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stargate, DanielJackson

Week 14, Title: 'Twas in another lifetime

Posted on 2017.04.10 at 22:48
Tags: ,
Terrence runs his hand along the metal wall, holding his place in the dark. He’s heard the stories of course, of the tunnel monsters, but they only increase his urge to explore. He walks for an age, but the anticipation in his heart doesn’t dull. Fingers run sticky against cobwebs and a hollow whistle echoes through the place. There shouldn’t be sound here. He knows this. He keeps walking.

The sound continues, louder. Terrence begins to feel light-headed, has to breathe deeper to grasp a breath. It’s possibly a leak. The air-flow isn’t as well-maintained in these old disused tunnels. That’s all it is. He moves quicker, fingertips reaching, stretching out; seeking a door. A thought hums agitated through his mind: air-flow is maintained everywhere, anywhere a child or animal may stray. It’s probably just a lie, propaganda, there’s no way resources are used up on this dank place.

Except it doesn’t feel like a leak. It feels as though the air is being stolen from his lungs themselves.

He keeps moving; he has to keep moving. There has to be a door.

The whistling shrieks high and wild, blanketing the tunnel, lighting it up. He can feel it, burrowing through his ear canal. He can’t scream. He can’t even breathe.

He tries to run. But collapses to the floor. He scrabbles against the ground, fingernails in the dust. He scratches at his ears and head and chest. The whistling grows louder still. Stealing the sound from between his lips, stealing the breath from his lungs.

He fights, gasping emptily, and everything fades away.


Brett stares blankly, unimpressed.

Ari frowns. “What? You love that story.”

Brett rolls his eyes. “Maybe the first thousand times.”

Ari sighs. His baby brother seems to be growing up so fast, too fast. “I should tell you one of the old campfire tales. The ones they actually told around camp fires.”  

Brett’s face scrunches up. “What are camp fires?”

“People used to spend days outside, for fun. It was called camping. They would make a fire to keep them warm and sit around it and tell stories.”

“Weren’t they afraid the fire would use up all the air?”

Ari laughs. “They were outside silly! No shortage of air up there.”

“Oh.” Brett says, frowning.

Ari can sense the question forming and tries to think of how he can derail it. He’s seen pictures of forests and trees and sky-scrapers. But to tell the truth Ari doesn’t understand the concept of outside much better than Brett. He’s still intent on keeping the all-knowing big brother ruse for as long as he can though.

Ari puts on granddads voice and mimics, “No one tells the old ones anymore. Vampires don’t make sense without t’sun. Werewolves don’t make sense without t’moon.”

Brett laughs. “Outside is scary.”

Ari grins, keeping character, “Well if you’d told ‘em people would end up living like this: it’d be the scariest story of them all.”  


(Deleted comment)
swirlsofblue at 2017-04-11 16:30 (UTC) (Link)
Thank you :). Yeah, it's more believable than I want to it be too.
i_17bingo at 2017-04-11 13:17 (UTC) (Link)
This is heartbreaking. I really liked how you can put together the relative ages of the characters through the dialogue, as well as the setting.
swirlsofblue at 2017-04-11 16:31 (UTC) (Link)
Thank you, glad you liked the way I made their ages apparent, I was hoping that would work :)
rayaso at 2017-04-11 14:52 (UTC) (Link)
You did a great job beginning with a possible monster in the tunnel to a monstrous future with no outside. I did not expect the switch -- great job!
swirlsofblue at 2017-04-11 16:31 (UTC) (Link)
Thank you, glad you liked it :).
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors
halfshellvenus at 2017-04-12 20:06 (UTC) (Link)
Living underground for possibly generations, always afraid of running out of air (maybe what's left above is poisonous now?) WOULD be a scary existence.

Kind of like living in a coffin, wondering how long you'll last. :O
swirlsofblue at 2017-04-13 16:32 (UTC) (Link)
Thank you :).

IKR, ooh yes brilliant coffin analogy.
bewize at 2017-04-14 14:18 (UTC) (Link)
Awesome vignette!
swirlsofblue at 2017-04-14 14:58 (UTC) (Link)
Thank you, glad you liked it :)
Shadow Wolf Byrd
shadowwolf13 at 2017-04-14 15:16 (UTC) (Link)
Creepy! :)
swirlsofblue at 2017-04-14 15:28 (UTC) (Link)
Thank you :)
d0gs at 2017-04-14 17:46 (UTC) (Link)
this was such a well written piece and so sad!
swirlsofblue at 2017-04-14 18:02 (UTC) (Link)
Thank you :)
mamas_minion at 2017-04-14 21:45 (UTC) (Link)
Brilliant tale, I just hope your version of the future never comes to pass.
swirlsofblue at 2017-04-15 06:53 (UTC) (Link)
Thank you :). So do I.
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