#FiveSentenceFiction: Trust

Interstices

I did not know the length of the labyrinth, only that it led to that gate, and the little platform, just wide enough for two feet, facing the immense sky, and a sheer vertical drop of several hundred meters high above the valley.

She had said to me, in another life it seemed, that she would lay the rope from the overhang, and that with my strong arms I could then reach the valley, right down the cliff, just taking the time not to exhaust my strength…

Now of course captivity had taken much of my energy away, the beatings, the hunger, the cold, still, I went for it, killed two guards in the silence of the night: this gave me just half an hour to reach the first gate, and run for my life through the labyrinth, using the little map she had given me, all those years back.

My lungs were burning as I heard the alarm resonating through the rocks and the thick doors: I thought my heart would explode, and now I could hear the roar of the mastiffs they had unleashed, a last lap to the gate in front of me…

The clear air took my remaining breath away: in front of me the abyss, I had to believe, had to hold on the edge and feel for the rope, behind me was death – I let myself slowly down, holding to the ledge – and the rope was there…

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