Wakefield, Quebec

A short exercise, written from a prompt in Method & Madness by Alice LaPlante. Edited for my first semester portfolio. P.S: I love scuba diving, and it is not scary like it’s made out to be in here. Really not. Promise. The piece:

The first dive was easy – after nine weeks of training in the pool, Molly and the others had learned about nearly every situation they might face. Twenty-five feet was exactly as expected. “Just remember,” she told herself, “Never hold your breath while ascending.” Now, Molly was sixty feet below the surface of the water according to her console, and she was the coldest she had ever been. The world above her head was grey and silted as she looked up and cleared her mask for the third time. Her diving buddy was a stranger named Ernest. His face was white and pale like an uncooked fish fillet. Her mask was filling up again. Molly found that she couldn’t breathe. She cleared her mask and drew panicked breath. Remembered section 4.4.1: air embolisms, 4.4.2: mediastinal and subcutaneous emphysema, 4.4.3: pneumothorax. The pressure seemed to be squeezing her, the decrease in pressure of only four feet… squeezing her, caving in her chest until she would spit out the regulator, panic closing the glottis, causing the lungs to become a sealed container and she would drift up and… decreased pressure causing the lungs to collapse, and up, and …Stop. Breathe. Clear the mask. She told her buddy that she was fine, flashing a circle made of thumb and index at him, with a smile that she didn’t feel. Her face felt numb. Then came the realization that she was not fine. Molly was sixty feet below the surface, exhausted, shaking with adrenaline, shaking with cold, she was down here, and she was going up. She pointed topside with her thumb, urgently, compulsively – two times, three times…

4.4.1  Never hold your breath while ascending.

4.4.2  Never hold your breath while ascending.

4.4.3 Never hold your breath while ascending.

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