XVII: Duties, Darkness, and Despair

Dave’s eyes pierced through the dark gloom with the experience only seasoned adventurers such as himself could possibly have obtained. This was due to his years of travel and seeking out thrills and dangers in the form of adventuring in dark temples and dusty old hovels. He continued on cautiously, glancing around here and there for any possible booby traps and their subtle triggers.

Shiifft! He stopped, glancing around for the source of the noise.

He had just started to wonder if it was nothing when his foot sank down an inch, barely perceptible to a novice or non-seasoned thrill seeker, but well noticed by a veteran such as himself.

The floor!” He shouted as the tile below him further depressed itself. ‘A trigger for some trap!’ He realized as he took over running at a mad gait.

All around him, chunks of masonry fell, knocking holes through the decrepit flooring- so that he could see the giant, churning spikes beneath. “Dear God.” He muttered as he continued dodging and weaving his way through the rain of deadly hail. Getting hit even once by one of these chunks of rock would mean instant death for himself and the baby clinging on his back.

Don’t look, just keep running!” He grunted as he urged himself on and ran for his life through the approaching tapestry of death and destruction.

*****

Shadows. That was all he could remember any time he woke back up from his sleeping periods that seemed more like oblivion- devoid of any creation or dreams. He had dreamed of nothing since his incarceration and awakening in the metal cube, and continued to do so. All there was was shadow and shadows, no dreams or thoughts.

Cameron had no connections to the outside world, and none to anything living- or dead surrounding him. For all he knew, the metal cube that he had come to call prison as well as home, could just be a block floating in deep space- or a realm that nobody would ever come searching for. He was trapped here one way or another, and there was absolutely nothing that he could do to change that.

This was one of the things that frustrated him the most about his predicament- the sheer unbearable helplessness that almost made him want to give up home.

Almost. But he didn’t, because he knew- one day, a friend or fellow adventurer would find him, as it was their creed.

To find things that were lost.

I just hope I never get hungry.’ He thought forlornly as he continued to meditate on past events and what- if anything, the future held for him…

*****

Dave finally stopped to take a very long breather, now that he was safe- for the time being.

The initial trap that he had unwillingly sprung had been very well concealed, and had also been one of the hardest booby traps that he had ever encountered in his whole career. However, his surefootedness, quick wits, and intellect had saved the day once more, and he had them to thank for his (as well as the muka’s) survival.

Whew. He blew out a breath of the citadel’s stale, musty air. Carefully walking about now, he navigated his way through carefully placed firebirds, dodged quickly rotating spike traps, and heeded the signs of caution in each chamber for the next thirty minutes or so. There were a few rare looking idols and treasures scattered about here and there at random, but he left them be seeing as they were most likely devilish traps and draws to lure him to his doom.

Having found a bomb midway through the endless puzzles, and tossed it carefully into his knapsack, he vowed to save it until he absolutely needed it to pass a certain segment or as a last line of defense against whatever enemies may have been lurking about.

Just like the old days…’ He thought as he continued on deeper into the murky, dank catacombs, dodging other traps and solving the occasional riddle or mind game to continue on. ‘I wonder why this all has an air of familiarity about it?’ He pondered as he continued on. Suddenly, realization dawned on him.

He stopped, coming to an abrupt halt as he said out loud, “This looks like something Munchy365 would make!” Only then did he realized his extreme misfortune and the disadvantage at which he currently sat.

Revised Edition 7/2/13

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