‘YOU call me Refugee’ by Paige Adams, Thomas Clarkson Academy

When the bombing began, it was a silent night, and everyone was terrified for their lives. No one in my family dared to say anything, stunned into stillness as explosions and screams erupted beyond our shelter. We were all expecting this, as disagreements between the leaders of both countries came to a standstill and were transformed into planning for an attack. The crisis was covered in the news with headlines such as “UK vs America” and “Trump vs Boris.” It was all over the place. The UK was winning; I believed that there wouldn’t be much more time until we won so that fewer houses would be destroyed, but my assumptions were proven incorrect.

As the roof of our bunker opened, a boom rang out above us and screaming grew more audible. Slowly peering out of the hole, I saw citizens fleeing for their lives, shrieking as loudly as they could like a goat desperate to be noticed. Knowing I didn’t have much time left, I dashed out of the protection of my home, leaving my family behind and heading in the opposite way. The gunshots became louder as the surrounding hubbub drowned out the commands.

Running I saw a ship crammed with people, striving to save the vast bulk of the populace. I pushed my way onto the tiny ship that would eventually evacuate the nation. We set sail a minute later. The further we went, the less noise we heard. I knew I was finally safe, that I was no longer in danger, but I couldn’t help but wonder about my family as I began my lengthy trek to Australia.

When I arrived in Australia, it was immediately comparable to the UK. No one was crying, and everyone I saw just went about their daily lives. Children ran around, not because they were about to die, but because they wanted ice cream; families loved and treasured their moments together, not because they might never see each other again, but because they wanted to make wonderful memories. After observing the beach, I concluded that I was finally at peace. After a few days, I realised I was peaceful, cheerful, and not at all afraid for my life. True, I want to return home, but Australia is starting to feel like home.