I wrote this little short story for National Geographic as they fight against single-use plastic. This story is inspired by the image of the seahorse holding onto a Q-tip. This is a competition currently ongoing on the writing platform, Wattpad. You can find the story on my profile here — https://www.wattpad.com/story/167263466-little-hero-planetorplastic — and for more information on the competition, please follow this link — https://www.wattpad.com/638334874-planetorplastic-writing-contest-planetorplastic — It’s our time to be heroes.
I swam through the murky waters, exploring the new area with a curious mind. In a distance, something drifts. I peer my eyes, it’s unfamiliar shape bobbing as the tide runs through its path. It’s abandoned I note, just like me. The creature of sorts is pulled viscously by the unforgiving waters. I should save it but my little body would never survive the tide. I would simply be pulled along but as I watched the creature desperately attempt to escape the tide, I urge myself to swim towards it. I need to help it. It’s going to die if I don’t. Clinging to my new found bravery, with determination I pushed my body into the tide and desperately clung onto the creature. Before I could rejoice in my act of heroism, the tide slashed at my body. I closed my eyes as pain burned through my tiny body. The ocean is a very unforgiving place to the tiny creatures that inhabit it. I urge myself to swim forward but with my energy completed, I could only cling to the small creature as we hurled through the tide. Is this how I’m going to die? The creature, long in shape, weighed heavy on my tail. It dragged me deeper and deeper into the tide. It must be tired. It can’t swim anymore. Is it even alive? A shadow falls over my body and fear stilled my body. Friend or Foe? The orange skin of the creature seemed to glow in the murky body. My heart skipped a beat as I recognized my foe. I was correct with my earlier predicament, death awaits me in my quest to save this unknown creature. My foe seemed to pause, unsure if it will venture into the tide willingly for its next meal. Although his body, much larger than my own, would be overwhelmed in the tide. His best bet would be to wait out the tide and hope his own predators would miss his glowing skin in the murky waters. Seemingly deciding to take the risk, the fish swam into the tide excited for its meal. Survival instinct kicked in and new found energy surged through my body. With every bit of force inside my tiny body, I swam forward. My damsel in distress whipped behind me, slowing me down. It’s heavy body fought against the water. Is this creature I’m risking my life for even my friend? Or is it just another foe? The tide relentlessly pushed and I could feel my orange foe close in on me. I clung to my heroism and with the last bit of energy left inside of my body, I stopped and whipped my tail to the side. The creature urged forward. Did I save it? Unable to escape like before, it could only bob in the vicious tide. My heart sank, my actions were in vain. The orange foe swallowed me, hole. The Q-tip continued to drift through the water causing destruction in its path.