Day 156: Alone in the dark

Day 156: I’m deep enough now even the duckens aren’t joining me . Or maybe they are and they’re just walking off cliffs a lot. It’s extremely dangerous and I’m going through a lot of rope making sure that I’m tethered to a solid surface most of the time. Fortunately, spiderweb is strong stuff, and the “rope” I’m using is difficult to snap. Unfortunately, when I run low I have to face off against spiders the size of ponies to harvest more.

Seriously, this has got to be a dream. Though the pulled muscles in my shoulders and back don’t feel like dreams right now.

Line drawing of a ducken, up close.
If there was a ducken down here, it’d probably look like this. They like to cozy up to you.

Day 155: Deeper than ever

Day 155:

If this isn’t a hallucination (I’m still pretty sure it is) then I’m deeper into the ground than I’ve ever been before. I pulled up some gold ore late in the day, and from where I was standing I could see a strange blue ore. I don’t think it’s sapphire, just because of the lack of shine, but maybe a form of lapis lazuli?

It reminds me a bit of looking at a nebula. Granted, the nebula would have to be on fire, but that’s how these things seem to go anyway.

But it’s been a long few days of mining and as I’m currently doubting my own sanity, I’ve decided the next few days are going to be dedicated to farming and fishing and maybe seeing if I have the chops to design a clock.

The absurdity of all of those sentences is so high I’m still pretty sure I’ve been hit in the head with something heavy.

Watercolor of a lump of stone made of bright blues and purples with gold streaks throughout it. Captioned "weird space-colored rock".
Hello space rock

Day 154: Is this even real?

Day 154:

Some days I don’t believe any of this. I don’t believe the stone under my feet, the wood wearing at the palms of my hands, or the ache of my back.

This is unreal. If these hallucinations are to be believed, I’ve been here over 150 days. That’s… well, it’s probably deep winter back home on Earth. It’s contract renewal season on the ship.

I don’t believe I’m here. I’m not here. I’m actually unconscious, in a coma from a rock fall during our last mission, on my bed, being carried home to my family.

Or maybe I never joined The Company. Maybe I’m actually at home, running a fever, with my family around me, like that old Wizard of Oz movie.

This is just too weird.

line sketch of the author's concept of someone lying in a hospital bed with an iv pole and a lamp above their head probably looks like.
this is probably me

Day 153: Death is permanent

Day 153:

I’m still trying to reach the bottom of the chasm I’m in, safely. I figure if I  can get to the lowest level of this chasm, I can follow it to wherever it goes and then dig up to the surface and see what I find. There are still a lot of monsters down here but I think a reasonable number of walls or hills should protect me.

Plus, everyone knows the good ores are always at the deepest parts of the mines. If this world wants to help me out by providing a highway at the bottom of the crust, who am I to argue?

The challenge is getting there safely because, well, there are monsters and they will kill me…. plus there are a heck of a lot of cliffs to fall off of.

Watercolor of a red tulip bud
Here’s a sketch of one of the red flowers from the fields because drawing death is a bummer

Day 152: The chasms have chasms

Day 152:

How I got to where I was: I followed a chasm down from the area where I’d been digging. It emptied into a bigger chasm.

I wish I could tell you that I was surprised to find, at the edge of that, an even deeper chasm. But I’m starting to believe the old saw about digging through the center of the earth.

Like sketch indicating that the author built steps in the smallest chasm, then large rooms in the bigger chasm she found before, only to dig into another even bigger chasm. A tiny stick figure stares into the abyss and asks, Seriously?!