The Valley Forgotten

Wilson awoke to a blinding light and a cold painful sensation in his right arm. His eyes opened to see a mountain blanketed in white. Off in the distance there was a fire and what appeared to be wreckage, Wilson threw his head against the snow in rage when he remembered the past two hours of his journey. Wilson was a professor of Native American studies at the University of Winnipeg and he was leading an expedition to Alaska to dig for extinct settlements on the southern coast of the peninsula. The team of students and two other professors from Quebec were also on the plane to Anchorage, but as the plane entered the Rocky Mountains there was horrifying turbulence and Wilson blacked out through the rest of the crash. Now that his mind was collected he began to examine his arm, and he saw that something had ripped a huge gash in his shoulder rendering the arm full of pain and uselessness. He then wrapped a nearby scrap of cloth around his shoulder and stumbled toward the wreckage.

The blaze was raging on the downed aircraft and baggage was scattered everywhere. He looked and searched all over the wreck, except in the fire for obvious reasons. Finding no sign of bodies or survivors, except a trail of blood which he avoided out of shock, he curled up next to a pile of luggage and contemplated the situation. As darkness approached and the wind picked up Wilson found a package of food and a sleeping bag, but he knew that in this wilderness, the night would freeze him within an hour. Like a light bulb exploding in his mind he remembered the trial of blood he overlooked. The blood must be from the survivors trying to find shelter! He thought. So grabbing his gear he set out on the trail before the sun faded.

The trail went on for two miles which on the mountains is absolutely no easy trek. After an hour of inching toward the destination through a wild blizzard with no visibility except for the ground and blood, he came upon a tunnel. Relief filled his whole body and he strode toward the cavern carved into the massive glacier. The tunnel was made of ice and it looked like someone had carved it, Wilson thought that his team needed cover and had done this painstaking job of making shelter. He followed inside the tube which seemed to wind farther and farther down into the glacier. He knew now that his friends did not make this tunnel, but the trail led on and that was his only hope of saving his team. He lost track of time in the place and continued on for what seemed like hours in the darkness of the cavern, only stopping for something to eat. While he was sitting he noticed that the blood was no longer streaks but simply drops. This disturbed Wilson very much still he went on.

The tunnel now was at the lowest elevation under the glacier with a permafrost floor and various rocks scattered about. There was no more blood to follow but Wilson was driven by curiosity and the will to know what was in this deep place. As he entered a huge room with many boulders and stones, there appeared to be a faint light at the end of it. So he climbed while ignoring the horrible state of pain his right arm was in. He slid down the final rock and saw that the light was a glowing mushroom of some unknown species which lived off the ancient frozen soil and illuminated the area. Behind the mushroom there was another smaller entrance. Wilson entered very cautiously.

The opening in the ice wall led to a massive chamber with mushrooms and huge glowing plants everywhere. The scene had astonished him so much that his whole body froze in amazement. There was movement though, movement in the center of the complex and he saw creatures. Creatures of pure white blending in with the ice and eyes that were slanted and misshapen so horribly that it appeared the whole group was blind. They surrounded a magnificent stone alter with depictions of things so dark and evil that Wilson froze in horror. But when he turned his gaze farther he saw his whole team crying out in madness and pain! The biggest of the creatures shouted some loud command in a foul and disgusting tone that made Wilson run as fast as he had ever done in the entirety of his droll life.

He ran the whole of the tunnel all the way to the entrance and he was laughing, not a cheerful laugh at all. It was the laugh of some insane man who had his soul snapped by a fact so terrifyingly true. The chant he remembered was familiar, very familiar. It was the root tongue of the ancient natives who crossed the Bering Strait. Some clan of hunters thousands of years past had lost themselves in a valley, in a cave and had never left. Those things were humans. Humans that had stumbled upon some godlike artifact that drove them to madness and deformity. An artifact left by ages before humans, before the ice ages. Before time.

The next day a rescue helicopter landed near the crash site that was covered in snow and they found nobody except Wilson. He was frozen, his last moment was him sitting and staring somewhere. As the crew lifted his frozen corpse into the helicopter they found a note scribbled on a piece of tarp it read, ‘They exist! They are coming! The end is nigh! The end is nigh!’

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