By Sophie Palmer, Year 7, Linton Village College

“We’re going to die. We’re going to die. Oh, my god, help us!” Emily shrieked, grabbing onto me like I was her life ring.

“Breathe, while you still can.”
“Oh, my god! Oh, my god!”

The water was creeping upwards to our ankles; slowly approaching, like a tiger ready to pounce on its prey. It was ice-cold, and it hit my skin like knives.
I crawled over to Emily, so we could share body heat. She gasped at the warmth — or was it out of realisation that my wound had grown? My blood was rippling through the water, like a trail of red, staining our wet clothes.

Would this be my last day? My last minute? With Emily, in a cold, dark, small space? My last breath as I drown? I closed my eyes. It was comforting, like a cape of darkness taking me away to a space where there’s no hurt, yet no colours, but no fear, no hate. It almost took me away. Then I opened my eyes. The water was up to our necks.

My head exploded with my screams as the freezing temperature kicked in. Every inch of my body was on fire. Emily was screaming, or shouting. It became more clear every second. These moments were probably my last, I couldn’t help thinking.

“I thought you were dead. Oh, my god, don’t do that again! Talk to me! Oh, my god, talk to me!”

I wasn’t dead… Or had I been? No, I’m already dead. I’m a dead person standing.

“I’m here…I’m here,” I whispered shakily. My body was numb from the cold, and I felt like a block of ice floating on the waters of Antarctica. The water was rising — fast. We both pulled back our heads to breathe the remaining oxygen.

I could already imagine my lifeless body, like a mannequin, drifting in the water. My eyes motionless, my expression the last I had: gasping for air. The feeling of just wanting more air — gulping in water and just wishing you could breathe. It was enough to make me sick. Make me scared. I was about to realise it. My worst fear. Drowning…drowning to death.

“Listen. I have — I have a vision!” Emily gasped, looking like she’d just discovered what happens when you die. I nodded, showing her to carry on. She’d been having visions for the past few months, and they always were right. Not like we needed it anyway. We both knew what was going to happen next.

But her expression shifted. She frowned, but then it clicked. She stood motionless in fear.

“Emily. Emily, what is it? EMILY?”

She struggled for words, tongue twisting in her mouth. Then she looked at me, with the strangest expression. The water was past our ears now, but I could still see it in the corner of my eyes. She smiled.

Emily closed her eyes and whispered into my ear, her breath tickling my ear softly.

“He’s here.”