Daisy Kate

Isy's father goes missing. Everybody thinks he drowned, but she's sure that it's not true. She is determined to find the truth about where he is - whether he's alive or not.

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2. News

Meep. Meep. Meep. Meep.

Isy gave a tired half-moan and thumped her floppy arm down on her alarm, cutting it off. She slowly sat up and swung her heavy legs off the bed. As usual, she had to clutch on to her wooden bedside table to steady herself. Sighing, she stumbled towards the door.

Out of her room, the brightness of the lights made her blink. Getting up was the worst part of the day. As she stomped clumsily down the stairs, she could hear her mother talking to somebody in the kitchen. The voice was unfamiliar. It was odd that someone had visited this early in the morning; the clock in the hallway said half past six. Isy wondered who it was that needed to speak to her mum at this time. Curious, she walked in, deciding that now would be a very good time to get her breakfast.

Sitting at the table was a man. He was quite tall, with hair cropped short, giving him an almost military harshness. He was quite muscly and his expression was stern. There was something about him that made it clear he meant business. Isy thought that she would never want to get on the wrong side of him. She looked at her mother, who was leaning against the kitchen counter.

"What's going on?" She glanced between her mum and the man, her expression asking for an explanation.

"I'm PC Newman. I'm here to talk to your mother. Would it be possible for you to come back later?" the man said in a way that sounded final. Isy stiffened. It was quite rude to tell her to leave her own kitchen.

"If you don't mind, officer, I would like her to stay. She needs to know." Her mum gestured for Isy to stand next to her and, when she did so, hugged her close. "It's her father."

"I'm not sure that would be appropriate..." the man started to protest.

"She's ten years old. And anyway, I think it's important for her to hear this."

"As you wish." The officer said grudgingly. "The boat, the Daisy Kate, went down just outside the harbour. The witnesses say that it seemed to be racing away from something, but there was no visible danger. It sank straight down, no rocking or malfunctions that could be seen. Our team guesses that an underwater current pulled it under. Whatever happened, all the members of the crew were lost. Your father is not coming back."

Isy stared at the man. It didn't make sense. Of course her father was coming home. He'd promised her he would, like he did every time he went out on the boat. He always made it back, even if there was a storm. Did this stranger really think that he'd ... It was stupid. Her father had to be OK.

"Mum, tell me it's not true!"

"Isy, that would be lying. But don't worry. It will be alright."

"WHAT?! I don't care what that guy says. Dad will come home!" She ran back up to her room and flung herself on to her bed.

 

Isy's mum didn't make her go to school that day, or the day after. Isy wouldn't leave her room very often. She only went out to go to the loo or get a drink. All her meals were brought up to her on trays, because she refused to go downstairs to eat. The rest of the world wouldn't understand that her dad was alive. Even her best friend, who she'd rang as soon as the officer left, thought that Isy was making it up. No-one else could feel him out there, somewhere, his heart still beating. She was the only person who knew.

In her time alone, she sat on her bed, trying to make sense of what PC Newman had said. The reports of the witnesses didn't connect at all with what Isy knew about her father. He never rushed the boat in, he thought the speed would bust her.

"My girl, she's an old timer. She could be your grandmother, Isy. If you push her too hard, she might just give out. She won't be hurried, will my boat."

There must have been something very odd going on. It intrigued her, the mystery surrounding her father's... disappearance. Isy wouldn't let herself even think the word 'death', because she was certain that that wasn't what had happened.

"I'm not going to learn much just sitting around up here." she announced frustratedly. Pushing herself off the bed, she flung open her door and, finally, descended the stairs.

As she put on her coat, her mother stuck her head around the living room door.

"Nice to see you downstairs again." Her tone didn't hide the surprise that was plainly written across her face. "Are you going somewhere?"

"I just wanted to have a wander. My legs are aching a bit." Isy told her, as she started to pull on her black Doc Martens.

"Don't be too long."

"I'll be back in about half an hour." She reassured her mum, before heading out.

Aimlessly walking, Isy listened to the sounds of the seagulls that circled high above her head. The light breeze on her face felt good, cool and refreshing. She came out on to the seafront, and leaned against one of the peeling railings. Splashes and crashes broke the quiet as the choppy water beat at the pebbled beach.

"My dad," she whispered to herself, gazing out at the ocean,"is there somewhere."

Standing up sharply, Isy turned away and began to almost run back into the town. Her hair was whipped back behind her and her fringe was flapping in her face, but she didn't notice. I will find him.

The finality of her vow ringing right through her head, she stepped into the police station.

"Can I help you?" The person at the desk smiled at her.

"Is PC Newman here?" Isy asked.

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