I feel like my responses to these prompts are getting shorter and shorter. I really hope this isn’t a trend.
Running away isn’t as easy as they say. I bet no one ever tried to run through a marsh, having the mud suck you in, and each step is a labor unto itself. I lost my shoes a few paces back, but it didn’t make it any easier to wade through the thick mass that was trying to swallow me alive. A root extended into the mud and I threw myself onto it. With a grunt and with a mix of colorful words, I drew myself out. The earth was slow to release me, and when it did it was with a wet plop! I collapsed on my back against the root, shivering (I had lost my socks sometime ago as well), and exhausted.
Lights danced between the thickly woven trees but no sounds followed. No splashed from the murky waters, no crackle of broken branches. Nothing at all except for my breathing and the distant hum of crickets.
They didn’t need to make any sound.
I rolled over onto my knees and pushed forward. Running isn’t easy, but it is easily my least favorite thing to do. The uneven ground didn’t make it better. Each step, each time my heel stuck the ground, a shot of pain reverberated in me. The mud stiffened on my pants, locking the coldness within. My chest burned, I couldn’t breathe.
The lights burned brighter now. I couldn’t escape. The marsh looked similar no matter which directions I turned. Moonlight trickled through the dense foliage overhead but not enough to navigate by. I stopped, I couldn’t go on. My knees trembled, my blood was boiling, I had to lean against a broad trunk in order to keeping standing. I swallowed air in hungry gulps. I wasn’t made for running. They made sure of that.
The crickets stopped singing and the ringing silence fell upon me.
This is actually my second response. I stopped my first attempt after the first paragraph. You aren’t supposed to stop, I know, but it was worse than this one. One of my story ideas leaked into it and it turned into a mess. I’m a bit happier with this one.