Welcome to my part in the Choose Your Own Adventure Bloghop! If this is your first stop, please click the image below to go to the beginning and start there. Enjoy!
Your heart pounds in your ears and you struggle to lift your leaden limbs. After the weightlessness of the water, gravity feels twice as strong as it used to. You can feel sweat beading on your brow by the time you have settled your feet on the icy floor and pushed yourself upright, but you press on, forcing yourself to your feet and off of the cold stone table despite the sweat dripping down your face and making your eyes burn.
The creature nods at you in what you can only imagine is supposed to be a reassuring gesture, and beckons once more towards the tank room. Its wordless, melodious song seems to swell about you and push you on. Your feet begin to move of their own volition, closer and closer to the room that holds your beloved.
You cast your eyes about the dimly lit room, desperate for some idea of how to fix this, and your gaze settles heavily on what appears to be a small metal stool beside the table. Its three legs end in heavy stone casters, perfect for knocking the creature unconscious long enough for you to stage your rescue.
But your body betrays you, your steps taking you towards the door despite your mind screaming at them to stop. You try to tell your feet to cease their movement, to turn to the left and return to the table, commanding your arms to rise and your hands to grasp the seat of the stool and swing it at the creature with all the might your exhausted muscles have left. But still, you walk, the cold of the floor biting into the soles of your feet with every step, the creature’s lilting song fills your ears, seeps into your mind, and soon, all thoughts eke away but for the single, dogged desire to enter the tank room and step inside the empty vessel inscribed with your name.
There is a sudden commotion of panicked whale calls outside of the pyramid, and in its surprise, the creature ceases its song for several moments. All at once, your thoughts rush back in, and your body slumps. It takes all you have to remain on your feet, your limbs once more feeling full of lead as you deliberately turn and reach for the stool. It is only once your fingers have brushed the steel legs, the cold sending a jolt of clarity up your arms and straight to your mind, that the creature turns its attention back to you.
But it is too late. Before the creature can begin its song again, you muster all the strength that remains within you and you swing the stool out in a wild, precariously-aimed arc. For a moment, it looks as if your blow will not land, but the last of the casters connects solidly with the creature’s face. Unable to support the weight of the stool any longer, you let it fall, and with mounting satisfaction, you watch the creature before you crumple to the floor with it.
You turn back to the tank room and force your feet to move, closing the distance between you and your beloved in several shaky, uneven steps. You fall against the tank, completely drained and unsure how you’re going to save your beloved. As you slide to the floor, you search for a knob or a button in hopes that there will be a simple way to open the tank.
Then you see it: there beneath your beloved’s name is a locking panel much like the one on the door of the pyramid. You wrack your brain for the order of the symbols the ghostly apparition of your beloved touched on your descent, and from the depths of your mind, the glowing symbols float forth as ghostly as your beloved first appeared to you.
With trembling fingers, you touch the symbols on the panel. With each subsequent entry, your beloved jerks as if pulled by phantom strings like some overgrown puppet. Dread grows, cold and heavy, in the pit of your stomach, as your finger hovers over the last symbol. What if it doesn’t work? What if it harms your beloved?
You close your eyes and touch the symbol, bracing for whatever may happen. There is a great sound of water being sucked down a drain, and a soft hiss. You hear your beloved gasp and suck in great lungfuls of air and dare to look up. And there stands your beloved, shivering and dripping with the sickly green liquid.
“You came for me,” your beloved says.
“I will always come for you.”
And you begin to plot your escape. That will be another adventure entirely.