“C’mon, boy.” John grabbed Nix’s sleeve. “The quicker we get down there, the sooner we’re shed of this place.”
Nix needed no more prodding than that, but he got it anyway. An icy breath raised the hairs on the back of his neck, and he hazarded a glance behind. All manner of creatures—human and otherwise—followed them. Most were average people who appeared to be sleepwalking, while others were twisted and deformed. Several, eyes glazed, sclera so red it glowed, radiated a hatred like the sun gave light. None of those frightened him as much as the animals, only a few of which he could name. Crawling things, some with legs too many to count in a single glance, oozed at the crowd’s feet. Most were no larger than mice, but many were bigger than a house-cat, armed with curved black claws that glimmered in their lethality.
A gibbering creature gnawed deep in the back of his mind, scrabbling to gain purchase, threatening control. He realized with what remained of his sanity it was his amygdala swamping rational thought with a single command. Run!
There was little thought left in his young head as he pushed everyone aside and fled for the safety of the steps and the tunnel beyond.