I could keep on running. I could fool the dogs staying in the stream but that would mean going into the tunnel. How old is it? Where does it come out? Would I even be able to come out the other side? I haven’t been here before, I don’t know the area, and I want to get out of this water. It’s getting colder and I’m soaking wet.
I hear them coming, those howling, high pitched whines when they’ve found my scent. They’re closer. Should I keep going and brave the tunnel? It may have no other opening, it may be the entrance to a huge deep hole. Would I be able to breathe in there, are there snakes?
If I go into the tunnel and they follow. . .if there’s no other opening, I’ll be trapped! Their barks are louder, pretty soon they’ll see me and then I’m caught. The tunnel is so dark, covered in moss, it will be wet and cold there, too. I have no choice. At least if the water masks my scent, I have a chance. There’s no chance on the open bank.
I’m going in, my feet sink slightly. I feel the air and the water are much colder here. I can’t see anything but it will take time for my eyes to adjust. I feel a shiver up my legs traveling up my spine. Is it a shiver? Or is it something. . .oh my God, I can feel it! It’s not a shiver, it’s a vine or an arm or a snake, what the hell is it? It’s wrapping around me. It’s choking me. I barely hear the dogs outside. I’m being dragged down, down and I feel a slimy presence engulfing me. I can hardly breathe. I should have stayed out of here. I should have. . .
Outside the tunnels, the dogs were anxiously watching the entrance, howling and whining louder than ever before.