Friday, October 03, 2014



"If it sees you," our instructor states bluntly, "you're already dead".

We file into the next room. I pick up the flamethrower as instructed - it only has two shots, but while it won't kill her it will scare her off temporarily. I scour the cluttered crates for anything else that might be useful, finding nothing, and open the door.

Steam and flame pour from exposed pipes; the station is full of noise and movement that distracts and startles. My first instinct is to hide, and I obey it.

I pull up the motion tracker: no contacts. This doesn't really reassure me.

The objective marker pulls me to the left, but as I round the corner the lights cut out and I stop dead. The motion tracker shows a single blinking dot moving towards me. I panic and start making my way down a nearby corridor - a dead end.

I stuff myself into a small locker, my heart beating so strong and so fast that I can feel it in my hands. The motion tracker still shows movement to the left, but from my cramped perspective at the end of a corridor I can't see—

She's there.

I hold my breath. She snarls. She starts to move away. When I think I have space, I move out of the cupboard, inching my way closer to the most dangerous thing I have ever laid eyes on as every fibre of my being screams to get back in the cupboard.

She moves behind a stack of pipes but I can still see the spikes on her back, silhouetted against the warning lights. I check the tracker again to make sure she's not moving.

When I focus back on the room, I realise I've lost sight of her.

Cowering behind cover, I keep staring at the tracker for signs of movement. A ping, much too close. I start to move backwards, trying to get a fix without giving my own position away.

She has her back to me.

I glance behind, and see a door. I can make it if I run, I think.

I stand up and sprint. I don't know how close she is, but the thump thump thump of her feet on the steel floors terrifies me. I smack the door release and run through in a blind panic. I turn around just in time to see her secondary jaw shoot out, into my face, and everything goes dark.

I was so scared I'd forgotten about the flamethrower.

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