The dirt hill behind our house looked more like a mountain to me. It’s weed covered earth and ashen ground burnt by the sun was a haven for our days of lost time where we played, adventured and learned about life. The field was only green after a rain and the dirt made clouds about our feet when we moved. The sun reached every corner but the base of the mountain where the cave sat. Pebbles and stone scattered at the mouth of the cave, and the dampness filled the mouth and nose within feet of the cave. This is where our adventure started. The ghost stories kept most of us out, there was a tale that murderers hid in the darkness, or a child had fallen and died but never been retrieved from within. I was afraid of the dark and death and anything but my dolls and dress up, so needless to say I avoided this spot like my life depended on it. My brother knew this and when we decided to walk through the mountain range that day he knew where he was taking me. He delighted in scaring me. When the mountain loomed up before me I froze I had a foreboding feeling starting a the mouth of this cave, I knew that danger, death and nightmares awaited us there. “Common” he said “don’t be a scaredy-cat.” He egged me on and I followed reluctantly protesting every inch of the way. Its dark, my shoes are untied, the smell, the sun will go down soon, I squirmed in my skin. Lets go home. He laughed, he teased and finally we were in the shade of the cave, just within the threshold and suddenly we could hear a dripping, distant and echoing. There must be a under ground river. I felt my skin tingle, perhaps a long lost and forgotten magic resided within the earth here. I ventured further with him without restraint. It seemed like hours that we wondered in the dark, sometimes over fallen stone, sometimes over damp sandy earth. In the darkness our eyes adjusted and our ears sharpened and all the while we heard the echoes of water dripping, moving swiftly. We seemed to be getting closer until I tripped over an unseen stone. My ankle twisted and my mind screamed out. I could not stand and I could not move. It was as far as I could go. He helped me sit against a large stone. Every hair on my skin was electrified with nerves. “I’ll get help.” He said in the darkness his face too distant to see, don’t leave me in this place! I screamed. But he was gone and I was frozen with fear and in the darkness my only comfort was the constant dripping, until suddenly it stopped.