The Descent - Part 10

JP with Alexis, gonyaul, Tarmen, voah, and winteroak:

You have been going for several hours. The heat was getting to you and now you found a nice cool cave and decide to camp.

Voah’s headache seemed to abate with the coolness of the cavern. However, she felt Gonyaul’s words to be dripping with sarcasm. What game was he playing?

“Why do you say it like that?”

With the decision made to rest in this place, Alexis took a moment to sketch it down. It couldn’t do it justice, of course. For one her drawing was more functional than artful. And then there was the fact that part of the eerie beauty of this place lay in motion, not stillness, in the fall and cease of the water.

And still, while drawing under the impression of this amazing place, the nagging questions in the back of her head would not cease. Why? What was the purpose of this place? How did this magnificent hall fit together with nonsensical tunnels, demonic masks and idols, unnatural cut shafts and spiked pits full of bones?

All questions yet unanswered, the mercenary sighed and added a sketch of the luminous flowers lending their uncanny glow to the scenery.

Gonyaul was still smiling and taking in the details of the room as he replied to Voah,

“Because this something I will never forget. And when think back to it, I will always find you there too.” His tone was one of joy as was his expression. He was not picking up that Voah was slipping into the more aggressive attitude from earlier in the dungeon.

Entering the chamber, Tarmen had gotten his notebook out to continue marking their trail. His eyes darted to all of the shadows, expecting some sort of presence. No movement, but whispers were heard, just out of the torch light.
He went to mention this to Voah, but stopped as he saw her talking to Barrel Boy.
He knew it. They were all working together and he was just bait for whatever lay in the void.
His eyes narrowed on the trinkets Barrel Boy had stashed away and a plan started forming.

Gonyaul turned to Alexis requesting her expertise.

“Where you think I should start setting up camp?” He knew where he would to get the best views, but he figured she would make the decision from a strategic perspective for keeping them safe and defensible.

Alexis looked up to Gonyaul and surveyed the room with that question in mind. She wanted to stay close to the pathway they had entered here, because they had no idea where all the other tunnels led. If they had to retreat, they would at least have some idea of the layout. Other than that, probably close to a wall, and off the flowers, if possible. She, at least, didn’t know what they were, but she knew not all plant life was good for one‘s health. She pitched a spot in the south eastern slope of the room, where they at least could watch all of the numerous exits of the cavern.

Gonyaul nodded to her suggestion. He took off towards the spot and began the process of setting up a campsite. His casualness compared to the other, by contrast, resembled a toddler wondering off confidently.

He let all the things he was carrying descend quietly to the floor. He then began setting up the area. Unrolling the blankets to make palettes to lie on. He consolidated the food and water in an area easy to access for each person. Then he placed the miscellaneous bags and climbing gear together. The new items were placed next to the climbing gear. It was in the form of a semi-circle with the curve facing a wall and the open part facing the room to give a best view of the place.

Why was he acting like this? Voah turned inward, deciding to just let things be. This place was clearly not what it seemed and perhaps it was having some effect on them. Maybe it WAS cursed.

The Arbiter stayed quiet for a while as she took out her things for lighting her censer and when it was ready she prayed aloud to Kupen’s light to reach this void and Panolis to lift any curse or disease that might be afflicting them or this place.

She really wanted to talk to them but something wasn’t right and she would rather not come off as crazy, which is exactly how she was starting to feel.

Tarmen aided in building a quick camp, though wasn’t at all interested in staying here. They were sitting ducks now and it infuriated him. Plus they were going to need supplies and it seemed that any water was avoiding them.
Maybe part of the deal made by the others, keeping their own supply while he dehydrates. The whispers were louder now and he noticed an airy chuckle that had started from the imp.
This betrayed a bit of what was happening he realized. While he wouldn’t take his eye off of the others, there was something here, probably influencing them all.
Remembering the threat Voah had made towards the imp, he decided to try and talk to Alexis alone to test this theory.

Gonyaul had taken a seat and was rubbing his neck and shoulders to get rid of the feeling the straps left behind. He took just a little bit of water and looked off to the center of the room and the glowing flowers.

He really wanted to go explore, but he felt the others would shoot down the request. He simply rested and observed the others, particularly paying attention to the ceremony that Voah was performing with interest.

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