Under Ground

Reads: 57  | Likes: 6  | Shelves: 3  | Comments: 7

More Details
Status: Finished  |  Genre: Young Adult  |  House: Booksie Classic

Submitted: May 16, 2018

A A A | A A A

Submitted: May 16, 2018

A A A

A A A


Under Ground

It’s hard work trudging through the rubble. These suits might offer protection from the germs that are floating free in the air, but it makes the sun’s unrelenting beating almost unbearable. I can feel the sweat trickling down my face, but the full face coverage means I have to leave it to drip.

The boots, although rugged and tough, are large, cumbersome. So much bigger than what I am used to, they tend to make me trip and stumble. Slow down! I can’t risk a tear in the suit; not here, not now.

It’s still a mystery for me why they want me here. I’m a virologist, one of the top in my field. Broken buildings, shattered cities; these are not my areas of expertise. And yet I was called here, ordered, I guess you could say; there has to be some reason for my presence.

Tom Grant, directly in front of me, beckons forward. We can’t really talk to each other out here so our communication is limited to gestures. I’m sure I can sense an urgency this time. Perhaps we’re nearing the point of this all. Not for the first time, I find myself hoping that it is worth my time.

More ruins ahead, but I can see stairs leading downwards. They have been partially cleared of fallen stone and concrete. There is enough space for us to make our way down them single file and Tom’s head gets lower in front of me. At least I know now why we had to bring the flash-lights.

This place must have been well-built, with reinforced walls and floors. As we go further below ground level the amount of damage becomes less. Another staircase, this one looking like it had hardly been touched by the blast. I’m not too keen on taking the stairs; the boots and the suit are messing with my balance. I put out a hand to the wall to steady myself before I bring both Tom and myself into a very rapid descent.

Four flights of stairs down and we end up in a corridor. There is something coldly clinical about it; the bare concrete walls and the metal doors have an ominous feel to them. This is only increased by the fact that most of the doors do not have handles of any kind; but keypads or, in some cases, id readers.

Tom leads me down the corridor to the door at the far end. Even through my biohazard hood I can hear the hollow echoes of our footsteps. He motions me to stay still, and clumsily he types in numbers. Will the key-pad even work? To my surprise the door slides silently open and allows us entrance. Not far though, because there is another door, card-operated, almost right in front of us.

He turns to me, Tom does, and motions a question. I am to check that my suit is still secure, no gaps, no tears, no air-holes before we go any further. We check each other’s backs. What have they got in here? Something highly virulent, it must be. Whatever it is, if it was alive, must be dead by now. Maybe it's a biohazad leak that they need assessed.

I can’t get over the look of trepidation, almost total fear, on Tom’s face as he lifts up the card and the door begins to slide it’s way open.

It takes my eyes a moment to adjust to the lack of light. I go to turn on my flash-light but Tom vigorously shakes his head. I’ll need to give my eyes time to adjust then.

We are in some kind of laboratory; that becomes clear very quickly. No, not a laboratory at all, but an operating theatre. Look at the ceiling, that light! And underneath it a metal table on which sits a figure. This has to be a hoax though, or some crazy dream, for the figure has wings that sprout from it’s back.

As my eyes adjust a bit more to the gloom I can see the figure is sitting up clasping her knees. For she is a girl, a young woman....no, an angel? But they don’t exist! This whole thing must be a hallucination of some sort. I want to step closer but before I move my eyes are drawn to the far wall.

VIRUS’ in large letters, and some kind of symbol, intricately designed and painted. But where’s the paint? My eyes scan the floor, the surfaces, looking for some kind of drawing implement. All I see is one shiny scalpel with some of what looks like the same substance on the tip of it’s blade. Blood? But it’s black, like no blood I have ever seen before.

I sense a movement rather than see it. She knows we are here. Of course she does; the door opened to let us in. Why has she not moved? And how can she have survived down here for what must have been weeks? Don’t angels need to eat?

There are so many questions flooding through my mind that I simply don’t have the answer too. I sneak a look at Tom and am struck by the sheer terror on his face. I’d expected disbelief, wonder, even. I turn back towards the table and I’m pretty sure my face must now match his.

She’s looking at us, or rather facing us, for where her eyes should be there is nothing more than deep black holes that seem to be dragging me forwards. Her skin is mottled, dead. Like frost-bite that has gone so bad everything has died on the surface and beneath. Her lips are cracked and seeping; some kind of thick black liquid oozes from them and slowly makes it’s way down her chin.

I want to look away but I can’t. I can’t move either. And those black eyes of hers are drawing me ever further in, showing me flames, angels burning and dying in agony. I know that somehow we as a race are responsible and that we are being held to account. The heat is building; I feel like I am cooking inside my suit.

They are going to get their revenge. This is just the start of it. That is my last thought before feeling myself beginning to burn and seeing the flames licking their way up Tom’s suit too.


© Copyright 2018 hullabaloo22. All rights reserved.

Add Your Comments:

Comments

avatar

Author
Reply

avatar

Author
Reply

avatar

Author
Reply

avatar

Author
Reply

avatar

Author
Reply

avatar

Author
Reply

avatar

Author
Reply

More Young Adult Short Stories