Once Upon a Time/2

"Come on! You really think you're going to learn how to swim like that? Float."
She was holding herself up by the immense power she was placing on her legs. She could feel them quickly turning into jelly, screaming for rest. She continued on, determined to prove that she could do this.

Her instructor rolled her eyes and kept yelling at her to keep afloat. She had finally gotten over her embarassement and asked her old man for a teacher. He was uncertain and hesitant at first. He had always encouraged her to be her own person, and he had always told her that the fact that she couldn't swim didn't make her any less of a person. However, she felt a weight and a drive to go against her own odds. She wanted to prove to everyone that she wasn't an outsider, that she could be just as everyone else.
Finally, her instructor released her, and told her to start swimming back. She lifted her already tired arms, and pulled herself to the end of the pool. She managed to get herself on the edge, and she sat there, breathing in air. She waved weakly at her instructor, as she left the room. She couldn't believe that was her own aunt.

She sat at the edge of the pool, softly splashing the water around with her toes. Wondering how such an apparent, unharmful force, could be so destructive.
It was then, she heard a huge splash in the pool, and was covered with a thick layer of water. She squinted behind her drenched eyelids to see who had caused the commotion. She watched in suprise, as the prince of the kingdom did laps around the pool.

They had only met a few times, and had barely spoke. It was as if he was living in another world, the kind of world she was fighting to belong in. Before he noticed she was there, she was up on her feet and out the door. She had her fill of shame for the day, she didn't want to overdo it.

The next day, she was in the pool again, with a frustrated aunt.
"Why do I even bother?" She asked, resignation in her voice.
"I want to. I need to."
"Don't you see you weren't made to swim?"
"Maybe. That doesn't mean I can't try."
Her aunt started at her in disdain, and replied, "I give up. You're on your own from now on."
Before she could answer, her aunt had turned her back. She was gripping the edge of the pool, as if it was the only thing keeping her from drowning.
"Stuck?" a deep voice asked.
She was so startled, that she let go of the edge. Just like a stone, she started to sink. This time, she didn'r fight. She watched as air escaped her mouth, forming bubbles that reached the surface of the pool. She kept going lower and lower, and realized how aqua the water was. She had never noticed the color before, to her, it had always been dark and menacing. Now it looked, bright and inviting. As she kept sinking lower and lower, she realized she was gasping for air. She started to flair her arms trying to get to the surface. It seemed useless, because she was a good deal in the water, and she couldn't use the surface to float herself up.
She closed her eyes and let the darkness take over her.


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