Ghost Ship

The Dwarfers gingerly began to walk down the stairs. The little spots of light that had led Jade and Cass back to the Dwarfers persisted, and it almost felt like they were following them.

'So, you got any information you want to share with us, Cass?' asked Jay as he led them further down the stairs. 'Like, I dunno, why all the lights went off?'

'The database had a file on a thing called a Quitzail,' replied Cass, tapping at her suits control pad, 'I'll send a portion of the file to you all now.'

'Cass thinks it is a demon,' joked Jade.

'Do I smeg. A GELF, or alien I suppose, but not a demon.'

'A Quiz-Tail?' said Jay slowly.

'A Quitzail,' Cass corrected.

'That's what I said!'

'A haunter of dreams?' said Thomas sarcastically, 'Spooky.'

'It does sound a bit silly,' said Artie.

'Says the brain in a floating jar,' Cass snapped defensively, 'It said we were 'trapped'.

'Gentlemen,' said O'Malley from the back of the procession, 'Have you guys looked at the walls?'

'I'm not really interested in getting tips for decorating White Giant,' said Jay, now beginning to sound a bit impatient, 'Derelict-chic just isn't for me, you know.'

'Oh, that's -,' said Thomas turning his light to the wall, 'That's something else.'

'To be fair, Jay,' Jamie whispered, almost in shock, 'That would look pretty good on White Giant.'

Along the walls that flanked them on both sides of the staircase were words carved into the metal. Some words were neat and precise but others were scrawled in a messy, almost violent way.

'It just seems to be nonsense,' said Cass, reading the translation on her HUD, 'Something about huge, mystical gardens.'

'This is about falling through their bed,' said Artemis reading a different section.

'This is about someone's heart falling out,' said Thomas.

'This one is about a sapphire miner,' said Jay, 'Oh, that's a bit strange.'

'I don't want to sound presumptuous,' said Pickman nervously, 'But I think these are people's dreams.'

'And what makes you think that?' asked Cass.

Pickman pointed his torch to the ceiling of the stairs, 'The big words that say DREAMS: 4432 - 4433.'

'Okay, fair enough,' Cass conceded.

'And here's mention of your Quitzail,' said Thomas, reading one of the passages that had been scratched into the wall. There was something about the way it was written, the jagged edges of the letters and the upturned metal that was still sharp to the touch, that instilled a sense of fear in Thomas as he read the words. 'Spoiler alert, it doesn't end well.'

'What does it say?'

'It comes for me. I try to run but it says I cannot. The haunter of dreams. It says I am trapped. Trapped with him. The haunter of dreams. Black as sin, a writhing mass. No need for eyes. The haunter of dreams. He says my final day is now tomorrow. I shall wake one last time. The haunter of dreams. I am trapped. I am trapped with the Quiztail.'

'Would it have hurt them to write in proper English?' asked Artemis, unphased by the words.

Around them, the little motes of light began to clump together again. The formed into the towering body of a dead crewmember. It was hard to tell through the glare of the light but they looked scared. Terrified, even.

'Do you know anything about this Quiztail?' Jay asked the 'ghost'.

The crewman let out a piercing scream and burst apart into dozens of little light particles.

'Okay then,' said Jay, 'I'll not ask that in the future.'

'Come on,' said Thomas, 'I can see the stairs levelling out soon.'

Just as the Dwarfers began to move, their torches began to flicker.

'Please no,' pleaded Cass.

Despite Cass's begging, she could not stop the lights from fading completely. They were now in total darkness.

'Jade?!' said Cass, reaching out to grab Jade's hand. Jade was breathing heavily, the darkness looming down around them all.

'Everyone, take someone's hand,' said Thomas, 'We don't need to get split up now. Shout if you haven't got a hand to hold.'

There was nothing but silence.



Then there was a bright flash of light and Thomas found himself alone in an empty room.

'Welcome to your nightmare,' said a voice.

<<OOC - I was thinking we will all be split up for a post and everyone experiences a nightmare?>>

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