Sam Makes a New Friend

“This is something else,” Sam said, keeping his voice at a low level. It felt… eerie, inside the walls. Like he was in another world, almost. He didn’t want to disturb the surroundings, knowing that he was outsized by almost everything in their world.

Oscar smiled faintly. It was easier to see his face in the low light leaking in from a split in the wallpaper above. They were just on the edge of the illumination before it faded into murky darkness in either direction. “It’s not too bad,” he said, nudging a woodchip with his shoe. It, like some other debris, was left behind from when the building was made.

“The path to my house is a lot cleaner, though, ‘cause I don’t want too much dust,” he explained conversationally. Oscar looked in both directions before he nodded to himself, assured of which direction they’d need to go if they wanted to get to his home from here. That was a long walk.

He opened his mouth to say more, but paused, almost frozen, and listened. There was a distant sound in the dust, something moving in the darkness beyond the area they could see. Oscar listened with a look of concentration on his face and turned his eyes towards the source, watching the dark. If they needed to run, they at least had the air duct right there to scurry into.

Oscar could see farther into the dark. When he saw the source of the quiet shuffling, his face broke into a grin. “Oh!” he muttered excitedly, glancing aside to Sam to see if he’d noticed yet.

Sam gasped at the sound, and found himself coughing on some dust he’d inhaled. The sounds echoing in the walls around them didn’t sound like a person’s footsteps, and were far too lightweight to be a human nearby. He couldn’t put an image to what the source was, and worry filled him at the thought of not knowing what was out there.

“Wh-what is it?” Sam asked Oscar tremulously. His hand once again gripped the younger boy’s sleeve, seeking out security. The hilt of his knife brushed against his chest with the movement, reminding him that he may be small, but he had a way to defend himself if he needed it.


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