Another Mans Treasure - RPLOG

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It has been a painfully long ride to get here. Amar said that he would provide transportation, but he certainly did not splurge on it. The old ox cart finally groans to a halt, far beyond the normal stomping grounds of the Freeswords in the wild lands between Firebough mountain and the Cliffside border.

Amar Widestripe and his attendant, Gavin are already here, waiting under a rather lavishly appointed pavillion while a few servants scurry about their work at the little camp.

"AH!" Amar calls out, waving a fat hand at the new arrivals as he reclines on a pile of pillows, what seems to be a hooka of some sort positioned beside him, "About time you all showed up!"

Galve lands with little fanfare. The vespid rogue has been doing a lot of work lately and as such it was hard to expect him not to be here. "Present and accounted for, sir." He says, a hand resting on his sword hilt.

Terry climbs down onto the steady soil after the long, rickety ride in the ol' oxcart. He spares a moment to rub at his aching legs, gone stiff from lack of movement. He straightens again and stretches, rather catlike, and steps up alongside the others, looking up at Amar. He offers a sharp salute. "Ready, sir!"

Levin is the next of the freeswords to leave the cart, his hand running through the short fur on the side of his head as he caresses a 'wound' from earlier. The bumpy ride had taken it's toll on the otter who, due to his always excessive energy, thought it would be a smart idea to stretch his legs about the cart while it was going through some rather bumpy territory. It wasn't a graceful landing. "Oi, oi, hey boss!" he calls out to Amar as he hits the ground "Everyone here and accounted for!"

Mal wiggles a flask, making a face as he realizes it's empty. He looks up as the cart rolls to a stop, slipping the flask into a pocket before hopping off the wagon. "Amar!" the Coyote calls, "Is this going to go like the last few jobs? Deadly traps, crazy pyromaniacs?" He grins at the Tiger. "Nothin' better to get the blood pumping!" Mal saunters over to the rest of the crew, rubbing his hands together. "What're we doing this time?"

After everyone else hopped off the cart, finally, an unfamiliar Ankylosaurus landed down with a loud thud. "Hold on a second, let me just-" The dino stretched themselves a little bit, shaking some of their gear around and straightening themselves up as they faced Amar. "Woah. Much, much better! Now, considering that it seems everyone else knows you and I haven't had the pleasure of meeting you yet, mister, the name's Cary." The heavy clanned spoke in a quite.. Soft.. Tone for someone of their size. Nevertheless, they nodded and smiled towards the Tiger.

"Very good, Very good," Amar says, rubbing his hands together, "I'm glad to see you boys! I trust the trip wasn't too difficult." He does not wait for an answer, and barrels on. "Now then, now then. I am sure that you are all ready to get right to work. Right to the point, as it were!" The fat, purple tiger waves a beringed hand down the length of the narrow valley. "Down at the end of this valley is a large cavern," he explains, "Some say that it is no natural cave, but carved by hands long before beings came to Promise. That is what we are banking on, boys. I expect that a real treasure trove could be down there!" He holds up a meaty paw to forestall any questions or concerns. "I know, I know. I know what you are thinking! You are asking yourselves, if there is such a treasure here, why has no one claimed it yet?" the tiger holds up two fingers. "One!" he says, "That mountain path is only fit for goats. I doubt anyone has traveled this way in decades! And Two? Well, there are rumors that the place is cursed or haunted or some such fiddle faddle. They say that no one who goes in ever comes out again." The feline's fat face splits into a grin, setting his second chin jiggling. "But I'm assure you, they only say that because no one ever has before!"

Galve nods. "So.... I assume we are going on foot then? I don't see any goats...." He says, fluttering his wings anxiously. He couldn't carry more than himself if he had to fly. "Curses I'm not afraid of."

Terry crosses his arms as he listens to the rotound feline, his tail flicking behind him anxiously. He quirks a brow at the mention of curses and haunts, but smirks at Amar's reaction. "Yes sir, it sounds like it. I suppose some beings have to be the first to do it." He looks around the group, his eyes scanning each party member, and nodding at Mal and Cary in recognition. "It might as well be us, eh? And I think deadly traps are all but guaranteed." He says with a smile at Mal.

"Levin," the otter replies, craning his head around to speak to Cary "Trouble shooter extraordinaire! Good to meet ya' and all that." He turns back to listen to the rest of what Amar has to say, his hears perking up a bit as he catches the most important bit of it all, 'treasure'. With a toothy grin he spins to about to take a look at where the fat cat was gesturing. "Seems like a bit of a long shot, and we ain't no goats - But treasure? Eheh, I ain't turning down a chance for treasure!"

The Coyote shrugs and pops his neck. "Sure, sure. No problem," he says. "So, bring back anything that looks valuable and isn't nailed down?"

The Freesword looks over to Cary and tips a nonexistent hat. "Name's Mal. I'm here for the booze, obviously."

"Only curse I'm afraid of is a crucible full of iron breaking just before the casting!" Exclaimed the dino as they walked on, adding, "But yes, my feline friends, might as well head in first. But considering those caves were carved by men, does anyone else other than me know how to read and speak the Creator language? That might be something we could encounter in there."

"Just a figure of speech, a figure of speech," Amar says, waving off all the goat commentary, "I am sure one need not be a goat to follow the trail. Only know that it is a treacherous one." The enormous feline waves to a servant who rushes to bring him a tray of fruits and cheeses. "Godspeed, gentlemen," he syas, "And best of luck. I expect only the best from you." He turns a shrewd eye on Mal. "Precisely, my boy, precisely. That is exactly what I expect you to do. And clear out any traps you might find along the way, of course. It will be helpful for further exploration." The fat cat looks askance at Cary. "Man?" he asks, "You mean the Creators? Ah, no my friend, these are no Creator ruins. You can be sure of that. Now, off you get."

The path down the valley quickly narrows until what was a valley becomes a high, narrow gorge, just wide enough for two average beings to walk abreast.

Galve nods, following the direction of their tubby employer, Galve heads for the path towards the indicated cavern. "Come on, it isn't going to raid itself." He says, heading for the path with his hand still resting on his sword pommel.

"Ha, you got that right, wings!" Levin calls out to Galve as he skips up to the vespid's side to follow. "You and me can take the lead, pal! I'm huggin' the wall though, you can always buzz down there if ya' fall and my head's plenty hard enough to break a rock if any fall, see?" The otter gives a sagely nod. "Safest option, unless we wanna tie up the lil' fella and toss 'em forward to check to see if the ground is stable - I don't think he'd like that though, would ya'~?"

Mal grins at Amar and nods. "I've worked enough jobs of yours to know what's expected," he replies before following along with the crew, hands in pockets and whistling a lazy tune. Once he's a fair enough distance from the Tiger, the Freesword gives a snort. "Room wide traps, Hill Wurms and crazy it's potential curses?" he says with a grin, "The more jobs I do for Amar, the more I think he's trying to get me killed!" Haaah, jokes.

"Sorry, I don't do languages. I do stabbing. And I do it oh so stylishly," the Coyote says to Cary, before going back to his lazy tune and peering down the gorge. He gives Levin and Galve a grin before throwing his two crowns' worth in, "So, who's first? Any volunteers?"

"It's alright, stabbing is also good. Just not for health." The dino smiled, walking only slightly ahead. "Well, I didn't know Amar until now but he seems like the kind of person who's got a lot of connections and... Also seems to be involved in some shady stuff, considering what y

"-Y'all talking about."

The narrow gorge soon widens. It widens significantly. And by widens, I of course mean that the cliff face to the right gives way to empty air, leaving the group standing on a ledge overlooking what must be a hundred foot sheer drop, if it is an inch. The ledge further narrows to the point that it is only just wide enough for one being to walk cautiously along the edge of the cliff. The huge, yawining opening to the cavern is just up ahead in the face of the cliff.

Galve walks cautiously. though he doesn't really need to, as he could fly if he wanted to. He was just being polite to the other less..... aerially-challenged beings in the group. "Narrow is right...."

Terry follows the other beings, listening to them but not saying much himself. He almost seems uneasy in the middle of this group, his tail flitting anxiously as he regards their suroundings. He squeezes past the others, but as their path opens into that dizzying ledge he stops and presses himself against the wall. He peers at Mal and Galve. "Well, if you still have rope, I wouldn't mind some right about now." He peers down, then around. "Well.. I suppose there's only one way forward now." He peers up at Mal again. "Sir, you seem experienced in these death-defying adventures. How should we proceed?"

Levin can't help but let out a bit of a snicker as he shuffles along, for once in his life being careful with his steps as he moves forward. "Yeeeah, well, I kinda left mine at home. Sorry little guy... But now that you mention it, uh, did anyone remember to bring any? It might be handy, ya'know, in the cave 'n all."

Mal whistles lazily and inches his way along the ledge, pausing to look at Terry. "With improvisation," he replies after a moment, giving the cat a bit of a grin. "Honestly, I say we head into that cave over yonder," he adds, gesturing to the cavern. The Coyote leans over to look at Levin. "...I have a pen. From Longtech," he says after a moment, holding the fancy pen up and twitching it between his fingers.

"Well, y'know, considering I've been journeying around for a while I've been bringing a lot of stuff with me but uh.. If I still have some rope left it may not be enough to tie all of us together or something like that." The dino says, walking very, VERY carefully now. Their enthusiasm about possibly charging straight into the cave was quickly eliminated. "Although I'm pretty sure I may have small picks with my blacksmithing tools which may be of some use."

The ledge is narrow, but not too treacherous. It is honestly more nerve wracking than actually dangerous. At least in these favorable weather conditions.

With only a few unnerving skids and no particularly close calls, the group manages to scoot and inch their way into the large mouth of the cavern that digs into the mountainside. It is wide and clear of debris. If it weren't so remote and at the top of such a large cliff, one might expect that it was maintained by beings. The floor of the cavern is smooth and bare and the ceiling is high and arched with no signs of stalgamites or stalactites to mar its surface. The wide cavern quickly fades into darkness, the outside sunshine does not reach far.

Galve pulls a torch from his belt. "Well... I'm going first." He says. "Mostly because I don't want to be trampled if we have to make a hasty retreat."

Terry follows along the group, staying in the middle of his group of companions. "Understood sir. I'll bring rope next time." He meant it, too. No use making mistakes more than once. He shimmies along, aided by his diminuitive size and slim profile. As he arrives at the other side he breathes a sigh of relief, sparing one last glance at the dangerous passage before turning to the cave and stepping forward. He nods at Galve as he steps forward. "Yes sir." He follows along, padding quietly, observing his surroundings. "Strange place, this.." He looks back at Mal. "Have you ever seen anything like this, sir? It's quite.. well kept. Certainly not how I imagined a cavern would be."

Levin lets out one hell of a sigh of relief when he gets off the ledge and into the safety of the cave - More then one of those unnerving skids were from him. "Cripes, I don't wanna do that again..." the otter grumbles before glancing back over his shoulder. "... Guess we gotta to get back out, but hey." With a click of his tongue his eyes wander about the room, a brow raising at the unusual smoothness that covered the area, "Well damn, the big guy was right - This is strange, yeah, real strange... Which means the chance for treasure is rising! Keep that pen of yours ready, my friend! We may need it yet!"

Mal pats Terry on the back once they're all safely inside the cave. "Not so bad, see? By the by, how ya been, Terry? Fed any livestock?" he says with a grin, looking around. "...We brought torches, right? I keep meaning to get my hands on one of these little glowing rocks, but I alway forget. Need to ask Zuri where he got his..." he says, pointing to Galve. "Ahh, there we go! That works," he adds, rubbing his hands together. "...I had something for that, dammit!" he says to Levin, before shaking his head. "Nevermind, let's go find some treasure!" he adds, a glint in his eye as he falls in behind the torchbearer.

"Just a bit.. More... Come on.." And Cary finally managed to step a couple inches into the cave, taking a deep breath, relieved that the cliffwalking was over... For now. "Creators be.. Finally. I don't want to ever go through that again without the safety of proper equipment." Cary leans on a wall for a moment, picking up something from the side of their bag. A small torch, indeed. The dino also opened one of his vials, pouring it on the torch's cloth wrap. Closing the vial and putting it into his backpack again. Cary approached Galve, asking. "Now that that's done, can you lend me your fire to light this one up too?"

The light of the two torches does quite a bit to illuminate the dark cavern. If there was anyone who doubted that the place was carved by hands before, now there can be no doubt. The room, for room it is, is large and square. Half pillars stud the walls at regular intervals, though they are so worn by time that they could be almost mistaken for natural rock formations. There may have been carvings on the walls once, but time has worn too much away to make anything out. Directly opposite the cave entry, the room gives way to an ancient, cracked archway, where a few stones have fallen to the earth. Beyond is a dark hallway, wide enough for a horse drawn cart!

Galve nods, lending the reptile his torch to light hers. "Nervous?" He asks, smiling and patting her on the shoulder. "We do this right, and you'll only have to cross it once more." He says before turning to face the crumbling archway. "Impressive.... I wonder who built this...." He says, taking the spearhead with his torch in one hand and the other resting on the pommel of his blade.

Terry looks over at Mal as he's addressed, and breaks a slight smile. "Not as such. I would have not minded to do so again, but I don't have livestock of my own to tend and.. I'd rather not tend to those of others without their permission, as it were." He looks around the dimly-illuminated room, nibbling on his lip. "So, what are the chances this place is trapped and what should we be looking out for?" He looks over at the others, and quickly adds. "And I resent any suggestion of sending the 'little guy' in first."

"Other beings, I'd say." Levin responds to Galve with a sagely nod. "I mean, who else could it have been? A spirit? There ain't nobody else on this planet that can think enough to make something like this but us... Right?" With a soft hrm the otter scratches the side of his neck as he wanders about, careful to stay within the light. "Hey, don't worry about it shorty - Me being the gentleman that I am will gladly take the lead! And I say we lead us... here!" He jabs a finger towards one of the pillars lining the walls. "Those stick out - lets see if we can find any markings on 'em."

The Coyote steps up to the wall, running a hand over the surface as he looks around. "...Cozy," he says after a moment, sauntering towards one of the pillars. "Hey, bring that light over here," he says, peering at the formation. He looks over at Terry and grins. "Damn, there goes that plan. Back to the drawing board," he teases. "Tell ya what, you pay my tab at the Inn, I'll take you to see some farming pals of mine." Mal pauses, thinking on it. "...Sorta farming pals. I do odd jobs, they give a meal. Anyway! Light!" he calls, looking to Galve, then Cary, waiting for one of them to come over and...shed some light on their situation, as it were.

Cary gently nodded as their torch was lit. "One can be so nervous.. I mean.. I'm pretty big and.. That cliff was really narrow, so... Yeah..." Cary also turned towards the archway, tilting their head slightly at the sight of it. "That's.. Definitely interesting! I just hope there aren't as many traps as we imagine around. That would be bad." The reptile shrugs for a moment, slowly walking a little bit ahead and inspecting the columns a bit closer, seems the coyote had the same idea! "This.. I wonder if we're the first ones here after so long... Let me focus for a second though."

As Cary focuses, the air becomes a little bit more humid. "I got a trick up my sleeve to protect us, but don't go too far ahead, y'all."

There is not much of interest on the worn columns. It should say something that they seem to be solid stone, and yet are worn smooth. This is not something that was built within the last 500 years, unless terrible sandstorms regularly rage through this cavern.

The broken archway yawns in the dim cavern, and the hall beyond is surprisingly large. There is little ornamentation. Now, at least. The irregular grooves and indentations on the walls might once have been elaborate carvings.

Galve waits for Cary to finish casting before he continued further. "That's right ....we need to be careful..... We don't know who built this or what kind of traps they left behind."

Terry stops by one of the bunches of worn out carvings, running his hands over it as he tries to decipher their meaning. An impossible task, given his lack of academic knowledge in these matters, but the diminuitive feline tries it anyway. "I think you shold pay your own tab, sir, perhaps with the earnings from this voyage of ours. We need to find treasure, however, and I doubt it will be laying around in plain sight.."

Levin squats down next to Terry, his eyes narrowing as he tries to focus on the carvings himself - He's likely far less adept at deciphering them then Terry is, however. "Any idea what they are? Ehh, we should have brought a bookworm, or a stoneworker at the very least..." With a bit of a huff he cranes his head around and says up to Mal "And the little fella's right, pay your tab off first or they'll start taking fingers - or worse - stop giving you booze! A horrible fate, I know."

Mal nods and turns, heading for the archway. "Worth a shot. Onwards!" he says, yawning a bit. "What, and not spend it on weapons?" he asks, looking at Terry with a baffled expression. "What's the point in having friends if they don't pay your tab?" he adds, grinning!

The Coyote pauses to look over the archway for a moment before slipping into the dim room beyond, peering at the walls in here as well, tracing over the grooves with a finger. "I swear, if this is another temple built by the Ancients..." he mutters, turning to look over the cavern. "...Had enough of the Ancients. One damn temple is all it took," he adds, looking quite disgruntled over this past experience. "Didn't even get to keep the coins, either."

"I'm done with my preparations." Said the Dino, as they stepped forward into the dim room, bringing along their flame. Cary walked alongside them, curiously inspecting the remnants of the once elaborate carvings, trying to identify at least some of them. But maybe it was just too damaged to even read anything. "So... Is this familiar to anyone in here?" Cary gently asked, glancing at the freeswords.

The carvings are nearly impossible to make out, worn as they are. Every now and then, one seems to be a strange, squiggly sigil or a depiction of some sort of long limbed being, but that is all that can be read in them.

As the last of the Freeswords traipses into the wide hall beyond the broken archway, there is a gentle 'click' from somewhere. At first, nothing seems to happen. Then, it seems that the hallway has started to become steeper, leading upward. . . and steeper. . . and steeper. . .

A glance backward would reveal the truth! The floor is tilting! The archway, while still open and easily visible, now opens nearly five feet above the floor! And that distance is rapidly growing!

Galve feels the floor start to tilt, and rushes to the others. "Come on, we need to try and get back to the top!" He says, trying to instill the same urgency that he felt into the others. He could probably fly out, but where would that leave his companions?

Terry mewls in surprise as the floor slides down under his feet. He glances around quickly at his companions, confirming that he's not seeing things, and then quickly runs back towards the passage they had just come from. He leaps up, aided by a burst of air magic to try and grip onto the ledge. "Quick, look for sometihng to jam the mechanism!"

Levin doesn't need to be told to do what he does best - and that's run like a madman . "Oi, oi!" he shouts as he tries to make a mad dash towards the rising edge "If this thing workin' off our weight and not some machine thing, it might tilt the other way too! Get ready to jump if ya' gotta!"

"...That looks like a damned Ancient," Mal mutters, squinting at the depiction of the long-limbed...thing. As the floor begins to give way, the Coyote blinks. "Oh shit!" he cries out, looking at the archway and the growing distance before attempting to scramble and lunge up to safety, hoping to get a grip, a foothold, anything to keep him from sliding into the unknown. At least, not before he knows what's down there. Probably spikes and skeletons or something equally unpleasant. Nevermind that he'll end up deeper in this death-trap, at least he won't be sliding to the unknowing.

In hopes that their weight could probably delay the trap a little from turning around completely, Cary charged ahead. There was no time to lose to try and find something in their bag, so they held the torch with their teeth and used their claws for support on the now tilting floor.

With the help of his air magic, Terry manages to fling himself back to the sandy floor of the entry cave as the floor tilts ever downward, leaving him alone in the dim light that filters from the mouth of the cave while his companions charge blindly forward.

Sliding and skidding on the stone floor revealed as sand drains backward toward some unknown pitfall behind them, the rest of the party manages to make some headway until the tilting gradually slows. . . and stops, just at the point where there would be no turning back. The light of the two torches shows that the tunnel ends in a blank stone wall up ahead, though the ceiling is still out of sight.

Slowly, but growing faster, the floor starts to tilt again, the other way this time!

Galve is confused about what he sees. "Wha.... Why is it a wall?" He exclaims in disbelief. "What do we do?" He says, looking to the others go a moment t

for a moment before the platform starts to tilt back.

Terry looks at his companions, watching the corridor continue to tilt upwards. He looks around frantically, then back at them. "I'll try to figure out a way to stop this mechanism. There must be some sort of lever or gear or..." He pauses, watching as the floor slows down, stops, and begins to tilt back the other way. His eyes widen in recognition. "A.. a lever! The whole thing is on a pivot! You have to balance the weight on both sides!" He looks back into the room behind him, looking for anything that could be used as extra ballast to help manage the weight. "Get closer to the center of the corridor! Find where the pivot is!"

"Shit, shit, shit!" Levin practically falls on his ass as he tries to put his mad sprint to a stop as the floor starts to tilt the other way about, tripping over his own feet as he twists about and barely able to catch himself in a position that lets him blot back in the other direction. "I was right! And so is Terry - In the middle folks - 'cept for you Galve, get your ass off the floor if you can!"

Galve hastily agrees and takes off, pushing little motes of sand as he lifts off from the teetering trap to hover in the air above.

Mal makes a face at Terry. "...Sure, why not," he replies, scrambling back to the middle of the corridor, to help balance the...whatever this is. "So, what's the plan when we finally get this thing to stop tilting?" he asks, raising an eyebrow. "I mean, as much as I'd love to just, yanno. Stay in one spot forever," he says, trailing off as he focuses on finding the 'pivot point'.

Cary desperately turned around, grabbing the torch with one of their hands and exclaiming loudly, "Shit, this thing is on a- Yeah, that's the word!" The dino attempted to find the center of the corridor, but considering the rest of the crew was slightly ahead, they went a little further towards the entrance end, trying to balance it properly. "Come get your asses to the center of the corridor! And you, waspy! Sorry for the sudden nickname but use your torch to try and find the mechanism or the way forward!"

The tilting hallway starts to gain momentum as it shifts, revealing the top of the doorway at the far end of the hall while those Freeswords still there struggle to find a spot of equilibrium. By spreading things out a little, with Cary on one side and Mal and Levin just a little to the other side of center, they manage to balance things out with the floor just under the door at the far side and just above the floor on Terry's side. Terry can see that the floor itself is a thick, stone slab, about two feet thick, and underneath it is darkness. The thing is no doubt very, very old. And also incredibly well made.

Galve takes his torch and starts looking everywhere he can for something... anything

Anything that could help their situation

Terry phews. "The corridor is just a stone slab on a pivot. It's empty underneath." He stops, racking his brain for a solution." We could try to jam it underneath, stop it from moving any more. Can you guys find any part of the mechanism you can jam?"

By the time the floor gets to a relatively level plane, the otter's left huffing and puffing from his frantic sprinting, barely able to do nore then slight shifts here and there to help keep the floor from upending itself again while he catches his breath. "Ri- right, so... Ha..! Yeah, okay... Should have brought some rope, shouldn't we?" He glances back to the now visable doorway down the hall, gesturing towards it. "I'm going to regret this, but - Wings, fly over, see if there's a switch or somethin' that'll lock the floor. If there's going to be somethin' to disarm this, it'll be on that side - but knowing our luck, it'll just drop the floor completely."

Mal looks between Terry, to Galve, then Levin. "...So I'll just...balance here?" he says, holding his position. "Just...lemme know when we figure something out. Kinda getting a cramp here," he says, smirking a bit.

The reptile catches their breath for a moment, allowing for a brief pause. "Okay. Okay, we're balanced. For now. So, first things first, jam the mechanism. How are we going to go about that? I suppose we'll have to rely on our winged partner for that, but I can handle the balance here, considering.. Well. You know what!"

The floor seems balanced for now, precarious though that balance may be. There seems to be no visible catch or pivot within the hallway itself. Perhaps it is meant to be a mad dash? There must be some kind of trick to it. Terry is alone in the dimness on the near side of the trap, and Galve hovers near the far door while the others are frozen carefully along the length of the hall.

"Soooo..." starts Levin as he does his best to stay perfectly still, eyes darting between Cary and Mal making sure that they're doing the same - if either of them lost balance, he would have to be quick to compensate for it. "Wings! Little guy! It's up to you two - I'm gunna take a wild guess and say that our best bet is over there." He gestures towards the doorway in Galve's direction. "If you're going to make an obvious way to disarm a trap, it'll be on the inside, right?"

Galve hovers, the droning of his iridescent wings echoing off the chamber walls and filling the silence. "Ok... What we need to do is get everyone off this side while also keeping the platform balanced....." He says, looking at their small party and trying to judge weights based on quick observation in dim torchlight. "I think it would be best to assume there is no way to disarm this trap..." He calls, though he does turn around to hover over to the doorway and look around for some kind of mechanism to disarm the trap.

"Most likely. And hey, I'm pretty sure I can compensate our weight, considering.. Y'know." Cary gestures towards themselves. Big dino and all. "If anything, maybe we can push one of the pillars on the other side of the platform to keep it stable while we continue ahead."

It is fortunate that Galve has a torch, because the great room beyond the hallway is utterly dark. There is some sort of mechanism here, two great levers, one on either side of the portal backward. Perhaps they effect the floor of the passageway?

Galve lands gently on the inside of the archway, tucking his wings back behind him

"See anything?" the otter calls out. He could feel his legs quivering under him - Standing still, for this long? It was madness! "Have a good look, I mean, we can't stand here all day ya'know! ... I mean, we could sit but uh, I ain't slidin' ass first do my death."

Galve lands gently on the inside of the archway, tucking his wings back behind him. No sense in wasting his stamina now when he could need it later. He walked over to the great mechanisms and examining them to try and figure out what their purpose was, using his hands to clear away cobwebs and dust to see the workings better.

"You okay in there? If you need the other torch I can hand it to you!" Cary exclaimed. As the dino couldn't do much right now, considering they were also balancing the platform, they stretched a little bit. "Seems we might be here for a while until our friend find something helpful. That or we could.. Well, run." The Dino added.

Mal seems to be balancing pretty well, for a Coyote that's usually drunk. "Hm? What? Someone say something?" he says suddenly, looking up. "I got distracted." Distracted? By what?!

The levers seem quite simple and, despite their obviously ancient origin, in good condition. Their mechanisms are not visible, but it looks like a moderately strong being could pull one. That being said, they look like they need to be pulled simultaneously. And probably held. And if they are to have any effect on the tilting hall, it probably needs to be ballanced at its starting point.

Galve heads back into the other room, careful to avoid falling back onto the carefully balanced platform. "Ok... there are two levers here. I'm not really sure but I'm confident that they should disarm the trap. But I think we need to keep the floor balanced for it to work. So I need one of you to get off and come help me." He says, his torch held to illuminate the doorway and the rest of them.

"Oooh, fantastic" Levin replies with a huff "Cary, stay towards the center - Mal, you'll need to head out a bit with me to keep this shit balanced. Now then, onward!" With a determined grin the Otter starts his mad... shuffle towards the door, always ready to hop back or foward if the tilting of the floor demands it. "Okay big guy, remember, you're our counter weight! Slow and steady folks, then I'm gunna pull me a fuckin' lever!"

Cary nods, looking over to the freeswords keeping the platform balanced. "Alright. I suppose I'm probably heavier than y'all are, so I'll do my best to keep this thing balanced while you pull your 'fuckin'' levers."

The dino laughs a little bit, keeping an eye on the platform's balance as they move.

Terry reappears on the near-side door after having milled about in the room. His pokes his head into the swingy room of doom to look at what his companions are doing. "We could use outside weights as well, if required." He nibbles on his lip thoughtfully. "We could also try to wedge or jam the mechanism somehow, to keep it in place for the levers."

Mal nods and follows Levin's directions. "...But I wanted to pull the fuckin' lever," he whines, grinning. "When we get this damn thing balanced, could someone go back and ask for some supplies?" he asks, falling into position. He points to Terry. "I was just thinkin' that," he says. "Not like I get to use these throwing knives without losing them, anyway," he adds, holding up one of his knives. "...Creators, I hope no one's committing crimes with these. I etched my initials into each one..."

As Levin inches his way forward, the platform tilts downward, ever so slightly. Once he has reached the edge, the floor is very nearly level once again.

Levin reaches out towards the lever, fingers trembling - Slow, so slow... if only he could just... actually fucking move! With a frustrated grunt he takes the final step forward, shouting out "I'M GOIN' FOR IT!" that echoes through the cavern as he's about to make it off the platform. As he does, the otter makes a mad dash towards the levers, huffing and puffing as he tries to reach it before the platform becomes too unbalanced. "Wings! Pull it! Pull iiiit!" he shouts as he grabs the one closest to him, pulling it with all his might in hopes that his guess might actually be right for once!

Galve rushes after the enthusiastic (or panicked, one of the two) otter and pulls the other lever with him, hopefully disarming the trap and allowing them to proceed.

Cary crosses their fingers and lightly bites their lips, hoping for the best but preparing for the worst. "By the creators I hope you know what you're doing!" Exclaimed the dino, carefully moving around to further balance the platform accordingly.

Terry watches from his safe perch, unwilling to move into the room and risk disturbing the whole arrangement.

The otter's last scooting steps set the platfoorm slowly tilting downward, which by some miracle of fate or luck or divine intervention means that he reaches the great stone lever and pulls at the exact moment it rises gently back into its center position, rising again under Cary's weight. There is a grinding of stone on stone, though nothing visually changes in the long hallway. There is a slight vibration in the floor, then everything is still.

Mal seems unconcerned about Levin and Galve's fate, either because he's apathetic, or because he's confident in their abilities to survive. The Coyote seems more concerned about his flask, wiggling it and trying to get a few more gulps out of it. As the floor stills, he looks over to the Otter, then Cary and Terry. "Well, I think that's our cue," he says, stowing the flask away and hopping off the death trap. "Let's move, folks. This treasure better be worth it..."

Levin releases his lever, for just a moment, and there is a grinding of stone against stone again as Galve's lever tugs at his hands. The otter quickly grabs on again. This trap does not stay sprung, it seems.

Galve hauls back down on the lever. "We gotta keep it held down until they get off!" He says, keeping his level held down.

As everything comes to a stop, Cary takes a step forward and checks the platform's balance.. "Is this thing safe now?" They yelled out. Should it be truly still, the dino would sprint to the group.

Terry perks as he hears Galve's message. He steps gingerly onto the platform, testing his rather slight weight on it before beginning to run across. He runs clean to the other side and emerges from the room next to his companions, smiling. "Nice work." He wiggles his nose in thought. Getting back out of here might prove tricky given how the trap is laid out..

As long as Galve and Levin hold on, the hallway is stable as stone, allowing even Cary to thunder across without trouble.

Soon, the group finds themselves all together once more in a truly cavernous room. The ceiling is lost in the darkness, and great pillars rise in regular intervals, all carved with intricate, flowing patterns and figures. Distantly, at the very farthest edges of the torch light, it looks like there is a large door on the far side of the room, flanked by a pair of statues. Or pillars. It is hard to tell in the dark.

Galve holds his torch up high, wishing he'd packed a lantern or learned some fire magicks. "This place... it's ancient. Who built this?" He muses out loud

"Hey, about that. Thanks y'all, that trap was a tight lil' situation." Cary smiled a little bit and lightly patted Galve's shoulder, briefly nodding. Slowly, the dino lifted their torch, inspecting the figures and forms as they pushed onwards, wondering if they were anything discernible. "Gents, we might as well be the first to have stepped here in a very long time while others have perished to the platform trap. Might as well keep an eye out for more traps, who knows, but this place is very, very interesting nonetheless."

Terry looks around, answering Galve to the best of his ability. "I don't quite know sir. I haven't seen a place quite like this before. It certainly doesn't feel.. like it was made by beings, or for being for that matter."

The Coyote mutters, sticking by the two torchbearers, seeing as he's lacking his own. "I bet it was the Ancients," he grumbles. "They have all these traps and no loot," he mutters. "I just want something shiny, dammit." He raises an eyebrow at Cary's cheerfulness, but just shakes his head and stuffs his hands into his pockets as he keeps an eye on the floor. Best place to put a trap, after all.

Leading the way, Cary finds the next obstacle quickly and painfully, slamming into an invisible barrier! The path toward the far wall seems clear, but what feels like a wall of very solid stone stops the Anklyosaur in his tracks.

Galve notices Cary hit the wall hard, and stops before he himself runs into it. He reaches out and feels for the wall that she hit, moving his light around to see what could possibly be making the air in front of them so solid.

Cary was definitely not paying attention at all, inspecting one of the patterns and sidestepping as they slam into the wall. Hard. In fact, Cary even falls to the ground with a rather loud thud. "Wh- Oof!.. Ow.."

As the dino slowly stood up, they tried to inspect the invisible wall, trying to figure out what sort of power was barring their entrance. "Who the f.. Now.. That's just toying with us when we're just a couple of steps away from discovering something. Darn."

Terry starts into a combat-ready stance as Cary's slam and subsequent fall ring out. His alarm gives way to confusion, and then surprise. "There's... a wall there?" He steps forward to try and touch it as well, mimicking the others. "How.. how bizarre. Does it go all the way from end to end?"

Mal blinks as Cary seems to slam into mid-air, looking up and around. He steps forward and pokes at the wall, looking at either wall. "...Is this Air Mathemagics?" he asks, taking a step back. "...Because I'm kinda shit with that."

Careful examination, feeling along the invisible wall reveals that is just that: An invisible wall. There does not seem to be any air magic involved, not in the way that beings understand it, at least. It just seems to be a very sturdy stone wall that also happens to be completely invisible. It stretches between two pillars, barring the direct approach to the far side of the room.

Galve considers something for a moment. He first looks around the pillar to see if the walls blocked them on all sides... "Hey guys, see if you can go between the other pillars to the side." He instructs, leading with a hand to make sure he didn't knock into anything.

"Still got some rope left? Throw it over to see if the other end can reach the floor on the other side of the barrier. I got -some- rope but it's not long enough. If anything, perhaps we could bring down those pillars or find a way around them like our friend said." Cary looks around, checking the wall for openings.

Terry looks around as he rests his hand on the invisible wall, looking thoughtful. "I don't suppose we could go over it? I bet it goes all the way to the ceiling, doesn't it.." He looks around, trying to find a pile of loose debris, sand or other detritus that he can scoop up.

"...I hate Ancients," Mal mutters, squinting at the number of pillar. "We don't have any rope, Cary. That's what Levin's supposed to be getting," he says to the Dino, shaking his head. The Coyote looks to Terry and shrugs. "Worth a shot, I suppose," he says, eyeing the room carefully. Maybe something he missed...

A thrown stone reveals that Terry's guess is correct and scaling the walls will not be an option. A cursory examination also shows that the path is clear to either side. At least in the immediate area.

Galve eyes their small group. "I think we should split up. I'll take one torch and the big guy can take the other. We'll go either way. Try and keep an eye on each other's torches as we go. Follow the left-hand wall." He offers a game plan to the group of adventurers/treasure hunters

"Alright. Y'all go on ahead a little... I'm going to inspect these markings a bit more and see what I can make up of it. If I find out anything relevant I'll yell that out. Unless you want to sit here and wait a bit. Maybe even have a snack." The Dino suggests, lifting a torch next to some of the symbols on the pillars, closely inspecting them.

Cary then raises their left hand and lights a small mathemagic fire, passing the second torch to Mal or Levin. "Here, take this if you're going to split groups."

Terry steps towards the pillars, not quite focusing on the same symbols as Cary, but on some fresher scratchings. He runs his fingers over them seemingly reading them by eye and touch alike. "We're definitely not the first beings here." He says, looking over at the others. "There's being-made markings here. I think.. I think someone may have tried to mark a path here."

Mal sighs, running a hand over the invisible walls. He turns and looks at Galve, blinking. "You never split the party!" he says, looking at Galve like he's crazy. He looks at Cary and blinks. "What's with you guys and splitting the group," he mutters, taking the torch. "Whatever, not like my life's on the line if any of you die," he says, turning and starting for whichever path Galve doesn't take.

The Coyote pauses as Terry speaks up. "What?" he asks, stepping over to where Terry is and peering over his shoulder. "Huh. If that's the case, is the path leading to safety, or danger?"

Galve nods to Terry. "You found some markings? Maybe we could follow them..." He says, walking over to shine some extra light onto the markings. "Maybe they will help us get through here."

Cary sighs. "So we're not the first around here. Oh well. That takes away some of the excitement but perhaps it's for the better. Let's inspect the rest of the markings, I'm sure they can help us."

Terry shares a sideways glance with Mal, then looks at Galve. "Confusing markings. I think someone tried to brute force their way through this place."

Mal stands and points down one of the paths. "This way is safe," he says, before pointing the to other. "That way will kill you." Simply put. The Coyote holds his torch up and heads down the proper path, turning to look at the rest of the group. "Stick together, folks. I'm like, 95% sure I read that marking right. 65% sure," he says, grinning as he slowly walks backwards. "...45%."

Galve nods, quirking up as Mal tried walking backwards through the walls. "You can't be serious... it's too easy."

With the help of whoever it was that came before, the invisible maze is not so painful as it could have been. True, there are still a number of stubbed toes and banged elbows and even a bloodied nose when Mal gets a little too overconfident, but soon the party finds themselves spread before a short flight of steps leading up to a huge, stone door covered in intricate carvings. The door is flanked by two huge statues, each as tall as the biggest of heavy clanners, depicting some kind of strange beast. At first glance, it might be a lion, if a stylized one, with heavy brows and swirling manes and huge, rolling eyes and wide mouths with lolling tongues. The engravings on the door create the image of a truly horrible beast with seven heads each with a fang filled mouth and in the center a horned head more terrible than them all with a single, massive eye. One can only imagine what might be behind such a door.

Galve eyes the carving on the door. ".... I imagine nothing living could still be down here after all this time, based on how old all the rest of this is.... maybe. Either that or there's some kind of inorganic sentinel. So... who wants to kick down the door?" He asks, pulling a pistol from his belt and holding it in his left hand, his right still holding the torch.

"Remember.. Eyes peeled. Who knows, we might find -even more- traps. I'm seriously distrustful of this place." Cary shrugs, looking around carefully and inspecting the statues with a bit of awe. "What do you think we could find in here? For one, I think this might be a worship haven for.. Whatever that thing is." Cary added, inspecting the door closely. The dino would look out for any sort of creator symbols or engravings related to the activation of something.

Terry hobbles forward on a paw and a half after accidentally kicking a corner quite hard. He moves up to the door, looking up at each statue in turn. The small feline blinks, taking in the very strange sight. "Seems a bit.. mmf.. over the top, doesn't it?" He looks up at the single eye. "That's quite the unusual feature.. Look for traps, indeed. Pressure plate, wire, anything like that."

Mal eyes the decor, still rubbing his nose. "...Looks pleasant. Ancients had good fashion sense," he says sarcastically, stepping forward to look over the door. "So, is the pull or push door...?" he mutters, checking for traps and tricks. Yanno, the usual things you do to a door with menacing carvings on the other side of an invisible maze in ruins filled to the brim with death traps.

As the group approaches, the two stone statues stir, rising from their seated positions and turning to face the beings on the stairs. They open their huge, toothy maws and a loud, rough voice fills the air. "WHO MAY KEEP A SECRET?" it booms, seeming to echo both in the ears and in the mind!

Galve is a little confused, instinctively leveling his pistol at one of the statues. "Who can.... that doesn't even make any sense!" He says, keeping his pistol handy but focusing more on the question.

"Wasn't Vasht the keeper of secrets, whose followers are bidded to keep secret knowledge?" Cary tilts their head, looking over to the statues. "Yeah, pretty sure that was 'Vasht, the Shadow who keeps secrets.'" Exclaimed the Dino, his eyes darting between Galve, Mal and Terry.

Terry looks over at Cary as the dino being offers what sounds like a very correct response. He looks over at the statue, waiting.

"Oh, good. They talk, too," Mal says, leaning against the wall and looking at the talking statues. "And they have a riddle. Lovely, it's like the Puzzler's here. 'Who may keep a secret'?" he repeats, rubbing his chin. "Well, obviously, I can," he says with a smirk, his tone one of humor. "Mm...'three may keep a secret, if two of them are dead', I think the hymn goes?" he murmurs, getting serious and looking to the others for confirmation. He's not the best with Creator hymns, after all. More about stabbing than prayer.

He snaps his fingers. "Oh, yeah. There's all the spirits, aren't there? I suppose they'd recognize spirits more than they would Creators..." he says, tensing as he looks to the statues, seeing if Cary's answer does the trick.

The statues do not seem particularly impressed with any of the responses. "YOU ARE TRESSPASSERS HERE!" comes the roar once more, "THIEVES AND LIARS! NONE SHALL HAVE THE TREASURES OF VASHT! TINDALOS HAS SPOKEN!" Both statues open their mouths and a roar like an avalanche ripples through the room as they attack!

Galve sighs. "I knew there'd be some kind of sentinel...." He says, taking aim with his pistol at the left-most statue. A lead ball might not hurt the stone much, but it'd do damage at least. He let off a shot, a crack and a billow of smoke issuing from the pistol as it fired, hurling a lead ball at high speeds towards the statue on the left as he repositioned, reloading his pistol for now. He probably didn't have much else to damage them with

Cary draws his runed spear. "Seems they don't like guessing and neither does this Tindalos!" Cary slams the back end of the spear on the ground, activating some of his chakra mathemagics. The dino's blood becomes increasingly hotter and a faint wind starts blowing. The sphinx ankylosaurus reveals its nature, his face becoming fully creator-like. His almost deific gaze sets upon one of the statues while feeding his allies with a rush of inspiration. "Very well then. You will crumble back to dust!" Cary yells as they charge the statues.

Terry grimaces as the statues roar at them, and begin to rumble and move. The small feline does the opposite of his dinosaur being companion, and instead backsteps to gain some distance and observe. He raises both hands, gesturing as he focuses on the flow of the divine math. With a 'punch' at the air he directs a sharp and compact blast of air at the creature, seeking to impair its movement or cause it to stagger so the others can strike it at the opportune moment.

"I THOUGHT YOU HAD THIS, CARY!" Mal yells as he rolls to the side. He looks over the scene, before nodding, a plan forming in his mind's eye. "Dont'cha wish we'd brought a dedicant of Vasht with us? We could be all, 'the power of Vasht compels you'!" he says, grinning as he lunges onto a pedestals, then onto the back of one of the stony guardians, scrambling at the rocky hide as he tries to ride the statue. Who knew a treasure dive would turn into a rodeo? "YIPPEE KI YAY, MOTHERFUCKER!" the Coyote calls out, the Thera'Dorian grinning like a mad man; probably the most expressive anyone's ever seen him.

The metal ball from Galve's pistol cracks into the flank of one of the statues, but it hardly seems to notice its new lead ornament. Nor do they seem particularly impressed by Cary's unusual display of power. In fact, it seems only to draw the ire of the damaged statue and it lunges at him with a swipe of its great, stone paw.

Terry's air magic, while having no specifically destructive effect on the stone statue, does slow it enough that Mal is able to throw himself on its back. There is not much in the way of hand holds, but the coyote manages to dig his fingers into the carved contours of its curling mane.

Galve watches the pistol ball do... a whole lot of not much. "Well... I figured as much. Let's see what a few more might do..." He muses, finishing his reloading and taking aim again. Again the pistol thundered, billowing smoke and hurling the metal ball at the statue again, his aim directed at the metal ball he'd already lodged into the stone, hoping to cause additional damage as he repositioned to take another shot.

"Shut it, we still got this! Don't let yourself be overwhelmed!" Cary yelled, trying to block the stone swipe with the large spear. Such aggression coming from Cary was definitely an unusual display of the dino's power. For a blacksmith, they surely knew a thing or two.

Terry steps back after unleashing his spell, to only minor effect. He reaches back to ready and draw his bow, pulling back an arrow and aiming at the creature's... mouth? Neck? Chest? There are no weak points he can exploit on a creature seemingly made of stone, so he levels a shot at the joints of it's legs. Maybe he can get some purchase there. He steadies his breath, then fires!

Mal grins and lets loose with another 'Yippee Ki Yay' as he looks to Terry. "Told ya I knew how to rodeo!" he says with browwaggle as he reaches back and unsheathes his sword with a flourish, before spinning it in his hand and slamming it down into the guardian's head. "I'm so, so sorry," he murmurs to the blade. "I promise so many repairs and upgrades, if you just last..." he whispers, trying to impale the statue with his bastard sword. If he could just lodge the blade in the stone...

Another CRACK and Galve's second ball smashes directly into he previous ball! Cracks spiderweb out from the attacking statue's shoulder. The ancient golem, if that is what you can call it is brought up short by the saurian's spear, though the haft of the weapon cracks and splinters under the strike of the heavy stone paw!

Mal and Terry, on the other hand do not have nearly so much success with their new friend. The huge statue is unfazed by Terry's arrow and the coyote's sword takes significantly more damage than the stone monster does! Then, to and injury to insult, the statue rolls! Trying to crush Mal beneath its weight!

Galve sees that his shots are finally starting to do some damage. Reloading, he takes another shot, praying to the creators that maybe the third time would do some real damage to the thing. A thunderous crack, the smoke billowing out, and the third musket ball flies towards its target with deadly intent. It was the only thing doing visible damage so far, but it felt like throwing pebbles at a wall.

As their spear was pretty much rendered useless, Cary threw it aside and clenched their fists, cracking his digits. "Very well. You ask for a knuckle, be prepared to get a family sized portion of them!" The Dino prepares his steel knuckles and charges again, trying to land an uppercut on the damaged stone monster.

Terry has no other recourse at this point. He nocks and pulls back another arrow, this time trying to aim for the golem's already cracked outer shell.

Mal jumps off, rolling over to Terry. "Well, I mean. If the beast isn't trying to crush me, I can totally rodeo," he says, scrambling to his feet. The Coyote looks at his damaged sword, and wipes at his face, sheathing it as he looks to the others. He's not tearing up. S'not like it was the first blade he'd ever crafted or nothin'...

The Coyote snarls and snaps his gaze to the statue, striding forward as he weaves mathemagics through the air, muttering some curse in Thera'Dorian, before thrusting his hand forward, hoping to crack the statue, even if it's just a smidge.

Under the combined onslaught of pistol, punch and. . . well. . . arrow does not start with a p, but that is what we have, the first statue's ornately carved foreleg and a devistating chunk of its torso shatters! The statue crashes to the ground, lifeless.

That does not stop the second statue though! It seems that it is barely effected by Mal's wind magic, heroic though the effort is. It seems more annoyed than actually impeded and turns its mad, rolling eyes on the coyote, leaping forward to pounce on him!

Galve reloads as fast as he could, before taking aim at one of the beast's eyes. He was out of good shots, time to make a fast one. He aimed at the lunging beast and fired, the ball rocketing away towards its targe, the lead ball on a collision course with the beast's mighty eye as the wasp prayed it would fly straight, the pistol's barrel smoking heavily.

The Dino pulls itself away from the lifeless statue, only to turn to the other one, figuring out that there probably isn't enough time to try and block it from leaping on Mal, Cary spits some creator curses out, igniting the face of the stone statue for a second by using another Chakra fire mathemagic, attempting to taunt it off of him, yelling: "Come fight someone of your own size, I AM YOUR FOE!"

Mal stares down the Guardian, his eyes full of hate, flashing red with anger as he flicks his wrists, gripping the daggers that fall into his hands. "You. Broke. My. Fucking. Sword," he snarls as he dodges to the side. "I am going to fuck your shit up," the Rogue growls, eyeing the statue for weak points before darting in and bashing the points with the pommel of his dagger. Handy thing about these knives, the grips and pommel are heavier than the blade. They're meant to concuss, not stab.

The Coyote begins to weave around, and even under, the guardian as he slams his daggers into its weak spots, becoming a blur as he Annihilates the golem, taking his anger and hate out on the source of all of it.

Terry lets that arrow fly but stops short of nocking a third one. This isn't having enough of an effect to be worthwhile. The small ocelot disengages, moving away from the flailing and rolling statues and letting his better equipped companions deal with this particular problem.

Things get loud and messy and hot for a moment as Galve's shot, Cary's flame, and Mal's general rage compete for the stone monster's attention.

The flame does not seem to have much more effect than the air magic did, aside from the fact that this time Mal is occupying the same space as the construct and is infinitely more flammable. The pistol ball puts an impressive chip in the forehead of the statue, but it seems unfazed. Mal's attacks would no doubt have been fatal on a beast made of flesh. Stone has rather fewer weaknesses. That is not to say that there is no effect. The stone of the monster's facade chips and cracks in the places that Mal makes the hardest strikes.

Another roar pierces the cavern as the statue opens its mouth again and drops itself downward, attempting to crush the irritating coyote!

Galve has to drop the pistol he was holding, for the metal and wood firearm had become too hot for him to hold after this much repeated use. It clattered to the ground, and the wasp frantically checked his being for other weapons to use. Finding none but a pair of tough metal knuckles, he put them on and waited for an opening, preferably when it was distracted with the others...

"No you will NOT!" The dino yelled out again, this time charging towards the other statue, preparing to punch it with all of his strength, trying to get it off balance before it dropped itself on the coyote. The battered steel knuckles were all they had to try and do something before one of his friends could get into serious trouble, and it would have to make do.

Mal rolls backwards, out of the way of the golem's jaws, before hopping onto the pedestal and crouching as he watches Cary go at the statue. "Yippee Ki Yay," he mutters, lunging forward to mount the distracted guardian for a repeat of earlier, gripping the stony mane as he pulls back his dagger, preparing to slam the pommel into the worst of the cracks.

The stone guardian tumbles away when Cary slams into it, the weakend stone cracking and crumbling as both statue and Ankylosaur crash to the ground. The Statue ceases its movement, but Cary certainly did not come out unscathed.

The Ankylosaur did infact not escape unscathed. The dino pulled his fists out of the crumbled statue only to find out that the steel knuckles were utterly shattered and drenched in the dino's blood, as both steel and rock cut into his fists. 'Need a hand there' might not be the best joke right now.

Slowly, Cary tried to pick up a dulling potion from his journeyman's bag, and with extreme difficulty, open it to try and drench his fists with the anesthetic.

Terry paces closer to the group as the fight subsides. The small ocelot had clearly avoided the struggle once it became apparent to him his weapons were not going to be of much use. He approaches Mal. "Are you alright sir?"

Mal tumbles as the statue crumbles. He lands on his feet near Cary, coughing in the cloud of dust and stone as he helps the Journeyman to his feet and out of the dust. "Shit, shit, shit," the Coyote mutters, brushing himself off. He looks at his hand and swears. "Where's my dagger?! Shit!" He turns and rummages through the rubble, pulling his dagger out of the mess with a grin. "Victory; one less dagger lost to the ages!" he says, looking to his companions. "You!" he says, pointing to Galve. Still hasn't learned Galve's name... "Do you have a kit? I think Cary's gonna need it." The Freesword looks around and wipes his face. "Patch Cary up, and let's check out the next room. Creators, this treasure better be worth it; better be a bottomless flask for me to keep. Amar can have whatever he wants, but if there's a magic flask, it's mine," he grumbles, fishing his own, bottomed flask out and jiggling it. Nothin' left to kill the pain with...

Mal looks at Terry as he approaches, giving the Ocelot a lazy grin and waving the concern away. "Pssh, I'm fine. Never better," he says, stretching, as if to prove his point. "Weapons are a little damaged, but nothin' I can't fix...eventually," he says, unsheathing his sword to look over the damage, looking a little sad. After a moment, he shoves it back into its scabbard. "What about you, Terry? Still got all your limbs attached?" he asks, looking over the Ocelot.

"Yeah.. Definitely going to need a kit.. If you don't mind.. I don't think I'll be able to use my hands for quite a while." The dino drops the empty bottle of anesthetic, letting it shatter on the floor. He could barely apply it anyway and most of the liquid was spilled on the stone floor.

Galve nods to Mal's suggestion, pulling some medical supplies from his belt and moving to help patch up the dino's bloodied hands

As the dust settles, there is a grinding noise and the huge vault doors slowly start to creak open. "YOU. . . " the growling sound of the voice from earlier fills the room and the heads of those who hear, "YOU ARE WORTHY! ENTER THE GREAT VAULT OF TINDALOS, HOUND OF VASHT!"

Galve patches up Cary's hands as best he could given his limited supplies. He'd need to see a proper doctor after this to make sure there was no permanent damage. After the doors had opened and the fanfare had finished, the wasp lead the way into the vault. He remained wary but he was otherwise relieved. "...why would they put traps -inside- the vault full of treasure?"

Cary stood a bit still as Galve patched their hands, slowly nodding and thanking the wasp. "Hey, thanks for that. I didn't imagine I'd have to punch a stone golem, let alone two. But hey, all I had was that spear." Cary then threw their shoulders back, shrugging and slowly following Galve into the Vault. "So, what are we expecting in here other than some flasks? Also.. Yotefella. I suppose that when my hands are healed I could help you repair your weapons." The dino nods once again, adding, "But thanks, y'all did incredibly good and we wouldn't be able to get here without the help of everyone."

Terry nods at Mal. "I'm fine, sir. They never got close to me really." He looks over at Cary's hands, frowning. "We should get you to a healer, sir, whenever possible. We should probably report back to our employer as soon as we determine the area is secure."

"Damn straight, I'm fuckin' worthy," Mal mutters, turning to look to the door. The Coyote snatches up one of the torches, muttering at the faact it's gone out. "Anyone got a light?" he asks, holding out the torch. "I'd like to...shed some light on the situation," he says with a shit-eating grin.

Once he gets his torch lit, the Coyote snorts. "Because with everything we've had to deal with, I wouldn't be surprised," he replies to Galve. Mal looks over to Cary and shakes his head, grinning cheerfully. "No need, I'll take care of it," he says. "Crafted every bit of these weapons myself, shouldn't be to hard to repair," he says, waving the offer away before he pats Terry on the back. "Good. I don't know how you'd look with a prosthetic limb. Probably goofy," he says, grinning. "Now, let's go get ourselves some treasure...I'm sure Amar won't mind if we help ourselves to a little 'hazard pay'," he says, heading towards the vault.

Light spills out of the vault as the doors swing open, steady and warm and golden.

Beyond the door is a grand hall and treasures of all shapes and descriptions are carefully shelved and arranged along walls and in wide aisles. About ten paces from the doorway is a raise dais. On the dais lies a creature much like the statues the party just destroyed, only in full, living, breathing color.

The Hound is a sort of combination of dog, lion, and dragon, resembling the lion dogs of Ancient Creator myth. He is a quadrupedal beast with the smooth hindquarters of a large dog and a long, fluffy tail with curling fur. His forelegs are the paws of a massive lion, but it is his huge head that really draws attention. It is like someone heard a lion described, then tried to make one without ever seeing it.

The Spirit has a thick, curling mane, sweeping back majestically from a face that is mostly mouth and eyes. Tindalos has great, round, golden eyes that roll wildly and apparently independently of each other under thick, curling brows. If the Spirit sees, it is probably not in the same way that we understand. A great, wide, thick lipped mouth full of sharp teeth and a huge, lolling, red tongue.

"IT HAS BEEN LONG AND LONG SINCE MORTALS HAVE COME INTO MY TREASURE TROVE," the monstrous spirit says, though its mouth does not really move in sync with its words, "ENTER WORTHY HEROES!"

Galve leads the way, dusty and tired but still managing to look quite dapper in his coat and cloak. His still smoking pistol was stuck into the holster on his chest. He remained silent for now, not wanting to anger the massive beast. He doubted that their little band could ever hope to even scratch such a marvelous beast

"What could Amar possibly want fro- Oh." Cary stood quiet as the spirit spoke, tilting their head to the side a little bit. Taking a deep breath, the Ankylosaur took a couple of steps ahead, adding, "Certainly...Um.. Honourable Tindalos." Their eyes darted over to Mal, Terry and Galve before walking along as the dino wondered if they were sure of what they were doing.

Terry looks up at the spirit, trying to not make obvious how awed he is by his unusual appearance. "I.. I believe we've found what Amar may be interested in." He looks over at his companions, then back at the hound. "Greetings, sir, and well met."

Mal stares at the Spirit, looking at his companions before stepping into the vault, taking a look at the treasures as he enters. "...Very nice collection you have here; how old are these relics?" he asks the Hound, not at all as scared as the rest. Maybe because he's a madman. "How long as it been since heroes entered your Treasure Trove?" he follows up with, looking over the Guardian. "I can only imagine it's been too long..." The Coyote looks back to the treasure, wondering what kind of goodies they'd be able to take with them...if any. Tindalos didn't look like the type to...share, as it were.

Tindalos watches the group warily. Or maybe he is watching them. His eyes roll about wildly, but all the party can sense his attention is on them. "FAR TOO LONG," he says, waving a huge paw toward the wall behind the group, "I HAD BEGUN TO FEAR MY COLLECTION WAS, INDEED, COMPLETE."

Should anyone choose to turn their backs to the huge Spirit, they will find themselves faced with the walls around the vault doors. It would no doubt take a moment for the sight to register. Unlike the rest of the gleaming room, this wall is covered in battered armor and ruined weapons. . . and skeletons. Dozens of skeletal treasure seekers adorn the walls. "I AM SO PLEASED THAT YOU WOULD COME TO JOIN MY COLLECTION!"

The great stone doors start to rapidly swing closed!

Galve sighs. "I knew there'd be a trap! The doors! Get to the doors!" Galve cries, turning on his heels and making a panicked rush for the rapidly closing door....

Cary looks to their fists, pretty much incapable of doing any fighting. "Y'know. I never thought it would come to this, I have never wanted to punch anything in the face so much than I want right now." Cary shakes his head, clenching his teeth, "Gah, damn it. Fine! Get a move on!" The dino yells as it rushes to the doors along with Galve.

Terry does not even hesitate. The moment the doors start closing the small ocelot turns and bolts. He tackle-slides his way out of the door, coming to a roll as he emerges on the other side. The small ocelot pats his clothes away after standing back up, rubbing his head. "So inconsiderate..."

"But...but my flask," he whimpers, looking between the door and the treasure before shaking his head. "Fine!" he yells, making a mad dash for the door, lunging through as soon as he's within range. No way is he going to get mounted to a wall...

The great stone doors slam to, over a roar of NOOOOOOOO! leaving the gasping party in the silent dark of the invisible maze.

Galve picks up his torch and steps over the stony corpses of the fallen golems. "Well... time to go tell Amar Widestripe that we failed...." He says, though he sounds relieved to have made it out alive.

Amar vote mal

"It certainly is, but I guess it's best to leave with our lives than not to leave at all." Cary sounds a little angry, but takes that time to pick up the remains of their spear, as they were still close by the door. Might be worth some salvaging after all.

Terry looks up at Galve and Cary. "Who says we failed? We discovered something unusual, perhaps unusual enough to warrant further exploration of this place at a later date. We may have left empty-handed, but knwledge is valuable too."

Mal rubs his face. "Yeah...Fuck, though, I was looking to decorate my room back at the Inn..." he says with a sigh, leaning against a pedestal. "Fuck," he repeats. "...Might as well head back...drown our sorrows in vodka," he says with a smirk. "You all owe me several drinks. As many drinks as I'd get from a flask that never runs out," the Thera'Dorian says with a nod. He sighs and pats Terry. "You good? Nice roll, Terry. I was worried I'd have to carry you out," he says with a grin, nudging the cat. After all that, the Coyote's still willing to crack jokes. "No, let's get out of here before 'The Hound of Vasht' decides to open the door and come after us..."