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Play the Game

Play the Game
Samantha Richards (Ireland)

I don’t know what I’m running towards but it has to be better than what I’m leaving behind. I shudder at the thought of the gloomy room. I can still remember the shadows that lurked in the darkness. I don’t remember anything about my life before the room but hopefully I’ll figure it out soon. I think back to how this all started, how I’d woken up to see a darkened hole in the wall that had never been there before.

The winding passage of stone walls envelope me, but I notice a light peeking out. I make my feet hit the ground harder and push me further. As I near the end I can hear a voice. I can’t understand what it’s saying but it doesn’t sound happy. Soon enough, I manage to push a large stone out of my way and emerge into a bright room.

A figure in bright clothes greets me. The figure approaches me slowly. Once my eyes travel past the illuminating clothes, the opposite of my plain grey ones, I notice the figure morph into a man with long hair, covering his shoulders in bright blonde locks. He looks like an angel, if an angel looked depressed. “Oh thank god, someone’s here to kill me,” he grumbles.

“Pardon?” I gasp, my voice squeaky with nerves. His blue eyes look me up and down, as if he can’t help but take in everything about me. Although I am doing the same, so I am in no position to judge. I look around and there are lots of paintings on the walls. They’re all bright and colourful, filled with myriad shades of yellow and blue. One painting catches my eye and as I move closer I realise it’s not a painting at all but a photograph. A photo of me; I recognise the brown locks that fall to my waist and my lanky legs.

The man comes up behind me. “It’s the only beautiful thing in this room, the darkness, the look of misery the girl has on her face, it’s pure, it’s twisted.”

I stare at him. I frown slightly. “It’s horrible, nothing’s happy, it’s all doom and gloom,” I sigh.

I jump as a loud voice booms through the walls, echoing. “Welcome, players one and two. I see you have been acquainted. For the past six months, I have been running a torture machine. Throwing you into a room with your worst nightmares. Now, you must survive against all the other teams.” I shudder as I feel the vibrations of the voice go through me. I can’t help but let out a soft whimper.

“Good luck.”

The voice then fades out and the walls around us begin to move, they shift to reveal four other passages, leading into darkness.

I then realise something, this was always a game. A game between light and dark, and now we have to work together.