I awoke to a feeling of wetness. The smell of damp decay was strong in my nostrils. Though my eyes were wide open, I couldn't see much. Very high above me was a small pinprick of light. To either side of me I could feel rough stone walls. They felt damp to my questing fingers. Beneath me more crumbling rock, along with puddles of stagnant water. By straining my ears, I could hear a faint dripping sound, slow and measured, in the distance. How I came to be here, I did not know. But I knew I must find a way out. I attempted to climb, but the stones seemed to be covered in a slick mossy substance. Repeatedly I slide back to where I started. I could feel a warm stickiness oozing from my palms and knees. I was sure I was bleeding. Blindly I felt around for some other way out.
The walls around me seemed complete, but I could feel a small breath of air at the level of my ankles. It was coming from the blackest area directly ahead of me. Loathe though I was to leave the small point of light, I crawled toward the air. Reaching out, I could feel a small opening. It was only the size of my hand, but with perseverance, I was sure I could enlarge it enough to wriggle through. The question was, where was I, and where was I going? I knew not if I was heading for deeper trouble, or if I had found a way out of the hellish prison that I found myself in. Bracing myself, I began to pull aside the rocks that held me captive.
Time passed. How long, I do not know. Eventually I was able to squeeze my body through the opening. The feeling of air was stronger now, but I had left my only source of light behind me. My sense of sight was useless. Slowly, I crawled forward, depending on my sense of touch to alert me to any dangers that may arise. The sound of dripping seemed to be closer now, or at least it was a bit louder. Soft mud squished between my questing fingers. Occasionally I felt a small creature scurry out of my way. Perhaps it was best that I couldn't see them. Ahead I could smell sulfur. The smell burned strongly into my already overfull brain.
I did not know where I was, nor did I know how I arrived here. Slowly, I continued on my trek. The scrapes on my palms and knees burned and itched. I ignored them as best I could. I knew not how high the opening was that I forced my way through. I dared not stand, for fear of hitting my head. The darkness seemed to be deepening as I went in even further. The air around me was getting warmer. I felt the sweat begin to bead along my lip and hairline. With each inch I traveled, the air in the chamber I was in seemed to heat up ten degrees.
It was getting harder for me to breathe. I tried to turn around and go back, but there was no room for me to turn. I couldn't back up, whenever I tried I felt a sharp jagged object dig into my backside. Doggedly, I continued forward. The mud grew hot as well. It seemed as thought the very rocks I was crawling through would melt from the intense heat. Yet still I persevered.
Suddenly, there was no ground ahead of me. My hands felt only emptiness. The heat seared my lungs as I struggled to breathe. I knelt on the narrow ledge, afraid to go forward, unable to go back. I heard screaming. Such unearthly screaming! And cursing! It seemed to be surrounding me at once, coming from every direction. In every language I'd ever heard of, and some I had never heard of. Then the pain began. Unimaginable pain! It was though my very skin were being ripped centimeter by centimeter from my body. I felt the tears running freely down my face as I added my own screams to the cacophony around me.
Now I knew where I was. I felt again the sharp jab to my backside. I didn't want to go forward, but I had no choice. Not anymore. As I fell into the black flames and they began to lick eagerly at my flesh, I knew what Hell really is.