Aoife Marzol, Grade 8, St Catherine's Catholic College -
Finalist in the 'Just Keep Writing 2019' competition
I was standing on the edge of a cliff, inches from fate. If it were life or death, I wasn't sure. But whatever it was, I had to accept it. I peered over my shoulder at my loved ones, gathered behind me, offering reassuring smiles and words of encouragement, they all had tears streaming down their cheeks, falling through the crisp winter air. I watched as their tears become part of the ground as the droplets were absorbed by the dark soil at their feet. I quickly tore my eyes away. I didn’t want to cry. This could be the best or last day of my life. In this cruel world only half the population can fly, to soar across the endless blue sky without a care for the landscape, cursed to rest motionless below. But the only way to learn which percentage you are in, is to jump from a height that will surely kill you. Most of my family and friends chose not too for the sake of their lives. But I had always wanted to know, I had always wanted to fly.
I focused my gaze on the edge and got lost in the swirls of the hypnotic black void below, waves crashed against the jagged rocks, foaming and frothing like a rabid dog, and the longer I stared the closer the waves seemed, and I realised I was gradually leaning forward. But I wasn’t quite ready, I hadn’t finished saying goodbye.
I once again turned to my family; my mother and father looked hopeful. Tears pleaded to be set free as I glanced to my girlfriend. She was sobbing. Her shoulders shaking, begging to make me stay.
Begging me to save myself.
But I couldn't live not knowing. I gave them all hugs and tried to reassure them that I would be back. They told me it was ok. That we should just drive home, I ignored them and walked to the edge. Allowing a small tear to fall.
And with one last salted breath, I was ready.
I stood with my back towards the horizon, I wanted to see my family, One last time.
I stretched my arms out wide and let the southerly winds push me over the edge.
My family cried out, rushing over to the edge, they peered down into the deadly abyss I was falling through, I smiled. Shutting my eyes, I envisioned myself rocketing back into the sky, my family spilling tears of joy. Smiling in sheer delight and happiness. I Focused on the vision. I felt myself spinning mid fall and I no longer knew what direction the sky was. I wasn’t flying. No matter how much I begged. Fly! I screamed internally. FLY! And I thought I felt the gushing winds stop, I thought I heard my family cheering, I thought I heard the ocean getting further and further away. So, I opened my eyes, and there they were. The hungry, foaming waves and the jagged, deadly rocks.