Out of the Abyss

Prompt: Into the unknown (assigned reading: "In the Abyss" by H. G. Wells)

I looked up at the dark sky, wondering when Bbglb (pronounced by fish vocal cords, not human ones) would come back down. Ze had been up there for 77 hours. Perhaps the water up there was too thin to breathe, or perhaps it was too cold up there.

"Glblbbl?" I said. (I will not try to translate, as I do not know Glb.)

"B?" said Glblbbl.

"Bgbl glbbbl blb glb g?"

"Gbb l blgblgb lbgl glb glb glb!"


"Blb gl, lbg, lg, g lg blg gl bl!"

So I built an enormous sphere, like Glblbbl said, and filled it with water that was the correct pressure and temperature so I could breathe, and I went up in it the way Glblbbl had described (i.e., by blb gl, lbg, lg, g, etc.; see above for details).

Before I went up, I had thought that there would be fewer animals because it would be colder up there, but in fact it got warmer as I got higher; this may have had something to do with the faint blue glow that seemed to be coming from the water. In addition, there were strange creatures, like fish with lights hanging down in front of them. These seemed to be some kind of lure, and other fish seemed to be coming towards them.

As I went up more, the glow became even brighter, so bright that I could hardly stand it. There were many more fish up there; everywhere I looked, I could see huge groups of fish. Finally, after much upward travel, there was a big splash, and it seemed like the water stopped suddenly. Outside of the water I saw two strange things. The blue glow was a brighter shade of blue, and there was a very, very, very, very bright light glowing straight above me, which seemed to be the source of the blue glow that I had been seeing. The other thing was a large, brown thing floating on the top of the water, with big white things sticking out of the top like huge pieces of paper, and there were strange creatures on this. They were mostly pink, but they had covered most of themselves up. They did not have any fins, but in place of four of the fins were long skinny things, and they were resting their body on two of them, and they were using these to run away from what was probably a very strange object that had just appeared out of the water.

I tried to talk to one of these, but it didn't speak Glb; instead, it spoke a strange language that used lots of vowel sounds, a language which it called "English."

"B, glg bl gl?" I asked.

"Aaa! What is that thing?" it answered.

"Blg bl, gl bl lg lb," I said.

"It's a big monster that came out of the water!" another one said, probably to the first one.

"Bl bl lb lb bb?" I asked.

"It's going to eat us alive!" it explained.

"B g Bblgbl?" I asked.

"B gg!" said Bblgbl, who had just appeared.

"Gl blgblb lgbl l glb l glb l glb bgl blllgbl," I said, and we went back down to our home at the bottom of the ocean, leaving those creatures wondering what that thing was.

Note on pronunciation: The speakers of the Glb language can't make vowel sounds, so there are no vowel sounds in that language. This results in words that are hard to pronounce by us mostly pink creatures with no fins. To make words more pronounceable, you can add in extra uh's, which aren't written. The l sound is usually pronounced with an uh after it (by humans), but not always. The name Glblbbl is pronounced GLUB-ull-bub-bull /ˈɡlʌb.l̩.bʌb.l̩/. The name Bblgbl is pronounced BUB-ull-gub-bull /ˈbʌb.l̩.gʌb.l̩/. The name Blgblgblbbggbgggbllbgblbglblgblbblggbllgbl is not pronounced at all, but that's okay, because it doesn't appear anywhere in this story (except right there). Note that in Glb, there is a word spelled as a single lowercase l. Do not pronounce this like the English word I, which looks similar but is pronounced completely different and is not used in any fish's talking.