Coming back to the Cavern after this last adventure has been difficult. Things have changed, people have changed. Some people are gone. I decided to make my way down to the shore behind the Library. To sit on the rocks by the shore, gives me a calm feeling. My mind can clear down here. The Lake is unusually rough today. Seems like all the new activity down here has stirred the waters.
Then, something caught my eye…..off to my right, behind a piece of the fallen walkway.
It couldn’t be….
I wandered carefully over…
I could not believe my eyes…
My boat, the one I had built for my first adventure across the Lake!!!
I examined her hull to see if she was still seaworthy, yes, just some minor repairs.
There was no guessing, no wondering what I was going to do.
I started immediately making a plan to once again retrace Ghen and Atrus’s path, backwards.
It only took me two days to repair my boat. I decided this time to name her. She is called, Jazzy Girl.
We paddled out on the waters to test everything out….
Strange, I have never seen the ceiling of the cavern look so strange.
I decided to delay my departure, and see if I could figure out what was happening, to make things looks so strange.
The Lake would just have to wait.
I took a quick run out on the Lake to check out my boat. All seems fine. When I gather my gear I will be heading out. This adventure will be more pictorial than narrative.
As I was out on the Lake I did see something strange. The cloud..if you want to call it cloud, formations were strange. I found out later that someone was doing some serious pellet drops. I am wondering if the two are related.
That strange cloud like formation that I saw when testing my boat is gone. Makes sense. Was nearly no one around today as I set out. As I suspected KI signal was lost as I passed thru the Arch. I am really hopeful this time, that I can get up to the Cleft. I read some more of Ghen and Atrus’s trip, and think that it was on the steep descent that I made my mistake in navigation last time.
My packsack is bulging, and I have other containers of supplies stored on my boat. I have dehydrated fruit and vegetables,a couple containers to keep water in, flint, water purification tablets, a small cook stove and cook pot, a change of clothes, emergency blanket, first aide kit, rope, knife, hatchet, spare batteries, and my cell phone. From my journeys I have found that my cell phone has times when it decides to pick up on signals, and it seems as long as I am out in the open (even though I am in a Cavern) I can still get signal. Something in the rock must be acting as a conductor.
As I draw near to the shore, again, that same sense…of awe. This tiny harbor is a welcome sight after the time on the water. I wanted again to stop at K’veer, but the desire to find my way up to the Cleft is stronger.
I tied my boat and started the trek up the steep slope that led away from the sea’s edge. Behind me the sea was dotted with tiny islands, they looked like dirt on the mirror of the orange water. It was indeed a grand sight as Ghen had told Atrus, and I stood and gazed, enthralled with the beauty.
From Atrus’ notes I knew I had hours of walking ahead of me with many twists and turns. I wish I had Ghens notebook!!
I decided to walk until I lost the cool air and breeze, and then find a place to make camp. The twists and turns ahead of me would have to wait until I was rested.
On the fourth day found my way through a small shaft after days of wandering through twists and turns. I kept close watch of my direction and always made it back to my camp, but this shaft looks promising. I had planned for this possibility, and I have all that I need with me, so I do not have to go back to camp. I expect to see the mining rigs, abandoned cranes, mounds of rock and warehouses described in notes at every turn, but nothing, I don’t get it. It is almost as if this task is not meant to be accomplished.
There is some steam escaping from small fissures, and this gives me some hope, but nothing like what I would expect to find. By all visuals, I am not even near the southern border of the D’ni kingdom, no where near the massive gate and marble floors that marks an entrance.
I was just about to get comfy in a small cavern that led off the shaft, when I saw something.
As I rounded the bend I was met with this set of stone steps, and the light coming from the top was almost blinding. It made no sense, but I have come to find that not much down here makes sense. I made my way up the steps and, as I had felt before, as when I passed through the mossy veil in The Valley of Shells, I had the feeling of linking, but nothing drastically changed. Except….. as I topped the stairs I was met with this scene.
An opening as vast as ever I could imagine, and more beautiful than any I have ever seen. I stood..stared and caught my breath. After I regained a sense of reality, I took stock of my strength. Could I traverse that bridge and those stairs today?…YES..I was too excited not too, and my adrenalin rush was too much to ignore. I made my way, over the rocky ledge to the worn path that led to the bridge. Off to the left in the valley I saw a sight that was too much to bear.
Down in the shadow of this rock was a house, a massive dwelling on the edge of the cliffs…How???
How was it made???
How can I get there???
How were there birds flying??Down here??
How did I get here???
I am not in a cavern anymore.
My path leads up, and can see no way down to the home. I will just have to keep going and see what meets me as I climb those stairs and round that corner. I am never going to find my way up to the Cleft at this rate. Who would have guessed that there was so much buried here, so much to discover?
As I made my way up the exactly 100 steps, I was too excited to be winded. The path flattened and led through a dark rocky corridor.
then ended at this wall. I puzzled over it for a couple hours, and as the light faded from the glimmers filtering through the corridor, I made camp for the night….not that I was going to get any sleep.
As I thought, I did not get much sleep. I had dreams of windmills, Yeesha calling me to the Cleft, and Bahro screaming. Windmills?? why I do not know. This wall is windmillish, but not enough to give me dreams…or was it?
I poked and pressed and prodded at this wall from every possible angle. It only stood 8 feet, so I was able to reach the top with the aid of some rocks I built into a step platform. I was baffled. Each panel was exactly like the other. I stood back and stared, crossed my eyes…the only thing I did not do was stand on my head!!
I could not shake the windmill thought. I could see no way that this would turn. What am I missing??
There was not even the slightest breeze coming up the walkway.
Okay…wind, so here goes……I took a big breath and blew with all my might at the wall!!
The scene before me made me step back as far as I could go…..open sky, swirling clouds, and the sound of a mighty wind.
I inched my way closer, I could feel no wind. I reached out to touch where the wall had been and my hand went through what almost seemed like a movie screen. I got a bright idea. I held my phone in my hand set to take a picture, and held it through the wall.
It looked to be an elevator. Being the fearless explorer I am, I stepped through…and………
I didn’t die, or link or evaporate…..
I was in an elevator with three buttons, yellow, red and green. I could see the cloud through the open elevator door.
I pressed the yellow…nothing.
I pressed the red…nothing.
I pressed the green…nothing.
I pulled at the casing for the buttons, and it swung open to reveal a
flat grey plate. I held my hand on the plate, and it glowed yellow, red green and blue…blue???? not one of the color choices???
Maybe nothing, but then again, how often is something nothing around here?
As my hand glowed the door closed, and the elevator started to move. I took my hand off the plate, and enjoyed the ride.
Up?? Down?? no idea.
I actually felt like I went down, then sideways, then up, but not sure. I guess I will see where I come out…maybe.
The door opened, and I was met by the most beautiful room I have ever seen.
I went to the window and gazed out. I was in the house that I has seen from the bridge, the beautiful estate on the rocks.
But….where was I really??
Was I alone?
The home seemed very lived in, not dusty in the tiniest bit, and a fire flickered in the fireplace.
I found myself very tired. I sat in the armchair by the fireplace and listened.
Not a sound.
Soon I was fast asleep.
When I awoke, nothing had changed. The fire still flickered, and even though it was a real wood fire, the wood had not burned down. Strange???
I checked my clock…I had been asleep for 8 hours!
I took a wander around the house, and immediately was met with some shockingly familiar things. My coffee cup………my document
My things…from my home on the surface. My kitchen sign….my antique typewriter……..
I found a diary, beginning date …November 25th, 2014, but current date, according to the diary was Nov 25, 2114…..
It was becoming more and more evident that I had linked to my future. My future???
…but then where was I??? I mean the future I??? Or the past?? Or my family???
Now I am confused. If I was here 100 years ago, where am I now?, okay, more confused….
Here are some excerpts from….my…diary.
November 25th 2014:
Since I stepped into the beautiful room off the elevator, I had the sense of being home. I have determined that I have stepped into a time loop of sorts. I came into this room, looked about, and fell asleep, but after my sleep, things had not changed. I found items of mine, as if this has been my home for some time, but no indication how the things got to be here. I guess I will just settle in for a bit, and see what transpires.
December 25th 2014:
Christmas…alone. I just do not get it. I am feeling very little passage of time passage of time in my body. According to the house clock/calendar, this is the date. But according to my cell phone it is Dec 2, 2014. A month has passed..but not according to my phone. I have only been here for a week. If this trend continues, I will be able to spend a year here in 12 weeks. Guess I will see what happens.
No one else has been around, no indication that anyone ever was. It is almost as if this place was made, for me. I am enjoying the solitude, I really did need the rest, but I am somewhat concerned. I tried to open the elevator….it does not work.
After reading that first bit I went to try the elevator, sure enough…it does not work. I am more perplexed. I decided to read the diary through.
Sure enough, I made a notation every week/month, and I was here for a full 100 years. I decided that I must figure some way out of here…I can not stay here for that long, I do not want to stay here….this is not what I came to find. I will make sure i have provisions always at hand, and the day that I get that elevator to work is the day I will leave…the moment!! According to the diary, I am still here Nov 25 th 2114, which would be, 25 years, if the time frame still holds true as 1 month here is 1 week in reality. I really hope that I can get something to work that changes what is in the diary.
I am puzzled about one thing, that, for some reason there is no blue..the blue is on the extremities of my hand print, but is not on the elevator controls. I am sure that this is the key. Nothing in the diary indicates that..I…thought of this before. This will be my focus, finding out what to do to make the elevator work. Until then I will do my best to enjoy the holiday that I find myself on.
I have been enjoying this home for the past few days, and come to realize one thing, whoever, however, whenever this house was made, it was made for me specifically. It is everything I ever dreamed of in a house…down to the woodwork around the doors and the details in the kitchen. Every time I went to look for something, flashlight, slippers, batteries, snacks… they were exactly where I would have put them.
I have very comfortably been able to puzzle over the ‘blue’ problem. I have no idea why my other self could not figure it out, but I am certain that I have. It seemed rather simple, but my idea bears trying out….but I hesitate. I am really in no hurry to leave, and if I try my idea, will I be able to get back?
I have decided to explore this house for a few more days. I really could use the holiday, and this place has much to explore. One thing to note…there are no doors leading outside to the grounds. There are balconies to the fresh air, and a garden out back, but no way out of this house except the elevator. How was this place built? My only explanation is that it was written…by whom?
After a few days, I found an entrance to the small tower at the back of the house. I found it quite by accident. I was in the game room, playing a Jalak like game of Jenga, with a 6 foot high virtual tower.When the blocks fell they would sparkle and disappear like the crystals in Ahnonay, It was amazing. Anyway….one of the blocks fell over beside a wall, and I noticed something uncharacteristic about this wall….it had nothing on it, no pictures…nothing. That is not me. I have pictures on every wall space! As I went to the wall this appeared….
The similarities shocked me….totally. As I backed away it disappeared. I would have had no reason to walk up to this wall, nothing to see, had it not been for my love of Jenga!! I had to explore…but I was not going to do it without having my things all ready. I prepared my packsack, and was able to fully stock it with travel food items from ..my.. pantry.
Okay…ready. I have said good-by to this house…maybe. I have no idea what I will find behind this door….but the explorer in me must find out…NOW!!!
I placed my hand on the door, the symbol swirled, and the door swung open. I stepped back….I was not about to go in there until I was sure I could get out if I wanted to. I pulled a chair over to the door, and pressed again. This time I placed the chair against the door, firmly holding it open. I was immediately met with a cold dark hole…and stairs leading up, and a smell of dampness and …something else…could not put my finger on the smell, but it was horrid…every fiber of my being said run…every hair on my body stood stiff…my adrenalin was at full capacity.
***Sorry, this was as much as Angelmyst AC sent me in this post***
What I found can only be described in pictures……
My packsack, just as it is on my back, except it is empty of any provisions, and mouldy from age…..and me!!!…just as I would lay to fall asleep.
From the note, I did one thing….looked for my relto book!! I did…I did leave it in the Library!!
So glad that I propped that door open. I must change this…this is my future in 25 years if I do not!!
I went to the Library and sure enough, there on the side table was my relto book, why I had left it there was beyond me, I do not even remember doing so.
I decided then and there…close that door, and try my idea in the elevator.
But… I could not leave me there….I decided to bury my bones in the garden, under the lilac bush, and then leave this house.
My idea for the elevator was simple, why the other I had not thought of it was a mystery.
The blue, was on the finger tips, so what if I touched the panel with just my finger tips?
It was worth the try…from what I found, it had to work. …but now that I know that the tower would be my trap and death, I know not to go in there without being able to get out…but still…I can not stay here.
I was ready…my packsack was still packed, and…I had my relto book firmly in place.
finger tips on panel…
door closed and elevator moved…
As I would in city I …
I stepped off the elevator, walked out and looked behind me, to the wall I had encountered days before. I wandered the rocky path and came back to the bridge, I looked over the edge to the house….
The house was gone!!
I made my way back over the rocky ledge and to the top of the stairs, again, I had that feeling of linking. I went down the stairs and back to the set of caverns and the shaft I had been in. I settled in a cozy cavern and thought through my next moves.
My goal is, as always, to get back up to the Cleft….how many more surprises am I to find as I make my way. Sure wish Ghen had of left better notes! I took a nap. I was more tired than I had thought, but a quick 30 min cat nap refreshed me enough to set out and see what I could find. I decided to keep everything with me as I explored, and forget the idea of having a base camp anywhere…I will sleep where ever I happen to be when I am tired…I will skip watching the time…I will just go according to my strength.
I climbed and crawled and slid through an endless labyrinth of paths. This would make an awesome amusement park ride!! I felt the moisture from several steam fissures…I must be getting close to something!! I came to another small cave off of what seemed to be the main path. There was a small shaft that Ghen and Atrus took in their descent…wonder if this is it?
That strange feeling…..again…what is with the linking feeling? It is almost as if they are traps of sorts, to keep one from actually getting from point A to point B…being Cleft to The city…or in my case city to Cleft. This would make sense. How many would explore the cauldron, without checking out the cleft home first…without finding out the message from Yeesha…without getting her blessings, in the form of a relto book?
As I came through the end of this small shaft I immediately knew two things.
1. this was not Ghens shaft
2. I was no longer in the caverns
…for this was my scene as I came out of the small shaft.
I stood, transfixed by he beauty!!
What was I going to find?
I almost felt like saying, forget the Cleft!! There is just too much down here to worry about finding the illusive path up, but my longing for that path was just too great. My explorer nature, however; was revelling in these discoveries.
I saw a small path that led to the right, seemingly circling the lake up on this ridge. The day was warm and sunny, and it seemed as if the sun had just peeked the mountain. There are times when adrenaline is an awesome thing, for I should be tired, but I am not, and the unknown calls..”angelmyst, come see what is here!!”
So, I obey the call.
The path was narrow and gently overgrown, I saw plants and insects that I had never seen before, but nothing else stirred. Getting closer to the lake took just over an hour, but it was easy walking.
These plants and animals were in abundance as I neared the lake. The mushrooms and the dragonfly were in every darkened crevass along the edges. I startled the peacock like bird from behind a whole field of the colorful pine cone/bulrushes. The staring yellow flower really creeped me out. It’s “eyes” followed me, and they lined the path every 6 feet or so. The fluffy faced bird followed me, just one of them, but I could see several in the foliage as I made my way down to the lake.
When I was about 100 feet from the water the bird ran off…not flew, not sure if it could fly, as I had seen none flying about. I soon realized why the bird had left, as I got closer to the water I smelled the most horrid stench you could imagine.
All along the shore of the lake were these starfish. They emitted a horrid smell that sent me reeling back in disgust, and made me retch. I had never smelled anything so bad in all my days.
I went back to where the bird had left me, and tried to circle around farther and see if there was any spot I could get to the water.
I had made my way about 1/4 of the way around this lake, when I figured I needed to find some place to rest for the night, for something caught my eye that steeled my determination to explore farther. The Island in the lake….
…on closer examination, looked to be inhabited. I zoomed as close as I could from a safe vantage point, away from the smell….could it be?? It was too far to tell, but I am certain there is a structure in the dark recesses of the bluff. How to get past the smell…how to get to the island….These are questions for tomorrow, after i get some rest. I found a quiet grassy knoll, and made camp for the night.
After a good rest my brain was in full gear, and ready to roll. I had solved the ‘smell’ problem in my sleep. I was able to construct a ‘gas mask’ with some large leaves, flour glue and ties. I added some perfume I always carry, just for added measure. I tied the mask on as I neared the starfish.
As I made my way past the creatures, I was able to get a better view of the island, and something else strange…..
Just below the surface of the water, very similar to the rock path in Water Ahnonay, was a path.
Irish fairy paths are said to exist under water, causeways in marshes than lead to islands. These paths, only used by the fairy folk, ran from one island to another and were paved with coral, making them and their travellers visible to fishermen in their boats above.
True to this idea, I saw this…several actually hovering along the shore near the submerged bridge..
As I made my way out on the path it rose beneath my feet
and the swirling misty waters cascaded off the rocky causeway.
This path lead right out to the island, and I made my way up the pleasant slopes. I was able to remove my ‘gas mask’ and the air had a sweet odor, like fresh honey warmed on toast. It almost made me think of Lotus flowers, and as pleasant as the scent was I was on my guard.
A narrow rocky stair case ambled through the trees, up to where I was sure I had seen a glimpse of a structure, outlined in the dark recesses
It was a beautiful day for a stroll, and I could have easily lost track of all time, but the scent of honey, kept me aware that nothing is as it seems, and I could face danger at the slightest turn in the path.
As I neared what I was sure to be the spot I had seen the structure, the sun made its way over the ridge and shone full down into this glen of sorts, dispelling every dark corner and revealing a house….but not just an ordinary house. I had stepped out of the lands of the ancient Greeks and lotus flowers into the land of fairy tales and gingerbread houses. This house before me, was right out of a story book…and I had to resist the temptation to lick it, to see if it was made of sugar.
As strong as my curiosity was, my sense of care was even stronger. If I have learned anything in my adventures it has been this….be careful.
I wanted to go right up to the house, knock on the door, and go in, make myself right at home. I knew that this was not to be…I had to exercise caution, for I had no idea who built the house, who was in the house…or what. No smoke rose from the chimney, but on this warm day that was not surprising. The area was not overgrown, the rambling garden was well tended, and all signs were there that this place was inhabited…..recently.
I circled around to the back of the house.What looked to be a stone fence was in my path, and as I neared the fence, a saw a very familiar symbol…and also saw that this was a boat, very overgrown, and dilapidated. As I stepped away from the boat the symbol vanished. It showed again when I was 10 feet from the boat.
The presence of this symbol could only mean one thing…I was still in D’ni territory in some fashion. I was at a loss how to proceed. I still had plenty of daylight left, it was barely noon, and so far I had not seen any sign of life around the house. I found a quiet spot in a woodshed and settled down to watch….and wait……
When I awoke nothing had happened. I mean, no one was around, and it seemed I was all alone. I checked the boat, and the symbol that had appeared earlier, did not appear now. Strange… was my presence noted some how?
Also, though I had rested for six hours ( yes, I fell asleep) the sun had not moved. It still shone full into this glen. Has my presence also stopped time?
I wandered farther around the back side of the house. and came upon a cute cottage . The colors were in keeping with the colorful house, and I just had to go into this structure and check things out…I was not prepared for what I found on the inside. A wonder land, bathed in black light and glowing, with strange creatures peaking out from cracks and crevasses. The paths all lined with a blue light, I followed around in a circle. All the creatures kept in the hollows, nothing came out of its hiding spot. The feel of a thousand eyes on me gave me the creepiest feeling. After one circle I had enough..out…now.
I decided to check out the main house. After the cottage, nothing would surprise me now. Why do I say things like that?? For, surprised I was. The exterior of the house, yard and gardens were well kept, but I walked into a dishevled mess. The walls were crumbling, the staircase littered with rubble, and it looked as if no one had been here in decades.
I carefully made my way up the stairs and to a closed door. I do not think I can take any more surprises….I thought…. What else could be up with this place? Could any one spot have so many surprises? I was overwhelmed as it was. I was almost afraid to open the door….but you know me, curiosity is my middle name.
This colorful wall met my gaze, dare I step through? CAN I step through? SHOULD I step through? I carefully reached out my hand. OUCH!!!!!!!!!! Hot. I examined my burn, red fingers, and then looked back to the offending view.
It was now a colorful blaze…..and the heat drove me back…..back…down the stairs and out to the yard, at a full run.
When I was, I figured , a safe distance away, I looked back to the house. I could feel the heat..intense, and I knew what was going to meet my eyes.Had I caused this?? Was this a signal to end my attempts to find the path to the Cleft??.
I stumbled my way back to the rocky staircase, the scent of burning wood, charred cloth, tar, and foliage searing my nostrils. After the stench of the burning house, when I crossed the water bridge to the starfish, the smell was not overpowering. Nothing could erase that smell from my mind, as it lingered on every nose hair, every olfactory nerve was seared with the smell.
I went back to my quiet grassy knoll…and cried.
After I regained my composure, and the scent had cleared my nostrils, I determined to go see, if I could ‘fix’ things. I have made a habit of trying to leave things as I found them. As I prepared to go back, something caught my…ummm…nose. The sweet scent of honey. I had not smelled it over here before…or had it been there and I just never noticed? The Lotus flower scent, like that on the island. What did it mean? I had that feeling, things were not as they should be….not as I had left them. The honey scent made me wonder if all I had encountered was just a hallucination, or a dream. I did determine one thing…if things are all okay, I was going to check out the symbol on the boat, the Path of the Shell symbol.
I prepared to head back. My gas mask was in my pack sack. I re applied perfume to it, and hung it about my neck to prepare for the starfish smelly area. I encountered the same things…exactly the same….strange.
As I again neared the spot I had seen the colorful house, the sun again made its way over the ridge and shone full down into the glen, dispelling every dark corner and revealing the house……..the house, fine, not burned, not charred…nothing. It was as if this was my first visit. AS I had determined I headed to the back yard and to the symbol , that was again, on the boat. This time, however, I am not going to step away from it….I walked into it…and linked………………………….
I came out in the labyrinth of paths I had encountered earlier, and saw the small shaft I had explored that led to the valley I had just been in. I took a slow peek into this shaft…..and was met with a wall of rock….no shaft….no beautiful valley. I was back on my path..back to my trek to the Cleft.
What was I to encounter next as I explored this World Beyond??
After such a horrid experience I decided to keep to the Caverns and wander the fissures and ignore all strange and wild things that may come in my path…..ya ..right. That resolve was very short lived.
After six days of wandering and finding nothing, you can imagine my
curiosity when I rounded a bend and came face to face with this.
A perfect snowflake….I walked up to it, then right through it and saw this…
and through it to a third…
and a fourth
Each was very different. I also noticed, as I went through the images, I not only got that strange linking sensation, but also it got colder. From the relative warmth of the fissures to this cold. I dug out my emergency blanket, and wrapped myself. I wandered through a cold cavern, nearly totally dark.
When I did emerge from the darkness I was met with this cold unwelcoming sight. What had I stumbled upon?
I wandered around, a cold barren wasteland, I went into the forested area and built a fire. I had to warm up. I warmed enough to have a sleep. I woke…..because I was too warm….. The area had drastically changed, all round me, where once was barren cold wasteland, was bright, hot sun-drenched beauty. I could not believe I was in the same place.
I wandered back the way I had come, and came to the dark cavern area again..I could see the snowflakes through the darkness, and I could see the beauty where I had awaken.
Okay……I did it again, changed something..grrrr…why do I do this? Why do I mess with the balances of nature in the areas I find? Certainly not on purpose. Well ….I guess I should just enjoy the beauty, and see what it is all about.
Okay, that was beautiful, but disappointing. I found nothing of interest. It is just a pretty spot. Again I wonder about these diversions, almost as if they are orchestrated to keep me from getting to my goal. I passed back through the snowflakes, and back into the labyrinth of paths, caverns and shafts.
From all the reading, I know now I am no where near getting to the South Gate. I have wandered in a relatively small area when the grand scheme comes into play. I wandered through a set of tunnels that were wet and musty smelling. I found fresh water dripping slowly from some rock, and replentished my water supply. As I was packing my packsack again I saw something in a pool of stangnent water, I pulled it out and carefully unfolded the old, worn, paper.
It looked as if someone had tried to destroy it, and from what I could make out……IT WAS A MAP!!!!!!
A map……of the route from the Cleft to the City!!!!
From what I could make out I was right about being still just in the first area of caverns and shafts that border the City. It looks to be a map made by Aitrus, but certainly not an original. Was it a copy made by the DRC?
It was not old enough to be here more than a few years. It is burned around the edges, as if it had been folded, and then an attempt was made to destroy it. It will however give me some help. I can draw out my path, and figure out where I am!! Maybe by tomorrow night I can be at the South Gate….I am hopeful.
After countless treks back and forth, over..through..under…and around, I have finally figured where I am according to the map.
…..I saw a familiar sight, an opening with a bright orange light glowing through it…..I was back at the Lake!!
Well, at least I know where I am….and down at the lake edge was…my boat.
Do I take my boat back to the city…hide it…and refresh my supplies…or do I turn around, with the limited supplies I have…and the map, knowing if I follow it, I will be to the Cleft in a short time….
What would you do??
Friends reading this adventure…I am adding a twist to things…
I want to know…briefly…what you would do. Please keep your comments short, but concise…please keep IC, and to cannon in your suggestions. Even though this is sci-fi, I still want to maintain the sense of continuity with the story line.
Have fun. 🙂
One day I was down over the Library cliff and found a map tucked under the bow of an old ship ruins.I looked at it & it had many paths to follow, but what intrigued me was a house drawn on the map far away. I wanted to go see this house and who might live in it ? Since I had no way to cross the lake I couldn’t go. But I knew angelmyst had crossed the lake & I was hoping for her return. By chance she might have found the house, went inside and met the owner? I will await her return and hopefully she can tell me more about this house ? The owner apparently made many trips across the lake to the cavern, but now all the ships are in ruins. Who could this person be and why did he/she make many trips across the lake and then stop doing it ? Why have a house out there and what were they doing there? Many questions that maybe angelmyst can answer?
Intriguing.. I have not seen the house you could be referring to, but I would like to compare maps. Will let you know what I decide…having a companion on my trek up to the Cleft would be nice…..if we can not solve your house riddle.
I was about ready to climb back up the Library Cliff when I noticed an object floating to shore. I ran back down to the lake edge. Oh My Gosh it’s Angel’s boat. What happened ?Did a storm or high tide wash it from shore or did Angel fall overboard into the toxic water?Angel is marooned over there with no way home to the City! What to do ? Get help? Then I realized her small boat will only board one person safely. If I go across the lake only one of us can return. I grab the map I found and frantically look at it very carefully, pondering the path to take. Is there a way to climb over the mountains. I dunno what to do?
Wow….you put my pictures on a map!!! Wow.
Okay. Now you have me marooned. You leave me no choice. I am going to take the few supplies I have and head up to the Cleft. When I get back to the city we can head over again and check out the house you saw….if I make it back…
Having loaded angel’s boat with supplies, food, water, matches, first aide kit, etc. I decidedI had no choice but to go look for her alone, even though the boat could only carry one person back. Just before going through Kerath’s Arch I saw a bottle floating in the water.
Grabbing it and pulling the note out.
I opened the scroll like note and read it.
I rejoiced in the thought that she is still alive and did not drown in the toxic lake.But I must find her & give her the food and supplies. I moved on until reaching the shoreline on the far side of the Arch. Reaching shore in a strange land for me. There was no sign of angelmyst. I quickly cached the boat in tall weeds and piled driftwood over it to conceal it.Hoping a bahro she mentioned would not find the boat or the supplies I left in it.Then I went along the shore a short distace and errected a carin monument as a sign for angelmyst.
If angel came by here I hoped she would find the boat and supplies inside it.I built a large fire by the carin & threw green boughs on top of it to make lots of smoke.I hope angel sees the smoke and finds her boat.I looked at the map I found and headed to the right towards the Yeesha picture on it.I was lost since there were so many side trails off the main trails that were not shown on my map. Onward to where ?
Its a trap..I did not send that note… I headed back up to Cleft, following the map I had found.I have very little signal now that I am passed The South Gate…oh how I wanted to enjoy the machinery, and explore every nook and cranny… But I pressed on. I came to a point where my KI no longer worked…I backtracked to check my messages. I hope I am not too late.I hope you do not come looking for me….I will wait here…just outside the South Gate…and pray….
Pray you did not come…
Been walking for hours up this trail, no sign of Angelmyst. My Ki flashed once andit was a message from angel but the signal was poor and all I saw was part of a broken message:”Trapper” …”I headed” …”back up”…”following the map”…”I came to a point where my KI no longer worked” …”backtracked”…”I hope you”…”come looking”…”and pray”I tried to fill in the words missing but it sure sounded like she was in trouble and wanted me to come looking for her! Then a couple more hours up the trail I saw this path, that Angel had described before.
I took many deep breaths to dive underwater and follow the path. I remembered my caving days just swim under and come up the other side of the shiphon in no time. The underwater path got dark and murky and I was running out of oxygen thinking my lungs would burst. I swam in so far I knew I couldn’t make it back to the entrance. I started to get dizzy and faint thinking this was the end for me! I seemed not to be moving foward with no energy left. Then a faint light above, but I can’t make it there. My lungs hurt bad and I wanted to breath the water in but I knew I couldn’t. Am I halucinating there in front of me was Yeesha waving me foward & up to the light above ..
… but I was cramping up and could not go further …… a limp body ..my last thoughts as it blackened out .. Ohh Angel .. I failed you …
gasp ehhhh gasp ahhhh ahh eehhhh spit spit cough spitI gasp for all the air I can breath. Emerging to the surface in a room, with a waterfall on each side of me. Standing up and looking back at the underwater path. What .. what is this place it looks familiar ? Yes it is in Elodea and there is the linking book to Unterwelt. I rush to the linking Book, it is broken and doesn’t work. Wait, this is not Elodea there are 5 Journey Clothes finding they also are all broke. I look at the ceiling of this small room andsee solid rock, no way out upward.
I turn and quickly run to go through the waterfalls but find it is nothing but solid rock behind them. I am trapped except for the underwater path I came in on.My Ki flashes and now I have good signal. I read angel’s message clearly now, she is safe back in the city. What a relief, I’m glad ! What? Angel said it was a trap? Who would want to trap me ? No choice but to go back through the underwater path even though I barley made it in here. arghggg I can’t enter the path, there is an invisible barrier it will not let me enter to go back! Sitting on a rock pondering I realize I am a prisoner now. I think what is that Gold Medallion on the wall above the Journey Clothes? I think Gehn has something to do with this ?
I try to remember all the details of Angelmyst’s adventures searching in my mind for a clue?
TD..I have no idea where you are…I am not in the city. You have received false messages from somewhere.. I am at The South Gate, a good days walk from my boat…..I am glad you are okay, but if you get this message do your best to get back to the boat, and back to the city. I am continuing up to the Cleft, I hope to be at a rest stop soon.
After a few days of not knowing what to do. It dawns on me to touch that Gold Medallion.I jump up on top the book & stretch hard rubbing my hands over it.I hear a rumble as the wall starts to open. Shocked I am staring at a shady character and a tunnel with stairs leading up ahead of me.
Me: “Shorah” thinking of nothing better to say.
Man: ” You come early”
Me: ” Whom might you be ? ”
Man: ” I am the undertaker”, pausing then says ” follow me up the stairs”Reaching the top of the stairs,I stare at the vastness before my eyes !
Me: “What place is this?”
Man: “It is the Tombs of the Great Kings of D’ni their history is in the Hall of Kings in the City. When their time has come I bring them by ship through the Arch to lay rest here”
Me: ” But the ships are all in ruins”
Man: ” There are no Kings in Ae’gura at the moment until the City is restored”, pausing again he then stares at me strongly ” I have a different place for you”
He raises his heavy staff and points with it, and I look.
Me: ” Nooooo I am not ready for that !”
Man: ” No one comes through here by the underwater path you took and survives it is too long”
Me: ” I had help from Yeesha, she guided me, and I needed to help a friend angelmyst in trouble”
Man: ” You say angelmyst, I’ve seen her travel through these lands by my house”I look at a picture of his house that he shows me.
Me: ” It is so colorful and bright”
Man: ” If you had my job as the undertaker seeing what I do all day, it is a place to relax.”The undertaker raises his heavy staff up over my head and starts to swing it down upon me.Thinking he is going to crush my skull, but touches my head so gentle and then: (POOF)What has happened? I am back at the shore where I hid angel’s boat. My Ki flashes and I can read my messages clearly now. angelmyst is going to meet me at the South Gate and I must return her boat to the city. As I pass through Kerath’s Arch ( the Arch of Kings), I think of all who has passed this way before me. Arriving at the library cliff I hide angel’s boat where I think she does, still well stocked with supplies. I am off to meet Angel at the Cleft and on to the South Gate if need be,I have a lot to tell her about my journey !
Oh Dave…I have not been able to get your messages. I am leaving the South gate…..give me three days and I hope to be to Cleft…barring unforseen circumstances.
I have no phone or Ki signal past this point…I will update as soon as I get signal again.
Some of you may know that I’ve befriended a couple of mermaids! Specifically, Murinna and her older sister.Murinna can be a bit impulsive, though. (She insists that she is not prissy! Honestly!) I just recently learned that she’s taken it upon herself to go searching for angelmyst, or at least her boat. She promised to keep me updated. Yeah, right.
Why?? I am not lost… It is Trapper who is now lost. I am, thanks to the map, well on my way up to the Cleft. Now, besides having Trapper’s disappearance on my mind, I now have the worry of this impulsive mermaid. …did she swim the Lake??? ….she must have thick skin, and impressive filters for gills. I wish I knew what to tell you…..really do not want to turn around and look for her….maybe she will find Trapper…oh my….this is going to be a worrysome point.
Well, from what they tell me, mermaids have been around humans forever – but those humans who encounter them tend to not discuss it for fear of ridicule.But, yes, if they can survive the cold and crushing pressures of the ocean without the benefit of clothing, I’d say they have thick skin. Or maybe just thick heads. Are they native to Earth or visitors from another Age? They won’t tell me.
After settling my mind, that Trapper is hopefully safe, and there are no signs of any mermaids coming to intrude on my adventure, I was able to get well on my way.
I had plenty of time to admire the magnificance of the Gate. As I left the cool breeze, and clear air behind, I wondered how I could travel these paths and fail to find the right one??The ever burning desire to get up to the Cleft, made all of the discoveries I had made grow dim…as I realized I was …finally…going to get to the Cleft. I was going to accomplish what I had set out to do, years….wow..yes years ago. Time really does fly when you are having fun.
The massive South Gate well behind me, I pressed toward the eder tomahn. when I had at last came to the narrow bridge of D’ni stone which made up for the collapsed bridge, I could feel for Atrus…I stood frozen, as he had. With the lave bubbling below, I almost wanted to relto out…almost.
I tied a mask about my mouth and nose. The sulfur smell was nearly over powering.
The warm stuffy air dissipated, and the echo sound of marble floor, tapped with my boots was heard…..ah…an arch.., the metal arch that framed this tunnel…YES!! I hollered, loud enough to have the sound reverberate over and over and over, to hear several angels chorus their joy!!!!
Hours..hours of walking. I needed to take a break soon….but…..I could feel it…I was getting so close.
I was seeing the dripstone, long columns forming all around me. I can imagine how much in awe Atrus was when he saw these.
The difficulties of this climb had worn on me more than I realized…until I stopped to rest.I had stopped where a pool formed along the rock to my right and the left was a jumble of rocks…if I remember right there should be a steep, narrow tunnel here somewhere……but…what was that I could see???? All of these tunnels…..oh my…my desire to explore…..tomorrow. For the ache in my back was real, and I am tired beyond words…tomorrow.
I rested, about 6 hours. Most of that time was fitful, and dream filled.
The curiosity that intrigued me before my rest….was off to my right, through this large cavern, which I am sure Atrus remembered….not the steep narrow tunnel I was looking for, but a narrow, straight tunnel…straight through…to….what??
Oh..I am so close to the Cleft….but I have to see what caught my attention…..
Okay, this was the most beautiful stone I have ever seen. A marble, about the size of a baseball…but looking into it, I could see a whole galaxy..worlds..truly worlds beyond…but what was this??
As I gazed….I had that strange feeling again….linking.
When the foggy feeling lifted, the marble was still in my hand. I placed it in my backpack, and looked around to………………
This ruins of a castle…..the starry sky, from the marble looming in the background…..was I in the marble?? I was not going to worry about where I was. The structure before me was calling me. Being ever careful, as I have learned, I skirted the boundaries….and the boundaries were very distinct. I could go no farther than a circle around the castle at he distance of about 1000 feet…except for one place. The sun rise on the horizon…as I came to the far left of the castle I saw a walkway leading directly into the sun rise.
It stretched out over an expanse of water, and headed straight…..but I was not going to take this path…not yet anyway. I needed to go back to the castle and explore its confines.
I made my way over the rubble at the only door I could locate. As it was I had to do some serious climbing to get to this door. This Castle has been abandoned for …centuries. It is beyond old. looking at the stonework I am thinking it is D’ni. I am reminded of the Kings of D’ni, and know there was one who was Guildmaster of the Guild of Stone Masons…but I can not recall which. Wonder if this was his?
As the sun rose farther in the east…or at least it should be east, the sky lit up with a million jewels, sparkling waterlike droplets that just hung in the air, and gave a light through the windows, making it very easy to see.
I would have thought there to be layers and layers of dust, but the moist air of this place has left little. The decay of the building, intrusion of critters, and total ambiance are all that lead me to believe this place is centuries old.
The small east tower seems to be the bed chamber. Someone loved the sunrise. AS I watched the sun grow on the horizon, something strange happened.
WHAT!!!!???? The Path of the shell symbol!!!
I ran out to the water, but by the time I got out the walkway, it was gone. I checked the time 14:04, that would be 12:04 KI time. If this age is on D’ni time…..I wonder what will happen??
Oh to have to wait until tomorrow…but…what will happen tomorrow?
For now, I will explore the Castle.
I walked back to the castle, and made my way through the rooms.
As I explored the Great hall I came across some old papers…..all I could make out were the words……rest….sad….and a scrawling signature…Ja’Kreen. I was right!! That is the King I was thinking of…this must be a place he came to for solitude, but from the looks of the great hall he did not come alone, unless some others found this place after his demise. I will never know, for as much as I search I can find no other clues to the identity of those who came to this place.
entrance to tower room
Then…as I was getting tired, hungry and ready for a nap…you all know how I love my naps…I saw, just fading, another Path of The Shell symbol…..20:15 KI time…..so if I miss one, maybe I can catch the other. Wonder where they lead to…I will only be able to find out one…for now.
As night drew near, I found a safe nook. Not that I have seen anything to be particularly afraid of. This place is very peaceful. I can understand how King Ja’Kreen must have felt…I am feeling sad and in need of rest…and lonely. I will be glad to find the Cleft…tomorrow…maybe. Guess it depends on where the symbol leads me.
Of all the strange places I have slept the past two years on my adventures, this was by far the best sleep I have had. I did not dream, but fell into a solid restful sleep. The moss covered table I had claimed as my bed, was like sleeping on a cloud…at least I can imagine it was, for I have never slept on a cloud. I was lulled to sleep with the sounds of crickets, and the breeze through the turrets gentle whistled a sweet tune, a lullaby that had me drifted off before I even had time to fret about the coming day.
It was 8:15, 6:15 KI time. I had a whole day to explore some more before the symbol reappeared. I was curious about the walk way into the sunrise though, and it was going to be my focus. I headed out after munching on some dried fruit I still had in my packsack…the last of my food.
I would be at Cleft now if I had not gotten side tracked by a shiny marble. If I do not find the symbol to lead anywhere, I will have to go…um..out….um…of the marble??? How??? I have no idea how to get out of this place, except for the possibility of the Path of the shell symbol leading me out.
It has to lead me out.
I have no food.
I see nothing edible.
I will die if I do not get out of this place.
Okay, now I panic!!!
Good grief, when will I learn not to let my curiosity get the better of me!!!!????
I wandered down the boardwalk, toward the …rising sun…wait…rising sun…??Yesterday when I saw the symbol it was 12:04 KI time, but the sun was barely up over the horizon…how could that be???? How could I not have noticed the strangeness? Seeing the symbol made me forget all about the fact the sun was just above the horizon at what should be mid-day.
Through out the day yesterday I was so enthralled by the interior of the Castle I did not even take notice of the circuit of the sun.
1st sighting of ‘sunrise’, approximately 11:00KI time
2nd sighting of ‘sunrise’, 12:00 KI time
Then I had daylight until near 20:15 KI time when I saw the other symbol inside the Castle.
3rd sighting of the ‘sunrise’, 6:45 KI time
so from sunrise to sunrise was about 19 hours…..if I had of slept longer I would have missed the time the symbol should appear, about an hour from sunrise…which should be in about 15 mins!!!!!!
I dare not go back to the Castle for my things…..I have to be here if the symbol shows up again…..I HAVE to get back!!!
Having been in one age where I saw myself dead was enough. AS mush as I want to retrace the path….I am tired, and have no idea how to get out of here other than this possibility.
So….I paced the boardwalk…watched the ripples of golden minnows in the water…then I heard it…a sound very much like the sound of an opening pod…..and I saw it…..
Again…Exactly in the place it was just 19 hours ago…..I ran…..faster than I have ever run in my life!!!
…………………………and as I was running through the symbol I had that strange, but oh so wonderful feeling of linking…………………..
and when I shook off the fuzzy feeling, I was here…….
I was back!!!!
I went to the closest structure and …leaned!!!
I checked my KI…all intact, buds were there…pictures were there that I had taken before I left…..
I took some time and flipped through them…oh I could hardly wait to get back to the City!!!
to see my buds….
I may never know where the other symbol led to, I can speculate…I would think maybe Er’canna, or maybe Kadish…maybe…maybe, I will find out ..one day.
So nice to be back in my relto