She’d been walking for days and was sure that she had been to this particular dead end at least three times before. She sank to the ground, it was damp from condensation, a sheet of stars glittered high above the walls of the Labyrinth.
She looked at her arm, it was scratched in fine ribbons along its length. She had panicked days ago and tried to push through the hedge. It was impossibly thick and seemed to increase its grip on her the harder she tried to push through. She failed, and when she withdrew her arm, tiny rivers of blood seeped from the scratches, they had dried and scabbed in the days since. Red, inflamed skin kissed the edges of the wounds, infection would not be far off.
She took a deep breath, exhaled... and with that, she gave up. She counted to herself after she exhaled, she didn’t know why with an even tempo she reached 20 before she felt the need to breathe in again.
‘Good’ she thought to herself, ‘I’m not in a panic.’
At this moment she totally gave up on leaving this place. She wasn’t lying to herself anymore. Just like that, she’d given up entirely.
A strange calm washed over her. Not disappointment or fear, calm. This was where she would stay, probably die. She might move around the labyrinth more, but she knew she wouldn’t escape.
She tried to cry, only because she thought it was the right thing to do when one gave up hope.
No tears came. Not a one.
Instead, a smile spread across her face, and she found herself starting to laugh softly to herself. Her posture shifted from slouched to upright and a sense of satisfaction spread through her chest. It was like she’d... Achieved something. Then it hit her, the truth of why she was here, she had felt it as she crossed the threshold three days ago, but only admitted it to herself right now.
She wanted to get lost.
That’s why she came in.