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Gates of Hope
March 24, 2021|Short Story

Gates of Hope

Gates of Hope

The darkness fell behind William, while he slowly walked down the path back home. He tried to recall his steps, but the dense clouds covered everything around him, and his surroundings turned into a maze he couldn’t remember.

Just a few hours ago, sunlight illuminated the beautiful landscaping of the Andean mountains—now he was only able to see a few steps in front of him.

I’m lost, he thought, noticing that the heavy mist stood lifeless on top of him. I’ll have to find shelter.

Nevertheless, the first drops of rain fell on his forehead and his possibilities for survival diminished.

The mountain is treacherous to those who are not aware of its signs. The day was supposed to be relaxing, although William had almost forgotten all the troubles awaiting him back home.

Perhaps this was the way the universe answered his prayers. After all, William had been repeating in his mind, over and over again, his desire to get away from his problems. Life was giving him what he wanted in the least expected way.

William moved quickly through the branches and bushes of an unfamiliar forest. Trying in vain to find shelter from the rain. To his surprise, the hill had prepared an abandoned tunnel for him. There, he could hide from the rain… although he was not the only one seeking shelter.

Even in a forest so close to a city, nature laws expanded its domain. Unknowingly, William found peace when he saw the perfectly circular cave entrance at the distance, and without consideration for his safety he entered it.

The tunnel looked like a human construction without an apparent function. It seemed like a pipeline to prevent landslides, William thought unsure of his imagination. The scarce sunlight only reached a few meters inside the artificial cave, beyond it one could only see an endless dark void. Even the sounds of his step seemed different, from what he was used to, as he walked inside.

William did not intend to inspect the cave, staying only at the entrance to cover himself from the rain—trying not to look at the depth that seemed to call his name. It was impossible for him to remain calm without knowing that something else could be found in the dark. So he took his cell phone and turned on his flashlight.

Lying against the tunnel wall was a creature with bare skin and long thin arms—with deep dark circles around its eyes. William blinked, holding his breath and noticed with surprise that the figure disappeared.

I have to get out of here, he told himself, turning to see the heavy rain falling outside the cave.

“Where are you going?”

The deep voice came suddenly. William lost control of his body, he even tried to scream, but fear kept him frozen for what seemed like an eternity. Finally, he regained his breath and slowly turned to look inside the cave.

Nothing…

It’s all in my head, he thought to reassure himself. As his body stopped trembling.

A pair of glowing eyes appeared in the tunnel. William graved his cell phone to illuminate the darkness, but he couldn’t see the lurking creature.

I should have a signal by now, he thought while looking at the screen of his cell phone. When a loud sound, like the bursting of two rocks, came from the deepness of the tunnel.

I rather get wet by the rain, William thought and turned to walk out of the cave. Then, he saw a panther for the first time. The animal lurked slowly under the rain—driving its powerful paws on the mud with every step.

William’s mind went blank, he finally managed to lose focus on everything that wasn’t behind the menacing eyes of the beast. A strange sensation, almost like a wave took everything with it, just like the feeling of having lost everything. The only thing left was right in front of him.

Without consideration, William ran back into the tunnel—the darkness absorbed him completely and after a few steps the ground disappeared under his feet. The fall didn’t seem to have an end, meanwhile William couldn’t imagine what would happen when his body crashed at the bottom. Somehow, the only thing he could see was the present.

William flew through a perpetual darkness; floating on an endless void. Until, to his surprise, his back made contact with a wall that gradually slowed his fall, and safely let him at the foot of a stone slide.

There, a brightly shining light blinded him for an instant. William looked at the source of radiance and understood, this was the reason why his ancestors hid the most precious treasures in the heart of a volcano.

Knowledge engulfed him like a cascade of wisdom crashing over his head.

William’s eyes widened when the rescue team secured him to the helicopter’s stretcher. The search party had been looking for him for two weeks, although for him it felt just like a couple of hours.

Few know the secrets of our ancestors, and despite his attempts, William wasn’t able to find the portal’s door again.

147 comments
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Sebastian Iturralde

Fiction blogger—citizen of this beautiful planet, eternal lover of artistic creation and literature. Certain that the creative energy comes from nature.

147 comments

  • March 24, 2021 at 11:05 pm

    nice post..

    • April 15, 2021 at 6:40 am

      Thanks, I was lucky enough to write this fleeting idea.

    • May 18, 2021 at 8:06 am

      Sebastian, I’m curious; why do you always leave loose ends in your stories? What was the thing that William discovered?

    • May 18, 2021 at 10:47 am

      I believe it’s a trend that has been happening more often than I would like, but is just the way of my words. I’m sure that you’ll be able to discover all of the secrets on future visits to my blog.

  • March 25, 2021 at 12:48 pm

    The imagination in your stories really keeps me entertained. Have a great day! 🙂

  • April 14, 2021 at 4:25 pm

    I found this Lovecraftian but more relatable, warmer, more accessible vocabulary, and I loved the mention of the “ancestors” at the end: right there it just evoked such awe and love. I’m going to keep reading these.

  • April 15, 2021 at 6:21 am

    Awesome blog, I want to read more

  • April 18, 2021 at 6:27 pm

    Thank you

  • April 19, 2021 at 7:19 pm

    I love that you have English and Spanish versions of your story. Which language did you first write it in? Gracias!

  • April 19, 2021 at 7:54 pm

    As a 95 year old fart trying to make sense of a civilization celebrating its rush to several possibilities of obliteration I much appreciate the struggle of a few people to accept the intricate puzzle of current existence.

    • April 20, 2021 at 7:21 am

      It’s an honor to be read by some one like you. I hope you enjoy my tales.

    • April 20, 2021 at 9:35 am

      Since I am at a total loss to discover even a theoretical way to reverse the possibilities of frightful obliterations in the very near future of this entire planet I am certainly not in a class to deserve any honors. The several hundred offerings on my site of a rather peculiar attempt at poetry extend no more opportunities than the chirp of an optimistic sparrow caught in a tsunami.

    • April 26, 2021 at 12:02 am

      I enjoyed the visit to William’s world. Seems like the enlightenment is so often preceded by the cataclysmic fall.

  • April 20, 2021 at 6:53 am

    wow! this is beautiful. I have learnt alot.

    • April 20, 2021 at 7:04 am

      I’m glad and I hope you enjoy my other short stories too.

  • April 20, 2021 at 2:00 pm

    I will share your site on my Facebook page!

    • April 20, 2021 at 2:08 pm

      That means a lot to me, thanks.

    • Joy A Carlson
      April 26, 2021 at 5:14 am

      Interesting. There’s a promise of a good story here, but also something missing. I apologize if that sounds harsh. I don’t mean it to be. As a writer, I try to encourage those who are good to become better. To those that aren’t, I say nothing. There’s too much negativity on the web as it is.

  • April 21, 2021 at 12:56 am

    Its a good piece. Nice short story.

  • April 21, 2021 at 12:59 am

    I shared it to facebook.

  • April 21, 2021 at 5:52 am

    🥳😁

  • April 21, 2021 at 8:52 am

    As another author, I love the way you write. Obvious, that you have beautiful talent. However, I do not see the certainty of creative energy coming from nature, but from the God who created it. Yet, in my opposing opinion I can meet you on other grounds and enjoy your posts. Therefore, I wish to follow your blog. Thank you for “liking one of my posts.

    • April 21, 2021 at 9:57 am

      I really appreciate it and hope the creative energy flows through us.

  • April 22, 2021 at 11:57 pm

    Interesting story.

  • Manyata
    April 23, 2021 at 11:14 pm

    Your post was great

  • April 24, 2021 at 6:34 am

    Good read. Thank you so much for reading my blog this morning. Please subscribe for next blog.

  • April 24, 2021 at 7:08 am

    scary and hopeful at the same time

  • April 24, 2021 at 10:05 am

    Thank you for your Hint about the Sight of civil strory comparings, I will have a look at your Site as I understand it is all about the natural Civilized – civil , Culture – Story as to leave a note to every-body and anyone who might and may want to avoid any clash and crash of Civilized Parrallels –

    The Site looks quite nice with my best greetings and salutations

    smilings;@)☺️😘😚😇😍😜😂😊😉🤣Sorrisoni’Samantha B. Medugno on todays day

    Saturday twentyfour/24. April 2021 from Mercogliano AV Italy

  • April 24, 2021 at 7:22 pm

    Well written! Suspenseful and evenly paced!

    • April 26, 2021 at 4:21 pm

      I tried to take you on a journey alongside my characters. I’m happy you enjoyed it.

  • April 25, 2021 at 7:23 pm

    Beautiful ! Thank you for liking my post for Spiritual Life Coaching. A great gift to give for Mother’s Day. Namaste Katharine

    • April 26, 2021 at 4:23 pm

      I’m happy you found it beautiful, Katharine. It was a pleasure visiting your blog.

  • Leave a Reply to Patricia A. Guthrie Cancel reply

    Author's Message
    This short story has been carefully crafted with inspiration I got from the Andes' highlands.
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    Welcome to RelatoCorto

    Sebastian's Blog Fiction

    Here you'll find all the author's creations in English and Spanish. Also his weekly stories in different genres: action and adventure, fantasy, romancescience fiction and thriller. Enjoy your visit and let your imagination run wild.

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