"Please don't do it," pleaded eight year old Andy but his older twelve year old sister just laughed.
"Your just a big baby," she gleefully said as she held his Teddy bear over the railing.
The family was on a camping trip and their parents were occupied. The father had his head under the car bonnet. He was banging and swearing at things, His mother was making lunch in the caravan and the children were fighting which ended with Sarah holding Bobo the Teddy bear over the railing above the crashing waves.
"Why do you like this stupid bear anyway?" asked Sarah.
Andy knew why. The bear loved him. It didn't laugh at his funny shaped foot encased in an ugly shoe like all the other boys did and his sister, who was supposed to love him was the worst. But Andy didn't know his sister did love him and often beat up the boys that teased Andy.
Andy lost his temper and lunged at Sarah who lost her grip on the bear. It plummeted down and came to rest on a bush, half way down.
"Look what you've done," yelled Andy, at his sister. Sarah, who never had any intention of dropping the bear, started crying, "I'm sorry, Andy, I'm sorry."
Andy ignore her and limped to the gate. There was a little path that climbed down the cliff face but the authorities had closed it because parts of it had fallen away and was dangerous but it went past the bear hanging from the bush. Before Sarah could stop him he climbed the gate and started to hobble down the path.
"Andy, Andy, come back. Mum, Dad, come quick."
Sarah explained everything to her parents and her father ran to the railings. Andy was quite far down now, in fact not far from Bobo the bear.
"Be careful Andy," yelled his father but just as Andy grasped the bear the path disintegrated below his feet and Andy and Bobo plunged down out of sight.
Andy's father raced to the car and retrieved a long rope. As he tied it to the railing he said to his wife "Get on the radio and get help,"
He tied the rope around his waist and raced to the gate which he vaulted with ease.
Slowly, feeling the path below him he reached the bush and looked down. Andy lay, unmoving, on his back, clutching Bobo. Waves were washing over the rock and around the boy. Andy's father had one metre to go when the railing broke and he dropped onto his feet, precariously perched on the edge of the rock, fighting to maintain his balance. He steadied himself then knelt down to examine his son. He took Bobo from him, puting the bear under his shirt. He felt his arms and legs but nothing appeared broken but there was a huge gash on his head, bleeding freely.
"Bill, Bill," his wife yelled from the top, "is he alright?"
"Yes, he's alive but with a bad head wound. Any sign of rescue?"
"Not yet. Will let you know."
Bill sat down with his back to the sea to protect Andy from waves and cradled his head in his arms. Andy stirred.
"Dad, daddy. Wheres Bobo."
"He's safe son. Just lie and be..."
Bill didn't finish as a large wave struck lifting father and son, pushing them to the edge of the rock. Bill gripped his boots on some mussel shells and stopped the slide forward but the wave covered Andy;s face. Bill struggled to get his head above water, blood pouring from the wound and flowing over his face. In what felt like eternity the wave washed by and the water receded.
Suddenly, Andy convulsed, fell unconscous and stopped breathing.
"Please God, no," uttered Bill and fell to his kness, putting his mouth to Andy's, ignoring the waves rolling around them. As suddenly as he stopped he started on his own and settled down to a steady rythm but still unconscious. He looked around him helplessly, just listening to his sons rattled breathing. Then Bill was suddenly overcome with a burst of anger at the teddy bear. He was the reason Andy put himself in danger. He pulled the poor bear out of his shirt and was about to throw it deep into the ocean when he realized his son would never forgive him. He carefully put it back under his shirt.
"Bill, they've arrived," his wife yelled and a bright yellow figure absailed over the edge, expertly landing on the rock beside them.
"Hello, I'm Nurse Rogers. Are you hurt?"
"No but the boy is."
She crouched over Andy and started examining his body.
"There doesn't appear to be any major external injuries apart from the gash but there is a swelling in his abomen I cant identify. It may be and internal injury."
While she was dressing the wound Andy regainded consciousness.
"Please, " he whispered, "help Bobo he's hurt."
Nurse Rogers looked at Bill.
Bill pulled the sea water saturated bear from under his shirt. It had a tear on its stomach. The nurse looked at the face full of worry for the bear. She took the it and reached into her bag then took out a band-aid, placing it over the tear.
"There, he is ok now."
The boy immediately relaxed.
While they were talking another man had come down with a stretcher. They strapped Andy in and hauled him up. Sarah was waiting and immediately went to his side.
"Oh, Andy. I'm so sorry. Please forgive me. I'll do all your chores for a month."
"Look after Bobo," he said, as they took him off to hospital. Bill handed Sarah the soaking bear.
Andy had to be operated on for internal injuries and Sarah set about rejuvenating Bobo. She washed the salt out, dried him, combed him and sowed the tear up. She even made him a pair of overalls and she tearfully returned the much loved bear to its owner.