They were unsure how long they walked for, but it had been at least several hours when they arrived at a junction. The path and the string of light bulbs with it, forked in two separate directions. Rodrigo looked around, and thanks to a successful Track roll he was able to ascertain that the path to the left was the most travelled.
George felt a strange sense of familiarity, though there was an odd nagging feeling about the right-hand path. It filled him with an unexplainable sense of dread, as though he knew something terrible lay in that direction.
Rodrigo felt that they should head right, as the less travelled road would likely mean there were fewer cultists to cross paths with. George strongly disagreed - there was something ancient and evil that way, though he could not understand how he was so sure. Finally the group agreed to head left, though Rodrigo was not happy with the decision. To ensure that they were not leaving some danger behind that may follow them Hubert set a man trap at the junction (his years of werewolf hunting finally proving useful!).
After another hour or so of walking the investigators arrived at a large mound of rubble caused by a collapse of the ceiling. It blocked their way as far as their torches could see. Hubert decided to climb the mound, but he slipped on the loose scree at the top and twisted his ankle on the way down the other side. Cursing his luck he saw that the line of bulbs continued on the far side.
Rodrigo climbed over next, taking a rope with him to help the others. Unfortunately Hubert and Rodrigo were a little enthusiastic in pulling George over the rubble, and he slipped, banging his knee badly. Sebastian, now alone on his side of the large mound, felt the weight of the desert above him and the press of the surrounding darkness. He quickly climbed over the rubble himself.
Whilst the group had no idea how long they had been travelling for they all felt exhausted and hungry, so they decided to rest for a while. They broke out their limited rations and tended their wounds. Rodrigo took watch whilst the others rested, and after a while he saw a figure walking towards him along the line of light bulbs. It was a Koori man, and he seemed to be inspecting the bulbs and replacing any that were broken from a satchel around his chest. He carried a lightning gun across his back.
|Following the lines of light|
After a few minutes the investigators started their exploration once again, despite the tiredness in their legs. After some time they entered a large open area, which they could sense rather than see. The string of lights lead into this area and encircled a huge pit, before leading on out of the chamber. There was no railing at the edge of the pit, but from the hole came nauseating and mind-numbing smells and terrible moans, cries, and growls. One cry sounded just like that of a human baby.
George felt once again that strange sense of familiarity with the area, though he could tell the pit was not supposed to be there. They decided to sneak round the pit and leave the area, but as they did so Rodrigo stumbled to his knees, cursing. There was a pause in the terrible noise coming from the pit, and then it returned even louder as though whatever lay within knew the investigators were there.
Rodrigo could not resist, his curiosity getting the better of him. He crawled to the edge of the pit and peered over, but he could make out nothing but ripples and vague movements can be seen at the bottom. Hubert passed him a flare, and Rodrigo dropped it into the pit, it's red light reflecting off the damp walls. It fell to the bottom, and revealed aberrant, appendaged, blasphemous, bulbous, depraved, festering, hideous, and Sanity-shaking forms sprawling, hopping, and oozing across the floor, far below. Some of the howling creatures looked like mis-shapen frogs, or bats. Luckily for Rodrigo he passed his Sanity Check.
The group discussed whether to drop explosives into the pit, but eventually thought better of it. They left the hideous chamber behind, consigning the monstrous inhabitants of the pit back to the darkness. Not far from the pit the line of bulbs split once again, and the investigators decided to take the left hand path once again.
Slowly they travelled through the dark, dusty silence. They spoke little, the sound of their voices seeming to make the silence even more oppressive. After an unknown amount of time they arrived at the edge of a large plaza that seemingly glowed with its own light. Around the edge of the plaza lay huge buildings of strange and disturbing construction, and the floor of the plaza itself was slightly curved forming a large, shallow dome.
George pulled out some binoculars and looked across the large open space. He spotted another tunnel on the far side, lit by yet more bulbs. As the investigators entered the plaza they noticed that the floor seemed to throb slightly, and what appeared to be veins of ore actually seemed to pulse as though the entire construction was some huge and monstrous beast.
Sebastian and Hubert failed their Sanity Checks. Luckily for Sebastian he failed his idea roll, and could not understand the full implications of what they were witnessing. Hubert was not so lucky. He lost 19 SAN, and fell victim to a strange malaise. From now on he would display suicidal tendencies (not that anyone would notice!).
They reluctantly left the soft, unearthly glow of the plaza behind and headed back into the darkness. Everything appeared grey under the harsh light of the string of bulbs and the the patina of dust that lay on every surface. The sound of the generator got louder as they progressed. Up ahead Hubert and Rodrigo spotted a glimmer of light moving towards them - another line-walker, who was checking for broken bulbs.
The group quickly left the pools of light and crouched down in the darkness. This time however they decided to try and ambush the cultist. As he passed their hiding spot Hubert charged and fired his sub machine gun at the poor soul, the bullets tearing the line-walker apart where he stood. The sound of gunfire seemed even louder than normal in the oppressive silence of the city. Hubert didn't care. George walked over and picked up the lightning gun that the cultist had been carrying.
After another hour of walking the investigators passed a generator being used to power the lines of light bulbs. George inspected the lightning gun as they explored, feeling that he had held one before, despite never having done so. Time passed slowly as they trudged on, starting to stumble from exhaustion, but up ahead another great plaza stretched before them.
An enormous octagonal hall with enormous, blank walls and ceilings, the floor of the plaza glowed with a sickly red light. The floor of this hall was flat, unlike the previous one, and Hubert began to stride across it. Half a mile away, on the right-hand side of the plaza was another tunnel, marked by light bulbs.
Tired and lost, the group decided they needed a proper rest. They camped up against the wall of the plaza close to the exit tunnel, and settled down on the cold, bare floor, trying to sleep. Sebastian took first watch, but he was so exhausted that his eyes began to droop shortly after sitting down.
He was alerted from his reverie by the sound of revolver being fired, but luckily (thanks to the use of a Pulp Point) the bullet meant for his head narrowly missed. A group of cultists and their slaves had come across the investigators and had launched a surprise attack.
|Attack of the Zombified Miners!|
He placed a lit fuse on the floor and George picked up the stick of explosive and threw it at the ranks of zombified miner slaves. It exploded with devastating force, killing many of their number. Two miners made it through the hail of bullets and explosive and launched themselves at Hubert, but they were quickly dispatched.
The investigators had survived, but were cold, lost, driven to the edge of sanity, and exhausted, with no sign of rest in sight...
A video of the session can be seen below.