She threw her head back and let out the sob she was holding in her chest. Her face, her back, her pride hurt, and now she was going to die. Worst of all she was going to die alone. With the liquid that sloshed around her knees and flooded the darkness around her she was sure Luther had swam away.
Overwhelmed she let out a nasty scream that died on the hoarse cords of her throat. The walls around her echoed and shook in response causing her to lose her footing. More liquid rose or she thought it had when she fell and it washed across her chin. Rushing to stand, her eyes sprang wide again in the dark. After several moments of frozen fear, she managed to loosen her muscles and ready herself for another attempt at climbing. If the walls were constricting with tremors, there was no way she was going to stay put. She would have used her original trail, aiming upward, always upward if not for the dull glow of light that shown like a blemish on the blanket of black walls.
A surge of everlasting hope sent a wave of adrenaline through her veins. If there was light, even the faintest glimmer, then there was a way out just as surely as there had been a way in. She slid her boots along the mud that settled beneath the water around her and carefully followed after the light. The beacon flickered and faltered several times sending her pulse into erratic beats.
She couldn’t lose the light even that small patch of it. She was far away from the walls of the well now at least she believed she was, having crawled beneath a barrier that she hadn’t known had an opening. It had yielded view to the light in the first place. Now she was out of the well, having gone several hundred steps upward and to her right.
Charis continued to stumble as the slick ground beneath her shifted. A gust of foul, hot, moist wind invaded her nostrils and forced her to gag. She covered her nose with her arm and struggled again to keep her balance. It was no use. Down she went, splashing in the water that stung against the cuts on her exposed skin and fumbling upon the ground beneath her that sent her equilibrium into a violent spiral.
She sent up a prayer for mercy, a practice that was long sense foreign to her, begging the God of creation that this foul place would not be her tomb. What a sorrowful thing to die alone with no one to attend her funeral.