The Amaze

Anand couldn’t fight free. His legs were stuck to the grass. He lay face down on the grass. He was breathing hard, recovering from his exertions. He lay still, letting the mud and grass cool him off. The earth below him shook. It was on the prowl and he didn’t know how much time he had.

Taking a deep breath, he pulled his right foot up. But it wouldn’t budge. So he tried his left leg. That too wouldn’t budge. He decided to change his position. Twisting himself, he sat up. His legs were crossed and his feet stayed stuck. He tried to figure out where It was. He couldn’t hear it, so he guessed it had moved away. Gently, he began to tease his right foot free. When it slid off the grass, he breathed a sigh of relief. He turned his attention to his other foot. Once again, he gently tugged at it until he had worked it free.

He scrambled to his feet and made his way down the maze. He came to a four-way junction. He waited and listened. He had to make a choice – the route that took him closer to the exit or the one that took him further from It.

Finally he chose to do neither and moved straight on ahead. The bushes began to close in on him. It was very dense and very dark. He guessed that this part was denser because It never came through here much. The thought made him feel safer and be began to run at a gentle pace. At some point he would have to turn right. That was the only way he was going to get out. But for now, he was fine with just keeping a distance between It and him.

Sweat was beginning to pour down his face. For some reason, the sweat poured down his face and went down to the back of his neck. It didn’t flow straight down. He could feel the wetness spread down his t-shirt at the back. A chill was spreading down his spine. He shivered and continued to sweat. He felt the ground beneath him rumble. He broke into a full run. He ran headlong into the path. At the first T-junction, he turned right and kept running. The ground was shaking violently now. He was finding it hard to keep his footing. But he knew he couldn’t stop. It would run him down. So he pushed himself harder. His breath was coming hard now. He was taking shorter breaths. His body screamed for oxygen. It screamed for rest. But that was out of the question, so he continued to run.

Then it happened. His feet got stuck. His momentum threw him forward and down. He landed with a thud.

Anand couldn’t fight free. His legs were stuck to the grass. He lay face down on the grass. He was breathing hard, recovering from his exertions. He lay still, letting the mud and grass cool him off. The earth below him shook. It was on the prowl and he didn’t know how much time he had.

Taking a deep breath…

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