An Ocean Apart


Rose clung onto Jacks bitter cold hands, sobbing weakly, her voice fading in nothingness. Icy tears struggled to roll out of her eyes as her last ounce of energy was used to mourn the death of her lover. She thought back onto all the time they had spent together, over just several days. There was so much fun and laughter. The wild and exciting party Rose went to down in 3rd class was a world away from cotillions in 1st class with the snobbery she was born into. Jack showed her how to have a good time, and also saved her, in every way that a person can be saved. He stopped her from throwing herself off the back of a ship, and then stayed by her side as they both fought for survival on that sinking wreck. He really couldn't have saved her life anymore if he had tried. Rose thought about how romantic he was. He took her to the very front of the Titanic as she sailed forth, the sun setting, and spread out her arms. Rose was flying! She always had her head in the clouds when she was with Jack, but now she couldn't be lower. Jack was dead. . .

But Rose suddenly remembered what he had said just moments ago. "You're gonna get outta here. You're gonna go on, and you're gonna make lots of babies, and you're gonna watch 'em grow!" She remembered the sound of his voice as clearly as if he were talking to her now. "You're gonna die an old lady, warm in her bed. Not here, not this night, not like this, do you understand me?" Rose knew that he was right, but also realized that as Jack was saying this, he was saying goodbye in his own subtle way. She couldn't let Jack down. He had saved her so many times, and even in death, he was about to save her again.

Her eyes flew open with the sudden thought that the lifeboat rose had seen row by not long ago could be gone! Her only chance of surviving, of fulfilling Jack's promise, was gone. She raised her head from the chunk of wood that she was laying on. Her frozen hair crunched as it moved from its position. "Come back!" her quiet voice cried out. The cold night air was taking its toll on the freezing teenage girl in the middle of the North Atlantic. The lifeboat continued to sail on. It was but a black silhouette against the starry night sky as it drifted off into the distance. "Come back, Come back!" Rose was crying, but for different reasons this time. The more she thought about, the more she knew she didn't want to die. Jack was right. Rose could do something with her life without her mother and Cal. She had been freed from the chains holding her back, but how could she really be set free if she didn't keep fighting for survival. She had to think fast!

Rose lay her head down on the wood, her face in front of Jack. He floated next to the driftwood; the metal handcuffs around his wrists frozen to it. She looked into his closed eyes. He looked just like he was sleeping, but Rose had already tried to wake him up. His funny, artistic, passionate and loving soul had gone to heaven with the 1500 other poor souls all around them. She pressed her frozen lips against his icy hands and kissed them before raising his hands. The metal cuffs came up with some effort as they loosened from the frozen wood. "I'll never let go, I promise." She whispered to him softly, and then she kissed his hands one more time and lowered them into the water. He sank down into the sea, Rose's eyes filling with tears as his handsome face disappeared beneath the dark surface of the water. She watched in disbelief, but she had to keep moving, if not for herself then for Jack!

Rose rolled over, the wood rocked from side to side as she shifted her weight. She got to the edge of the floating debris and fell off into the water. It was unimaginably cold. Rose felt sharp pains as if a thousand icy knives were stabbing her all over her body. She mustered up every ounce of strength to swim across to an officer of the ship, who was slumped over a deck chair with a whistle in his mouth. Minutes ago he was blowing the whistle, screeching out the echoing howl to seek help. Now he was still and quiet. He looked like a statue floating in the middle of the ocean. Rose reached the dead men, her body aching, but she ignored it. Her mind was too busy to feel pain. She took the whistle from the mouth of the officer, took a deep breath of bitter North Atlantic air, and placed the cold metal object between her lips. In seconds, the screeching call for help was echoing across the vast and endless ocean. The sense of isolation and abandonment was overwhelming. She kept blowing the whistle, knowing that someone would hear it. It was the only sound to be heard. All was quiet now. It had been eerily silent for about 10 minutes, since the dying hulk of the Titanic sank into the dark ocean.

Suddenly, Rose saw a light! She closed her eyes slightly as the bright beam shone towards her. It was painful to look at. Rose hadn't seen light since the power went out on the dying Titanic. She hadn't seen light since she saw the light in Jack's eyes disappear. She kept blowing the whistle. The men in the lifeboat with the torch had to follow the sound. She could hear them calling out. She heard the voices, so distant, yet so near. She was feeling very tired. The blowing was getting weaker and weaker. The light was heavenly now. She kept looking into it, knowing that it was getting closer. If only she had done this sooner, maybe, just maybe, Jack would be. . .

Just then, a pair of strong hands grabbed Rose under each arm and pulled her up from the water. As soon as she felt her body come up from the frigid ocean she sighed with relief. She was in agony. Her limbs were numb and her joints were stiff. She couldn't feel her body, but she felt the hard wooden bench of the lifeboat as she was lay down on it. She tried to keep her eyes open, fearing what may happen if she shut them. Her gaze wandered from the officers beginning to row the boat again, up to the black night sky that hovered over them like a shroud, filled with glittering stars. In the city, you couldn't see the stars like this. It was beautiful to see. It was so huge and mesmerising and powerful, much more powerful than the people down here that looked up and dared to try and match the gods that could create such beauty. Hopefully now, 1500 lives later, those power hungry humans have learned their lesson.