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the bite of the aggressive southerly. It nipped at his

protruding ears and neck, unperturbed by any attempt to cover his

face with his beanie. A lone seagull wafted unwillingly towards the

jetty, the arc of its wings folded inwards as it battled feebly against the

unrelenting wind. The weather was formidable – Redburn’s inviting

blue coast unrecognizable. Most had retreated from the jetty, the

triumph of a catch not worth enduring the cold. Only Jake Camper

and Jimmy Whett remained. Their fathers had gone for a drink. The

scrawny kid was whimpering, hugging himself so tightly he might as

well heve been in a strait jacket.

Jake rolled his eyes. Stupid girl, he thought, what a wuss. Bored,

he started breathing heavily out through his mouth, watching the fog

that escaped mingle with the wind before disappearing completely.

A sudden cuff of wind nearly knocked him off his feet and he ran to

catch the upturned bucket before it fell into the depths of the

ferocious waves below. When he looked up he was alone. Jerking his

head around, he searched frantically for the red jacket that seemed

to consume Jimmy Whett’s lean body.

‘Jimmy!’ he shouted, peering desperately at the bleak horizon.

The wind hollered back at him. ‘Jimmy, where the hell are you, this

isn’t funny! Jimmy!’ He stared down at the inky water. His stomach

churned. A splash of red flashed in his peripheral vision and there

was Jimmy waving his hands as his pale face bobbed between the

rough waves. Jake didn’t jump. He turned up towards the jetty,

frantically searching for the men. But he was one insignificant,

solitary figure standing at the end of the jetty, one step away from the

infinite ocean.

The wind shifted.

The red jacket drifted further and further away. He stared at his

worn out sneakers and willed them forward, but it was as if his body

was frozen from the inside. He couldn’t. Suddenly, he was spluttering

violently – he had forgotten to breathe.


. Had he jumped? He

felt dry, faint. Numb. His father’s windbreaker sliced through the

water, closing in on Jimmy’s thrashing arms.





. Miss Healy turned up her lips, winked at him. He

avoided his teacher’s gaze and disturbed the moaning herd of

students as he sidled his way through the blocked corridor.

‘Mate, we’re going down to the jetty, you coming?’ Ryan wiped his

Jetty View

Lauren Yip