Stairway to Heaven
His calves burned. His breath came in raw ragged gasps. Blood of a thousand falls slicked his palms and streaked the dank walls he leaned on for support. One bruised, aching foot after another he screwed up the feeble vestiges of his remaining courage and trudged towards the sweet shining promise of the light. He barely dared number the remaining treads lest they prove a cruel uncountable Escher trick of his rheumy, sweat stained eyes. He yearned for the surcease of a cool breeze, unpolluted by his own ever present stench; the sound of the open, not echoes of his own desperate progress, the sights soaring aloft on the wings of a distant horizon, not sight of more rough hewn walls. Soft bludgeons of sleep battered his resolve and, weeping, defeated, he fell before them. Awake, crushed beneath the weight of familiar darkness, he once more began his allotted climb.
This story was written for Angela Goff’s ever excellent Visual Dare challenge