Blazing pinpoints of brilliant light like searing sparks from a sparkler lit up her darkness. Nausea washed over her as she resisted the compulsion to be sick and her head throbbed in the claustrophobic stillness as she emerged from her anaesthetic induced slumber. Warily she began to assess her situation. The darkness was so complete it caused her to question whether or not she had been rendered blind. The icy fingers of panic clawed at her consciousness as the pounding of her heart filled her ears. It was as if all her thought processes were swimming in a sea of treacle. The foul air was suffocating as she struggled to think clearly while every muscle in her body cried out for oxygen. Powdery dust filled her nostrils and coated her throat choking her. She fought the urge to cry out for help or even cough and sneeze fearing that someone would hear and realize she was conscious before she had an opportunity to reconnoitre and formulate a plan for escape.
She lay on her back on a flabby, overstuffed mattress filled with lumps, some of which moved, on a sagging bed that creaked every time she made the slightest movement. She was acutely aware of things unseen gently landing on her and creeping over her. Groping about inch by inch in the blackness she found nothing but empty air within arm’s reach.
The pinwheels and nausea eased as she lay in the terrifying darkness. Listening intently she could hear subtle sounds of movement in the darkness. Cautiously re-positioning to an upright sitting position, bracing herself she swung her feet from the bed gingerly lowering them to the floor. A new fear suddenly gripping her as the floor beneath her feet began to stir and writhe causing her to recoil, retreating to the bed. She didn’t know which was worse being subjected to unidentified creepy-crawlies dropping on her and creeping all over her or the unknown horror that awaited her on the floor surrounding the bed. She remained motionless in her blindness as visions of Bartholomew exploding through the door to her prison, sweeping her up in his powerful arms and transporting her to a safe haven, manifested themselves in her fevered imagination.
Marsha’s reverie was rudely interrupted when something thumped down on her shoulder and proceeded to crawl up her neck. Reacting in terror she brushed frantically at the new horror sending it scuttling across the room. Marshalling all her resolve she lowered her feet once more to the living carpet below. Shuddering as once again the indescribable assault of creatures invisible in the utter darkness started immediately swarming over her feet and ankles, squirming and crunching like potato crisps with each disturbing step.
Taking two tentative steps with arms outstretched she encountered a wall. Sliding left she ran her hands over the surface searching for an opening, a crack or a weak spot, anything she could exploit in her quest for freedom. Within a few repulsive steps she reached the end of the wall and finding nothing made the turn to continue examining her prison. It was at that moment that something very big could be heard and felt moving on the other side of the wall. Sliding her fingers along the wall as she went she came upon a vertical edge and tracing its perimeter discovered it was a door and it was locked. Then the door began to throb with a deep, guttural rumbling sound as if something powerful and angry stood sentinel, waiting.
A VERY timely read.