In December 2020, I submitted an entry into the Sea Sunderland Flash Fiction competition.
My piece was selected as the ‘Reader’s Choice’ and was filmed by Jamil Omar.
The finished piece can be seen here.
It’s dark, it’s wet, the stench scrapes the lining of my nostrils, and my bones ache with the cold.
But it’s safe.
Waves crash and smash above me, spraying spittles of angry foam across the pier. Their roar muffled by solid concrete walls as I cower and hide.
Salt laden drops click a steady beat to my right, their metronomic timing a comfort.
Seagulls squawk, feeding off the upset sea, like Facebook dwellers living off the slightest bit of drama in their dull and empty lives.
None of them know the truth. None of them.
I can’t sit here forever. Eventually I must return to shore.
And everything that means.
But for now, I’m safe.
These walls have stood un-breached for centuries, no matter what the North Sea has thrown at them.
Yesterday there were happy families above me. Couples outside for a stroll in the afternoon sun. The evening was peaceful, with little other than the whiff of pungent skunk from an angler’s joint to let me know anybody was there.
But things can change, even around here.
And sometimes the damage is beyond repair.
I look towards the end of the tunnel.
And I see the light.
My original entry can be seen above.