Branches snap under your feet and cold air cuts across your face. You’ve been running for what feels like days, but you can’t stop. Your pursuer is right behind you. But you need to rest.Your lungs ache and your legs feel like stones. Maybe if you could find somewhere to hide, you could stop running.You happen to stumble upon what looks to be an abandoned house. How lucky.
>Enter the house
You pull the door open and slam it shut behind you. You don’t know how far away your pursuer is, but you hope they were far enough that they didn’t see you come inside. You look around the room and confirm that this place is definitely abandoned. A rotten sofa and a large cabinet with rusted hinges sit in an otherwise barren room in front of you. To your left you see what seems to have been a kitchen at some point, an old wood burning stove laying on its side in the corner and a countertop caked in dust mounted under a broken window.
To your right, an old, dilapidated staircase leads up to a second floor. There’s also a closed door at the base of the stairs. You don’t know where it could lead. You need to hide somewhere. Your pursuer could be here any minute.
>Hide in the cabinet
>Look for somewhere to hide upstairs
>Try the door
>Look through the kitchen
Carefully, you climb the stairs, avoiding the few that have collapsed in on themselves. There are two doors upstairs, one across the hall from you, and one down the hallway to your left. The door in front of you is open, and you can look into what appears to be a bedroom. You try the handle to the door on the left, but the door knob seems to be broken, and it refuses to open. There's also an overturned, broken table laying on the floor.
You enter what looks like a bedroom. There’s a broken bedframe in the corner next to a collapsed nightstand, and an old lamp sits shattered on the floor under a small window. You take a moment to look around the room, but there doesn’t seem to be anything of note here. There isn’t even anywhere you could plausibly hide in here. As you’re exploring, you catch a glimpse of movement outside, through the tiny window. You instinctively glance at it and are stopped in your tracks. It’s your pursuer, and they’re looking up at you. You panic as they turn around and start toward the front door. They’ll be here any moment.
>Run back downstairs
>Find a weapon and defend yourself
You rush back down the stairs. Luckily, your pursuer isn't inside just yet. Your only option seems to be to go back out the way you came, so you throw yourself against the door, flinging it open. You see your pursuer just a few steps away, looking taken aback by your sudden appearnace in the doorway. You continue your sprint into the woods, and very soon you can hear the footsteps of your pursuer close behind. Your only choice is to keep running, so you do.
>>Bad End: Right back where you started
There’s not much here, just the overturned stove and the counter. There are a few drawers and cabinets, most of them hanging open. You look out the small window and notice that the sun is setting.
The cabinet is just big enough for you to fit in. The rusted hinges make the doors difficult to open, but you manage. You climb inside and are greeted by spider webs. Pulling the doors closed behind you, you take a moment to enjoy the fact that you’re sitting down for the first time in what feels like forever. You can breathe, even if the air you’re taking in is mostly dust. You try to focus on the matter at hand. You listen as hard as you can for any sign of your pursuer, but your heart is still pounding and the blood rushing in your ears makes it hard to tell. You sit in silence for another minute. You don’t think there’s anyone else in the house right now. Maybe you can actually rest easy for now?
>Get some sleep
You turn the rusted door knob to find it’s unlocked. The hinges creak as you push it open, and you find yourself in a small storage closet. Or at least, it was probably a storage closet at some point. There’s not very much in here now, just some broken shelves and a moth-eaten old rug. It’s empty otherwise.
You have to think fast. Looking around the room, you notice that the broken bedframe has fragmented into several sizable sticks of wood, at least one of which is ideal swinging size. You pick it up and position yourself behind the door, ready to swing at anything that comes through. You listen as the door downstairs opens, then shuts, then footsteps make their way up the stairs, toward you.
You decide to let yourself doze off. You don’t know how long you’re asleep, but you’re startled awake very suddenly. The dark cabinet is quickly filled with light as the door is violently pulled open. A figure fills your vision. You don't even have anywhere to run, this time.
>>Dead End: No Rest for the Wicked
You find it locked.
You fight off the urge to sleep in favor of staying alert. You stay in your hiding place in silence, allowing your heart rate to return to normal. Eventually, your breathing returns to normal. You quickly grow accustomed to the still silence of the house. After what feels like hours, you decide that you’ve probably spent enough time in hiding. You hope that you’ve finally lost your pursuer, but before you can open the doors of your hiding place, you hear the creak of an opening door. You still yourself and listen as soft footfalls enter the house, walking around the ground floor for a moment before ascending the stairs. They didn’t even come close to your hiding spot. You hear a door open upstairs and whoever it is goes into one of the upstairs rooms. You think that, if you want to leave the house, now might be your best time to go without being detected.
>Stay hidden where you are
>Go upstairs to confront the noise
You hold your breath and stay put. Hopefully, if the source of the footsteps is your pursuer, they’ll just leave without checking your current hiding place. The footsteps move around above you for a few minutes, and you hear more doors open. Eventually, they descend the stairs once again and pause in the living room. There’s a hopeful moment where you think the footsteps may be returning to the door from which they came, but you hear them start to come towards you. Not long after, the doors to your hiding place are pried open, and a figure fills your sight. So much for waiting it out.
>>Dead end: Too Safe, Too Sorry
Carefully, you climb out of your hiding place, trying not to alert whoever is upstairs. Against your better judgement, you let your curiosity get the better of you and you go to check out the noise. You try to tiptoe your way up the stairs, but you're too busy looking at the top of the stairs to look at your feet. You step right into one of the broken stairs, and your ankle twists as you half-fall into the stairs. A figure appears at the top of the stairs, seemingly alerted by the noise. Of course, it's your pursuer. You realise that you ankle is firmly caught in the stairs, and all you can do is watch helplessly as they descend the stairs toward you.
>>Dead end: Watch your step