A gold ring glowed in a shroud of obsidian rocks, and the liquid inside moved like raindrops on a pond. Charley continued to run as she about pulled Drake’s arm out of the socket. Drake couldn’t take his eyes off the mysterious ring, but Charley’s next tug shook his foundation. The world came into focus, and Drake could hear Charley’s screams.
“Drake, we need to leave!” Charley yelled. “Look at the grass.”
Charley wasn’t looking at the grass, but instead, she kept her gaze back towards the bunker. Why couldn’t she have seen the value of the bunker until now? Drake saw the dead grass below the floating rock and fluid ring. The obsidian remained undisturbed by the gold and black liquid as it passed orbited the ring. The once steady appearance of gold raindrops accelerated, and that’s when Drake found his reason to run. Black grass grew out in a direct line towards Drake and Charley.
Pulled out of the haze of curiosity, Drake ran faster. As he kept pace with Charley, the path of dead grass shot past them. The thin line started to thicken, and Drake imagined some invisible toxin growing out from the path. Drake tugged Charley to the left, even though it would take them away from the bunker. The narrow path shot left as if to mirror their movements. Drake swore under his breath. How do you escape something you can’t see?
“We need to get to the river,” Charley said.
“What?” Drake asked.
“The river,” Charley said, a slight tremor in her voice, “I think it’s feeding off the grass to keep following us. Maybe we can lose it at the water.”
“It’s not a bloodhound,” Drake replied.
But he saw the truth that Charley wasn’t saying. Their current plan to run towards the bunker wouldn’t work, and it was time to try something else.
“Do you have a better idea?” Charley snapped.
Drake shook his head and then tried to remember where the closest river ran near the bunker. Yet, for the first time, Drake felt disoriented. Charley started to pull, and Drake followed. If she brought up the idea, then she already knows where to go. Drake fought the pride that told him that he needed to be the one taking the lead. Drake looked at Charley with eyes that hadn’t seen such fear in a long time and couldn’t believe how beautiful she looked at that moment. Even with the sweat glistening in her blonde hair, and her hazel eyes full of dread, Drake saw something he couldn’t remember seeing for a long time. The rumble of a river sounded nearby, and it threw Drake off for a moment because the closest river was usually only a trickling stream. Drake looked up just in time to see the wet rock that Charley slipped on before she fell and pulled Drake into the raging river.