Water laps between his chin and neck, each wave colliding to the beat of his heart. The tide was definitely rising. Jay spat out a mouthful of salt water, gasping for air between each wave of the roiling sea.

He tries again to pull his foot free of the rock. It doesn't move and he only succeeds in digging sharp rock into his leg. Jay grits his teeth and pulls, hard. White hot pain tears up his ankle. He opens his mouth to shout and seawater floods in. His chest spasms as he tries to cough and another wall of water crashes over his head. Salt stings his eyes, lungs burning, the pain in his ankle radiating up to his knee.

The water keeps rising, and it's harder and harder to get air. Dark spots dance in his vision. His throat burns from the saltwater and Jay manages to rasp in one last breath before the ocean closes over his head.

Rough hands grab his shoulders. They move down to his legs, tugging at his trapped food. Pain flares and he tries to kick them away but they don't stop. He wants to sob, to give up and let himself sink in the water.

Jay's thoughts started slowing, fog seeping into his mind. The water stopped feeling so rough and so cold, and Jay wondered why he was struggling so much in the first place.

New pain dragged him back to the present. The stranger wrenched Jay's foot free and his vision swam.

The hands came back, under his shoulders and dragging him up. They broke the surface, light searing Jays eyes, and he lost consciousness.

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