My world is dark. Occasionally, light pierces through on one side; a rectangle shaft that just lights the walls. It is just a small space, but room enough for me and my babies, and my larder. The food is good here, with lots of fresh meat landing outside. Occasionally I will step outside and extend my home. There are lots of building possibilities, but the extensions get blown down frequently. This is the tale of one such day:
I had been sitting outside on my latest extension having recently wrapped my dinner, and the familiar rumblings and vibrations began. The Wind started so quickly I had no time to step inside. At first it was easy to hold on; I’m used The Wind moving me around a little, and I’m good at hanging on. This day was different though. The Wind was so fast my extension began to tear up around me. I needed to get inside where it was safe, inside to where my babies were, so I tried to crawl along toward the gap. Normally I can scuttle along and swing about, but I knew that one false move and I would lose my home, my larder full of fresh meat, my unborn babies in their nest and fly. The last time that happened I was lucky to survive. I landed on the roadside after narrowly missing several of these huge machines that were hurtling along. That was when I found this home; an exquisitely dark hole that seemed to be immune to The Wind. On the inside at least. I’ve lived here for many moons now.
I was cursing my own laziness as I clung on for grim life, my home disintegrating around me, being torn to shreds. Handholds were becoming scarce and I was dangling on the end of my own rope, flapping around. Twice I had been blown against the wall, a surface too smooth to grip onto. The Wind was howling around me, screaming, and my grip was weak. I was being thrown around like a kite; The Wind toying with me, like it was just waiting, choosing when to finish this dance and rip me from everything. My only chance was to make it to the gap. Length by length I made ground, trying to tie together the strands of my home as I went; trying to strengthen my delicate hold on my world. More strands tied, another length made, and then the strands unravelled again, and I smashed once more against the shiny smooth wall. The wind was dying down a little, at last I could spin some more rope, extra sticky this time. I scuttled along back toward my door, bringing my rope behind me. Only a few lengths to go when the wind picked up again. I tucked my head down and battled. My babies would not survive if I was not there to provide nourishment for them when they were born. I only had to make a couple of lengths and I would be in lea of my house, where I knew the wind would not be so bad. Leg by leg I crawled, head bent against the wind, slowly, gradually. Throwing rope forwards and dragging myself toward safety. Finally the lea was met, but I relaxed too soon and The Wind turned, blowing me against the wall once again. Winded, I began to slide down the wall. I needed more rope and fast, if The Wind gets me now I’m done. Hastily I threw more rope at the wall, and more still. It stuck fast and I at last could grip to the wall. Throwing rope before me and with a solid surface beneath my feet I began the climb back toward the gap again. The Wind was doing all it could to tear me from the wall, blowing me this way and that way, first one leg torn away from the wall, then another. Thrice it blew my rope away and I watched it fly from me. So tired, I was beginning to lose the strength to make the rope quickly enough. One more thought about my babies, I made one super-arachnid effort and forced myself back to the lea. After scuttling inside, The Wind ceased its game with me, but I could hear it outside still shouting and shrieking, deafening. I had to rest a few moments before checking my larder, and my babies. Gladly everything was still in place. I tucked into a packaged meal to replenish my strength, and slept.
I awoke to the light shafting through the gap. The vibration had stopped, and The Wind had ceased it’s screaming. Slowly I crept back outside. The surroundings had changed completely, but the shiny wall was still there, with my rope still attached. Slowly I began to build another extension. I’ll be quicker back inside in future; as soon as the vibrations start.