Tell A Tale in 500 Words

Tick Tock By Alissia blase

‘Tick, tock, tick, tock’ the timer sung against my chest. Time waits for no one, especially people who barely exist in society, a voice whispered in my head. I remembered ever so clearly the last words which the strange woman had whispered into my ear. ‘No one knows who you are. No one cares about poor girls. Just put on this belt, and in 10 minutes you will be in a place where everyone will know who you are, and everyone will care about you.’ She strapped the belt around my chest, covered it with a bulky coat and sent me on my way to a train station just outside the derelict apartment.

I had met her earlier today whilst I was scavenging for food from the rubbish bins next to the hotel. She told me that if I came with her she would send me to a place nothing like earth. There would be mountains of food, and people who cared and loved for me.

Moments later I stepped into the train station, my heart pounding against my rib cage. Millions of people passed me, not even sparing me a single glance. I stepped towards a bench where an old man reading a newspaper sat quietly. As I drew closer the writing upon the front page became clearer. It read, ‘children suicide bombers- what has our world become?’ Accompanying the text was a picture of a belt, similar to the one that the lady had strapped around my chest.

I sat down upon the bench, now bearing the weight of a young toddler and his pregnant mother as well. The man turned towards the woman and said, ‘terrible business isn’t it? These frightened children being bullied into killing themselves along with many people around them.’ I didn’t listen to the woman’s reply, instead I stared into the toddler’s innocent eyes. Only one of us could go to heaven, well that’s what the lady said, so why should it be me?

The ticking of the clock was silenced by the racket in the train station. All of these people, dead, just so that I could live how I had dreamed of living. That’s when I realised that what I was doing was wrong. I ran out of the train station. The words, ‘time waits for no one’ smashing against the sides of my brain. How could I stop it? I was young and useless, what could I do to prevent this from happening. There was not enough time to tell someone. I had to do it by myself, just like I had done everything else by myself.

As I ran I came to the bridge where I slept nightly. The brown swirling water surging beneath me.

I jumped. I jumped to save the toddler. As the water engulfed me everything became silent. All I could hear was the ‘tick, tock, tick, tock’ of the timer.

‘Bang,’ my body fell limp, but the people lived on.

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