Thursday, February 11, 2010

Caves at Midday

Before you is a dark opening in the rock where the strong midday sun doesn't reach. In your hands you hold a lit lantern which casts no light in this brighter world.

With the lantern held out in front you enter the cave. The heat of the day is immediately gone, replaced by a damp chill. Your eyes take a moment to adjust.

The floor of the cave is smooth, curving up to meet walls just as smooth. From the roof hang stalactites which, some so low you need to duck. The tunnel begins to twist and turn and soon the light of outside is lost totally.

The lantern struggles to pierce the darkness ahead and behind. The stalactites become looming shadows and the walls seem to leap out at you in the flickering light.

You stop, three black openings have appeared in front of you. Your lantern refuses to light them, refuses to give you a clue as to which way is best.

After a moment of indecision you choose a direction and push forwards once more. As you walk you realise that you do not know how long you have been in the caves; it could have been minutes or even hours. As a light appears before you, you realise you will soon find out.

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