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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Action and Adventure  |  House: Booksie Classic
If you can just find a way to keep going you might just make it!

Submitted: February 12, 2017

A A A | A A A

Submitted: February 12, 2017





Your right foot hits the first plank of the bridge and you feel the whole structure lurch sideways. You can’t afford to think, to slow, so you follow with your left foot, grabbing hold of the rope handrails as you go. You can’t help noticing as you sway violently from side to side that some of the planks look rotten – dangerously so.


Should you slow down, make an effort to miss landing on those? If you were travelling at not much more than a walking pace you could spend a bit of time seeking out the safest path. But that is not going to work. Even as you consider it, you hear another pair of boots hitting the bridge, and you have to force your legs to move even faster. The bridge is lurching in all directions now, the creaks and groans it is emitting are alarming but you have to turn a deaf ear to them and pound onwards.


At last the bridge ends and you are back on solid ground. You dare not allow yourself to slow. Those footsteps, you hear, are gaining on you! Onwards you run up a gentle rise that leads straight towards a rock face. There does not appear to be any way around it so while you are approaching you search for footholds, for handhold, for any way of gaining leverage. There are a few obvious cracks in the rock. You head towards the cracks, hitting the rock painfully before starting that upward climb. Hand over hand, foot over foot, you painstakingly make your way to the top, trying to ignore the sound of heavy breathing coming from beneath you.


And what do you find when you get to the top? A gap, only about a foot in front of you. You could have so easily have plunged straight over the edge. It is a deep drop, with sharp rocks protruding up towards you. There is another piece of flat land on the other side, but to cross the chasm you are going to have to trust the rope that stretches away across the gap at the level of your feet.


Don’t think, just move. Thinking will lead to paralysis, to defeat. You lower yourself down to the ground, reach out your arms to grasp the rope, push your body forward.....and drop! The jolt on your shoulders, your arms, your wrists is agonizing. And worse still, you realize the only way you can make progress is to let one arm at a time carry your full weight. It feels as though your shoulders are screaming, that they will become dislocated at any second. It is only pure adrenalin that allows you to carry on.


Your arms are throbbing with pain, shaking with the strain. And then you feel the rope become more taut. You can feel judders run through it that do not match your hand movements. Someone else is on the rope with you. You are going to have to hurry.


Finally reaching the end of the rope you find that your arms are shaking so violently that they can barely help you in steadying yourself, in getting yourself back up on to your feet. A steep hillside drop is in front of you; simple compared to what you have been through, you think. But that thought soon evaporates when you feel the surface moving downwards, trying to drag your feet from underneath you. You can’t stay standing, but hit the stones, sliding most of the way on your back. From your prone position you can almost catch a glimpse of your pursuers.


At last reaching the bottom of the slope, you are confronted by a tunnel. Too low to enter standing at your full height, you crouch down. It is hard to run in such a position but it is about to get even worse as your head bumps against a dip in the tunnels ceiling. The gap is too tight now to be able to get through apart from by crawling.


A whoop sounds behind you so you flatten yourself down and claw your way forwards. The gap is now so narrow you can barely pass through it at all, it is like trying to make your way through a stone tube. It is cold, painful, hard to progress forward through. Hopefully your pursuers are finding the going as tough. At least they are quiet now.


And then the tunnel ends. Your eyes struggle for a moment, trying to adapt to the daylight. A wall is in front of you. You can’t run any more, but approach it at a painful jog. Your hands can just reach the top if you stretch. Digging your fingers in deep you start to pull yourself over but your arms rebel, scream out and refuse to support your weight.


The whooping is back, and it is coming at you in more than one voice. Again you fix your fingers to the top of the wall, walk your legs up and over, ignoring the rebellion of your arms. You are at the top, now you have to believe that you can make the jump back down to the ground.


Don’t look! Don’t think! You jump, your feet hit the ground but your ankles and knees will not hold you and you find yourself falling forward, barely missing the ground with your face. You won’t give up now though, you’ll force yourself that few remaining feet.


Your pursuers catch you up.


That was great, Dad! Can we go again?”

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