The sand scratched at Sebastian's skin as he staggered onto the beach, drenched and delirious, but he cared not. "Oh, what wondrous place is this?" he cried out, soon brought to his knees.

"I know not, my lord." Antonio's natural seamanship served him in staying on his feet, albeit precariously. "But there can be no doubt that it is our last hope for salvation."

Sebastian regarded the towering palm trees and snow white sand with further wonder. "What manner of kings or gods must live here?"

"For now, we do," Antonio replied with a laugh, dipping down to haul his companion unsteadily to his feet. "Come, we must find shelter."

Sebastian grinned madly and entwined his arms around Antonio's neck. "What need have I for walls or roofs?" He brushed his lips over Antonio's ear before adding in a whisper, "You are all the shelter I need in this world, dear Antonio."

Antonio flushed and drew back, raising a hand to Sebastian's forehead. "You must be feverish, my lord, to say such things! We should get you out of this sun."

Sebastian stopped grinning and looked at Antonio with a graver countenance. "Forgive me. I am giddy in my relief, but I assure you...my troth is a true one. I should rather sleep a thousand nights under the stars wrapped in your arms, than in the finest feather bed in all the land."

Antonio regarded him carefully for several moments, before resting his forehead against Sebastian's. "I laughed when you asked what sort of gods resided here. Now I know that they must, for it is truly a place of miracles."

A whispered "Let us not risk their anger, then by squandering this one," falling from Sebastian's lips was the last thing either would say until the sun had long since fallen from the sky.