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Drowning a Mermaid – Gerard McKeown

You: ten Regal Kingsize and peppermint Extra. Me: twelve tins of Harp and a bottle of Rumpleminz.

That evening at the end of summer, the first year we didn’t return to school, I sat on the harbour wall after chucking in a trolley. Trolley cost a quid, but it completed my list of things to do while still a teenager.

I asked where all the water went.

‘All around the world,’ you said, then dived in yourself.

I flicked my fag butt after you, and walked away, cracking open my last beer. Far as I know, you never came out.

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