Cathleen Huang

Being freed like the fish

Exhausted at being consumed by her numbness and depression, she gave up. No more trying to escape reality by studying, by watching anime, by sleeping more than half the day away. It was time to face what she had been hiding from.
She sighed. My mother hates me, she thought. A pained, broken smile stretched across her face, and her eyes misted without her knowing it. She had suspected this for quite some time of course, and her friend Zadok had even once told her that he thought that her mother valued her money over her own daughter. Yet, there was a part of her, at that time, that had always hoped that her mother was actually doing this for her own good, that she didn't actually believe her daughter was as pitiful and worthless as her actions showed.
A couple days ago, however, her mother had proved otherwise. She had come home twenty minutes late, since finishing the T.V. episode at her friend's house proved to be longer than she had suspected. Her mother had accused her of watching porn with her friend, and had released all her inner, hidden thoughts about her offspring.
She was okay with her mother saying that she hated her and that she thought she was a complete was of money. But she crossed the line when she started insulting her friend and her friend's mother.
Ah, she knew her mother was vastly disappointed in her. Taking it out on someone else was too extreme, too painful, since her friend had introduced her to the world's wonders, as her mother had never bothered to introduce her to much in life. That's why it was time to end all of this.
She would go out with a bang, her own special, quiet bang. One of the items on her bucket list was to release goldfish into the ocean by cutting open the bag that they were in, and flinging them off a cliff, into the immense body of water below. A fish that had never known the terror and the sensations of flying and falling, on its way to freedom, hopefully not killed on its journey. It had crossed her mind though, to kill two birds with one stone. To stop her mother worrying about the money she was wasting, she would just leave the planet. And hey, if she was going to die doing one of the things on her bucket list, why not?
She got off the train at San Diego, looking around. A pet store caught her eye, and she jogged towards it. She purchased five goldfish and left the store, catching a bus on her way out. Conveniently, the bus was on its way to Bell Bluff, a cliff.
Surprisingly, Bell Bluff had no people to enjoy the nice scenery. The bus left her, and drove away, until she could no longer see it. The long grass waved on the ground, the gray sea reflecting the sky, and she walked to the edge of the cliff. She looked down, and untied the knot on the bag holding the fish, walking away from the cliff.
Holding the edges of the bag in both hands, she ran towards the edge of the cliff. Once at the last solid place, she jumped foward as if doing the long jump. Her arms snapped back, then foward, thowing the fish into the open air. All of a sudden, life slowed.
Drops of water glistened in the air, water that had come from inside the bag holding the fish. The fish themselves, were twisting in surprise, mouths gaping, gills opening and closing, and fins flapping uselessly. As she fell, her tourso bended, her hair, arms, and legs, reached up, drops of water landing on her, fish above and below her. Her open mouth made no sound, her eyes glistening in wonder, all the while gravity was pulling her to the ocean.
When she hit the water back first, it was painful. Her head snapped back, her body inhaling water in shock, her eyes burning from saltwater. Yet, in the chaos and pain, there was something tranquil about it. Knowing that her mother would make no more scathing remarks about her, knowing that she wouldn't have to deal with any conflicts between family and friends, that, in itself, was peace. She looked around, seeing the fish darting around in obvious surprise at the newfound freedom, some of them nibbling at underwater waterplants, and she smiled, happy that they found freedom. She closed her eyes, bits of sand trapped in the inside of her eyelids, knowing that she too would soon be free though in a different way. She began to lose consiousness, and then, finally, life.


All rights belong to its author. It was published on by demand of Cathleen Huang.
Published on on 06/20/2012.


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