Miranda Kate’s Picture Choice: 2
Title: Interdimensioning - Part 4
Elise blinked, but it didn’t make any difference, she still couldn’t see anything. She heard a shuffle next to her, and then a hand on her knee reassured her that Logan was there. She was sitting upright, but she couldn’t work out where. The smell of earth was pungent and when she touched the ground it felt cold and damp, leaving moist bits on her hand.
“Where are we?” She whispered.
“I don’t know.” Logan squeezed her leg and shuffled closer, bringing his arm round her. She was glad of the comfort.
“How long were we out for?”
“No way of telling, but I’m glad that we’re still together.”
“Me too.” Elise snuggled into him.
A shuffling sound reached their ears and then a pinprick of light appeared. As it grew larger it lit up their surroundings and they found themselves in an underground cavern that had trees roots running all round the walls and floor.
As it came closer they saw it was made of a firefly trapped in a hollow ball of twisted twigs carried by a long vine, or root. Behind it were two other vines carrying leaves which were placed on the ground in front of them, along with the light. The vines retracted and Elise and Logan sat up to take a closer look.
Logan reached out his hand to touch one of the leaves. It unfolded to reveal collections of berries. He glanced at Elise who shrugged.
“They’re feeding us? Why?” Logan picked up a red berry and sniffed it, then passed it to Elise. She turned it over in her fingers.
“Do you think they’re poisonous?”
“If they wanted us dead they would have killed us already, surely.”
“True.” Elise nibbled at an edge while Logan watched her. She licked her lips. “It’s sweet, try it.” Logan picked one up and tentatively bit into it.
After they had tasted each one, they took in their surroundings.
Elise said, “What now? Should we try crawling out?”
Logan shrugged. Then a voice cut across the cavern, making them both jump.
“I wouldn’t if I were you.”
They could just make out a shape across the dark cavern. They heard a scraping sound and then a figure crawled into view. Its movements were stilted and as it came closer they realised that it wasn’t human, although it was clearly designed on one. The eyes gave it away with the mechanisms and cogs visible behind the translucent colouring.
“Who are you? And how did you get here?” Logan asked.
“I am Reginald, a data droid, left here by the last humans that passed through this world.”
“Why did they leave you here?”
“They didn’t have a choice, they died.”
Elise felt her stomach clench.
“And why shouldn’t we try and crawl out?” Logan ignored the droid’s last statement.
“Because it’s too small and they won’t let you stay outside.”
“I’m not entirely sure, but when my humans tried it, they kept being returned to this same cavern over and over again.”
“And then what happened?”
The droid paused. “I’m not sure what you mean, Sir. My human’s kept trying until they became too weak and died.”
This stopped Logan; Elise could see his mind working, his mouth opened a couple of times but nothing came. She pulled away from him slightly.
“How did you get into this world?” She asked.
“A malfunction in my programming; we were suppose to be going into the fifth.”
“Another timeline besides our own that they liked to travel to for parties.”
Logan’s eyes lit up. He sat forward. “You’re able to travel into other timelines?”
“Yes Sir. But for some reason we ended up here…although I’m not sure where here is exactly.”
“It’s a parallel dimension, rather than moving forward or back into dimensions we’ve gone sideways, entering those where other species dominate.”
Reginald blinked, and a whirring could be heard, then he blinked again and said, “Excuse me. I’m not functioning at my best, having been in this damp cavern for some time. A parallel you say, my human’s didn’t consider that.”
“Are you still malfunctioning?” Logan asked.
“My humans tried to correct my programming but as they couldn’t work out where we had gone, so they couldn’t reroute us back.”
“Would it be possible for me to try programming you?” Logan brought his hands out and wiggled his fingers.
“Are you familiar with data droids Sir?”
“Call me Logan, not Sir. And no, not droids, we don’t have any of them yet, but I do create programs for lots of other data machinery. Would you allow me to try?”
Reginald pressed a place on his torso, and a flap opened to reveal a numeric pad. Logan moved the firefly light in between them to take a closer look. He smiled.
“It’s the same sort of keypad we use. With your help I might be able to work something out.”
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