“Hē nīvu, ēḷuva.”
I felt a rough prod against my back as I winced slightly. Where was I? I looked around frantically as I tried to build a quick mental picture of my surroundings.
Nothing. Blackness. Just pure blackness, everywhere.
“Nīvu sumāru avivēki huḍugi calisuva nillisalu, mattu calisuva paḍeyuvudu.”
Okay, whoever they were, they didn’t speak English.
I felt a rough tug as I was hauled upwards, onto my feet. I stumbled slightly at the uneven ground below me as I was pushed forward. Distant laughter echoed up ahead, where a tiny speck of light shone brightly. Was that the exit? Hope filled my chest as I struggled to stop myself from running . A rough sigh sounded beside me, and I gasped in surprise as I felt a large hand caressing my back. Goosebumps ran all over my skin as a wave of nausea washed over me. Where does he think he’s touching? I trembled, panic-stricken. Wherever they’re taking me, it’s not a good place.
“Nīvu sākaṣṭu halavāru mārāṭa hōgi nīvu!” Deep, throaty laughter sounded all around. What were they saying? What language were they speaking in? Where was I? Why am I here? Where were they bringing me? Uncertainty and fear engulfed me. I breathed heavily and my heart raced rapidly against my ribcage as blood pounded loudly in my ears.
Who were they—