James was now taking off his shoes and and socks. The gestures that I had ridiculed just moments before I was now praying would speed up. I felt a shooting pain in my hand and looked down to see I had squeezed a specimen cup until it shattered. Blood slowly dripped down into a small puddle at my feet. I was hypnotized by the growing redness until I heard a splash.
I looked up to see James swimming into the water while Ms. Herrington was on the phone. A faint sound of sirens in the distance let me know that her call to 911 had made it through.
I watched James close the space between him and Liberty in mere moments. He wrapped one arm around her, turned her over, and then started pulling her to the shore.
"Kyle, Jacob help him." Ms. Herrington shouted over the din of voices. They laid Liberty on the ground.
She was so pale. Not moving.
For a moment, my world went hazy. Shaky. Shadows loomed where none had been before. And Liberty turned her head and looked at me.
"Elizabeth, help me." The words were a low hiss, like something dry being dragged against the floor. She reached a hand toward me.
The world turned black and I fell crashing to the ground. The impact made me bite my tongue and the coppery taste of blood flooded my mouth. My vision slowly started to clear. Dena and Josh helped me to my feet. Dena wrapped her arms around me and started sobbing.
I followed Josh's gaze to the group around Liberty. James was holding her hand and sobbing, with Ms. Herrington's hand on his head, like a priest absolving a parishioner. She pulled him to his feet and to the side.
It was then I noticed the ambulance crew.
And the black bag they were zipping up around Liberty.
Well, I said last week I wouldn't do it, but I did anyway. I killed off Liberty.
But don't worry, I have a sneaky suspicion that we'll be hearing again from her.