Picking up where we left off a few days ago…
There were still lots of other parts to explore that I hadn’t seen yet. And, there were lots of animals yet to see.
Every day for several weeks I went out and looked and explored. I was having a great time until one day when I was going down to one of the lower levels where we kept the larger animals…
“Hmm, here’s another ladder going down, I don’t remember seeing this one before.” I thought to myself. Down at this level the cages were much larger than the ones higher up.
“Wow! I bet the really big animals are down here. One more level won’t hurt…”
I was frightened by the big cats at first, but they turned out to be pretty friendly as long as I didn’t get too close.
Then I saw another ladder leading even farther down.
“Hmm, I’m pretty sure that this is where Papa told me not to go. But, I wonder what it looks like down there”.
Just then I heard some strange rustling around noises and noticed that the lamps that lit up each of the lower levels seemed to be out. I began to get very curious. I looked around to see if anyone was around.
“Papa will never know if I look just once.”
So, I began climbing down the ladder and I was turning and twisting around trying to see what was there when suddenly the ark lurched and my foot slipped. I lost my grip on the ladder and began flailing around trying to grab onto something when my left leg got caught in one of the steps of the ladder.
There was excruciating pain, a horrible snapping sound and then I landed hard on my back, flat on the deck. The next thing to hit must have been my head because I blacked out for a while.
When I awoke, I was in more pain than I had ever imagined in my whole life. I realized I had broken my leg badly. I couldn’t keep from yelling and crying it hurt so badly, but no one came. I was down there all alone.
I realized that my father and uncles were cleaning out stalls at least two decks above me and couldn’t hear me.
“Where is Grampa’s God when I need Him?”
I immediately felt completely alone and in the dark. Then I began to feel afraid. I didn’t know how often they came down to this level to care for the animals.
My eyes began to gradually get used to the dim light.
I began to yell again.
“Help,” I yelled as loud as I could.
After the second or third yell, there was this really weird echo. It sounded a lot like a horn of some sort.
Every time I hollered help, that strange horn echoed back to me.
After about five or six times, I tried to sit up and look around.
Through the tears in my eyes and into the dim light, coming toward me was the biggest animal I had ever seen.
It was sort of a brownish grey with big floppy ears and a long huge nose, an absolutely monstrous, grey, wrinkly body and legs twice as big around as my Uncle Ham. Just as I started to get a good look at it, it rose up its nose and made that horn sound I had been hearing.
It walked slowly over to me with its nose pointed at me sniffing me and then touching me. I was scared at first, but its touch was so gentle I stopped being afraid. It pushed at me a little bit, like it was trying to help me stand up. I reached up to feel it’s long nose and it began to pick me up and cradle me with it. I felt the pressure on my leg get less and the pain got easier to handle.
I wasn’t sure what was going on or why this animal was doing this. I looked up and I could tell the big thing was also looking down at me. I began to feel very relaxed and very tired. My eyes had trouble staying open and I must have fallen asleep for a while.
When I woke up, the animal was still holding me up. I began to call out for my father. “Papa,” I would call out. I was not very loud at first. I did not want to frighten my protector.
I would repeat a little louder each time.
After a while, I stopped because I wasn’t getting any answers. The pain was still pretty strong and I was getting tired again. I was also very thirsty and starting to get more afraid that no one was answering me.
I was getting scared and I didn’t know what to do.
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