The force of the water battered Kevin around like a toy but the ropes kept him on course. The anchormen on shore tightened and gave more slack in the lines as needed to direct Kevin to his precious targets. Stumbling repeatedly, the slippery rocky bottom hampered his progress and he went under again and again. The dunkings slowed him and Kevin cursed out loud, trying to regain his balance. Time was his enemy since he was already numb from the icy water. He had to get them out. An eternity passed before he finally made it to the pair. Tommy was out of the water, lying motionless on his belly on the rock as Jamie held on to the life jacket. “Jamie, are you okay?” he had to shout. She looked pale but nodded. “Take Tommy!” she yelled back to him. “I’ll take both of you together!” Jamie shook her head. “No, the water’s too strong. Take Tommy first.” Kevin knew she was right, but she didn’t look good. He feared she couldn’t hold on but he also knew he did not have time to hesitate if he wanted to save both of them. “Tommy!” Kevin shouted to be heard above the water. “Tommy, it’s Uncle Kevin. I want you to move slowly but I want you to come into my arms, like you’re giving me a big hug. I’m going to take you back to your dad. He’s worried about you.” At the mention of his dad, Tommy’s head perked up. He began to move and reached for Kevin who grabbed him in a bear hug. Turning to look at Jamie, he yelled, “I’ll be back for you. Don’t you let go! Do you hear me? Don’t let go!” he repeated. “Okay.” She nodded but she did not convince him. “Promise?” “Promise,” she answered with a weak smile. He did not want to leave but he had no choice, he turned to go. She was right. He couldn’t have held on to both of them in this rough water. Tommy hugged Kevin as he tried to soothe him with words of encouragement. “It’s okay, buddy, I’ve got you. You’re gonna be okay. Your dad’s waiting for you. You’re gonna be okay.” As Kevin began to walk back, he could feel the sheer power of his friends pulling on the ropes, leading him back to safety. He could not have made it back on his own. His strength was drained from the glacial waters. As he neared safe water, Rick handed off his rope to another man and ran into the water toward his son. He embraced Kevin and Tommy, then lifted Tommy out of Kevin’s arms and hugged his son like he would never let go. But Rick did let go and handed his son to Mike on shore. “Go warm him up,” he ordered. “We need to get Jamie!”
About the author:
Born and raised in Michigan, I am a registered nurse and continue to enjoy my primary career. However once my kids were grown I found myself with spare time. Instead of knitting, I sat down with a laptop and my fingers took on a life of their own. To some it sounds nuts, but writing relaxes me. Combine that with get-a-ways to our little cottage on the lake...and I am in heaven. Perched in my hammock, I write with a view of the lake as the hummingbirds dive-bomb each other over the feeder I strategically placed above.
In my debut novel, Montana Wild, Jamie is a spirited young woman who makes some uncharacteristically spontaneous choices that forever change her life. It's a good lesson for all... if you want to make changes in your life, don't be a passive onlooker... go after what you want. Life is precious and too short. Celebrate, be spontaneous, laugh, wear crazy wild socks, do something outside the box, challenge yourself. Kiss life in the face!