I fell out of a roller coaster - I’ve no idea where the hell I am - Chap 1
The ride was called MegaDrop.
It had been marketed as the best white-knuckle roller coaster in the world.
A gigacoaster combined with a water ride.
I excitedly sat in the bucket seat and reclined as the shoulder harness fastened over me and the ride attendant checked the safety straps. Adreneline coursed through me as I prepared for the thrill of my life.
With an exciting opening video, the train of cars set off out of the station up the perilous incline.
Up. Up. Up.
We climed and climbed high above the park. Railing round the corner of track the cars approached the death-defying drop – plumetting into the darkness into the indoor water ride.
The thrill of the drop took my breath away!
The sound of the park from outside, the squeals from the riders, the splash of the water … gone. Nothing. Silence. Just the sound of metal wheels speeding against the rails.
The cars plumetted into the water into a dark show room. I shook my head and dispersed the water which clung to my hair.
The train of cars slowly passed through the tracks … but where was I? I’d been somehow released from my secure seat on the train and was bobbing nervously in the water in the ride’s show room watching as the train I was on chugged away into the next portion of the ride. Silence.
I looked around. Darkness. And cold, cold water. I kicked my legs and started to swim further into the ride’s showroom. I was scared but I didn’t want to know how deep the water was. I didn’t want to panic.
A noise. Thundering wheels hurtled down the tracks accompanied by wild screams. The next train of theme park visitors plunged into the dark show room with a euphoric splash. The riders whooped with glee and a series of pathetic splashes punctuated the train’s exit into the next part of the ride.
“Ah! Ooh! Ah!” I heard splashing and fighting against the water.
“Hello?!” I offered.
“Yeah?! Hello? Can you help me?”
“I don’t know! I just got here”
“I don’t really know where we are!”
“Urgh … how deep is it?”
“I don’t know!”
Whoooooooosh budda budda budda budda budda whoooooooooosh
The next train came in.
Murmers of amazement from the train of visitors. Then splash “oh! Ah! No!”
And the train peeled away.
“Hello?” I asked
“Ah! Help me! What’s happened?!”
“We fell out of the coaster and now we are here” I said
“I am SO SUING for this!” Said the last drop-off.
“Ok … so how do we get out?!” Asked the newcomer.
We decided to shout for help when the next train plummeted down. Unfortunately no more trains hurtled into the ride showroom.
We bobbed and we splashed. We waited. Around 15 minutes passed with no more trains.
“There has to be a security camera in here” I said to my two fellow drop-offs. “I am sure someone will come soon”.
“I don’t know” said the first drop-off. “It’s close to closing time – they’ll be closing the ride soon”.
I looked around frantically for a fire exit sign or any kind of light that could guide us out of this cavernous building. It was terrifying not knowing how deep the water was, if there was any machinery underneath connected to the coaster that could pull us under. We had no idea where the ride went next and in the pitch dark we had no clue where to go.
A klaxon sounded and fluorescent strobe lights flickered on.
I grimaced as my eyes adjusted to the bright lights. We were in a huge show building – as big as an aircraft hangar. About 12 feet to my right was what must have been the second drop off, judging by where his voice was coming from – a guy in his 20s. A short distance in front you could see the tracks of the coaster leading into the splashdown trough which sailed riders into the next portion of the ride. On the other side of the trough was the first drop-off. Another guy, I’d say late 40s.
“Finally!” said the younger man and began swimming towards a fire exit door where a uniformed theme park employee stood motionless. “Hey thanks! We were wondering when you’d come get us!”
The employee stood there stony-faced. The three of us splashed through the huge show building to pull ourselves up onto a ledge in the hope that we’d be apologised to and led to some back-route towards the ride exit.
“You’ll be hearing from my lawyer about this!” First drop-off declared, seething.
The deadpan staff member turned slowly to a pair of fire exit doors behind him and flung them wide open. Expecting to be greeted by the park outside, the excited patrons bustling around, the whiff of over-priced snack food filling the air, we were somewhat shocked to find ourselves in some kind of vehicle maintainence bay.
A portion of the same steel grey coaster track was up ahead leading off into pitch darkness.
Two maintainence guys turned to face us. They’d been busy working on one of the coaster cars. I say cars as this wasn’t a full train of 12 pairs of seats. This seemed to be a special car – maybe one the technical guys use to fix repairs on the track? Who knows.
They motioned for us to board the vehicle.
First drop-off was hesitant. “Oh no – no more rides – just get us out of here! My wife and kids will be going crazy wondering where I am!”
The staff member and two maintainence guys just stared at us in silence – then again motioned to us to get in the car. There was something eerie, something off about the three of them.
Second drop-off thought he had it sussed.
“Guys – just play along alright?” he said in almost a whisper. “I think this is part of the ride! They must be actors. It must be a giga coaster, water ride AND Horror show combined!”
I felt panic rising from my stomach. I love coasters and I love water rides but I dont go anywhere near Ghost Trains, Haunted Houses, Spook shows. I hate that, I hate being made to jump out of my skin and I hate the unexpected. Before I could protest, Second drop-off was leading me by the arm to what looked to be the service car.
Not like the two-seater low cars we’d been sat in earlier this was simply three single seats with a lap bar positioned one behind the other.
Tentatively we got on board and to my horror they motioned for me to sit in the front seat – staring down the black tunnel with no clue as to what lay ahead.
Cranking a primitive looking lever one of the maintainence guys, emotionless up until this point, burst into life, grinning and waving furiously at us, wild excitement in his eyes.
“Buh-bye!” he said, over and over like a broken record as the car rattled out of the service bay into the dark tunnel ahead.