Trinsic Tales:Ships Ahoy!/Chapter 16
Chapter Sixteen: Last of the Red-Hot Lavas
<Capn_Ascii> "As we join our heroes, we find them having braved the deadly Corridor O' Traps (patent pending), the brothers of the mysteeeeerious Order of the Hectapus hot on their heels. Get it? Hot? ...because it's a volcano?
<Capn_Ascii> .....*ahem*. Moving on..."
Marilyn continues along the corridor, carefully checking for more traps as she goes.
<Capn_Ascii> There don't seem to be any more traps along here. Presumably, whoever built the place blew the budget on that corridor and figured it would be enough. That'll teach *them* to put all their trap-related eggs in one basket! Whoever 'they' are, anyway.
Marilyn continues onward to the idol room, still scanning.
<Vathgani> "Is safe here?"
<Capn_Ascii> As you advance down the tunnel, you can see that it opens up into a large, circular room at the end. The design of this room reminds you of the 'arena' where the hydra was sleeping earlier, although this one has a new feature - a large, cauldron-shaped crater in the center of the room, about 20 feet across and rising up from the floor to waist-height. The elevated basin is full to the brim with raw, liquid magma, seething and bubbling dramatically
<Capn_Ascii> (as magma is wont to do in situations like this).
<Capn_Ascii> ...raw, liquid magma, seething and bubbling dramatically (as magma is wont to do in situations like this).
<Vathgani> "Okay, is not safe here."
<Capn_Ascii> Attached to the rim of the basin are a couple of dozen lengths of rope (presumably fire-proof to be able to survive their proximity to the magma). Each one is tied to a hook on the rim of the basin, then stretches out and up to the outer walls of the chamber, with dozens of small metal chimes dangling from each.
<Capn_Ascii> The overall effect is that of a large spider web, strung up throughout the whole room. There's barely enough room to pass between the ropes in places, but even then, you'd have to be reeeeally careful...
Marilyn looks around for the idol, any mechanisms, or anything else of interest, that she can find without disturbing any ropes.
<Capn_Ascii> There' another vault door like the others you've seen...on the far side of the chamber, of course.
Marilyn carefully looks around for a safe path, not really expecting to find one. She also checks the length of the room.
<Capn_Ascii> Marilyn: The room seems designed to *prevent* a safe path. Even flying wouldn't work, given the multiple heights of the ropes.
<Capn_Ascii> There's a small safe spot in front of the vault door, barely big enough for a person to stand without touching anything.
<Marilyn> "No safe path, obviously. I think a Dimension Door is our best option."
<Capn_Ascii> The lava bubbles impatiently.
Ashling prepares dimension door "I'll be right back"
Marilyn nods and turns to the others. "Be ready to flee when she gets back, either by teleport or flight."
<Capn_Ascii> Ashling casts her spell, focuses her mind's eye...
<Capn_Ascii> ...and *poof!* She's gone.
<Capn_Ascii> She finds herself standing inside what is presumably the other side of the vault door. There's another pedestal here, and atop it - sure enough, another idol. This one is ruby red, and depicts, oddly enough, a roc.
Ashling searches the room for anything,.
<Capn_Ascii> You give the small room the once-over. Besides the usual pressure plate trap beneath the idol, you can see a small catch on the backside of the vault door. Your until-recently-forgotten trapfinder's instinct tells you that it's an emergency release for the door - just in case someone accidentally locks himself inside.
Ashling looks around for something heavy enough to replace the idol for
<Capn_Ascii> You don't see anything close at hand. You might be able to improvise from your inventory, at least.
Ashling pulls out a sack and takes a few seconds to create six pounds of rocks out of nothing. she then ties it off and gets ready to swp it for the idol.
<Capn_Ascii> With some creative use of Prestidigitation, you manage to summon forth...a big bag of fake rocks. The things are so brittle they collapse into powder as soon as you try to bag them. Fortunately, the law of conservation of matter is on your side, and they end up weighing the same amount.
Ashling hands the bag of powder to Ariel. "Swap this for the idol, Avra, grab the idol when I saw go." She then moves to hold down the pressure plate. "Go."
<Capn_Ascii> Your little friends make the swap, leaving you to release the plate. Nothing happens. Which, in this case, is a good thing.
Ashling shoves the idol in her pack. "Let's get out of here." she says as she trips the lever to open the door.
<Capn_Ascii> The lever clanks softly, and the vault door extends outward, creating an opening for you slip out. You can see the ropes from here, though...best be careful.
Ashling takes a second to cast etherealness, and quickly runs accorss the room.
<Capn_Ascii> You blur across the room in the blink of an eye, phasing right through the ropes. You make it to the far side just as you flicker back into corporealness.
<Marilyn> "Mission accomplished?" Marilyn queries.
Ashling pulls it out of her bag and hands it to her. "shall we get out of here?"
Marilyn places the idol carefully into her bag. "Indeed. Teleport?"
Ashling nods and begins casting
<Capn_Ascii> You waggle your hands, speak the magic words, and...
<Capn_Ascii> ...nothing happens. It seems the same anti-teleport setup from the last temple is at work here.
<Ashling> "Perfect. Juuuuust perfect. We're being jammed again."
Marilyn nods, having expected it. "I'm not surprised. Alright, same thing as on our way across the first time. Evasive action. Do not get hit by the gunsharks."
Marilyn leads the way, bravely charging across the Room of Death, doing her best to avoid any sharkfire!
<Vathgani> "Vathgani hopes other calf gets through intact..."
<Capn_Ascii> Once again, you brave the hostile airspace over the shark pool. More lasers come your way, and irritatingly enough, Vath gets shot squarely in his other calf.
<Vathgani> "Ah! Vathgani should not have said that aloud!"
<Capn_Ascii> The sharks chuckle evilly.
<Marilyn> "Knowing when to keep your mouth shut is a valuable skill, soldier!"
<Vathgani> "Vathgani history student, not soldier."
<Capn_Ascii> History's greatest lesson:
<Capn_Ascii> Sharks are dicks. :p
<Capn_Ascii> Carry on.
<Capn_Ascii> Vath limps through the air (quite a feat in and of itself) as you pass over the other pit and return to the elevator chamber.
<Marilyn> "You became soldier when I pressed you into service, and don't you forget it," Marilyn sneers at Vathgani. "If you didn't want where you are you should have thought about it before you stowed away on a ship bearing the Crown Princess of Belcadar."
<Vathgani> "Never heard of Belcadar."
Marilyn waits for everyone to get on the elevator, then triggers its 'up' action. "That... is odd, seeing as that's where you had to have come from to board my vessel in the first place."
<Vathgani> "Got VERY lost."
<Capn_Ascii> The elevator rumbles upward through the shaft, leaving you stand around and wait aimlessly.
<Capn_Ascii> As you near the top of the shaft, you can hear voices from above.
<Capn_Ascii> "I'm sorry, sir, I can't find the call button!"
<Marilyn> "Okay, there are obviously enemies up top, prepare to fight, I will make everyone invisible," Marilyn remarks, quickly pulling out her wand.
<Capn_Ascii> "What are you talking about? It's right there! That big red lever!"
<Capn_Ascii> "Uh, sir? I'm pretty sure that one's trapped."
Marilyn starts casting Invisibility on the group.
<Capn_Ascii> "Nonsense! It's clearly the elevator call lever. You're just too paranoid to get the job done. Stop being a wuss and give it a pull."
<Marilyn> That complete, Marilyn pulls out her blades; Island of Blades stance, activate! Marilyn also hisses at Ashling. "Get ready for emergency Teleport. They're probably foolish enough to blow the trap."
<Capn_Ascii> The lever isn't just booby-trapped...it's *mega* booby-trapped! Your intuition tells you that the whole temple is rigged to blow - pulling the lever will detonate a magical explosive charge buried beneath the temple, destroying it and causing the volcano to erupt! Wow, that seems a bit much...
Ashling slowly begins casting teleport, trying to get as close to the top before she finishes.
<Capn_Ascii> "I really don't think that's a very good idea, sir..."
Marilyn carefully places her foot next to Ashling's, so she's capable of fighting, and still being in the Teleport.
<Capn_Ascii> Blue huddles up, sensing something dangerous and bad-assed is about to happen.
<Capn_Ascii> Finally, the platform ascends into place. The half-dozen robed, hooded guys standing inside the small room all turn to face you.
<Capn_Ascii> "Th-there, see sir? The platform's here after all. We don't even need to pull the lever."
<Capn_Ascii> "Yes, but how are we supposed to lower it back down once we're on it?"
<Capn_Ascii> "Maybe it's motion-activated."
<Capn_Ascii> "That's stupid. Motion sensor technology hasn't even been invented yet."
<Capn_Ascii> ".....you're stupid."
<Capn_Ascii> "You're both stupid. I'm pulling the lever."
<Capn_Ascii> "No, you're not. We'll find another way."
<Capn_Ascii> "Ugh, fine, whatever..."
<Capn_Ascii> Having gotten good and sick of listening to them blather, you finish the teleport spell. *WHOOSH!*
<Capn_Ascii> Moments later, you find yourselves standing on the beach, next to the longboat. White is nearby, swinging his sword at nothing in particular in what appears to be some sort of self-amusing shadowboxing or something. He stops and embarassingly puts away his sword. "Oh, there you are."
<Capn_Ascii> He tilts his head quizzically. "...I think?"
Marilyn smirks. "Let's head back. I expect our enemies to do something monumentally stupid like cause a volcanic eruption momentarily."
Marilyn makes herself visible as she says this*
<Capn_Ascii> Suddenly, there's a violent trembling...the beach rocks beneath your feet!
<Capn_Ascii> The shaking gets worse, and then...
<Marilyn> "Yep. They did it. Let's get out of here. Immediately."
<Capn_Ascii> A massive column of volcanic fire explodes from the top of the mountain!
Marilyn quickly loads herself into the boat. "Double time!"
<Vathgani> "Reminds Vathgani of home."
<Marilyn> "We must outrun the pyroclastic flow!"
Ashling takes a second then quickly sprints out onto the water.
<Capn_Ascii> You hear a high-pitched "SKRAAAAW!" as a small, black, singed object goes flying out of the caldera and arcs overhead, splashing down into the ocean.
<Marilyn> "Don't be a fool, Ashling, get in the boat!"
<Ashling> "You get in the boat. I'll wait here."
Vathgani tags along into the boat
<Capn_Ascii> Ashling runs right past the rest of you, as you push the boat out into the water and quickly clamber in.
Marilyn growls as she grabs the oar that would have been Ashling's. Ooooh, that woman is in a lot of trouble when she gets back to the boat for that stunt.
<Capn_Ascii> Marilyn: Your mental complaining is cut short as a massive chunk of volcanic rock splashes down into the water nearby, creating a huge column of steam and violently rocking the boat.
Ashling runs towards the ship.
<Capn_Ascii> The rest of you watch Ashling grow smaller and smaller as she keeps right on running, outpacing your longboat quite easily. Still, you row as hard as you can, and soon find yourself out of range of the volcanic fallout.
Marilyn switches her manuever set as she rows, adding a Mighty Throw to make a point.
<Capn_Ascii> --SOME TIME LATER--
<Capn_Ascii> White pulls the longboat up alongside the ship. The ropes are lowered, and the crew starts hauling up the boat as you all climb out onto the deck. Ash is sitting on a nearby crate, gasping for breath.
Marilyn climbs onto deck and immediately makes a grab for Ashling. Mighty Throw! "What was that stunt for?!"
<Capn_Ascii> Sore, wet, and angry, Marilyn stomps across the deck, making a grab for Ashling. She reaches out her arm...and accidentally brings her heel squarely down into a wet patch on the deck.
<Capn_Ascii> "Yaaaah!" Her scream of surprise echos across the ship as she skids across the deck and flips right over the far railing, catapaulting into the ocean below.
Marilyn futilely treads water for a few seconds before finding her bearing and righting herself. "ROPE!" she screams, now pissed off even more.
<Capn_Ascii> The crew collectively tries to stifle their laughter as a rope is lowered.
Marilyn grabs hold and decides she's done being useful. "UP!" she demands, not even attempting to pull herself.
<Capn_Ascii> The rope is hauled upward.
Marilyn carefully sets herself on the deck. "Let's get out of here. Set course for the center island, and try to time it so we're not there until tomorrow. I am taking the last idol belowdecks, then I am going to lock myself in my cabin and try to regain my composure. Unless there is a critical situation, I advise *not* disturbing me."
<Capn_Ascii> "Yes, ma'am."
<Capn_Ascii> The ship gets underway, the crew taking their time, everyone hoping to be well-rested for tomorrow.
Marilyn locks herself in her cabin and throws a spare shirt over the camera, not caring for anyone to see her activities at this point.
<Capn_Ascii> Marilyn: You stow the last of the idols in the Super Secret Room next to the others, and then head off to bed. As you leave, you fail to notice the idols glowing softly...
<Capn_Ascii> ---END SESSION---