I would like to ask if someone could give me a short summary of "The Pit and the Pendulum".
The speaker of this story is a victim of the Inquisition (an attempt to find unbelievers and do away with them). As a result, he is imprisoned in the room with the pit. He is tied up, and then falls asleep. After a period of time, he wakes to find he is no longer bound, but the room is completely dark. He stumbles around to get his bearings and falls...only to discover that he almost walked into the pit which he determines is quite deep by throwing in a rock and listening for the impact. He falls asleep again and wakes to discover he is tied to a table with a pendulum above him. The pendulum swings closer and closer and he realizes he will be cut in two if he does not escape. He rubs the meat left for him to eat on the ropes which hold him, and the rats in the room chew at the meat-flavored rope. He is able to get lose just in time, and shortly after, he is rescued by soldiers who oppose the Inquisition.
It all seems very coincidental, and many critics see it as too good to be true. However, this is the short and easy version of the story. I would encourage you to attempt the longer, more indepth summary provided here at enotes to help you understand the story completely.