This is a story in four parts. It’s kind of an obvious metaphor, but that’s half the fun. a metaphor (it’s been pointed out that it actually isn’t that obvious).
Part One – 12 feet tall (@ Scrawlers)
There was no sense of motion, but I knew I was gathering speed and falling toward the planet. With foreboding, I noticed the strength of the gravitational field. I worried about being torn in half as the pain of my joints being stretched beyond their capacity passed from discomfort to excruciating.
The force was too strong; the planet pulled me in before it pulled me apart. Its only effect was to stretch me into a 12-foot giant. Significant time would pass before I adjusted to limbs too long and weak to combat the constantly crushing constraint of the amplified gravity.
Part Two – 9 feet tall (@ Scrawlers)
The others here have shown me their plan to get off this planet. A tunnel boring through the entire world. Once complete, the insane gravitational force will slingshot something (or someone) through the tunnel, generating enough velocity to escape.
Days I slave with them to elongate the tunnel. I outwork them easily; gravity hasn’t had time to crush me yet. Towering over them at nine feet tall, I still have hope. Nights are spent staring into the bottomless darkness, wondering how much work can be squeezed out of me before I’m like them? How far left to go?
Part Three – 6 feet tall (@ Scrawlers)
This is the last of the vessels. They are the interstellar version of messages in bottles, potential tickets off this demented desert island. The vessel drops into the tunnel, whistling terribly as it accelerates toward the center of the planet. I immediately scan the horizon. Other spotters are better situated than I am to confirm successful launch, but, stretching to my full six-foot height, I can see our final hope shoot across the sky, emerging from the other side of the planet as a tiny meteor.
None of the other vessels have come back. That should give me hope.
Part Four – 3 feet tall (@ Scrawlers)
I don’t know how long I have been here, I can only mark the passing of time by my diminishing height. Based on the others, at three feet tall it’s essentially over for me. Soon the compression will progress to the point where my internal organs are crushed and the planet will finally be victorious over the last of its inhabitants.
This is no sure thing, but I know I cannot stay here. My muscles, mangled by stretches and compressions, are too weak to achieve any kind of jump, so I awkwardly tumble forward into the bottomless pit.