I sat in the cold cell memorizing each color, every contour of the room. It wasn’t large, just a stone floor with four walls covered in cracked scarlet-red paint. The bed was small, just enough to fit me. There was no sheet, just a thin blanket covering the pale mattress. The only window in the room was high up, the bars so thick that only a thin streak of light could get in through the gaps. It was when I was admiring the rotten wood door that it had opened. In stepped a thirty-year-old-looking wearing a uniform of all black. He stood tall, with ash blonde hair that contrasted with the darkness of the room and a strict looking crease between his brows. I looked up at him sourly. I had hoped this moment wouldn’t come. I hoped someone would bail me out but I guess there wasn’t anyone left. There was no Grace, nor Andy or even Ed. They were gone and it was all my fault.

The man gestured for me to stand up. I complied and he handcuffed me, earning no resistance from me at all. I walked towards the door while the cold metal of the handcuffs dug into my wrists. I was led down a corridor full of similar doors leading to cells containing people like me. People forced to kill, people with no one left to care for.

I entered the courtyard and the sun immediately blinded me with its dazzling light. Slowly I made my way to the platform where I would stand while my fate was settled. Should I escape or stay? This was the question that had been running through my mind all week. I kept my face expressionless, not showing my thoughts and my false sense of hope. With a bit of luck I’ll live and I’ll be forgiven, but so far it’s looking unlikely. The courtyard contained a huge crowd and the sun was rising and shining out its yellow light, illuminating anything in its path. The sky was stunning, showing off many shades of blue, orange and pink without a cloud in sight. Truly, it was a spectacular view to see before dying.

Words were said and exchanged but I wasn’t listening, just trying to admire the world one last time. A bag was pulled over my head and I sighed. The noose was tightened around my neck, the rope was already suffocating me. I had to focus now, to make sure I could get out what I wanted. Then, just before they pulled the lever that dropped the platform, just before my fate was sealed, I managed to choke out the words. The best words I had ever said, the most life-changing words these people would ever hear. There was a stunned silence once I spoke and I was certain no-one was moving. Just as the shouting started and people tried to reach me, the leaver was pulled and the platform dropped. I took my last breath.

FOLLOW US was established in 1997, and since then we have successfully completed numerous short story and poetry competitions and publications.
We receive an overwhelming positive feedback each year from the teachers, parents and students who have involvement in these competitions and publications, and we will continue to strive to attain this level of excellence with each competition we hold.


Stay informed about the latest competitions, competition winners and latest news!