Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Without You - Chapter 20: Thump

How long
Must I linger
Stay with me
Awhile longer

I let go
Thoughts of you
Distant murmurs
Only the thumping

What is that
That rips me
From my dreams
I continue on
The desperate sounds
Getting farther
And farther
A few more steps
And then I see it
The gateway
To all I’d hoped for

I shuffle my feet
My stagger
A bit briefer
I reach the doors
Running my hands
Over cold steel

To one side
A keypad
With a black recess
I search the journal
Only crude maps
Scribbled over loose paper
Business cards
A post card
But no keycard
I bang my fist
Against the wall

The doors slide open
I stand there
My prayers
Have been answered
I barely slip through
Before the doors
Shut behind me
Keep it together
You’re almost there

I step inside
It’s small
No more
Than ten feet across
I continue to the far wall
I’m in some sort of mid-room
Standing between the bunker
And the world I know
But there’s no door
Not on any of the walls
Except the one I came in
Just an empty storage locker
I slam my fist again
But this time
The heavens do not answer
Knew I shouldn’t get my hopes up
Too soon

A medical kit
In the far corner of the room
Seems useless now
But I open it anyways
Even a Twinkie
Bet it’s still fresh
If anything could survive
It’s Twinkies
And cockroaches
And my money’s on the Twinkies

I trip over a crowbar
Lying on the floor
Feels much better
In my hands
I swing
Bounce it off the wall
Not my companion
For some time now
I pick it up
With both hands
To get to the bottom of this

I retrace my steps
Trying not to let my mind
Wander too far
It’s what got me in trouble
In the first place
If I’m going to find you
I must be strong
For both of us

I follow the sound
Spotting the door this time
Hidden in a shadow
There’s no keypad
No lock
Banging my fist
Doesn’t do any good
I should use my head this time

With my oversized can-opener
I force the door open
Lights snap on
As I step inside
A crude dim chasm
Parts of a helicopter
To one side
No way that bird will fly

A round door overhead
Even if I could open it
How would I get there?
One thing at a time
One thing at a time

The pounding intensifies
I call
But there’s no answer
Just the rapping of metal
Most likely a trap
Cannot risk it
Cannot risk
Losing you

A silver switch
On the adjacent wall
Sparks my curiosity
I look up again
And conclude
Most likely
It’s for the doorway
My best
And only
Way out

Without another thought
I flip the switch
But the portal
Does not budge
I try again
Still nothing
Probably a problem
With the wiring

And as I step aside
The metal door bursts open
And something thunders towards me
On eight giant legs

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