand. There’s a confused and uneasy look on their face, but you can’t imagine why anyone wouldn’t be happy to be here, on the best, most sweetest island ever. You decide it ought to be your duty to make sure they get to enjoy themselves just as much as you do.

You stick your hand above your head and wave eagerly. “Hi-iii!” you call out, then pick up the pace until you’re practically bounding across the beach toward them.

They freeze in place as you come skidding to a stop in front of them. You smile down at the cute little thing; they barely come up to your chest, and look so slender that you have to resist the urge to start stuffing candy fruit into their hands. Why, you can’t even see their belly. And where was their tail, or their snout, or—ooh, wait! You’ve heard of these before. They’re, umm...humans, that’s right! You giggle to yourself and clap your claws together.

“Hee hee, you’re a human, right? How’d you get here?” You’re surprised by your own thick, exotic, sugary-sweet voice, but you’re not sure why; you sound just like you always do. Right?

“Um, yeah,” the human says, trailing off as they glance behind them, as if expecting to see something other than more beach. “I just opened the door to the apartment and then...I was here.” They look up at you like they’re having trouble believing their own eyes. “Where am I?”

“Why, you’re on Candy Island, hun!” You draw yourself up to your full height and lay a hand on your chest. “My name is Tahiti—” Wait. No it’s not. “T-Tah...” Your smile strains as a confused look creases your brow. Something’s wrong. “That’s not my, I’m not...Tahiiitiii...” Your eyes roll up. Your lips move as if trying to form words. And the—


“I’m Tahiti Splash!” you squeal. Your eyes light up and your smile snaps back full-force. “But you can call me Tahiti. It’s so sugar to have someone new here! Oh my gloosh, you’re so small though... But don’t worry hun, I’ll have you back in big, round, squishy shape in no time!” You give your belly a little boing for emphasis. You can’t help gushing, you’re excited to have a new friend.

The human only looks more concerned now. You have no idea why, but then you don’t even remember fighting with yourself over your own name. As far as you’re concerned, you’ve been Tahiti Splash since the day you hatched.

The human starts to back away slowly and says, “Um, thanks, but...I just need to find a way back to my apartment.”

“Who needs an apartment when you can sleep out on the beach? Ooh and we can make s’mores and roast marshmallows and talk about our favorite kinds of candy—mmh, we’re gonna have so much fun together!”

You’re so excited for sleepovers with your new best friend that you snatch them by the shoulders before they can scramble away trap them in a massive bear hug. As you squash their entire body against the front of your big round belly, a warm shudder runs from your frills all the way down to the tip of your tail, and a dizzy moan slips out between your lips. “Oo-ooohh...”

The human squirms and lets out a bout of muffled noises, but all that wiggling only makes that tight squish feel even That’s the only word you know to describe it. It’s so fun that your tongue flops out of your mouth and your eyes go a little crossed and your cheeks turn pinkish. With a thrust of your hips, you slosh your belly against them. A rush of warm, sticky, gooey fun shoots straight to your head. The next thing you know they’re sprawled on the sand underneath you, while you’re straddling them on your knees and pinning them down with the sheer size of your stomach.

“Wh-what are you doing!?” the human gasps.

“Rubbing bellies!” you say. “It’s how...candy dragons...have fun together!” Each time you pause, you heave your belly down against their body with a heavy, swaying wobble. You tip your head back and sink your toe-claws into the sand. Your tail quivers with each big push. Clutching the top of your belly, you squeeze down with both hands, trying to exert more pressure against your tender scales.

It’s not long before their belly is bulging too. It blossoms out against you, pushing aside those silly human clothes and stretching their skin taut. Their cheeks are a bright, tasty purple-pink and they’re making all sorts of cute squeaks and groans.

Each heavy, jiggling thrust grinds your stomach against theirs, and while yours is the clear winner, you can feel the pressure starting to push back against you as they bloat up bigger and bigger. They even start rocking back against you, arching their back, pressing their sprouting scales against your own, and only adding to the intense fun both of you are feeling. As you sway back and forth against one another, you can feel the snap of their shirt bursting apart, freeing their ballooning candy chest as well.

They should be delighted to be growing all big and round and cute, but instead they look surprised, almost upset as their pink-scaled breasts surge out too big and round for their hands to hold back. That won’t do at all!

“You need to relax,” you coo, looming down over them. You stretch your neck lower and lower, slurp your tongue out to wet your lips, and then squash them against the human’s entire face. Your tongue slithers around the back of their neck as your thick pink drool drizzles down their cheeks. You tug and pull and with a wet slorp you suck their whole head into your mouth up to their shoulders. You wiggle and squirm with fun while your tongue slathers across their face and slips down into their throat.

You pull your head back. Their neck stretches like taffy. A pair of curly horns and long, pointed ears slork free from your lips. You tug again, and a pair of wide, slit-pupiled eyes pop out. With one last yank, out comes the big round dragon snout. Your head bobs up and your tongue reels back into your mouth, while they fall back dazed against the sand. Pink scales stretch along their underbelly all the way up to their chin, while the rest of them is rich juicy purple

You clutch your cheeks and gasp, “Ohh my ker-splooosh! You’re such a cute candy dragon! Is that passion fruit and guava? Mmh, we just have to taste each other some—ohhh!”

You’re pushed back as the human’s belly rises upward and outward. Their tapered tail shoots out from underneath you, then lands with a thump in the sand next to your own. Their body is close to rivaling yours in size, and while you can’t squash them into the sand any more, there’s so much more surface area for you to mash together as hard as you can. You let out a squeal of pure fun and lean down against them as their tail twists itself tightly around your own.

They gasp out, “I’m...not a...c-candy...” Their voice sounds so much sweeter! A quick thrust of your hips squeezes the words right out of their throat with a moan instead. “I’m n-nnh...” they try to say. Their eyes flutter back in their sockets, rolling with bright colors.

All this rubbing has you so warm and sticky you think you might melt! Your dangling tongue slaps against your chin and your face is locked in a cross-eyed expression of silly delight. Rubbing bellies is so much fun you’re fit to pop. You can’t keep going much longer but you can’t stop either. You’re so close! All that fun is building and building and bubbling up and spilling over and—


You topple back onto your butt. Mangos and pineapples spin woozily above your head. Thick webs of candy syrup cling between your belly and the new dragon’s, a mixture of guava-pink and pineapple-yellow oozing down your scales. Your new best friend is spread out on the sand, eyes glazed, jaw slack, and drooling.

Shaking off your cartoon dizziness, you drag yourself back up onto your feet, then scoop up the purple-pink dragon’s hand in your own and haul with all your might. You manage to swing her back up onto her feet, then catch her head before it slumps over. Her eyes have spun so far back in their sockets that they’re completely white. Her silly stupefied expression is so cute that if you weren’t so eager to get to know your new friend, you’d let her stay like that till she woke up on her own.

You squeeze her cheeks and jiggle her head from side to side. “Rise and shine, hun!”

Her pupils slide back into view: bright pink slits, surrounded by rings of purple and green. She gulps her tongue back into her mouth and blinks several times, letting out a tipsy groan.

You yank her head up so she’s snout-to-snout with you, looking straight into your wide eyes. “You never told me your name, silly!” you say, “How are we supposed to be biggest best dragon friends if I don’t even know your name? Let’s start over. I’m Tahiti Splash, and you are...”

The new candy dragon gazes into your eyes as she tries to think. You can tell how confused she is, but you try to look as bright and confident and cheerful as you can. She just needs a little help remembering who she is, that’s all!

“I’m...” she starts, then trails off. She closes her eyes and shakes her head. “I-I’m Buh—I’m Baaah...” Yes, she’s doing it! A goofy grin curls across her snout. “I’m—hee hee!” You give her cheeks an encouraging squish. Finally her eyes snap open wide, her little winglets flap up behind her shoulders, and she says, “I’m Bahama Breeze!”

You squeal and pull her in for a tight hug, tossing your arms around her shoulders. She hugs you back, and you squash up against one another cheek-to-cheek in the tight embrace.

“That is such a sugar name!” you tell her as you let go.

Bahama giggles and blushes. “Oh my glosh, yours is so cute too, Tahiti!”

You give your best friend a sly look and bump your hips against her stomach, getting a tender moan out of her. “Your name’s gonna be Bahama Mama after all that belly-rubbing!”

“Hee hee, what else are friends for?” She rubs her claws up and down her puffy pink scales. “Ooh, I think I’m swelling up already. Hey, we should get a nest so we have somewhere to lay our eggs!”

Your fins perk up. “I have a hammock!” you say, then take one of her hands in your own and start leading the way down the beach. Neither of you are in any rush though, so you amble along, bouncing alongside one another. You wade through waves as they lap at your toes, while Bahama walks a little further up on the dry sand.

“So you can fly?” you ask. “I bet you could find all the best pools and streams and waterfalls to swim in...”

“Oh, for sure! And I bet you know all the best sunny sand bars to stretch out on.” Bahama’s face lights up. “Ooh, and are there secret coves here? With buried treasure to find?”

You roll your eyes at her. “Of course there are! What kinda Candy Island do you think this? Oh— and here we are!”

The two of you come to a stop in front of your hammock, strung up between the two little candy palms. While you call the whole island home, there’s something about this stretch of beach, this reef, this patch of jungle, that feels more home than anywhere else. Probably because you spend so much time here!

“Aw, it’s perfect!” Bahama says. Then she wrinkles her snout and lets out a big, drooly yawn. “All that belly-rubbing tired me out though...think we can wait to go exploring tomorrow?”

Mmh, sounds great! We can do all the egg-laying in the morning and go on an adventure in the afternoon. After a big lunch, of course!” You giggle as you scoop up one of the lime coconuts from earlier, then hop up and tumble over into the hammock. Once you’re in, you scoot over to the side so Bahama can climb in with you.

With a flutter of her wings, the purple dragon picks herself up off the beach and plops down into the hammock next to you, making the palm trees sag even more under your combined weight.

Cheek to cheek and belly to belly, you snuggle up against Bahama, then bite open the coconut and fish out a pair of straws and paper umbrellas. Together you polish off the lime punch, then share a kiss that leaves the taste of passion fruit-guava lingering on your tongue, and sour mango-pineapple on hers.

The last purple light of sunset slips below the sea, leaving just the light of the creme-flavored crescent moon to wash over Candy Island as you both drift off to sleep, nestled up against one another’s soft, warm scales.