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breathing, breathing — for as long as she concentrated on what kept her alive, the bones didn’t have space to cross her mind. When she dragged herself out of the water on the other side, she was exhausted and euphoric. A beaming smile broke outward from deep inside her belly. One of Sophie’s school friends wolf whistled. As her eyes adjusted she noticed Peter. The night had tinted him. His wet hair was a dark curtain across his forehead; his blue eyes hidden in black shadows. He stared in her direction with eerie intensity, his lips slightly parted. She heard the quiet whirr of bugs in the surrounding trees. “Um, Eleanor?” Sophie prompted. “You’re, uh,” she searched for an appropriate English word. “Emerging.” Stomach lurching, Eleanor looked down. The fabric had been displaced during her swim, exposing her left nipple, which pointed straight ahead in the chilly air like a compass. Eleanor’s hands shot up habitually to cover herself. Then she sighed. “You know what? Fuck it.” Changing direction, she reached around to unclasp her bra, tossing it aside. It landed in Peter’s lap. The Germans cheered. Eleanor gave a little shimmy. In the dark, the water’s surface turned over and over, a constant state of transformation, as it lapped like a cat at the sandy soil. •

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2017 Word for Work Workshop ebook  

2017 Word for Work Workshop ebook  

Profile for cusoa