Icarus

*scroll past this if you don’t want 700 words of shitty writing by me

Okay so I wanted to write because I haven’t written anything in months and I’ve never really written much so I got an idea and I stuck with it. I’m going to change the ending so I can continue the story but for now I would like to share it. I would say I want this criticized but I haven’t edited yet so I’ll probably find most the things you would tell me to fix later anyways.

              Run, Jump, splash, climb. Run, jump, splash, climb. That same pattern would repeat itself dozens of times. There were occasionally pauses, little slips, hope, and a variety of emotions happening during and in-between but the pattern refused to cease. It had been hours since Icarus’s family arrived at their cottage. They used to go a few times every summer but last summer Icarus’s dad used up all his vacation days on a trip back to China alone so they couldn’t go. This was the first time they went this summer and the first time Icarus was old enough to go out on his own.

          For the first hour when he was set loose out into the empty wilderness, he explored. He watched an assortment of birds soar above the ever greens, chased squirrels up oaks, and avoided touching the bugs which littered the weeds that blanket the ground.  He had gone about half way around the lake before he came across the cliff. It wasn’t actually a cliff but that was the only name he knew it by. In past visits, when he sat on the dock watching the sunset as his parents cooked on the BBQ he could see teenagers jump from a spot as taller than his cottage, into the water. He always asked if he could go but his dad always said to ask his mom who always said no.

              It took him about 10 minutes to work up the courage to jump. He would look over the edge and back away; fears of hidden rocks and monsters filling his imagination. There was something deep inside him, filling him with dread at the thought of the landing. The water seemed much farther away than when he saw the teens do it. Standing at the edge, with his toes gripping the rock and his eyes closed he took his first leap. The upwards sensation was so short he barely had time to register it before he was falling. A surge of panic rushed through his body at the weightlessness but before he could scream his whole body was submerged. His relief at the fall being over was short-lived as he felt his body continue to descend. Frantically, he flailed his arms and legs; making every attempt to break water and take a much needed breath. It felt like far too long a distance before his head broke water and he took his most grateful breath since birth.

             The boy laid on the shore for a few minutes to reflect before he repeated the experience; only with slightly less fear each time. As he ran, jumped, splashed, and climbed  back up onto the little cliff over and over, the rush of excitement he began to wane. He began to feel dissatisfied at how short lived his time was in the air. It seemed like such great a distance but when he jumped there was no time to register what he was feeling before he crashed down into the water. When his feet left the ground he wanted to feel as weightless as he thought the teenagers looked, but instead all he got was his body pulling himself down.

            He stood still for a moment, a few meters away from the edge, and stared towards the horizon, with fierce eyes.

“This time you won’t fall.” He whispered to himself.

            He ran, eyes open; taking in the beauty of the sunlight glittering in the water and the green of the trees zooming past him. He felt different this time. He felt a lightness in himself. When he leaped he knew he would travel forward with the wind, and for a moment he felt himself take flight. That feeling of happiness was nothing that he’d ever felt before. It was devastating when it disappeared an instant after its conception. This time, as his body crashed through the water, he realized that thinking he could fly, the hope of the delusion, was never worth the disappointment. 

Thank you for reading this. I hope it was worth your time.