2: Craving

(C) Geoff May

The crater, from what I could see, dove into depths I couldn't imagine. The walls slowly disappeared into the darkness down below, leaving behind nothing but hard grey rock. Occasionally, a large bolder jutted out of the edge, but they were seperated by at least fifty feet of air.

I couldn't see the source of the sound I had heard of rushing water. I could only speculate that it was coming from somewhere down there. At this time I decided I had two choices: Stay up here, suffer a slow, tormenting death; or take my chances and climb - or jump for that matter, and hope that at the bottom lay a deep river of fresh flowing water. I can say that just then, the latter seemed to be the best course of action.

I gathered what strength I had left and stood up. There was a warm gentle breeze, but it did not feel good. So after praying and praying I wouldn't die, I took one last deep breath and jumped...

I closed my eyes and just imagined what it would be like to drop an unimaginable depth, to end up splattered against a rocky ground. Not a comforting sight. After falling for what seemed thirty minutes, I opened my eyes. The hole I had jumped through was now just a tiny white speck against an otherwise black view.

The sound was growing louder as time went by and soon the walls recieved a deep bluish glow. My hopes started to rise as the air that was once sizzling hot became cool and refreshing. I turned over into the best diving position I could handle in my condition and readied myself for the best swim of my life.

In about thirty seconds, I could see a blue ground; highlights and ripples became visible as an eerie glow from below the surface lit up the gentle ripples of the water surface above. I had a huge smile on my face as my hands hit the water, swallowing my arms, body, legs, and finally my feet.

It felt so good to have the feel of cold fresh water rushing by my face that I didn't want to make myself stop diving and rise to the surface, but I had to. My mind was racing with joy as I opened my mouth... but all I tasted was sand. When I opened my eyes again, all I could see was desert.

My mind cried out in pain and anguish, for I could feel no worse than I did at that moment...