His body towered over her, entrapping her between the stove and
his tall, menacing figure. A wave of anxiety washed over her. Ted
Barker was no longer the attractive stranger, he was an imminent
threat. She had to escape, but where could she run? To whom could
she run to?
‘Naomi? You’re as white as a ghost..’
For perhaps ten minutes she ran clumsily through the darkness
wilderness, the sound of her lungs gasping for air filled her ears.
Dead branches and leaves crackled under her feet, the rapidly
increasing tempo of her strides becoming a signal of her growing
anxiety. Her throat was beginning to constrict and her head was
starting to spin, yet Naomi L. continued to stumble on through the
wall of green (or black as it now appeared for nightfall had well and
truly arrived). Survival instincts were spurring her on but soon it
grew impossible to continue, the feeling of constriction had now
spread to the chest and her desperate gasps for air were almost
inaudible. She needed to calm herself down. Lying on the ground
with hands under her trembling shoulders and legs outstretched
behind her, she began to perform her pushups. Her voice croaked
‘one, two, three, four…’ it took ten repetitions before the exercise
began to have its soothing effect, her heart rate and breathing slowly
returning to their usual rhythm.
The anxiety had passed by the time she felt something creep up
her left leg. Darkness impaired her vision so she could only just
make out the spider’s fluorescent red-wedged back as it disappeared
onto the forest floor, leaving an acute stinging sensation in her
upper-thigh. She knew that lying still would slow the venommoving
through the body, yet she needed assistance. Already light-
headedness and nausea rendered her motionless, the only option
was to call for help.
Naomi L. lay paralysed on the forest floor, all she could see now
was pitch black.
‘Someone help me… please! I don’t know where I am... I’m not from here…’
Her voice was soaked up by the looming bloodwoods, drowned in
the darkness around her.
A Wall Of