Monday, January 8, 2018

The Colony - In the Unknown Depths

Start Date: August 23rd, morning
Start Status: Gem Temptation
Start Location: ???

Adventuring: Rennard, Jinx, Brigg, Smoke, Zenobe
At the Tulip: Castor, Hagan, Xon, Aaron

The Turn

"I knew we should have taken those jewels before trying this!" says Smoke as she paces back and forth in the pedestal chamber.

"Relax and have patience," answers Brigg. "It worked once, it'll work again."

"How do you know? Are you a secret wizard or something? Maybe we drained whatever magic powers it."

Brigg shrugs. "It's been at least five minutes. Should we try again?"

While the rest of the party was ready to press on with exploration in the newly discovered tunnels, Jinx was more interested in ensuring the group could return to their starting point. He offered to test the platform by himself, but the others, seeing the wisdom of his suggestion, joined him on the platform. Jinx touched the pyramid, which did the same glowing/golden lights routine as the sphere pedestal. The group spent a minute reassuring themselves that they were back in the Silverstream before returning to the platform to continue their exploration of the space beyond. This time, however, the platform didn't work, leaving the party waiting for... something.

After Brigg voices his suggestion and with varying degrees of enthusiasm, the party returns to the platform and Jinx touches the sphere. This time, the light show starts as expected. "See?" *fwoomph* "It just has some sort of delay, perhaps a recharge cycle," says Brigg as the group reappears in the mystery caves.

"Right, let's get moving. Time is passing," says Zenobe.

Brigg takes point, followed by Jinx and Rennard, then Smoke and Zenobe. As the group passes the strange statue with fire opal eyes, Smoke eyeballs the pool, which is filled with murky water. "I hope there's nothing living in that," she mutters as the group continues to the double doors that showed signs of use at the end of the hall.

Brigg takes a few minutes to listen, then shrugs and pulls out an oil flask. He dribbles a bit on each hinge of the door panels, reaching high to reach the topmost. "You know, the size of these doors suggests this place was built by the tall ones. Look how high and narrow they are." Finally, he grasps the pull rings and gives a gentle tug, followed by a harder pull. The doors finally start to open, hinges grinding and edges scraping on the frame and floor.

"Not exactly quiet," whispers Jinx.

Brigg shrugs, "You can open the next set."

The chamber beyond is octagonal, roughly 20 x 30 feet. Like the hall, it appears to have been carved out of solid stone. There is a heap of rubble in the center of the room and another set of double doors in the north wall, and one of these is ajar. Thin lines of mold follow damp trails from ceiling to floor and puddles of discolored water mark the floor, and the air is dank and chilly. Scuff marks show where someone or something moved between the doors and all around the room.

"Look here Rennard. I think this might confirm your theory that there was some sort of rebellion or uprising." He points to the rubble, which, after a few moment's study, everyone can plainly see was once a statue of a (possibly tall) humanoid figure.

"Someone took a serious dislike to this," says Rennard, as he studies the shattered fragments. While it's easy to spot the bigger sections of the body, shoulder, leg, torso, the statue's head is either missing or hammered into gravel. A thick layer of accumulated muck and dust indicates this damage was done long ago, but some of the pieces have been moved recently.

"I don't hear anything here," says Smoke at the north door. "Looks like more corridor."

The group moves into the north passage, which is 10 feet wide and carved through solid stone. "Hang on a second," says Jinx. "Something here. I can see some faint lines in the stone." He points out details to the others and eventually discovers a hidden catch that opens a tall and narrow panel in the wall. Beyond is a narrow corridor that bends south after 10 feet. A search of the far end reveals a similar panel and latch.

"Tricky," mutters Smoke. "We really need to be careful here."

Everyone backtracks to the main passage and, with Brigg back on point, heads north. And north. The corridor is at least 150 feet long, and at the north end it turns west and continues. The group is about to start down the west passage when Rennard hisses a warning and dims his sword, "Quiet!"

Everyone stops dead and Rennard gestures at his ear, indicating the others should listen. Smoke is the first to nod, then the others follow suit. They can all hear the faint echoes of a single voice speaking in a regular cadence. Brigg gestures back toward the corner and the group backs up as quietly as possible. The monk keeps watch at the corner, and Rennard whispers, "I don't like the feel of this."

"Can you sense evil?" asks Zenobe.

The paladin shakes his head. "It may be too far away. Can anyone make out the words?"

No one can, but Brigg says, "It sounds like someone reciting something. A ceremony or ritual maybe?"

OOC: Brigg can barely make out a pair of pillars or facades in the corridor around the corner and ahead.

End Date: August 23rd, morning
End Status: Voices in the Dark
End Location: ???

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