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Do You Know Where You Are?

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It’s almost as if you stepped into a different world. The hot summer air is gone, and you’re only left with stagnant, stale air. It’s breathable, but by no means pleasant. It’s not exactly warm in here either, and you’re wondering why the stiff air isn’t matching the indoor temperatures. But what are you to question this place? They’re ancient ruins, you tell yourself. Surrounded by an air of mystery. No one really knows what’s inside.

But that’s what makes it appealing to you. And with little hesitation – perhaps swallowing your fear – you continue to walk inside, the dim light from the opening already fading. And it’s fading a bit too quickly, you notice. It unsettles your stomach a bit, but you just ignore that.

It’s dead silent. Even your footsteps seem to melt away in here, not leaving an echo at all. And you wish so badly for there to be one. It’s discomforting, the silence. It’s creeping up on you, threatening to swallow you up whole. But, no, that’s not possible. After enough exploring, really, you can just leave.

That is, if you can find an exit.

Your flashlight isn’t living up to expectations. It provides a path, but there’s another problem: the path looks the same, no matter how far you walk. The scenery is starting to look alike, as if it were rotating endlessly. It bothers you greatly – you’d like to leave here eventually, wouldn’t you? You’ve got things to do, a journey to complete, badges to earn. You’ve got little time to spend running in circles.

Your legs are starting to hurt a bit. The uneven surfaces of the ruins are starting to make you stumble around and trip. You keep a tight grip on your flashlight, almost terrified of losing it. Who knows what lies in the darkness? If your light source vanished, you could be lost for a very long time. Unless you’ve got a fire type with you, your luck is very short.

You need a break. Your legs feel as though they’re ready to give out. It’s gotten considerably warmer – uncomfortably so. A thin line of sweat coats your forehead, and you’d do anything for an ice cold glass of water. It sounds so pleasant – but sadly, the ruins have turned your water bottle into a nasty, lukewarm drink. It’s not really preferred, but it’s better than nothing.

You think to yourself – has anyone else really been down here? Maybe, but with a proper exploration team. You’re just a headstrong kid who dove into the ruins all by yourself. You’ve read about them, and heard stories about the residents of the bordering city. And oh, it was worth checking out, you said. You were so curious!

And curiosity kills the cat. You want to go home. You’re lost. The flashlight’s beginning to dim. And, you’re not sure if this is due to exhaustion – but you have the slightest hunch something is watching you. But how? Isn’t this place deserted? Who else would be here?

You remember that Pokémon inhabited this area a very long time ago. But… as said, that was ages ago. So that can’t be it. Right? They’re ancient. Written in books as history.

You sit for a while, contemplating on how to find an exit. Yet, you were just… so excited, you skipped past the Pokémon center. You can’t force them to help you. The gym battle wasn’t horrid, but they needed rest. And you regret it greatly. It might take hours, days to work through this place in the dark. You look upwards, hoping that shafts of light would make their way through the earth. But, things just aren’t in your favor. You’re underground, yes, but there aren’t any cracks through the dirt.

In frustration, you slam your hand on the wall. A shockwave of pain, brief as it was, makes your hand sting. You rub it silently, thankful there’s no blood. You’re not sure what you’ve got in supply of makeshift bandages, anyway. Other than socks and a few clean shirts, there’s nothing to stop any sort of blood.

You’re inactive for quite a bit, mulling over your options. You could try to retrace your footsteps. Try calling out – maybe a research team would come by. If desperate, rely on the help of your team. You hope the first option would work. With a sigh, you rise from your spot, hoping the last life of your flashlight can assist in the best way possible.

You’re trying to be hopeful. The same feeling – eyes are on you – returns, and in a much heavier sense than last time. It suddenly feels very cold, and you zip up your jacket fully, trying to bury your face in it. It was warm just a minute ago – and there was no way you could be near the entrance. Your stomach drops, a feeling of dread overcoming you. What on earth is causing this feeling? It’s empty. This place has to be empty.

You quicken your pace, despite your tired body telling you to not to. Your heart rate increases rapidly, your breathing coming out in short, quick pants. Something is after you. You don’t even know what, and your mind spits out every worst possibility it could. It does nothing to calm you. Your panic increases, and you trip over your own steps, the flashlight clattering to the ground and rolling out of sight.

Your eyes widen, panting, rubbing your injured knee. It’s bleeding now. Slightly, but the injury does nothing in your favor. With no light and now an injury, you’re really wondering how you’re going to get out of this place with ease.

With little options, you stay in place, patting your wound with a clean shirt. The stains will be questionable once back at the Pokémon center, but you’ll find an excuse, won’t you? Plenty of people must’ve gotten lost before. You can’t be the only one.

And suddenly, the silence is fading. You hold your breath, hearing shrill cries in the background. Not human cries – definitely not. Are they the Pokémon here? Were they friendly? Would they help you get out?

As your mind continues to wander, you don’t realize the creatures closing in on you. They tend to dislike disturbances – especially humans who cause such noise.

The last thing you see is a bright burst of light. And unfortunately for you, it doesn’t lead to the outdoors.

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