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The Pond

by Lee Roby 11 months ago in Short Story
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1968 Christmas

The Pond

It was my time as captain and my work ethic and my time to shine. I walked to the center of the pond ready to do my best, but as I was about to skate I heard a snap. The snap happened three times as a sudden chill ran down my back. The ice creaked and in a moments notice I fell in. It hit me like a ton of bricks the icy cold water shot through me and I was cold as ice. What I did I had never done before. I had always checked the ice over and over again like my dad had taught me to do since I was little and here I was drowning in an icy pond. This time I was more than unlucky I was stupid I thought to myself. How could I not check the ice? How could I walk on thin ice? Why hadn't I listened to my father preach? How could I be this stupid?

The stupidity lacked substance while I was gobsmacked in a deep stupor while drowning in an icy pond. My stupor ran vivid as my body echoed deep spasms of icy tonnage surrounded by layers of cold; icy cold water. The layers of icy cold water surrounded my every movement and bellowed a deep cry of sobbing weeping tears of desperation glued stuck and forever clasped to its icy veneer as I flapped tirelessly in the icy cold water of that frozen pond I had known for years and now I was in the thick of it. The shock ran deeper and deeper now confused to what I was supposed to be doing. What was it again? Where had I gone wrong? And why was in this position. If time could only tell. The shock led me to panic and that led me to reality. And reality spoke. It spoke opened it's mouth and screamed to the top of its lungs. The reality was I hadn't thought or prepared myself for a situation like this. I panicked under the water; as the reality waned deep into my brain as I swallowed some of that icy water instead of holding my breath. I could feel it's icy veneer, and with it's ice cooled exterior it waned purple. Purple in a cloud of smoke.

My brain had a thought as the cold strangled the last surviving nerve into egregious anger and led me to drag my feet to the hell that I was living right then and now. My anger erupted into a sea of frothing nightmarish sounds of pounding archaic waling sounds. It pierced my ear drums as well as shot adrenaline into my system. The adrenaline shot through my legs like a thunderbolt and I untied the skates somehow from my feet. I had come to the conclusion that I was in hell right now. I was struck with a mighty blow.

This time it hurt and I could feel the pain coalesce my body as it consumed every inch of it to the top of my head and down to my feet. The pain was unbearable. This time I lacked strength and lacked motivation as well as something to calm my nerves as the feeling of pain suddenly shot through my nerves straight to my body and back to the point of no return.

The initial shock and numbness had disappeared and now I was at the point of death. The episode of drowning had just begun and I was soaking in it. I was drowning. I was barely alive. The pain had crept inside me and stayed their a fortnight not wanting to leave.

The icy cold water was inside me and all around me. It was swirling and swirling and coming ever so close as to halt my every movement. It was this time I was in it to the death. The thorny icy cold water had awoke and this time it was mad. It was mad at how I had become drunk with death and to the point of no return.

Was it going to kill me? It had knocked me on my proverbial ass and made me think about how I was never going to do this again. Why hadn't I listened to my father? If I did I wouldn't be in the situation I was in. The complete shining example of the dire situation I was now in. I had at last reasoned with my situation.

My situation was dire as it was real. I kicked as the adrenaline I had forgotten about started to remember where it was and it started to gain consciousness and suddenly awoke in a panic. The panic started at my feet and I kicked and kicked like a tornado gaining speed.

It had moved from my feet to my hands and I started treading water and kicking violently as I got my head above water. I could see again and I saw light at the end of the tunnel. I tried to find the edge of the ice where I fell in. I grabbed it pulled with all my might and got out. It was cold and I was frozen but I got off that frozen pond and Walden had witnessed a miracle.

I was lucky to be alive. I thanked God right there and then and told him I would be the best person I could ever be and I would listen to my father and do well in school, but I wasn't out of the clear yet. My situation was dire and my parents were nowhere to be found. My flint was back in the cabin, and I had no clothes to change into. I had no blankets, no fire, and here I was desperate and cold. Freezing cold chattering to death as my core temperature was going down.

Hypothermia was inevitable and death soon knocked at my door again and I felt like drowning again. Drowning in a sense of why had I forgot my flint and why couldn't I start a fire. I started screaming at the top of my lungs for my parents but there was no one. It was still a jaunt to the cabin and my body was shivering, my breathing was rapid, my blood vessels started to constrict.

Fatigue had set in as well as impaired judgment and lack of coordination. Fatigue had lessened my ability to think. What was it that I was supposed to do? I couldn't tell. The fatigue gripped my heart and started to shunt it. My heart rate started slowing down and my breathing started to fail.

My breathing slowed and time was passing as death was racing. I knew if my organs started shutting down it was over and I would be sitting there dead with no state championship. The nightmare was real and time was inevitable taking my life as I lay there slowly breathing. The cold was taking effect my judgment was that I didn't think I was too focused on the state championship and dreams of sugar plums in my head that I had totally forgot what to do. I had forgot my jacket which had my flint.

My jacket would have kept me warm. I had lost all thought. All I remember is waking up in the hospital. My parents later told me as best as they could that they removed my cold wet clothing replacing it with dry clothing, and taking me to the hospital.

There the doctors used active core rewarming they called it using intravenous fluids to irrigate body cavities. Then they used a heart-lung machine to keep me alive. No internal damage or brain damage; I was lucky and with it we won the state championship that year. I had totally recovered and played my best hockey. I'll never forget how I lapsed judgment, and learned a valuable lesson.

Short Story

About the author

Lee Roby

I published Trigonometry Simplified on Amazon. I like to write fiction as well as non-fiction. This is all a learning process for me and as I progress through this maze called life hopefully my passion and writing becomes greater.

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