spin the gears

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Status: In Progress  |  Genre: Fantasy  |  House: Booksie Classic

Submitted: August 20, 2016

A A A | A A A

Submitted: August 17, 2016



It is barely the break of dawn, and yet I can already feel the vibrations of the old, rusty gears turning - pulling along the tough, corded ropes. These fibres which were previously slack, now stealthily snake their way up my body, coiling around each limb as they gradually become taut. What to some may seem to be the final stage, for me it is only just getting under way.

Eyes closed, I am dragged violently across the hard stone floor. Every crack, every uneven edge, sends stinging pain rippling along my skin. Throughout this agonising journey there is no struggle: the only sounds come from the few terse breaths that manage to escape my lips. In the back of my mind, I already know the outcome, I know where I am being sent.

As I am thinking this, the pulling sensations begin to weaken, and the loud screeching of cogwheels can be heard coming from deep underground. With a final creak, the ropes fall loose around me before slithering away from sight, swallowed by hungry crevices.

Hoisting myself onto my elbows I squint in the early half light. I have been left inside a chilly, stone room. Raising a hand slowly, I warm it in the rays cast from thin slits in the walls. Looking ahead, in the direction I was brought over, I see the shadowy shape of a person ambling down a flight of steps. The rope operator. Over their head is a crumpled brown paper bag, obscuring all facial features. Not that it matters - I know who it is. I restrain myself from calling out, however. No reason to… their time will come.

Getting to my feet, I face away from the figure, towards the other end of the room. And there it is: a heavy set black and golden door, fixed in stone. Immediately my eyes become glued to this behemoth: noticing the tentacles of gold which twist and twirl across its obsidian surface. My mind is assaulted by a swathe of sound and smells which seem to pursue me as they filter in from beyond the door. By this time I am directly in front of its pulsating exterior. I can only watch as a hand - my hand - rises to press itself against the gateway. It swells once and then I fall past…  

Pure ecstasy rushes through me. Surrounding me are a rainbow of smiles and laughter; exotic tastes and smells. My body shudders as powerful waves crash into me. I let the excitement pull me along...

Smack! I hit the ground hard as I am sent sprawling. After a few moments I realise I have been spat out from the portal, like bitter dregs of coffee. Mind and body aching, I stumble towards the steps I witnessed the operator use earlier. Hesitantly I climb the icy stone.

At the top is another floor. Sweeping my gaze to each side I make out a small compartment in the centre of the space, as well as a cavity the length of my arm, peeking out from the ground.

With sluggish movements, I approach the centre. Before entering the cubicle, I bend down to reach into the hole, pulling free a brown paper bag. Inside the central compartment I am met by an array of levers.

It is my turn to spin the gears.


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