THE TALKING STICK
Breathing was the hardest thing to do as she dragged her sodden body up onto shore. Sharp stones cut her hands as she clawed her way forwards. Her chest, screaming with raw pain as she sucked in every lungful of air, coughing, retching the sea water out. The force of it causing her small body to double over, then start the process once more, of trying to grab one more tiny lungful of air. Her heart pounding in her ears live, breath, live. As she knelt exhausted in the sand and foam, the screaming of her fellow passengers tormented her, the tearing apart as the boat exploded on rocks in the violent storm. Her mind spinning as she remembered the pale hands grabbing onto her, pulling, clinging, as her own body was pummelled deeply under Neptune’s deep roar drowning out any calls for help.
The dumping of her body onto a small stretch of stony beach was her salvation from a watery grave. Fingers of foam greedily stretched out to her, wanting to suck her back into the turmoil. Using every ounce of muscle she owned, she pulled herself away, looking for an anchor to hang onto. She heard another crawling up after her, retching sea water as she had done. She could not move, not yet, only her eyes took in the young man, the pain he was in, as he held his chest, blood dripped from a large open gash across his cheek, a pale cream bone poked through, his wet shirt tinged pink, mixing crimson blood with sea water.
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