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#145895
K. A. Grey
@k-a-grey

I felt weak.  Nauseous, almost.  But it had to be done.  Even if the fear was enveloping me like smoke, filling my lungs, choking me.  My right knee went into sudden spasm of trembling, even though I tried to will it to be still.  I didn’t want them to see my fear.
I took a step toward the entrance of the cave.  I suddenly imagined myself panicking inside the cave.  What if I lost my head and started screaming?  I didn’t want my comrades to think I was just another hysterical idiot.  The last time I was in a dark, enclosed space….  I closed my eyes and shook my head a little to force out the memory.
“L——, are you sure you’re alright?” our leader asked, placing a hand on my shoulder.  The concern in his eyes warmed me as much as his touch.  I tried to smile bravely so he wouldn’t worry.
“I’ll be fine,” I managed to say.
“You’re a brave soul, if I ever saw one,” he said admiringly.
“I just want to help,” I said, blushing.  “Besides, no one else can fit through that opening.”
He smiled, handing me the light dagger we call a trythe.
“Be safe.” He raised his hand in salute.
I nodded to my comrades, took a deep breath, and stepped inside the cave. Instantly the blackness overwhelmed me.  I looked behind me to catch one more glimpse of my friends standing in the sunlight, but the circle of light coming through the opening got smaller and smaller until I could no longer see anything.  I was in complete darkness.
I could feel the panic start again, but I didn’t feel like screaming.  I felt sick.  My head swam, and I could feel the blood rushing in my ears.  But I wouldn’t scream.
Instead, I tried to focus my energy on breathing.  I would be all right.  After a few minutes my skin would start to glow, and I could see my way through the cave. I would be fine.  And when I found what we were looking for, I could make my comrades proud.
I slowly relaxed my death-grip on my trythe.  I’ll sing, I thought.  When I was little, I always sang to myself when I was scared.  The words of a song came to me, and I started walking slowly as I tried to arrange a tune.  I sang the first verse.  My voice echoed around me.  I laughed at the sound of it. I tried to think it  was a chorus of voices cheering me on.  It was strangely beautiful, in an eerie, wild way.  I felt better now.  A dim blue light was appearing at the edges of my fingertips.  I would be able to see soon.

~~~~~

Yeah, I’m not sure who to tag either, so do you want to pick a judge, @this-is-not-an-alien ?

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