Chapter 18 - When Can I Relax?

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Corey. It was Corey!

"Corey!" I called through the bushes, but immediately smacked my hand across my mouth realising that I had just given anyone who has been hunting me. I didn't even take a look back at Corey. I had to run, I had to get to safety.

I lifted myself with great trouble out the almost unbreakable mud that had dried slightly and ran out of the 'cave'. I felt more weighed down with the mud drying onto my bum, but I kept running, no where to go but along the thick wall of plants.

The mini log in my leg was jiggling around, bringing it to bleed again, but I kept running. I could practically hear the attacker behind me. I could feel the blood soaking every leaf I tred on and started to loose my almost certain footing when I ran into mud. The thickest mud I had ever seen in my life. It was impossible to free my good leg, let alone my injured one.

I felt like screaming out to just let someone come and find me, maybe help, maybe kill but either way at least I could have a chance to maybe geet freed. Even if it was a miniscule chance. I opened my mouth, nothing came, again and again I tried, my dry tongue just flopping around like a dead seal in my mouth.

It was like one of those nightmares when you are getting chased and you just can't make a sound, not a even a grunt.

I started panicking, but found that only wasted my energy. I tried to calm myself. It was like trying to shut up a dibber-dobber in preschool. Impossible.

I felt very dizzy, it was just like a spider bite - only emotional, like it had bitten you inside.

I was numb, this time not from the cold, but from the stress I was putting on my body. My legs were like jelly.

Wait Hope. Stop thinking. Just... stop.

Good.

Now listen... breathe... in... out... in... out...in... There. That's better. Now, take a deep one... in... ... ... out... Brilliant. You do this now, lift.

There it was again. My fairy-godmother voice. It was like it came at the worst times for me, but helped me through.

I looked down. My feet still stuck in the mud. If only I had been wearing shoes then I could of just taken off my shoes, but no, of course, I had the worst of luck at all times.

Okay, here it goes. Calmly this time.

I took a deep breath, pushing out of my mind that there was someone following my trail of blood. When I exhaled I pushed all my energy to my core and leg muscles and pulled up my left leg. It seemed to move a little, the drying mud cracking away from my foot.

In a surge of power, my foot was released from the strong grip. I could hear my muscles give out a sigh. Only one more to go.

This one was easy, although not moving the stick more would be challenging.

I got my left foot in a secure position on a clump of dry mud where I could put a lot of weight on it without sinking down into the mud again.

I leaned over towards my left leg, my body leaning with me and taking my other foot with it. I was surprised at how easy it had been, it thought it was going to be harder.

I allowed myself a minute break so I could catch my breath and regain some energy. I decided to leave the few clumps of mud on the sole of my feet so it would give me some support and protection from the harsh grounds, even if it did slow me down a bit, my feet couldn't take much more battering.

59...60.

I had been counting up the seconds in my head and picked up the pace again, I didn't much like the idea of being beaten up again. I ran, pushing harder to reach the safety of the thick trees just ahead when I heard the footsteps.

I didn't dare look back, I wasn't willing to sacrifice a millisecond for a chance just to see an ugly, killer's face. I dashed for the trees, willing to get in the shelter of them.

I felt my shoulders lose strength as I willed my arms to pump as fast as my legs.

I had to reach the trees soon, soon or I am kissing myself goodbye...

I finally reached the darkness of the cluster of trees. My mouth begging for water. My throat coughing and gagging as I got furthur in the forest. I searched around for a bush or another vine cave to hide in, but there was no sign of any, just endless trees poking up from the ground not too far apart.

'I have to climb.' I thought to myself, but how with this leg? I slowed to a jog, looking for a tree that mightn't be too hard to climb, but would be tall enough to conceal me.

I did a round look while I ran, spotting one off to the left. I ran straight at it, hoping to use my remaining momentum to reach the first fork which was a little higher than my head.     

I ran right at the trunk. I had to make this or I can choose from:

1: Get killed by this... stalker.

Or

2: Death by tree trunk.

I decided both would be as bad as each other so I picked up my speed putting as much strain on my muscles as I could.

I was about a metre and a quater from the trunk and jumped, hoping I had judged the distance right.

My fingers scratched at the bark, my nails being torn up. I was desperately trying to get my legs up on the fork. I was puffed but refused to stop. I got a tight grip with my nails and hauled myself up, I had no clue where the strength came from but it was surprising me!

My shoulders reached the fork and I threw my upper body over it, winding me, but I continued pulling up, my hips eventually reached the fork, letting me sit there.

My mouth was feeling like someone had emptied a bag of sawdust into it, there was only a drop of moisture left.

After resting for a minute again i started climbing along the main trunk, eventually reaching the ones up furthur that could hold my weight, no one heavier. I was concealed in the brown leaves, listening to the wind rustle the leaves as I caught up on my lost breath. It was peaceful up sitting in another fork - secure from falling out, but not too low.

I sat up and leaned against the stronger limb with my back, smaller, slightly thinner limbs surrounding my sides would prevent me from falling. I had my left leg crossed and the one with the stick in it, lying out straight on the limb.

I kept an eagle eye out for the follower, but I was soon consumed by darkness as I lost consciousness.

Remembering Hope FindlayWhere stories live. Discover now