The idea for this story came to me last night. All characters from Ingo belong to Helen Dunmore. Please Read and Review! :)


It had been four years since the Crossing of Ingo.

I hadn't thought about it for such a long time. Now, trying to recall those days felt like sifting through all of the seaweed and sand that got caught in the fishing nets Conor and I would use as kids, down at the cove. We'd go on our own most of the time, or Dad would take us...

... Dad. I hadn't thought about him either. I had tried to forget. I suppose that's why I didn't go down to the cove for such a long time after we got back. I promised Faro I would return, and I had meant to. We got back to the cottage and slept for days, and then Granny Carne brought Sadie back. Mum and Roger returned from Australia soon after, and life went back to much of what it had been before. School, long walks with Sadie, spending time with Rainbow and Patrick, and trying to forget.

And so the years went by. I'm starting my second year at the University of Plymouth, training to be a nurse, just like Mum had always wanted. I am a normal student, I suppose, but with an extraordinary imagination. For what else could Ingo have been? I have taken psychology classes now. We learned about coping mechanisms, how children try to bear the loss of a loved one. A dream. That's what it was, what it must have been. And Faro? Elvira? The whale? All children have imaginary friends, don't they?

"Sapphy!" I started as the shrill voice of Samantha, my roommate, burst into my thoughts. "Sapphire!" she yelled again, sounding as if she was right behind me. The paper thin walls of our apartment always gave this impression. She began to pound on the wall, beating a steady insistent rhythm.

"Just a second!" I called. I finished with the mascara and began to trace my eyes with eyeliner. I was not used to wearing makeup and it still took me a long time to apply it well. The first few times I tried had ended up making me look like a clown. I stepped back and examined my face in the mirror from a distance. Samantha's incessant pounding was making it hard to concentrate.

Just then I felt a couple of cold drops on my back. I whipped around. The grimy little bathroom window was propped open to a monotonous view of grey rooftops and chimney stacks. I peered through it at the cloudless, blue sky. I must have felt a couple of rogue raindrops. I sighed and turned back to the mirror, hoping that the uncommonly pleasant weather would prevail.

A swishing sound and the noise of splattering drops on the tiled floor behind me had me whirling around once again. I let out an exclamation of frustration and stepped over the puddle on the floor to shut the window with a loud bang. I didn't understand. The sky was still crystal blue, and there was not a cloud to be seen. A whooshing sound had me swiveling round once again, and the uncomfortable sensation of cold water on my feet sent a shiver down my spine. The puddle on the floor had grown. "What the hell?" I exclaimed, chucking a towel onto the floor to mop up the growing pool of liquid.

"Sam! We've got a leakage in here somewhere!" I yelled over her regular beating on the wall.

"I don't care, Saph, I just don't want to be late! Will you get a move on?"

The towel soaked up most of the water, and it didn't look like the pool was growing any more. I returned my attention of the mirror and compared two different colours of eye shadow to my top. I was so engrossed in my task while trying to remember where I had last seen my umbrella, that I didn't notice the swooshing sound until it was practically drowning out Samantha's persistent banging. Once again, I turned, slowly this time. What I saw made me gasp and drop my compact into the now ankle deep puddle of water that was encircling me.

The water of the toilet bowl was churning. Water was rising from the bowl and tipping over the sides, but this wasn't what made me open my mouth in a terrified, silent scream.

A hand. A hand had appeared. It was gripping the edge of the bowl so hard that the knuckles had gone white, and the arm to which it was attached was slowly emerging. The pounding on the wall had stopped, and I couldn't seem to make a sound. I wanted to cry out, but seemed only to be able to make a kind of squeaking noise. Even in my terror, something like familiarity stirred within me. The limb protruding from my toilet bowl was tan and muscular. Its contours, and the way the veins were popping out stirred a memory. I pushed it away though, as a new wave of terror struck me and I flattened myself against the door.

Another arm had joined the first and a suction noise announced the emergence of the entire torso. Two hands gripped the sides of the bowl, and suddenly, muscles straining, a head, shoulders, and stomach were wrenched out with a grunt of effort.

It was then that I at last found my tongue. "Faro?" I whispered. "H-how?"

The boy laughed, flashing his perfectly white teeth. "All drains lead to the ocean, Sapphire."


Credit for the last quote goes to Finn from Finding Nemo.