The bay window acted like a one way mirror in the dark. From the outside you could see us sitting, hunched around the television drinking lager for what seemed like an eternity that night. From the inside we saw blurred versions of ourselves, our outlines shimmering against the imperfections in the glass. Outside was pitch black, storm advancing, waves crashing against our garden boundary wall. A flickering light in the distance. Inside, we were warm, entertained and pleasantly bladdered.
I hadn’t looked at my watch all night, that’s how much fun I was having. My mates screwed about, killing each other effortlessly on the television. I’d taken a break to down another shot. My arse was well and truly settled into the flea ridden settee. My eyelids started to close slowly, an impetuous poke in the ribs later and I was back in the room.
The jolt disgruntled my settled state and I decided to get up and open the bay window, which could creak far enough to let you out if you bent low enough. The whoosh of sea gale proved only a short lived annoyance for my friends, who were just about to reach the zenith of their killing spree. I climbed out, clicked the window back into place and waited for the darkness to freeze over me.
My face felt paler, but as twenty units circulated round my blood stream I felt a strange barrier of invincibility. I could sense rain on my nose, bitter cold on my finger tips, but my whole, my whole felt impenetrable and superhuman.
I also felt drawn to the ocean. This was no primeval urge, no ancient siren singing sweet serenades to bring me to my doom. No, this was the alcohol talking. Walk over there. Have a look. There is no big wave coming.
I trudged across wet mulch and swampy lawn until I reached our wall. Spray lashed and looped over the top brick, I shielded my eyes intermittently. I saw the light again flickering out in the ocean. Some poor bastard was out there in this storm.
Hauling myself up I sat precariously on the wall. I looked down. I imagined drowning down there, amongst the rocks and waves, crashing violently with percussion and chaotic rhythm. You would fall, body mangled first, or perhaps an undercurrent would drag you down before you felt your legs break. What would that last gasp as you fell feel like? I found myself singing, alone.
Another light, this time higher up in the abyssal sky appeared. It went in and out of focus, as it swiftly moved between low black clouds. Perhaps this was a rescue? Was some heroic act being forged right now, just a few miles away?
I slipped slightly and scrambled back over the wall to the safety of my garden. My feet were sodden, my clothes covered in mud and my hair dripping in sea foam. I must have sat out here for an hour. My friends hadn’t even noticed. I could see them in the one way mirror still shooting each other up, laughing, joking, glorifying. I could have drowned.
—From cake.shortandsweet Wednesday challenge… I met the deadline by 5 minutes… go me.