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Swim Dammit!

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‘Even if you don’t know how to swim, sinking into the soft lulling waves of the ocean, there will always be someone there who will pull you back to up to the surface. Trust in that fact, if nothing else!’



 

"One way out!”


They were all chanting the same mantra as the men poured from the inside of the whitewashed prison and towards the landing platform.


He was standing there, watching in horror while the others simply jumped into the below waiting deep dark waters. All of them. As hey simply rolled in, without any kind of hesitation.



But, Kino did not. Jump.

He was frozen in the very spot he stood in.


Even with his fellow escapes keeping on pushing through, shoving Kino in the process when hurrying past to just get out of the hell hole they had all been stuck inside of for so long, Kino hardly budged.

 

What seemed like the longest moment, most likely mere seconds though, the life as Kino knew it to have been, flashed by his eyes. Something of a cliché for sure. But it was happening just the same. 



With a certain strong memory getting his attention from somewhere deep and buried.

 

“Flik, please help me!”


The drowning boy cried, after having slipped into the deep roaring river while jumping on top of the slippery rocks on the bank.


“Please Flik! You know I cannot swim!”


The boy he had been all those years ago. Kino. Shouted out for his brother to come to his rescue. The whirlpool of the deep water quickly sucking him in and under. His breathing getting harder and harder as his arms flailed in trying to somehow push himself towards the surface.



“Fliiik! Please!”



With this last breath, Kino shouted out before he was engulfed inside the murky liquid for good. Only able to watch in horror as the daylight disappeared somewhere above him as he was sinking fast.

His eyes slowly closing, ready, for the inevitable. The last air escaping his lungs. Awaiting only for the cold hand of death to claim him…

 

Suddenly, he felt a jolt of his body being touched. The firm grip of arms around him. The motion of the water as he was being guided ever upwards and back to the light and air, to the surface.

Sputtering, trying to catch his breath, Kino was eye to eye with Flik. His brother having heard the pleads and come to his rescue.


“Don’t you ever scare me like that again, Kino Loy!”

 

It was in that moment of clarity, when Kino’s decision was made. The trust in his brother in the past, Kino knew he could trust in the others, in the here and now.

He might not have been able to swim to save his own life, but dammit, Kino was about to try in hoping someone would help him in the process.

 

One deep breath, then another. 



Closing his eyes for a mere moment. And then, as another wave of inmates rushed by him, Kino did what he was afraid to do.

He jumped.



The fall down felling like an eternity.

The waters surface looking cold and dreary.

As he hit the waters, Kino sank into it.

Without the ability to fight back the inertia of his fall drowning him. The same old panic hitting as all those years back. Arms flailing, gasping for air, even if there was none for gasp for. 



Kino knew, he was going to drown.

He closed his eyes. Letting the waters consume him.

At least, he would die, free.


Sinking in further, his conscious mind starting to shut down. The film that of his life, no more.

 

And then, he felt the familiar jolt.

As familiar as it had been in the past, so was it now.

A pair, then another. Arms placed around him. 



Hauling Kino in a hurried pace towards the surface.

 

Kino was back. On the surface of the ocean. Sputtering and then managing a glance at his saviours.

He was looking into the eyes of an unfamiliar inmate, but then the other one, he knew.

Cassian Andor, as Kino now knew him as. The man finally having revealed his true identity to Kino just a little before they had made it out. With a soft smile on his face he looked at Kino.

 

“You didn’t think we would leave you behind did you.”

Kino knew right then and there, he would be saved.