Chapter 5

George swallowed heaping fishgulps looking for air. He couldn’t breathe as he reached for stars.

He could see every dot and detail of the sky above. Constellations moved about in random flicks as his limbs were too slow and weighed down to catch them.

With every grasp at the stars he would scrape the edge of the reachable sky. His fingers pushing against where the stars floated, slipping far away from his fingers.

All around he could see shapes in the wavering light. Massive stone structures illuminated at his feet and all around. His feet were rubbed bloody as he kicked off from them, each time nearly reaching the edge of the night sky. And each time his breathing became harder. He was suffocating.

With a push his hands reached the edge of the stars. He began pulling them down to his face in clawing handfuls. Their bright centers were no bigger than his fingernails as he gulped them in. Through his chest he could see them illuminating under his flesh. Miniature sprites of light navigated his throat and lungs finally finding a home deep in his center.

Beneath his feet were hands grasping from beyond the stones. The square shapes below were surrounded on all sides by sets of hands grabbing at his feet, pulling him back down to earth and away from the pinpoints of light.

But always in his eyes was the symbol inscribed in the sky above him. He could make out the curves and ridges — a glyph he couldn’t comprehend. A radiating wave of leaves. A twisted face.

His fingers pressed forward scraping the sky until the his body couldn’t stretch any further. His lungs filled with sparks of stars and it’s heaviness until he lost sight of everything.

His body only twitched as the hands that grabbed at his feet lost their hold and he floated lifelessly away from the stars.

Isla is a novel-in-progress. Feel free to read along (and share) as new chapters are published.

Chapters: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8,

Music to write by | Mercy Street by Elbow

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