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Tales from The Vacuous Breach pt3
The man stepped through the door and a few steps after stepping into the cold nothing he heard the door close and seal behind him. He turned to stare at it but only for a moment. Flailing for some understanding of the situation he found himself in, but his introspection was cut short by a voice inside his helmet it sounded like one of the faceless men that worked for this ominous figure that had him doing his dirty work.
“I advise that you continue and get the job done post haste, You are within the lights but only so much so. The outside is an inhospitable place.” and the voice was gone as quickly and mysteriously as it came.
“What’s with the freaks in a fancy suits using such big words?” the man though as he began to trudge forward, though the ground was flat it was still slow going. Even if not for the bulk of the suit he thought it would end up feeling like moving in soup. Though nothing impeded his movement.
“Why’ve I never heard of a place like this.” he wondered too himself as he walked, he could tell he would need to walk a while longer before he reached the last light. “Darkest place I’ve ever seen.” he mused looking up, for a moment. The feeling was odd. Felt like being underground, but no roof above him, but didn’t feel like sky either…just felt like it went one and on and on. It felt crushing, not physically but made him feel like something smaller than he could imagine. The longer he looked at the darkness the less it felt like just ‘the dark’ it felt big, and alive and like it coated everything. “I need to hurry this up.” he thought as a shiver crawled down his back, and he pushed himself with more haste.
As he reached the last light after several minutes of walking he stopped to pick up the rope, and taking a light from the pack making sure it was situated the right way so he’d not have to drive it into the ground again he thought he saw something in the dark. It was so hard to tell though, as he looked harder he saw something. Whatever it was, was only slightly less black than the world around it. Was it looking at him? “I’d be easy to see,” he thought. “Standing in the light like this.”
At the moment that thought crossed his mind the thing moved slightly west of where it started, but when it moved, if it could be called that it just seemed to pull and stretch itself into the new place. Jittering and shifting, like he wasn’t meant to see it move, like it was made to move between blinks of the eye.
“What is that?” his mind raced for an answer, it was bigger than a wolf, but its shape was all off, thinking too hard about it even a second after seeing it, shot jabs of pain like needles in his mind.
With the realisation that spurred the man to work faster. “There were only twelve lights to place, easy.” he told himself, but he kept an eye out for more movement. Reaching the end of the light he pushed the Gold end into the fitting then sank the light in the ground. The ground under his feet was as weird as anything here. While walking it felt harder and smoother than marble but sinking the spike into the ground it felt like soft clay. Once it was seated firmly in the ground the light came to life, washing a small circle of light. The murky green glow widened a bit after the light had a moment to warm up. The man plugged in a silver end to the silver slot and moved on, placing light after light.
In fleeting moments in the corners of his vision he thought he saw movements, some of the strange dog-like shapes, some more human. But none even close to what they appeared or his mind tried to tell them they were. Regardless, the man continued, “The sooner I finish the sooner I can get out of this place.” He kept telling himself as he walked.
Reaching the final light, the man took a step forward and nearly missed it. A place where the light wouldn’t touch. The circle was widely lit besides a small perfectly cut square of space under his feet, or rather where his foot nearly was, but the sudden stop and struggle to force his weight backwards the light slipped from his hand and fell from his grasp. “Well…” he thought, “I got most of them.” he told himself as he turned to go back, as he pulled the device from his belt to tell them he was done and heading back something snagged his left shoulder, it felt like a large hand. The man turned his head to see a long thin jet black arm reaching from the dark hand snapped onto his shoulder but the arm was…smoking? Why was it smoking? But before the thought could take hold the man was pulled just outside the lights safely and stood face to face with a monster.
Pressing its face nearly against the glass of his protective helmet. It screamed a cacophonous high pitched scream that felt like it was in his head and not his ears. As it did it’s mouth seemed to form for this purpose only as it tore across its face in a wide ear to ear maw. The man managed but just so to wrench himself free falling back into the light he watched the thing stalk back and forth a few times before running off.
The man sat wide eyed for a few moments before realising where he still was. Pulling out the device he whispered into it “I’m coming back…”
“Good.” one of the tinny voices said, “Did you place all of the lights?”
But the man’s response never came.