she always been scared of the sea, but will one event change her mind?


1. reflection

The sea has always scared me. Not helped by dad's job of killing creatures in it. I hate that he brought me up to wish death upon them, so that I wouldn't try and stop him from making a living.

It had been a beautiful day, with children happily building sandcastles and women balanced perfectly on pink plastic lilos. But I'd found it difficult to enjoy myself, isolated on a blanket away from them, they had barely noticed me, until now.

"Come on Jas, it's getting dark now and your missing out on all the fun!" my mum called.

"I’m fine mum," I said, wishing they'd carry on 'all the fun!'

"Jasmine! Stop sulking and listen to your mother, you shouldn't sketch all day." My dad looked like he meant business, and even though I didn't see any problems from sketching all day, I shuffled over to them.

"Please try and look like you have had a nice time?" Poor mum, I tried a smile, which obviously wasn't convincing. "Why don't you go for a little walk? I'm going to pack up the car and dad will get you when we're leaving." Seeing as the smile hadn't turned out well, I agreed on the walk for mum's sake.

I trudged along the endless shore, the scummy brown bubbles washing over my flip-flops. There was a disturbing smell of death that became stronger as I walked, but my thoughts were elsewhere. I would be less of a selfish cow in the future. The scent of death was unmissable now and I clicked into reality .I froze at the sight in front of me.

The shiny scales and yellowed teeth reminded me of the endless gallery of my dad’s ‘victory pictures’ and stories he told me of terrifying jaws. Yet its eyes were the thing that scared me most. Two black holes that swallowed up all colour, their darkness symbolised gloom, but why wasn’t I scared? Was there fear hidden in there? Was that why humans’ eyes had colour? So many questions I couldn’t answer.

Dad and I never talked about sharks, but I scanned my brain for any information that could help me. I climbed onto the rocks above it; they were razor sharp so instead of kneeling, I peered over. I examined the creature for any cuts or wounds, unsure what I was expecting to find. I fell onto the sand. I wasn’t in pain, but blood saturated my top, blood that I knew wasn’t mine. I looked over my shoulder and saw the shark alarmingly inches away from my face. Instinctively, I screamed.

I looked at the shark for a while, there was something odd its face. It didn't look as scary as it should have. I wondered whether it was just incapable of moving, but it looked as if it were asking for help; those eyes hypnotized me, in need of some revival. They reflected the world in a strange distortion of size and colour.

"Jas?" my dad shouted. I heard the confusion in his voice. Then a silence, "Jasmine!"

I wondered why he sounded so worried, then realised what he would see, "Dad, no! I’m fine, it’s not me-"

A body stood over us, its figure blocking the sun. The darkness in the sharks eye vanished, a mist clouded over the reflection. I dropped my face to the sand and wept.

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