As Aisha and I ran down the underground corridor, squinting in the dim light, we heard a voice crackling from an old wooden speaker box on the wall. It was Silas.
“You can’t escape you know.”
We darted to the passage’s end. A blank wall. Backtracked to an intersection. Ran right.
“I had the tunnels built like a maze for just this reason.”
Another dead end. Aisha swore. “How do we get out of this insane asylum?” she cried. We backtracked to an earlier junction and took a left.
Silas continued, his voice echoing through the stone halls from various speakers. “I’ve been doing this for years, you know. And I haven’t lost a victim—that is, a subject—yet.”
“I guess we’re going to have to hear his monologue after all,” I said.
Silas talked as we ran down more corridors, hoping to find a way out. “I’m not happy about what you did to poor Junifer. She suffers from mental illness, you know. You took advantage of her condition.”
Aisha and I stopped at a cross junction. The tunnels went four ways. We gathered our breath. We hugged each other. Silas’s eerie ventriloquism continued. “Her mother suffered from the same condition, you know. I tried to help Junifer as best I could. But my experimental treatment was ineffective. So, I set her up as the mistress of this house. Only the best for my daughter.”
“She’s his daughter?” said Aisha. “That explains a lot.”
“Let’s go,” I said. I placed my hand on one wall and we jogged along, my fingertips always keeping contact. At the end, instead of retracing our footsteps, I kept my fingers on the wall and followed it around until I was next to the opposite wall. “This will take a long time, but eventually we’ll get out. As long as we follow the walls, rather than the floors.”
Aisha nodded and smiled. “So, what were you, John? A boy scout?”
“Just call me the ‘labyrinth lord’.”
Aisha rolled her eyes. We moved on.
To be continued…
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