No Outlet

My first published story, from issue 3 of Laptop Lit Mag

So come with me, where dreams are born, and time is never planned. Just think of happy things, and your heart will fly on wings, forever, in Never Never Land. –Peter Pan

Dank darkness, rocky walls, and dirt. These were the things that Humo knew, the things that had surrounded him his whole life. So what was he doing, digging upward, towards the forbidden and unknown?

Father, tell me the story about the Surface again!” begged a five-year-old Humo.

The shadowy figure of Humo’s memory would let out a loud laugh and relaunch into the tale, a tale of an endless ceiling, of wide open spaces, of animals and breeze, and a bright glowing ball called the “sun.”

Humo stopped to catch his breath, bracing his small wiry body against the safety lines he had cast. He took a sip of water from the moleskin pouch at his waist and rubbed the sweat from his pale eyes.

They had called him a heretic, spreading falsehoods about a Surface that no longer existed, one that had been destroyed by war. Humo still remembered the night they had crashed through the door of his home, how Mother had clung so desperately to Father, begging as they dragged him away. Fear had grasped his heart in a vise, like the great rock crushers that stood in the center of the village. After that, Mother had never really been the same. Her already-thin stature diminished further, becoming more and more wraith-like until one day she refused to wake up.

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