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My powder blue sneakers crunched forward, two turtle-steps toward death. I sucked in my breath, the lump in my throat rising as I struggled to keep back tears. My palms were soaked in sweat, and weak fists balled up by my side. Careful to keep tears from pouring out, I opened my eyes and looked down.
Murky water filled the lagoon about fifty meters away, with light brown boulders underwater creating a sepia tone. One step closer, I told myself. Only one step closer and it’s all over.
I looked up at the sky, a collage of deep blue with melting, pasty white clouds. The sun was dull enough to be able to look into, but not dull enough to leave the sky. The serenity and peace was like a fairy tale—welcoming, with a happy ending—total bulls***. It mocked my thoughts of when I thought life was sparked with magic; filled with dreams to chase. But I had learned the hard way that the magic was a trick, and you never catch your dreams.
Hot tears seeped down my cheeks as I looked back at the lagoon. A thin canopy of olive green trees surrounded it, leaving one space in the middle that wasn’t covered by leaves—a space big enough for me to fit through. In the most welcoming way, its cynical beauty told me to jump. Leave all of it behind, the ripples of the water whispered. There couldn’t be any more darkness down here than there is up there.
I squeezed my eyes shut, closing the doors to all tears. My stomach did the wave as I leaned forward, and my lips poked open to take my last breath. This is it, I thought, trying to keep my thoughts firm. I lifted my foot shakily as I exhaled; ready to leave the crunchy rocks that held me on the earth—
¬My cell phone buzzed in my pocket, nearly pushing me off the cliff with the shock. My eyes flew open and I put my foot down, fumbling through the mess of candy wrappers and headphones to reach the phone. With sweat-drenched and feeble fingers, I pressed the green button to answer.
“He-hello?” I stuttered, struggling to find my voice.
“Cindy? Its me,” a deep, familiar voice answered. Memories of finger painting in preschool, passing notes in middle school, and hanging out by the local pool flashed in my mind as I saw a sophomore with short auburn hair and worn out skate shoes. It took me a few seconds to realize it was my best friend on the phone.
“Are you sure you can’t come to my place tonight?” Dustin asked me, bringing me back to 3:00 this afternoon. “Its not gonna be a huge party—just you, me, and a couple other kids. Come, on it’ll be fun.”
I took a deep breath, inhaling the last few scenes that happened in my life. I was committing suicide, I realized, and just thinking of the action made me aware of what I was really doing. What could have made me attempt such a thing? My mind wandered to my depressing week, through each knot and failure that had triggered my actions.
Was it really worth it?
“Yes,” I told Dustin, taking a step back from the cliff. “I’ll be there.”