Far Horizons: Tales of Sci-Fi, Fantasy and Horror. Issue #13 April 2015 - Page 188

from her before carefully examining it. Despite its comic appearance, she had seen it do something and had to assume it could be dangerous. The trigger was obvious and right next to it a small switch pointing to a little red ‘f’. The other position pointed to a green ‘s’. Other than that, it still looked like a toy, no more than a foot long and weighing no more than a grapefruit. Claire almost let it fall back to the step, but decided to take it just in case. After flicking the switch from ‘f’ to ‘s’, she pointed it towards the foot of the escalator and pulled the trigger. Nothing happened. It was either safe or a fake. She pushed it into her bag. She stood and tiptoed down the rest of the escalator, ready to run if she had to even through she knew there was nowhere safe to go. Her heart was still hammering, but her breathing was even as she told herself ‘don’t panic’ over and over again. There might be a cleaner, or someone else to get help. Even if she did find someone to let her out, what then? She was still a dozen stations away from home. What good would it do to be out on the street in a part of town she didn’t know? She had the money for a cab, but only from the last station, and she didn’t have a clue if there was a bus she could take. Phoning for help would be just too humiliating. Phone? Claire slapped her forehead and dug a hand into her bag. It took a moment until her hand closed around the familiar shape and she pulled out her mobile. She pressed the wakeup button, dragged her finger around the screen to get past the security, and waited for the display to clear. Icons flickered into life and, finally, the signal strength indicator. It immediately turned red. Of course. No signal. That would have been too easy. She stuffed the phone back into her bag and stamped down the rest of the steps. Four steps from the bottom she noticed a silvery sheen on the floor. Her heart leapt. Maybe there was a cleaner after all, with a mop or a polisher. As she got closer she realised it was a trail of slime, tracking out onto the platform. It had to be a trail left by the Morph that had taken Evie. Claire paused to curl her lip at how gross the idea was, then followed it across the small hallway. She edged along the wall and peeked out onto the platform. Nothing moving, so she poked her head out for a longer look. The platform was clear. At the other end was a ‘Way out’ sign. Claire started to walk briskly towards it but as she passed in front of the train she took only took a dozen steps, each slower than the last, before she stopped and looked back. Where was the driver? There was no slime around the front of the train so he hadn’t been eaten by the Morph. And where had the driver been when they had stopped the train? Where were the police and the station staff, and everybody else who should have come running after a train was wrecked in a tunnel? And what about Evie? So there might be someone to help at the other exit, but how would Claire explain that a strange girl had b VV