a fictional work I wrote for one of my college writing classes
I open my eyes. I see nothing but total darkness. My head is pounding with pain. Why can’t I see anything? I start to panic, so I breathe deeply. I realize I am lying down and I try to sit up, but pain flares through my head. I think I will just stay lying down for a few minutes. I can hear water trickling somewhere. I taste dirt. I don’t know where I am. When I try to sit up again, pain is throbbing against my temple, but I force myself anyway. My mouth is so dry. How long have I been here? My back is sore and so are my legs. I can understand why my back hurts after laying on a hard floor, but my legs?
I shiver and wrap my arms around my self. The pain in my head has subsided a little. I try to stand up but immediately fall back down. My legs are wobbly. If only I had something to hold on to. Then I remember something. My keychain. It has a mini flashlight. I reach down into the left pocket of my jeans and grab it. I switch it on and glance around with little light I have. At first, I am confused. I see that I am in a wide area with rocks. Then I remember, I was walking with a few friends in caves. I must have slipped. Looking up, I see a hole. No wonder I hurt, that’s far up there. My mom is probably scared to death. I was supposed to be home in time for supper.
With the light guiding me, I crawl towards one of the rocks. Temporarily, I shut the light off long enough to hold on to the rock while standing up. I lean against this rock. Now I understand why I am cold and why it’s so dark. I switch the little light on again. I glance around as best as I can. Well, with light I feel a little better. My legs don’t feel as wobbly. I just need to try to think. There are what looks like tunnels going in both directions from where I am standing. But which one leads out?
Suddenly, a terrifying thought occurred. What if the group doesn’t realize I’m missing? Don’t be silly. Sara will know. She’s your best friend. She will come back for you. I just have to wait. But for how long? It’s getting cold and it’s dark. It has to be late. I tell myself to calm down. I figure I better find a way out.
I cautiously walk away from the rock, letting my light guide me again. I only hope my light doesn’t give out.. I walk toward one of the tunnels. The sound of the trickling water seems to be getting louder. The thought of something to drink empowers me. I continue to walk in that direction. Finally I see the source. I see a small waterfall. I rush over to the trickle and, after putting the flashlight down on the ground with the light facing towards the fall, I hold my hands in a cup-like fashion under the waterfall. It feels very cold. I take a sip. I almost fall down due to the relief of the water inside my mouth. I can’t get enough of it. After a while, I realize I better get going. I pick the flashlight up after drying my hands off on my pants. I decide to continue along through this tunnel. Hopefully, it’s the one out. My legs hurt but they are tolerable. I hold on to the tunnel wall. It feels slimy against my left hand, but I continue to lean against it.
After a few steps, I come to a fork in the tunnel. I choose the right tunnel and continue along my way. So far, my light hasn’t given out. A shiver travels up my spine. I can feel goose bumps along my arms. I stop and lean against the wall. My legs feel worn out. Why? I haven’t been walking very long. I make myself continue further.
As I walk, I come to what seems like a big underground room. I hear flapping sounds echoing off the walls. Fear rushes through me as I realize what that sound is. BATS! I move the flashlight up and see thousands of them. Quickly, I move the light back down. Don’t panic. Just walk forward. The other entrance isn’t far. You will be out soon. I can feel wind on my face as a bat flaps by my face. My heart races. Before long, I arrive at the other end. With relief, I run out of the big room. I keep running, but suddenly, I feel a sharp pain in my leg and I fall flat on my face. It takes a few seconds to get my bearings together. I sit up and my left leg starts to throb. Holding the flashlight in my mouth, I roll my pant leg up and see a deep cut. Blood is running down my leg. Before panicking, I use the flashlight to look at the source. A big boulder. I look closely by nudging myself across the small space. I see a sharp part sticking out. It has a dark substance. My blood. Groaning, I scoot back toward the stone wall and lean back. Closing my eyes, I try to focus on something else to stop the pain. But before I do, I hear something. Sitting up, I strain to hear. A voice.
“Emily?” It’s Sara! She came back. But can she hear me?
“I’m here!” I hear my voice echo through the cave.
“Where are you?”
“I’m coming!” I shout. I didn’t walk very far. I struggle to stand. Pain is throbbing through my leg. Once standing, I wobble to the other side of the tunnel and lean against the wall to my left. I take a few steps. Then I scream! The pain is too much.
“What’s wrong?” Sara calls down.
“I have a deep cut. It is hurting a lot,” I answer, and I know I have to continue.
“Linda, call an ambulance,” Sara talks to someone else.
“Who’s there?” I ask.
“It’s me and Linda. We aren’t too far from the cave opening. She’s going to call on her cell phone,” Sara’s voice seems to be getting closer. I force myself to walk through the big room again. I turn the light off and carefully walk through the room. I can feel my skin rise with goose bumps as I imagine the bats. But before long, I sense the bats behind me. I turn the little flashlight on and see that I am, indeed, out of the big room. I continue on.
“Are you still there?” I start to panic. It’s been quiet.
“Of course! I just left to get the rope we brought.” I walk past the waterfall. My mouth feels so dry again. Finally, I am back at the spot I was at to begin with. Glancing up, a light is shone on my face. “Oh, sorry,” Sara moves the flashlight she is holding to the side. “How did this happen?“
“Oh, I decided to take a detour,“ I have to keep my sense of humor.
“Ha ha. Ok, now, I’m throwing the rope down. An ambulance is on its way. Just grab it and hold on. Linda and I will pull you up. Luckily, you weigh less than both of us,” Sara whispers something. “Ok, Linda is tying the rope around a boulder up here. Grab on and hold tight.”
“Do you have a bottle of water up there?”
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