the breath is a metallic grating through the tunnel. all ten eyes tore forward. the silence there was static, but active with the white noise eyes make when strained in the night. far away, a deep clank, once. and then silence and a answering surge in water pressure, the pipes lurching into place as the flow hit them. the breath was fetid, the sewer water lank and thin, reeking, with thickened movement that held boots, not letting them know what moved in the water.

above, a manhole lets light make translucent the water. at a far end of tunnel, a brief shard of light holds forth. to the left branches a tunnel which immediately branches into a left curve and a right straightaway.