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Intermediate. Years 7/8/9

Two Down

By Dominic Coyde, year 9, Elizabeth College

“Get away from me you bastard!”
James McMann had never in his nine years of life heard his older sister insult him in such a vile way ever before. He could only deduce in his relatively small mind that he had been sworn at - his father had used the b-word before in a fit of rage (which were common these days after the war) and had been told not to curse again in front of the children.
The young lad subsequently retired to the cow shed, where he always found comfort with his only friends in life. As a farm boy, he seldom caught a glimpse of the outside world and, despite his protests, continued to be home-schooled in the main farmhouse.
Yet, more boundaries had been enforced on his life after that dreaded day, only 3 years ago, where he experienced an accidental reduction of two of his phalanges on his right hand. This made him ‘special’ – according to his parents – but James knew that tasks he had always wanted to learn, such as milking cows, would prove to be impossible.
He also loved to visit the cliffs, and in a few minutes he found himself walking along the great structures of the shores of Guernsey, towering high above the crashing waves. This was the only chance for this innocent, selfless young lad to feel truly free. He would cry out to the waves in triumph knowing he had sheer superiority over them, saying:
“I may be two fingers down, but I’m one level up on you”
However, today, it felt different. A thick blanket of Guernsey mist was beginning to envelop itself around him. James began to feel lost, calling out in vain “Is anyone there?”
The cliff jerked below.
The churning sea now wanted superiority.

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