It is cold outside. Your fingers visible from the holes at the end of your sleeves look as pale as bone. I grab your hand and give you a disapproving look you do not notice. Your golden hair looking grey in the night, softly falls across your eye. I stop walking abruptly and grip your arms tightly, which seems to startle you. It startles me, too, as you almost lose balance. I realise just how close we are to the edge of the channel. With your eyes still wide open, I quickly brush the hair out of your face. The night falls silent, and I forget to breathe.
Music blasting, the merging moans and groans of depraved individuals. Sitting in that tight booth, I can see the back of her teeth as she leans back laughing, growling like a lioness. She crosses and uncrosses her legs as they make their proposition known to us. I look back onto the dungeon floor, heaves of people pushing against the barricades. I now see a woman almost elbow deep inside a man; my vision blurs from the sour wine I have been drinking. My apprehension eases just in time for the dungeon monitor to usher us out of the booth like bats flying out of a cave. Enough talking, she says, time to play.
The wooden edge of the kneeler on this church pew is digging into the small crevasse on my knee. The white light coming through the one and only window not adorned with bright stained glass blinds me. It is only a tiny slit in the large wall high up at the front of the church, but light floods it as it crowns the crucifix statue of Jesus. Mother Mary is watching me. A thousand small metal hearts surround her, but their lack of symmetry sets off my OCD; I start picking at my palm with the nail of my ring finger.
Clawing at the steaming water, I try and pull you out. As the waves surge upwards, I try and make out what is forcing you down. The intricate ropes wrapped around your neck and chest look like they are cutting into your skin, about to break your collarbone. It is as if something has gathered the other end of that rope and is dragging you away from me. The veins in your tensed neck look black, and your lips translucent as your eyes start to roll backwards. I am still pinned to the ground trying to rescue you, my arms going numb from the struggle, but the force on my body makes me feel as if I am falling, falling through nothingness.