By Chandler Kaiden
Read by Richard Dansky
At first, there was only numb horror.
He couldn’t move his arms, couldn’t catch his breath. Everything was black. The thick stench of mildew, of rust and minerals, coagulated in his nose and throat. Steaming water spilled over his forehead, rained into his eyes, seeped between his lips. Brackish, foul water, full of chemicals.
It seemed to go on forever.
He tried to move. But he was confined, his limbs pressed tightly against his body.
When the water stopped, he heard dull, heavy thumping, like the machinations of an enormous water-logged engine.
The air was thick with steam. The foul water collected around his eyes, spilled into his nostrils, packed his sinuses.
There, in the wet darkness, he tried to drown himself. He inhaled the water. Tried to hold his breath — that breath he’d been instinctively fighting to catch when he came to — and found that he could hold it and hold it and hold it, and nothing happened.
_I want to die._