Oh, so much screaming. It was hardly intelligible, to say the least. But the chaos . . . it felt like a thick cloud of smoke over your head, like it's about to smother you and suffocate you until it did you in. It was something that made your heart beat so hard, like a bird slamming against its cage in hopes of setting itself free.
Just . . . all this that I was experiencing aboard the almighty "unsinkable" was profoundly indescribable.
My heart was pounding blood like no one's business, my head screamed at my stubborn feet to move, and my lungs refused to heave another breath of the chilled air. It was so cold that it was unbearable, especially since I was still wet from the lower decks of the ship, which no doubt, were completely flooded with ocean water. All I could think about was cold, and wondering what warm felt like again.
Even as I grappled at Harry's hand beside me felt like I was holding icicles, like the ones that grew on the edge of the roof of my home back in England. But I wouldn't let go, because if I did, I would become evermore cold. Not physically, but inside of me, I would. My heart would freeze over.
"Louis, we have to jump."
My brain grew to a standstill. The gears that made me function collectively halted, all at once.
"What did you say?" Of course I knew what he said. I just refused to acknowledge it.
"We have to jump, Lou," Harry said assertively. "If we wait—"
There was an earsplitting crack that sounded like it could've split the air itself. It was the sound of wooden trees being snapped in half, but the sparks that followed indicated that it wasn't trees that were breaking in two.
It was the ship.
"Oh, fuck," I breathed.
"Lou! We gotta jump, alright?!" Harry screamed. What I thought was chaos a moment ago was now something like hell breaking loose all over the ship.
"And why in God's name would I bloody do that?!" I screamed back.
"Because the ship's suction's gonna pull us down with her if we stay here and squabble!"
Resorting to my thoughts to think it out, I fell silent as I started to consider if the fall alone would kill us. The freezing water—which, even in my half-frozen state, made me shiver!—would be something I'd hardly look forward to if we survived the drop from the stern.
Harry grabbed my arm forcibly, leaving red marks where my skin was turning a sickly white color. "We have t'do it now, Lou. We'll go when this half falls back in the water."
I looked up at Harry as if he was some sort of mathematician, or some kind of physicist. How would he know all about this? About the ship falling back into the water?
Oh, right. Considering we were at about a forty-five-degree angle pointing upwards and the ship's breaking point somewhere in front of us, we would definitely fall right back into the Atlantic before this half would start sinking. And the huge mass of the Titanic would definitely cause major suction during its descent downwards—however far it'll have to go before hitting the bottom . . .
"You ready?!" he shouted.
I nodded weakly, looking straight at him in the near-darkness. Concentrating hard enough, I could make out the determination in his jade eyes . . .
Another crack resounded, louder than the previous one but easier to expect. However, as the sound of a thousand breaking trees rang out a third time, it was the fall that caught me by surprise, and how my organs all tried escaping through my mouth simultaneously.