The first sensation you feel is the taste of the acrid, thick humidity around you. With every deep breath taken with parted lips the lingering taste of something metallic becomes more and more pronounced against the buds in your lips. Moments later the second sensation fires up through your nostrils. Something rotten lays close by. The strength of the smell is enough to make your stomach churn but the sudden, yet dull throb in the back of your head distracts from the bile building up inside. You reach up to feel but your limbs feel heavier. In fact everything feels heavier.

Finally your eyes open and the blurred environment around you looks wrong. A fire in the distance burns upside down and the smoke from the fire appears to be floating down towards the ground. The flames reach a few feet down and your mind struggles to comprehend what you are looking at. Though that is when you feel the sweat drip up from your lips and chin to your nostrils and over your eyes. Your hair stands on end and the pressure inside of your skull finally smashes all the clues together.

You are the only thing upside down.

Your blurred vision finally focuses and the fire in the room illuminates just enough space to show that the floor is tiled and covered in black pools in various areas. Finally the sensation of panic grips your chest, hugging tighter than any embrace of a loved one. You squirm in the air and you muster the strength to flex your abs and hips to bend upwards and see your feet bound by rope and hanging by a rusted metal hook before your muscles give out and you fall back and swing back and forth.

The momentum of your body swinging back and forth pushes your back into something hard, yet squishy at the same time. Something rubs against your back and sticks to your shirt before it peels away. With a grunt and a shift your body twists on that hook and you get a momentary glimpse of what you bumped against.

If it wasn’t for your parched, dehydrated throat you could have screamed. Nothing escapes but a whimper after your eyes captured the sight of a very bloody burlap sack that was on its own hook behind you. Fresh blood trickled from the bottom of the bag and dripped onto the ground. The sudden realization of what must be in the bag was enough to send your stomach over the edge. Craning your head the best you can nothing came from the dry heaves that overtook you. The force of your episode was enough to bump your body against that sack a few more times. Despite a million thoughts and fears racing through your head, instinct and survival smash through the rest. Your body rocks back and your hips turn again.

Your hand lash out and grip onto the bloody, slick sack and you pull upwards with all your might. You keep a tight, almost nail breaking grip on the sack with one hand and wrap your arm around the disgusting object and hug it tighter than ever before. Your muscles and lungs burn with the exertion and exhaustion of the activity but the goal is just within reach. Climbing slowly up that nasty bag your body is forming almost a perfect V and one arm stretches upwards, gripping onto the slick hook that held the bag. With every burning fiber of your being your other hand leaves the bag, stretching out to the hook that your feet are roped to. Slippery fingers fumble around the rusted hook but latch on, never letting go.

With a grunt and cry your hips arch and your knees contract. You fling your legs upwards and extend your knees and suddenly gravity becomes your worst enemy. Your hip and elbow cushions the fall to the ground but the pain is immense. Nothing is broken, thankfully, but the wind certainly was knocked out during that seven foot fall. Your hands slide against the black goo that the flames had shown earlier and nearly stick to the ground because of it.

Keeping them on the ground for a few moments longer you are finally  able to climb to your knees and finally your feet.  You place them near the fire to see what it was that had covered your hands and undoubtedly your front side. The black, ichorous substance felt like glue but when exposed to the fire it…ran. The blackness peeled itself away from your clothing and hands and slid back against the floor. There was a perfect circle around the fire where the blackness just ceased to venture any further. The ooze retreated into the shadows of the room that the fire did not dare to venture. That is also when you realize, in your shaking nerves, that your feet are still tied together by that rope which was long enough to allow you small steps to that fire in the first place.

As you kneel down to try and undo the knot something bangs in the darkness. The sound of flesh meeting steel echos through the room and it is clear that the nightmare has just begun.