The way she remembers it can’t be the way it happened, but it’s the way it creeps into her dreams, soundless and in filtered blue-green light. She floats, anchored by one silver anklet her mother brought back from India before she was born, wafting back and forth in a tiny slice of the bay, hair spread through the silty water. Her skirt breathes with the current, ballooning then clinging again as though she’s encased in a swimming jellyfish.
She remembers being calm. Broken planks dancing lazily around her, paint flaking and swirling like red algae around her head. She feels like she could spend eternity here. The finely worked elephant loses his grasp on the sand and her ankle springs free, silver charms shimmering silently. Her jellyfish skirt propels her gracefully upwards until her head breaks the surface, breaks the spell. Hair plastered over her face and neck, she flails.
JY Saville writes various lengths and genres in northern England, and in 2017 made it onto the first stage of Penguin Random House WriteNow, for writers from under-represented backgrounds. Her short fiction has been published in more than forty places including Untitled:Voices and Confingo. She tweets @JYSaville