Solo Finishing the 56th Level

A continuation of "The Duo Returns"

(This is a thread from Mizahar's fantasy role playing forum. Why don't you register today? This message is not shown when you are logged in. Come roleplay with us, it's fun!)

Built into the cliffs overlooking the Suvan Sea, Riverfall resides on the edge of grasslands of Cyphrus where the Bluevein River plunges off the plain and cascades down to the inland sea below. Home of the Akalak, Riverfall is a self-supporting city populated by devoted warriors. [Riverfall Codex]

Moderator: Gossamer

Finishing the 56th Level

Postby Zephari on August 29th, 2015, 9:34 pm

Image
Timestamp 76th of Summer 515 AV

This is why only a select few were allowed to work on the front line team.

The day had started out pretty normal. Well as normal as days could be working at the Coalinga mines. Up early, down to the mines, started work. It had been five days since Zephari was assigned to work on the front line team working the bottom of the mine. She was the designated geologist, and so was the one who directed the workers where to mine. So far it had been very smooth, with only a single small wall collapse, with nobody even being near it.

The crew now had two tunnels heading in opposite directions from the main room where the great left descended into. Each of those tunnels branched out into three more, heading away from the main chamber. Four of the five tunnel directions had been determined by Zephari's original survey, the other two were done by the foreman overseeing the crew.

Zephari was working in the second northwest tunnel today. This was the tunnel that she had started because of traces of calcite and topaz in one wall. Due to the hard work of her friend Havar, and reimancer, the tunnel had made good progress, reaching almost thirty feet in the direction that she had indicated. The crystal deposits had indeed grown richer the further they mined, but were still not rich enough to actually bother extracting. Wanting better results, the foreman had requested she help with this cave today, to make sure it was worth spending manpower to continue mining.

This was a little nerve wracking, as if it turned out that it wasn't worth continuing, this would count as a failure on her part, but it did mean she got to work with Havar. When she first learned he was also on this team, she had hoped to work with her child-like friend, but her surveys kept her busy, and unable to do any actual mining. So this was a nice change of pace.

Arriving at the head of the tunnel, as always Havar was already here and working hard. It still made the benshira jump whenever she came upon her friend, simply due to his size. But she quickly got over it and approached him, calling his name in an attempt to get him to stop hammering away at the wall.

"HAVAR!!!." she eventually had to shout to get his attention. He looked back, the same dimwit look on his face that he always had. "Sorry Zeph, how long were you there?" he asked, opening his hands in a welcoming gesture. Normally when people did this it was nothing to think of, but Zephari knew that she was about to be almost killed.

Her suspicions were proved correct as he took on step over to the comparably tiny woman, picked her up, and gave her a massive lung crushing hug. By Yahal when will he learn to not squeeze so hard! Once dropped, taking a breather for several ticks, she asked "How's the tunnel coming along? Still finding more crystals?"

Taking her lantern, pushing past Havar, she ran her hand along the newly exposed wall that had just been uncovered. Holding the lantern close to the rock, she could see that the calcite was still larger than the last time she had checked this tunnel, but even the largest chunks would barely make an accent gem on a small ring. The tiny dots of yellow and green said that there was still topaz, so there was yet hope for this.

"I assume the foreman told you about his impatience?" she asked, turning to Havar. Her expression showing her irritation at the situation. "Yup. How much bigger do we need to find though?" he responded, looking less irritated, more just confused. "These are still shiny"

Taking her pick, Zephari gouged out a chunk of rock that had some of the larger pieces of crystal. Opening the lantern to allow for better light to examine them closely. "If only it was so gods damned dark down here. We aren't even a hundred paces from the main tunnel which goes all the way to the surface, but there is no trace of any sunlight." she complained, grabbing Havar's lantern.

Each crystal was about twice the size of a grain of rice. Now if kept raw, these could be used, but due to the nature of calcite, it had to be cut, often to less than a quarter of its original size. So these were simply too small. In order to be of any value, they needed to be at least three times this size. Zephari didn't even bother examining the green and yellow glimmers, as they were so small you could barely tell they were crystals at all.

"In order to make an real money, we need to find ones at least the size of my small fingernail." she explained, showing her pinkie finger. She knew crystals like this existed in this mine, she had mined them herself. But these were all pretty consistently the same size, meaning they weren't in the right layer yet. "We probably have to go at least another ten feet. How fast can you do that buddy?" she asked, hoping he would have a good answer

"I should be able to do that before lunch". he said, a broad smile on his face. There is no way... Well actually now that I think about it, he probably can. Freaking giant. And with that, Zephari moved out of the way, and let him start smashing away. He used the fine point of his pick, because now he could just break off huge chunks, and shove them back to Zephari, where she could break them for him. They settled into a rhythm, where it would take the benshira about the same amount of time to break each chunk into carryable pieces as it took for the Akalak to break off each chunk.

With this, they made immense amounts of progress, having to take breaks every four or five chunks to carry the rubble out of the tunnel. Just as lunch time arrived, they reached twelve feet, and something was weird. Havar grew hesitant to strike the wall at full force.

"Whats wrong buddy? We are doing so good, and it is almost time for break." she said, giving him a weird look, one eye raised. He was normally so powerful with his strikes, and went at his with with gusto. "Weird noise." he said, taking a swing with his pick at the wall. With the first swing Zephari didn't notice anything strange. However as he continued to swing, she noticed that alongside the normal metalic clang, which echoed through the tunnel, there was a second, far quieter echo. Telling him to swing harder so she could hear it more clearly, she put her ear to the wall next to him.

The impact wracked her brain, but her hearing remained sharp. The impact was normal, but the sound afterwards was very, very weird. Each ping of the echo was clearly mirrored, but within the wall, not the air of the tunnel. As the echo continued, the mirrored echo changed as it dissipated, as if the mirror echo was in a different place.

"Keep swinging, but carefully. I think there may be a cave." she said, her voice very stern and solemn. He took two more good hit against the chunk he was working away. Upon breaking, the chunk, rather than falling towards Havar, fell into the wall. A rush of air flowed from the new hole in the wall, blasting Havar and Zephari with a gust of cold, damp air. "Guess I was right."

This is the color of speech.
This is the color of others speech.
This is the color of thought.
Image
Last edited by Zephari on September 13th, 2015, 8:01 am, edited 1 time in total.
Image
User avatar
Zephari
The Collector
 
Posts: 161
Words: 107646
Joined roleplay: February 22nd, 2015, 7:27 pm
Location: Endrykas
Race: Human, Benshira
Character sheet
Storyteller secrets
Plotnotes
Medals: 1
Trailblazer (1)

Finishing the 56th Level

Postby Zephari on September 13th, 2015, 5:10 am

Image
Carefully they spent several hours clearing away more rock from the opening, making sure to not take too large of chunks at a time, in fear of causing a collapse, as they were unsure of the size and structure of the cave they had stumbled upon.

Once they had an opening about four feet tall, and half as wide, Zephari reached into the opening with her lantern, followed by her head. The room smelled of lime, bitter and earthy, and the air very thick, almost foggy. The subtle sound dripping echoes throughout the dark cave, giving it a strange calmness. The light cast by her lantern showed only about thirty feet of the gloomy came. Not the usual stalactites, and stalagmites, but lots of water markings on the floor and walls.

Slowly and carefully retreating from the hole, Zephari was wide eyed with surprise. "This cave is massive. Move likely full of good mine-able stuff. But we need to be super careful Havar," she described, looking up at her coworker. He looked in, barely able duck down low enough to fit his head. He made a strange whistling noise that squeaked at the end."Bet there's a lotta shinies in there Zeph. But why do we need to be careful?" he asked, obviously excited to get inside.

Zephari pointed at the rim of the hole. "If we expand the hole too quickly, we could cause the cave to collapse. It's like connecting two tunnels, each one has it's one structure. If you aren't careful in connecting them, both collapse." she explained, gingerly backing away from the hole, stepping over the pile of rubble behind the pair. She grabbed her pick ax, knowing that while she wouldn't be as fast, she could be more exact than the giant. Directing Havar to move the rubble away from the tunnel, and out to the exit, she got to work expanding the hole. "Alrighty then."

Once Havar was far enough away to not be a distraction, she got to work. The whole was a rough pentagon, with the point facing downward. The edges were very sharp, having been broken from shards of the walls. The hole was about four feet above the floor of the cave, and two feet from the ceiling. I guess we are digging down... Just go slow, don't want to make too many fractures. Sweat began to bead on her forehead as the started chipping away at the lower edge of the hole, starting at the sides and working towards the middle. Making to to never swing even close to full force. Slowly breaking each edge down by three or four inches per shard she removed, the hole slowly grew.

After about an hour, the hole was almost all the way to the floor of the tunnel. Now Zephari could easily fit herself into the hole, so she did so. Using her pick ax as a hook to hang from, the benshira lowered herself down into the darkness. Once her foot touched the ground, she reached up and grabbed her lantern, revealing her discovery. The cave was largely shale, with bits of lighter limestone.

Slowly treading farther into the cave, she slipped, sliding down farther into the darkness, dropping her lantern. As she fell, she grabbed her pick ax, which was still handing from the ledge, snapping off a large chunk of rock from the hole. Once she stopped sliding, about four feet away, she looked back at the hole. The chunk of rock that had been torn from the wall was supporting the hole. It began to collapse, the light of Havar's lantern being slowly covered by a pile of rocks.

"NOOO!!!!" she screamed, scrambling to stand up, falling back down due to the slippery stone.

This is the color of speech.
This is the color of others speech.
This is the color of thought.
Image
Image
User avatar
Zephari
The Collector
 
Posts: 161
Words: 107646
Joined roleplay: February 22nd, 2015, 7:27 pm
Location: Endrykas
Race: Human, Benshira
Character sheet
Storyteller secrets
Plotnotes
Medals: 1
Trailblazer (1)

Finishing the 56th Level

Postby Zephari on September 13th, 2015, 8:50 am

Image
And so all was dark. Her lantern was in her hand, but out from being thrashed around from her fall. The hole back into the main tunnel was sealed, only tiny wisps of light seeped through the pile of rubble that covered the hole. She was soaked, and sore from the fall. The only noise was the tiny pebbles settling within the pile of rubble, and the continuing dripping from farther into the cave.

"By Yahal why... Does Semele want me dead within her?" Zephari pleaded, looking around for her lantern, her eyes almost totally useless. While she had very good darkvision due to working in these mines for so long, she didn't exactly have true night vision. Just barely able to make out her hands in front of her face, Zephari resorted to crawling around in search of the lantern.

It took several chimes of crawling around blindly to find the lantern. The glass of the sides was shattered, but it had oil still within it's well. Shaking it she could hear the sloshing of the oil, which let her have a sigh of relief. "At least there is still some fuel... If I can get a way to light this thing maybe i can work out how bad it is..."

Taking several more chimes to crawl around in the dark, Zephari eventually founder her way over to the rubble pile, lantern in hand. Placing the lantern next to her leg, so that she could feel it, Zephari got onto her knees and stood up, slowly. She slowly leaned forward, making sure to keep her legs spread to keep balance on the slippery floor. Her hands eventually reached the rock pile and she smiled. "Just as I hoped... Sharp, hard shale. No wonder there wer so many sharp edges around the hole."

She recognized the sharp grained feeling of shale. It was the compressed sandstone that was common in the deeper layers of this mine. One thing that it was really know for, was making sparks. All stones made sparks when you hit them with a pick ax, but shale had a way of making sparks that really flew. It was actually an eye hazard for miners in the lower levels. If I can get two smallish piece, in theory they should be able to spark at least half as much as hitting this stuff with my pick... In theory... Gods I've never been in such darkness.

After fumbling through several crevices of rubble, putting small cuts into her uncalloused wrists, she found two small hand sized pieces of rock, and she slowly knelt back down, knocking her lantern over again. "Damnit... Where did that freaking lantern go!" she exclaimed, getting down on her hand and knees, again searching for the lantern. This time she found it quickly, as it has simply rolled downhill from her into a small divet.

Elated at finding it so much easier, she stood up, forgetting the slippery floor. Sliding downhill, away from the rubble covered entrance, and fell, landing hard on her left elbow. The twinge of sharp, echoing pain shot up her arm and into her skull, making her brain rattle. It was quickly followed by a throbbing, rhythmic pulsing sensation, and the feeling of thick warm fluid running down her arm.

"Shyke! Ahhh that hurts, nggghhh..." she grunted, rolling over onto her back, clutching her arm and lantern with her right hand. Blood trickled off of her finger and onto her face, the warmth of the liquid startling Zephari in the complete darkness. As the pain slowly receded, the benshira shakily arose, making sure to stay slow and calculated. She was now shaking, her body sore and beat up from the multiple falls. Placing each step with the greatest care, Zephari moved back up to the pile of rubble.

"Ok, just stay steady this time... Your gonna get out of here just fine." she mumbled to herself, her voice cracking slightly from fear. Taking the two rocks she had gathered, she twisted the knob on her lantern letting the oil dribble out of the nozzle. She set the lantern on a flat rock at about shoulder height, and smashed the two rocks together.

A single, large and bright spark flew from them into the darkness, dissipating after about three ticks. Zephari grinned, knowing that this would work. Making several more attempts, rotating the rocks slightly each time in order to find a better angle to smash them together, she eventually was able to get flurries of sparks to fly from the stones in her hands. Once she was able to repeatable make a hand sized burst of sparks, she turned to the lantern. The smell of oil was starting to permeate the cave, meaning it was running pretty strong. Ignoring this, she smashed her stones together, sending sparks flying into the lantern's open front.

This is the color of speech.
This is the color of others speech.
This is the color of thought.
Image
Image
User avatar
Zephari
The Collector
 
Posts: 161
Words: 107646
Joined roleplay: February 22nd, 2015, 7:27 pm
Location: Endrykas
Race: Human, Benshira
Character sheet
Storyteller secrets
Plotnotes
Medals: 1
Trailblazer (1)

Finishing the 56th Level

Postby Zephari on September 17th, 2015, 5:39 am

Image
A gout of flames burst from the oil soaked lantern, nearly scorching Zephari's hands, just before her instincts kicked in and she jerked away from the geyser of fire. The burst of flame went right up to the ceiling, illuminating that the cave was entirely covered in tiny sparkling gems.

Zephari of course didn't notice this, as she screamed and leaped back from the flames. This time she was able to keep her footing, but only just, her leaning back and waving her arms around like an idiot to stabilize herself. One her feet were firmly under her weight, she gingerly made her way back over to the lantern, which was now lit, though the bottom was also one fire as the excess oil burned off.

Lifting it, she carefully moved around the pile, looking for any gaps back into the tunnel. After less than half a chime of searching, she could hear the sound of voices from the other side. They were panicked, and there was at least two voices.

"Hello!? Can anybody here me?!" she shouted, praying that they could hear her. If Havar or one of the other reimancers hears me, I'll be able to get out of here for sure! Even if not the'd search the collapse for a body. Wouldn't they? Her hopes rose as the sound of rocks being moved resounded through the cave. After about a full chime, a tiny gap opened up, letting light flow into the cave. Havar poked his giant head through the hole and shouted.

"You alright down there Zeph!?" he belowed, sounding very worried, on the brink of tears. He starting ripping away more rocks once he saw the benshira standing there with the lantern covered in her own blood. "Yeah I'm alright Havar, just roughed up a bit. My elbow is bleeding pretty bad so it would be nice if you could get me out of here some time soon." she said sarcasticly, smiling a great big smile at the sight of her freedom.

Once the hole had been made large enough, the Akalak laid down on his bare chest,
reaching out to grab Zephari. Grabbing his hand, she climbed up the pile of loose rocks, scrapping her shin a couple of times on the sharp broken edges. Once out of the cave, she made a break for the main chamber, and waited for the lift. Havar thundered over to her, and started fussing over her arm like a concerned mother, even though he had no ability to actually do anything about the benshira's injuries.

"It's Ok buddy I'm fine. This is all just another day at the mines."

This is the color of speech.
This is the color of others speech.
This is the color of thought.
Image
Image
User avatar
Zephari
The Collector
 
Posts: 161
Words: 107646
Joined roleplay: February 22nd, 2015, 7:27 pm
Location: Endrykas
Race: Human, Benshira
Character sheet
Storyteller secrets
Plotnotes
Medals: 1
Trailblazer (1)

Finishing the 56th Level

Postby Konrad Venger on March 6th, 2016, 10:11 pm

Image

Hey, Zephari! Once you get back and deduct your Winter Seasonal Expenses, I'll grade this up, no problem. PM me when you get back!

||Common||Thoughts||Pavi||Fratava||Myrian||Other's Speaking||
Image
Note: As of Fall 517AV, Konrad is known only as "Hansel" in Endrykas
User avatar
Konrad Venger
Long is The Way and Hard
 
Posts: 922
Words: 1057869
Joined roleplay: November 23rd, 2015, 4:05 pm
Location: Endrykas
Race: Human, Mixed
Character sheet
Storyteller secrets
Scrapbook
Plotnotes
Medals: 4
Featured Thread (1) Overlored (1)
Donor (1) One Million Words! (1)


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 0 guests