Monday, April 3, 2017
Alice Robinson

Em must sleep awhile with the others; unconscious in an instant, like turning out a light. Then all at once they are beyond the city, the wide, tidal salt-flats, and into the glittering bay. Em shocks awake, doused in icy spray. It is dawn, and it seems they are all waking, dropping into a nightmare rather than surfacing from one. Spluttering, Em lunges for Matilda. She calls the child’s name even before she can rub saltwater from her eyes. But the little girl is still there, already awake, rigid with fear. The men have set the outboard wheezing, keeping them on course. Who knows what they are using to make the motor run. No lifejackets. Matilda can’t swim.

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