Finish It #22: A Little Too Late

He took a deep breath. Inhaled and exhaled a couple of times, each time a little bit slower, a little bit longer. He closed his eyes and repeated the breathing. He could feel his heart rate slow down. Slowly he put the mask on and then he emerged into the world he felt so at ease with. He would be one with the ocean once again, diving for minutes without any air. Usually he was down here to enjoy. To become one with this amazing world. This time was different. A lot was at stake. He had to succeed. The consequences would be too huge to handle otherwise but it was too late and he knew it.


Elizabeth, please, just for a little longer. He thought as he dove deeper than he had ever done before, only breathing when he felt the burn of his lungs increasing but the deeper he went, the less he cared about dying or running out of air. If she wasn’t safe and alive in his arms, he would lose his purpose to live. He would rather die to be with her than to live a life out of solitude.

The light grew fainter as he dove deeper and soon had to squint to see. As he went deeper and there still wasn’t any sign of Elizabeth, his heart began to pound harder than ever before. Each beat resembled the loss of precious seconds and the increasing feeling that Elizabeth might be dead.

Come on, Elizabeth, where are you? He wondered anxiously as he suddenly felt as if he was moving in slow motion while everything around him blurred by. He took another deep breath and proceeded.

Then he saw it, a tiny familiar glint up ahead. With depleting oxygen, He swam as quick as he could. The glint was coming from the golden ring on Elizabeth’s finger, the one he placed on her finger almost a decade ago. There she was, her eyes closed and hands tied with thick rope, her brunette hair fanned out while she was just floating and sinking.

Quickly, he placed his arms beneath her body and carried her to the surface. His crew helped them both aboard. He brushed his right hand lightly against her icy damp cheek and without removing his gear, he began administering CPR. One two three four five, he counted mentally over and over while praying to God, begging him not to take Elizabeth away from him.

After the sixth try, he gave up. He sat back, tears began to fall, while he just stared at her. Everyone and everything seemed to have stopped around him. No one dared to say a word. Everyone just stood there. “Just get me to shore,” he said at last, icily.

As the boat approached shore, he noticed a group of men in black stood in a triangular formation on the beach, waiting. He jumped off the boat and waded to shore. “How dare you!” He snarled, “She was innocent.”

“She was collateral damage.” The bald man stood before him spoke in an informative tone.

“Everyone is collateral damage to you. She was my wife. I loved her and you just went and killed her.”

“We did not see another option.”

“Oh yeah? Then I guess you’re collateral damage too.” He pulled out his gun and without a second thought, he shot the bald man in the chest. The bald man fell on his knees and his face hit the sand and in that same moment, the other men pulled the trigger of their guns. Half of those bullets landed on him.

I am participating in Finish It, a challenge where we are provided an opening and we are to finish the story.

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