Competition winner – 3rd place

Here is our second 3rd place winner, Iona Carslaw, and her entry:
     I take a breath, allowing the bitter air
into my lungs. Somehow the frostiness takes away the worry that’s been grinding
in my mind, and instead leaves a need for warming comfort. Pulling my fur shawl
closer towards me, I carry on walking, getting deeper into the forest.

     Luscious greens surround me, in a mosaic
of leaves, moss and firs. The bark which would normally complement it is cloaked
in shadowing mist, giving me shivers that run up and down my spine. Usually it
wouldn’t bother me too much but today I’m wearing my ‘binding’ dress, the
outfit that should engage me off to a man. So if anything’s lurking in the
shadows, I wouldn’t be able to fight.

     Before I can start ranting about the dress,
I see a passed-out figure lying across a stream. Instantly I know it’s a woman.
As I walk closer to her, I see brown mattered hair, a rag dress tightly
stretched around her and a black tattoo etched onto her shoulder. Somewhere in
my mind, I vaguely recognise where it’s from but my thoughts are conscious on
the knife that’s by my hip.

     As if the woman’s reading my thoughts, she
suddenly wakes, her eyes focusing on me. Then, without even looking away, she
jumps up, already in a fighter’s stance: knees bent, arms out with knife in

     “Ooo hah uuuu…oooooohhhaaahhhuuuuuuuu?”
Hisses out of her mouth. Suddenly clarity comes to me, with the translation:
‘who are you?’ Her lack of articulation is due to her class, the hariberars, as
well as the tattoo. It’s a pity really because I see determination within her,
and I don’t want to kill that. However you see, I’m an opulenter and she’s a
hariberar, so I have to kill her. That’s just how classes work.
Make sure to keep up with the blog over the next month as we continue to share the winning entries and showcase their amazing dystopian creations.

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