Click here to learn the back-story of The Cellar Journey and to catch up on parts you may have missed...
* * * * *
The water had risen to the point where I was forced to tread water. My muscles ached.
"I don't know how much longer I can take this," I thought to myself.
There was 2 feet of space remaining and only a few minutes before the room was completely full. It seemed drowning was going to be my fate, at least if this creature didn't kill me on the way. And then I saw it again, the creature swam by continuing to circle me. It was sleek in nature with exposed and menacing teeth. This was a creature designed to kill.
Each time it circled me, it got slightly closer, and it was only a matter of time before it attacked.
As I did everything I could to maintain my calm, it finally grazed me with its solid tail. There was nothing I could do to hold it together. I panicked and transformed into survival mode. I began hitting at it, splashing and moving abruptly to get it to go away.
All my activity made it worse as the creature began snapping at me.
A sharp pain pierced the back of my leg and shot up my spine.
"Ahhh..." Whatever it was, it bit me.
Blood was in the water and it was only a matter of minutes before the room filled up completely. An then I realized it. This creature was distracting me.
"I have to find a way out or I am dead."
Whether this creature was attacking me or not, I was getting out of here. With one last breath, I dove downward.
* * * * *
My vision was blurry and all of a sudden, I couldn't breath. Panic and the deepest fears flushed over me as I helplessly looked up.
Beep. Beep. Beep. The medical equipment began screeching.
The emergency room staff rushed into the room.
"Call the doctor in here STAT, we're losing him!" Nurse 1, yelled.
"His lungs are filling with fluid, he is going to drown!" Nurse 2, responded.
The panic overtook me and I began flailing and thrashing. Nurse 1 quickly grabbed my arms and held me down as she placed the oxygen mask on my face. Nurse 2 grabbed a thoracic catheter and quickly brought it towards me.
As the doctor quickly entered the room, he asked, "What's our status?"
Nurse 1 stated,"His lungs have been punctured and are filling with fluid. We have him on oxygen and are about to do an intercostal drain."
The doctor moved over to begin the process, and I began drifting out of consciousness until it all went black.
* * * * *
I blinked and looked around.
It was clear, I was underwater.
But why was there did I not have any desperation or fear to try and breathe? Hmm.... I could now breathe underwater.
Looking down, I noticed the wound where I had been bit. Whatever bit me caused me to change and it was growing. I seemed to still be human, but my skin was turning a dark color and webbing seemed to generate between my fingers. I pulled my arms back in a swimming motion as I moved downward.
I was still in the room with the bookshelf, but now it was all underwater. Debris was floating everywhere, but I could not see the creature which bit me.
I swam downward to grab my book and flashlight. I have must have dropped them after everything happened. I looked around and noticed the door I opened. It was wide open now and it seemed to be the next place I should go. I did not like this journey I was on.
Why wasn't there another way? Did I have to go forward?
Frustrated, I swam forward towards the door.