Trinsic Tales:Ships Ahoy!/Chapter 07
Chapter Seven: Everyone Hates the Water Temple
<Capn_Ascii> "As we join our heroes, we find them plunging into the unknown depths of the lagoon. Will they discover sunken treasure? Or are they diving headlong into a watery grave?"
<Capn_Ascii> Marilyn: You drop down into the tunnel, falling down against the current. At first, you make a little headway, but the upward flow of water gets stronger after a few feet. Soon, you find yourself effectively floating motionless - the current is too powerful for your personal, water-buoyed gravity to defeat. You're no more than a few feet down the hole...
Marilyn frowns, looking around for inspiration (or some sort of mechanical assistance).
<Capn_Ascii> Marilyn: There doesn't seem to be much in the tunnel itself, aside from the stone block walls around you.
Marilyn floats over to a wall and tries using it as leverage to force herself further downwards.
<Capn_Ascii> Marilyn: You scrabble with all your might, but it's no use - QUIZIBUK just isn't in the official dictionary.
<Capn_Ascii> ...er, wait.
<Capn_Ascii> I mean...it's no use. The walls of the tunnel are too slippery with algae for you to get a good grip.
Marilyn looks around for a spot to send down a grappling hook to try swinging on that to go down further.
Marilyn sighs, realizing that's not going to work. "Vathgani, give me your hand."
Vathgani hesitantly hands over his hand. "Vathgani prefers personal space, but okay..."
<Marilyn> "That's fine, this won't take long. Try to work with me, and let the current work for us here..." Marilyn looks up, and prepares to fling!
<Marilyn> "Okay, I'm going to throw you upwards, I want you to try throwing me downwards as I do so."
<Vathgani> "Vathgani not sure about physics here, but Vathgani can throw."
<Marilyn> "Let's do it!" Marilyn yells, engaging in launching motions!
<Capn_Ascii> After spending a few seconds getting tangled up with each other and then dis-entangling, you assume your respective positions - Marilyn below, hands above her head, and Vath standing on them like a platform. At the signal, she pushes upward, and he kicks downward.
<Capn_Ascii> The resultant force sends Vath shooting up out into the water above, and Marilyn plunging down deeper into the tunnel. She doesn't get more than another 10-15 feet down, but that may be enough - she can see what looks like a rusted metal handle on the wall within reach of her hands. Better grab it, quick!
Marilyn makes a grab for the handle.
<Capn_Ascii> By George, you've got it! It seems solid, and by holding onto it, you keep yourself from floatng back up. Looking around, you can spot a round stone button-like protrusion next to it.
Marilyn attempts to press the button
<Capn_Ascii> The powerful current immediately stops, leaving you dangling from the handle.
Marilyn smiles. "You can come down now!" she calls out to her peons. Er, partymates.
Vathgani tags along on down
<Capn_Ascii> Marilyn: Below you, at the bottom of the shaft, you can see a large metal grating covering the bottom of the tunnel. Set in one wall is a stone door.
<Marilyn> "Let's try the door first. We'll break the grate if we don't find what we're looking for inside."
Marilyn tries to open the door.
<Capn_Ascii> Marilyn: The door is large, thick, heavy, and has no immediately obvious way to open it - at least, not that you can currently see.
<Capn_Ascii> .....get it? Currently? :D
<Capn_Ascii> HAR HAR!
Marilyn checks for a secret opening similar to the other temple.
<Capn_Ascii> Marilyn: Ah-hah! You find a small section of carved decoration in one corner of the door that moves. You push on it, and the door slowly grinds open, revealing a very dark, murky tunnel behind it.
Marilyn quickly enters the tunnel, gesturing at the others to follow.
Vathgani keeps tagging along
<Capn_Ascii> You follow the tunnel, which digs horizontally through the lagoon bed. You walk for quite a distance before you eventually hit an upslope - following it, you find yourselves emerging from the water into a slightly larger, dry chamber.
Marilyn smiles and pulls herself onto dry land.
Vathgani gets onto dry land without any change in facial expression
<Capn_Ascii> Now, *this* looks familiar. It looks almost just like the inside of the spire vault - there's a cylindrical chamber with an obvious vault door in one wall, complete with keyhole.
<Capn_Ascii> More writings adorn the walls here.
<Marilyn> "Ashling, text deciphering, if you please."
Marilyn sighs, realizing her lack of response, and just grabs the key and turns it.
<Capn_Ascii> Marilyn: You insert the key and turn it in the same direction you did back at the first temple. As before, the vault door slides backward, allowing you into an interior chamber.
<Capn_Ascii> The interior of the vault looks much like the earlier one. It even has the same pedestal, though this one has its own prize - a beautiful idol of solid amber. It appears to be carved into the shape of a giraffe.
Marilyn looks around for a rock to pull the same trick on.
<Capn_Ascii> Marilyn: Hmm. No rocks, although you do find a large, oddly-shaped stone tablet with the word "IRAQ" carved into it. This should work.
Marilyn grabs the tablet and prepares to make the trick work. "Vathgani, assistance please."
Vathgani stands next to the idol with his hands at the ready
Marilyn nods for Vathgani to pull the idol as she slams the tablet down
Vathgani quickly pulls the idol away before it gets smashed by the tablet
<Capn_Ascii> You pull the Indy bait-and-switch again. Soon, the tablet is perched atop the dais, and you have the idol.
Marilyn examines the idol for clues
<Capn_Ascii> It looks like a normal (if expensive and culturally significant) idol. The giraffe is rather squat and chibi-fied in order to be the right size for an idol, but still looks like it took a lot of effort to carve. Other than that, though, it just looks like a solid chunk of amber.
Marilyn looks around the room for another key to continue this wild-idol chase.
<Capn_Ascii> Marilyn: Hmm...you don't really see anything here. If Whifflebottom's explorer party came this way, they probably didn't make it past the currents back outside.
<Marilyn> "I suspect we will find a key under the grate outside. But for now..." Marilyn carefully looks around the room for anything else valuable.
<Marilyn> Not finding anything, Marilyn resumes the underwater trek and heads back for the grate.
Vathgani treks along
<Capn_Ascii> You soon find yourselves back in the watery shaft, the grate beneath your feet.
Marilyn pulls out her crowbar and attempts to pry the grate loose.
<Capn_Ascii> Marilyn: You pry at the grate, but the bars are quite thick and embeddes solidly in the stone walls of the shaft. It doesn't budge.
Marilyn sighs and hands the bar to Vathgani. "You know what I want."
Vathgani takes a try at prying the grate
<Capn_Ascii> Vathgani grabs the bar, flexes, and gives a mighty heave...!
<Capn_Ascii> The bars groan in protest, but soon the grate *snaps* open.
Marilyn continues below the grate.
Marilyn looks around
<Capn_Ascii> You sink farther down into the depths of depravity. Or at least the dark, murky shaft.
<Capn_Ascii> About 20 feet below the (former) grate, you find yourself standing on top of what looks like a big stone fan-like contraption. There's a central hub, and several fan blades made from stone that block off most of the passage below you. Presumably, this is the source of the current.
<Capn_Ascii> There's also a small nook off to one side, no more than a few inches across.
Marilyn checks out the nook
<Capn_Ascii> It's small, and square, and dark. You can't see into it very well...
Marilyn calls out. "Ashling, can we get one of those little ones down here? They might be able to see it better."
Ashling looks at one of them and points in the direction.
<Capn_Ascii> The little fellow drifts into the dark, watery hole...
<Capn_Ascii> ...and illuminates a small stone cubbyhole with a stone box inside it.
Marilyn carefully examines the box for traps
<Capn_Ascii> Marilyn: After taking a good, long look at the box, you reach around behind it and tap the secret button that's exactly two inches down and three to the left. This disarms the finger-smashing trap, the acid blade trap, the bone-dissolving-gas trap, and the tiny baby rust monster concealed in a secret compartment inside the box. All the trap parts fly out in a cloud of bouncing mechanical bits and clatter to the bottom of the shaft.
<Vathgani> "Vathgani is impressed."
Marilyn takes the box eagerly and looks inside
<Capn_Ascii> It contains...
<Capn_Ascii> ...a key!
<Capn_Ascii> It looks just like the others you've found so far.
Marilyn passes the key to Ashling for analysis. "I think we've got what we came for."
Marilyn begins making her way up the tunnel
Vathgani tags along
<Capn_Ascii> Fortunately, it's a relatively simple matter to half swim, half climb back up and out of the tunnel. You soon emerge into the relatively brighter waters of the lagoon.
Marilyn quickly gets herself out of the lagoon, taking a few steps away from the water, then blows her whistle, signaling Black to return to her.
<Capn_Ascii> Marilyn: You wait a few minutes, but there's no response.
Marilyn sighs and walks down the banks of the lagoon's outlet, looking for evidence of Black.
<Capn_Ascii> You head down along the creek-like water stream that leads away from the lagoon and out towards the ocean. Soon, the trees part, and you step out onto a long beach that stretches out to either side.
<Capn_Ascii> The water widens into a large inlet, with several large rocks scattered across it, before emptying out into the ocean. Lying on top of one of the rocks is Black - still and unmoving.
Marilyn stifles a word unbecoming of her status and runs to her quickly.
<Vathgani> "Vathgani had the feeling we forgot something..."
<Capn_Ascii> The rock is out in the water a good ways - about 30 feet or so. You'd have to wade through it to get to her.
Marilyn sighs and starts wading out there.
<Vathgani> "Might not be good idea to go into water."
Marilyn pauses and asks, "Why?"
<Vathgani> "Little kraken might still be around."
<Marilyn> "Ah. Good point. Do you have an alternate plan?"
Vathgani crouches down a little, and then effortlessly leaps across over to the rock
<Vathgani> "Vathgani used to play basketball," he says, and then takes a closer look at Black
<Capn_Ascii> Vath: You land flawlessly on the little rock, despite it being small and slippery.
<Capn_Ascii> Black's body is in bad shape - she's been brutally crushed, presumably by constricting baby kraken tentacles. There are suction-cup-induced hickeys all over what parts of her body aren't covered by armor.
<Vathgani> "She did not make it."
Marilyn falls down onto her knees, frustrated. "I TOLD her not to get herself killed! This mission has been an utter disaster!"
<Vathgani> "Should Vathgani bring back the body?"
<Marilyn> "If you can do it safely, yes."
Vathgani carefully picks up the body, and leaps as close to the shore as he can manage
<Capn_Ascii> Vath: You land in the water with a SPLASH! and scamper the rest of the way to shore.
<Capn_Ascii> Moments later, you hear an angry sound from beneath the water farther up the estuary.
<Capn_Ascii> Vath hobbles up away from the water as a familiar tentacle emerges from the water...it swings in the direction of the sound, waving around a bit, as if looking for the source.
Vathgani continues scampering away from the source of the noise
<Marilyn> "Alright, let's get out of here," Marilyn comments. "To the ship, immediately." She begins heading back the way they came, staying out of tentacle strike range.
Vathgani tags along
<Capn_Ascii> Carrying Black's dead body, you return through the jungle and eventually make your way back to the savanah. Stepping out of the trees, you can see the three tigers from before - now curled up against each other, sleeping peacefully like little baby kittens. D'awww.
Marilyn continues quietly past them
<Capn_Ascii> Ashling spends the trek looking over the key. It's more heavily rusted than the others you've found (reasonable, since it's been stewing in salt water for god knows how long), but the words are still legible: "CRAG TEMPLE - INNER VAULT"
<Capn_Ascii> Belinda waves to you as you pass by. You quickly shuffle onto the dock and into the boat before she can start talking about farming again.
<Capn_Ascii> White is sitting on the dock, feet kicking at the water. "Oh, there you are...oh, no."
<Capn_Ascii> "I guess Black didn't make it..."
Marilyn nods, still upset. "Yeah. Let's just... get back to the ship, okay?"
<Capn_Ascii> "Yes, ma'am."
Marilyn loads herself into the boat
<Capn_Ascii> The ride back to the ship is a sadly quiet one...
<Capn_Ascii> --END SESSION--