Friday, July 22, 2016

The Waterfall - Flash Fiction

Meera opened her eyes only to be nearly blinded by the sun, while a faint drizzle touched her face at irregular intervals. Unaware of where she was, she could clearly hear the rush of the water nearby.

She shielded her eyes with her hand and attempted to get up. She couldn't remember her last dream, conversation or last anything. She couldn't even remember going to bed the previous night but was sure that was what she had done because it was what she'd been regularly doing for the past 20 years.

She stood up and arched her back. She would have heard the muscles crackling if it hadn't been for the sound of the gushing water.

Water? Where am I? She thought, as panic began to build up in her heart and body, while her brain quickly attempted to remember where she had been the night before and rationalise that she may still be in a dream.

Meera looked around but all she could see were rows upon rows of falling water. She couldn't see the top, but saw that she was stranded on a protruding rock near the middle of one of the waterfalls. To her right and left was more falling water. Below, she dared not look.

The rocky ground beneath her formed puddles here and there. Move slowly. Extra slowly. Do not panic. And above all do NOT look down! She told herself as she moved at a snail's pace with her back against the rocky mountain.

How did I get here? Her brain circled around that question, but another voice inside her – she wasn't sure if she were arguing with her brain or if her brain was arguing with itself and she was a victim to this vicious conversation – told her to forget that thought and focus on getting to higher or less slippery ground.

Slowly. Slowly. She continued. S-L-O-W-L-Y! Meera reprimanded herself when her foot slipped slightly on a particularly wet spot.

No multitasking today. Just one task, one step at a time, she continued to instruct her mind and body.

After what seemed like several hours – but was only several long minutes – she found herself standing between two waterfalls with a dry spot in between. The mountain was climbable in this part.

I hope first time would be the charm, she thought, giving herself a weak smile and weaker encouragement. She looked up, enjoying the sun drying her sweat, while cool water spraying from the falls cooled her warm body. The part of the mountain where she stood had an extended cliff allowing her to take a few steps forward.

As she looked up, her jaw dropped. The waterfalls were nothing like the multiples of Niagara Falls as she had thought they were.

Out of the endless mountain top protruded massive heads of what Meera thought looked like the Titans of Greek mythology she'd read about.

"WHOA!" She exclaimed aloud, her mouth remaining slightly agape.

From the mouths of these enormous heads came the waterfalls. The ridge seemed endless, with the rocky visages extending from the mountain frame itself.

After the surprise subsided slightly, Meera began to climb the mountain to reach higher ground or find any signs of life. I hope there aren't any fierce animals – unless I'm in a dream – still I don't want to be eaten, her brain raced with thoughts.

When she reached another protrusion that she can stand on, Meera attempted to look below, only to realise that the bottom was nowhere in sight and was replaced with thick layers of clouds. There were splashes of green below the clouds, but nothing to indicate where the water fell to and where land began.

"Where am I?" She wondered aloud.

"NEAR!" Rang an eerie male voice.

Meera shivered despite the heat and the exertion. She thought the voice had come from the heart of the mountain behind her.

"H-h-hello!" Her stammering barely audible.

"SOON!" The voice spoke again, ringing from somewhere behind the rock and nearly plunging Meera in the unseen abyss below.

This story was inspired by Takhayyal writing prompt no. 38.

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