1. Prologue


It was coursing through my veins, infiltrating my mind - but it was also the only thing that was keeping me running. My legs were aching, sore from only minutes of desperate sprinting through the woods. They ached for me to stop, ached for me to rest...but I couldn't. I was almost certain they knew I had escaped by now.

Suddenly, a splash of moisture hit my face. My pace slowed to a halt. The droplet carved its way down my fiery cheek, which was scarlet from running. It felt like ice, but as soon as it leaked onto my tongue I could taste salt. It was a sensation so strong I might've been back home, at Hugh's chip shop on the pier, but I wasn't - my eyes opened to take in where my legs had carried me.

No longer was the floor a twiggy woodland, but my feet were on colossal, slimy boulders. The waves of the ocean were vast, and pounded against the rocks repeatedly, beckoning me closer. The rage from all my time spent locked up in that room rose through my body, and spilled out in the form of a scream. I yelled and shouted and howled until I had no breath left in my lung to give. A sore emptiness was left in its place.

I clamped my hand over my mouth. What had I done? They could have heard me. Only seconds later I saw the inky mist appear from the forests behind me, they were close...too close. My naked feet felt suddenly very numb. I looked down at them, caked in blood and dirt - they were disgusting. They represented my suffering and I wanted them clean, now. My eyes met the void of ocean in front of me, I knew what I must do.

Turning around I could see bodies appearing, twisting through the mist, gliding over the boulders towards me. With my heart hammering in my ribs like a caged animal, I flung myself off the boulders with all the force I could summon. The blue waves enveloped me, limbs stretched out beside me. Tiny bubbles escaped my nose as I saw my feet, they were clean. A warm, comforting sensation washed through me as I sank deeper and deeper into the blue black water. It was like a dream, just like falling asleep.

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