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Tuesday, November 13

Awfully Familiar Update

Eventually, the relative warmth of the fire and Jacko's labored breathing lulled me back to sleep. But my senses were no longer dulled by Modav dust when Black returned. I watched with growing anxiety as he oozed out of the darkness.

"All right my pet," said Black. He grabbed hold of my cage. "It's time to for you to run the Maze."

The wind whistled through the cage as Black swiftly carried me through darkened corridors speared by the occasional ray of sunlight. The sunlight became more and more infrequent, replaced by crackling torches. The air got colder. We were going underground.

Deeper and deeper we went. I caught a brief glimpse of a great maze covered by a tightly woven mesh. It was a vast network of twists and turns, all of it structured to create a labyrinth of seemingly endless complexity.

Black lowered the cage into the entrance of the maze.

He undid the latch to the cage and the opening yawned before me.

The corridor walls were splintered, wooden, and stained. Strange, dark stains patterend the stone floor. Above it all was the metal mesh. Every footstep of Black's shuddered throughout the maze, the sound echoing off of every surface despite the damp wood. Given the duration of the echo, the place must have been huge.

I didn't move.

"I knew you were smart," said Black with a wry laugh. "The wisest decision you could ever make is not get into the Maze in the first place. But life doesn't always give us such choices, so I'm afraid we'll have to give you some encouragement."

There was a high-pitched, rhythmic giggle from behind the cage. "Eh heheheh heh HEH heh!"

The sound burrowed through my stomach and curled into a hard knot.

"That'd be Hack. I'd start running if I were you."

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posted by Michael Tresca at 2:29 PM


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