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The Water

Extract from a novel

By E MPublished 2 years ago 4 min read
The Water
Photo by Sean Oulashin on Unsplash

The door of the interview room closed loudly and suddenly it was just Detective Baines and I. I watched him as he walked over to the metal table and took his seat across from me. He smiled genuinely and I knew he was trying to make me feel comfortable.

"Alright Mara, that's my team gone now, just like you wanted. It's just you and me. Would you like to continue?". He had a nice voice, warm and interesting but as it bounced off the metal and concrete of the room it hardened a little by the time it reached my ears. I surveyed his face as I silently weighed up if I should continue the interview or not. I wanted to tell him everything so I could go home but on the other hand if I told him, there was a chance he would send me to the looney bin. I breathed out deeply and sat forward in my chair, leaning my elbows on the cold table top.

"I don't really feel comfortable speaking about this, I've told you everything anyway. I didn't run away, I wasn't depressed or delusional, I wasn't on drugs or alcohol, I just woke up there. I'm not crazy", I said as I looked directly into his eyes. I could see he understood and he nodded his head and let me finish.

"I know, I know. It's alright. I believe you, but your mother reported you as a missing person. You've been gone 6 days and you suddenly reappear thinking you've been gone 6 years? Something doesn't add up Mara and it's my job as the head of the missing persons unit to figure it all out".

"Yes, but I'm not a missing person anymore. I'm here, right in front of you".

"Mara please. Let's just go over it one more time. I've done what you asked, I've sent my team home so we could chat together. Just start at the beginning, I'll make my notes and we'll go from there. I'm not here to judge, I just want to help you so you can go home to your mother and get back to living your life". I decided I could talk to him. Don't ask me why. Maybe it was his face, or that he was young like me or maybe it was just that I subconsciously trusted him. I cleared my throat and got comfortable, he picked up his pen and notepad as I got ready to talk.

"I went to bed like normal last Sunday night and when I woke up on Monday morning I wasn't in my bed. I didn't realise it at first, you know when your a bit groggy in that inbetween stage of sleeping and waking. The first thing I noticed was the warmish breeze on my face. Fresh air scented like mimosa and coconuts entering my nose and flushing through my lungs. I thought maybe I had left my window open all night but it was too unusual. The next thing was the sun. My eyes were closed tight but it was so bright I could see orange and yellow through my eyelids. As I was lying there and my brain became more awake I was suddenly aware of the sand around my ankles and between my fingers and toes, the sound of water lapping at the shore. I was at the beach I thought as I sat bolt upright and opened my eyes for the first time".

"Where you scared? What were your first thoughts? Did you have any recollection of how you got there?"

"No. I wasn't scared. The first thought I had was that it was so beautiful. It felt normal and natural for me to be there. I looked to my left were the sun was quite high in the sky. I could see outlines of palm trees and little huts and the beach curve around in the distance but it was hard to see that way as it was so bright. I looked to the right and could see the sandy beach go on for about 2 kilometers before it curved around following the waterline. I could see people too, like me. Lying or sitting on the sand waking up. About 10 meters from me was a black guy about 35. We looked at each other but there was no recognition. I didn't know him and he didn't know me. We were both calm and peaceful and we held each other's gaze as we stood up in unison, brushed off the sand from the back of our legs and walked towards the water. He said "Hi" as we got closer to each other and I said it back then moved beyond him to the waters edge. I was drawn to it and felt it was somehow important. I let my toes curl in the sand and watched as the warm water lapped around my feet, covering them whole to the ankle, then pulled away again leaving sand and a white shell in its place. I knew it from that moment. It was all about the water. That's why we were there".


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