- Vol. 04
- Chapter 12
The Water’s Call
It starts with water, tepid and foam-free, bouncing off her skin in the shower; small tears fracturing as they collide with porcelain, exploding on impact.
She drinks only water, pure and transparent, encased in glass. She does not trust herself to add anything to it, not even a slice of lemon; something which packs a hidden punch, something which would get to the heart of the matter.
Water is everywhere and accompanies her to sleep, surfacing in her dreams in the form of huge waves crashing on to the shore, wiping everything from sight. A clean sweep. Blink and you’ll miss it. The horizon now spotless and resembling a single tidemark.
Sometimes she dreams of giant taps, water running, continually flowing, seeping into hidden cracks, bloating and swelling anything in its path. She likes the unpredictability water brings; how, despite it being most definitely a liquid, can be frozen into a solid, and if left exposed to the air, can evaporate into nothing. The idea of freedom – unbound to anything – flows through her veins, quenching her thirst and increasing her desire for adventure.
In the bath, late at night, she immerses herself completely, pinching her nose and closing her eyes before taking the plunge, entering a water realm; a world that is constantly moving. Here, she forgets the woes of daily life, the struggle to wake up in the morning with a smile she does not feel is plastered across her face. She thinks that if she stays here long enough she might just pass beyond consciousness and enter a more forgiving place.
The Water’s Call
But her throat begins to burn, a monumental pressure yearning to burst from her lungs, and, powerless, she surfaces sending pools of water on to the bathroom floor. She breathes, and for the first time, it is painful, her heart thumping wildly while she fights off a cascade of dots spotting her vision.
Her dreams become wilder, the water’s call harder to ignore. It beckons with foam-tipped fingers, a seaweed mouth and clams for eyes.
She wakes up, her heartbeat suddenly racing but her head isn’t damp. Wiping a hand across her brow, it comes away completely dry.
The air is much cooler here with the wind buffeting her skin like a murder of crows, teasing her hair into a splayed midnight starfish. She will lie here until the cold seeps deep into her bones, ice replacing marrow, hardening all the while. She will lie here until she can feel no more, and she will watch with a heart full of joy and a head as clear as a summer sky as the verdigris tide advances, inch by inch, claiming a body which yearns only for the water’s touch.