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Corette drifted in a slow, soft haze, her mind totally at ease. She slept, and it was a full, deep sleep of the sort she rarely ever got. Violet light chased itself through her subconscious, pulsing and flowing in a swift river around her. 

Suddenly, everything slid sideways as her dreamworld was upended. The bottom dropped out of her stomach, and Corette’s eyes flew open just in time for her to see the purple light of the cavern swing past her as she crashed onto the floor.

A cloud of glowing particles bloomed around her as she fell right into a large cluster of fat, purple mushrooms. They broke her fall, but the spores were so thick now that she coughed, struggling to breathe. Instinctively, she tapped her Cadmium, just to catch some respite from the glowing dust.

Instantly, the world sharpened. She still felt drowsy, but already some of her earlier exhaustion was wiped away. Corette blinked, taking in Rig’s sleeping form above her, the glowing spores, the lines of pulsing fungus, the body of the woman lying limply next to her, almost totally hidden in mushrooms...

Wait, what?

Corette peered closer, and sure enough, the sleeping form of a woman lay down there, pale and still. She definitely was not in the scouting group. Corette got to her feet, eyeing the cavern with new suspicion. Several more people were clustered at the cavern entrance, peeking in.

”There’s a woman lying here - not from our group,” she called over, her voice slightly odd as she tapped and talked at once. “Good call not coming in. I’ll wake Rig and Allri, but this one might be dangerous. Better to wake her once we can watch her properly.”

She walked over to Rig and shook him a bit. “Wake up.” Nothing. Typical. Corette shook him harder this time, gripping the lapels of his coat.

”Rig, wake up.” Still nothing. He murmured something in his sleep, lips quirking in a smile. He looked so peaceful, almost kindly, without his typical smirk. Corette fixed that image in her mind for one moment, then, grinning, she shoved him over sideways so he toppled into another cluster of mushrooms.

@TrailRunnin @Sorana

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Karin nodded, looking at the lightshow, and the people sleeping inside of it. She took a deap breath in case she needed to talk and then walked in. She wondered if the spores would affect her as well if she did breath in. She was tempted to try it, but decided to wait until they got the others out. Besides, she already had the chance to rest inside the worm. She wondered why the sleep effect was there though. Was it just self-defense, or was it to create prey, perhaps for a second species? She shivered for a bit, the idea of flesh-eating plants always made her nervous.

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On mobile right now so apologies for formatting

Rig sat around a war table in elendel, debating with the lord Ruler, aloomancer Jak, and his long-dead grandmother. He wasn't sure what they were arguing about, but he was confident he was winning. His grandmother turned to him, her gaze as warm as the terris peaks. 

"Wake up," she told him. Well, that was something he had no intention to do. He rather liked sleep. 

"Grandmother, age has apparently addled your brains. Why ever would I want t-"

"Rig, wake up," she said more forcefully.

"Grandmother! I am not-"

He was cut off again as his world tipped sideways and he landed with a crash. He opened bleary eyes, tearing through the fog of sleep as adrenaline rushed through his veins. He heard voices-was that...Corette? 

The urge to sleep hit him again, stronger than ever. He fought through it and stood slowly, noticing a throbbing centered on his skull. The pain helped cut through his tiredness, and he saw the rest of the group gathered near the edge of the cave. 

"What's wrong, Cor," he asked groggily. "I was sleeping so well!"

@ZincAboutIt

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13 hours ago, Invocation said:

Malu walked over to Nekorb, noting that he seemed a little lost. "So do you have any idea why we're actually down here?"

@xinoehp512

"Not really," said Nekorb. "There was something about a subway, I think?"

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Just now, xinoehp512 said:

"Not really," said Nekorb. "There was something about a subway, I think?"

"Huh. Think it'll actually happen?"

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Just now, Invocation said:

"Huh. Think it'll actually happen?"

Nekorb shrugged. "I guess it depends on what we find down here, right?"

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Just now, xinoehp512 said:

Nekorb shrugged. "I guess it depends on what we find down here, right?"

"Fair enough. Want to go sneak up on the other group? Could find something cool." Malu had no idea why he suggested that. He had no interest in being eaten by something. Too late to take it back, though.

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10 minutes ago, Invocation said:

"Fair enough. Want to go sneak up on the other group? Could find something cool." Malu had no idea why he suggested that. He had no interest in being eaten by something. Too late to take it back, though.

Nekorb hesitated, uncertain of how to reply. He'd avoided going ahead before because of the danger, but... the scouting team would discover any dangers, right?

And he had to admit, the caves were interesting. Nothing he'd ever seen before had compared to what he had seen so far. And this was only the first cavern. What wonders could be lurking even further below?

"Sure," he said, keeping his voice steady. "Why not?"

Edited by xinoehp512
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Corette watched Rig sway on the spot, eyes still half-lidded as he spoke. She still felt a measure of exhaustion herself, even though she was tapping now, and she gave another hard look at the luminous spores floating through the air.

Aerosol dispersal, and strong stuff, too, she thought, fighting the urge to giggle at Rig's drowsy complaints. She did raise an eyebrow at the nickname. No one had ever given her a nickname before, not even at the orphanage as a girl. Nicknames were for people you trusted, people you liked. Hearing it drop from Rig's lips, easy as breathing, still warm and softened with sleep, was...

Fine. It was fine. She could be Cor - why not? She rather liked it, actually. Corette rolled the odd prickling from her neck and tucked some hair back behind her ears, fingers leaving a glowing violet streak on a few strands near her face.  

"Don't you look fetching," she said to Rig, looking him up and down. He was well and truly covered in violet specks now, though nothing glowed quite as brightly as whatever he'd raked through his hair. "I think purple is your color."

She found her pack where she'd dropped it, then fished around inside for her oxygen tank and breathing tube. Corette strode back towards Rig, who looked as though he might fall over again any second, and grabbed the front of his coat, towing him over to a nearby stalagmite. He followed obediently. The stone pillar had a rather flattened top, making it short and stubby - only about a foot high. Perfect.

Corette hopped up onto the tiny plateau, the sudden elevation bringing her up to about Rig's eye level. With practiced hands, she looped the breathing tube around his head before shoving the two little rubber nasal tubes into his nostrils. He protested weakly, and she smacked away one hand.

"Breathe through your nose," she commanded, staring him full in the eye now. Rusts, this is satisfying. "Feels better, yes? Now, pull yourself together and help me wake the Mistborn. Maybe give her a little Steelpush, that should be fun."

@TrailRunnin

Edited by ZincAboutIt
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"I don't know." Althea replied to Sarah. "I'm no expert for strange mushrooms. You have to give it a try. Should you feel sleepy, just step back."

She saw Corette get up, fetch a device to help Rig breathe. These two were settled. Corette moved without breathing herself and Althea made a mental note to ask about her abilities later. Inhaling she followed Karin into the cavern, felt the stormlight like a comfortable warmth inside of her stomach. Carefully she set one step in front of the other, made sure she didn't catch her foot on a stone or hurt her ankle in a hidden hole. She gestured towards Sarah, Karin and then the Mistborn, then turned towards the hidden figure Corette had discovered. Bending down she pulled gloves over her hands and then started to remove the mushrooms. A human, a woman.

Gently she brushed the mushrooms away from her, made sure no part of her body was still trapped beneath some kind of plant or mushroom and then easily picked her up. Her weight posed no problem to her strengthened body and she carried her over to the others.

Exhaling she resumed breathing to be able to talk and carefully placed her body on the ground.

"We should be careful. We don't know if she poses a threat or not." She repeated Corette's words to make sure everybody knew about the possibility that the woman might be dangerous.

Then she knelt down next to her and shook her, to wake her up.

@Invocation

@kenod

@Rushu42

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Rig tried to let himself get carried away by the slow pulsing of the caves, to go back to sleep, to rest. Corette, however, was having none of it. She dragged him about the room, never letting him get comfortable, ignoring his muttered complaints. Eventually, she hopped up onto a stubby little stump of a stalagmite. Awwe, I bet she feels tall up there, he thought with a lazy grin. She shoved something towards his face, and swatted his arm away when he tried to stop him. So urgent, Cor. She jammed something up his nose, and then leaned back, satisfied. 

Clarity flooded his mind as oxygen raced down his throat, thrusting him into reality. 

"Better. I guess not such a safe spot after all." 

Rig picked up the tank connecting the tubes to his nose and walked over to Allri, who was watched over by the rest of the party. He grabbed the smaller mistborn by the shoulders and stood her sleeping form up before taking out a handful of coins and placing them on her back. He pushed lightly on them with steel while holder her upright, shoving them towards the exit. Eventually, they reached the tunnels outside of the glowing cavern. That done, he turned to the rest of the party. Althea had brought a new woman out of the cave: one of the original expedition, maybe? He kneeled down, peering intensely at the pale face laying on the ground.  

"Do we know who she is?" he asked, glancing around at the faces of the scouts. 

@ZincAboutIt @Sorana @Rushu42 @Lord Furret @I ♥️ Rashek

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Whoops sorry for the delay classes happened and I forgot this was a thing I needed to do!

2 hours ago, xinoehp512 said:

Nekorb hesitated, uncertain of how to reply. He'd avoided going ahead before because of the danger, but... the scouting team would discover any dangers, right?

And he had to admit, the caves were interesting. Nothing he'd ever seen before had compared to what he had seen so far. And this was only the first cavern. What wonders could be lurking even further below?

"Sure," he said, keeping his voice steady. "Why not?"

"Nice. Let's get going," Malu said, starting off. I really hope this guy has some way to fight that's better than what little I can do, or we might be in trouble at some point.
@xinoehp512

48 minutes ago, Sorana said:

Then she knelt down next to her and shook her, to wake her up.

Eos felt herself being shaken. Maybe the train had started moving again...but then why were there hands touching her? Something was wrong. She fought her way out of the soupy clutches of her slumber and jumped up from where she was laying, auroral lights already drifting about her hands in preparation to fry whoever had ahold of her. "Who are you people? Where's Benny? Did you kidnap me?"

@TrailRunnin @Sorana @ZincAboutIt @everyone else in this small area

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1 minute ago, Invocation said:

"Nice. Let's get going," Malu said, starting off. I really hope this guy has some way to fight that's better than what little I can do, or we might be in trouble at some point.

Nekorb blinked, surprised at the abrubtness. "Okay, then." He stood up and followed Malu, stepping carefully on the slick cave floor. "We do know where we're going, right?"

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You feel like getting lost? :P 

 

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3 minutes ago, xinoehp512 said:

Nekorb blinked, surprised at the abrubtness. "Okay, then." He stood up and followed Malu, stepping carefully on the slick cave floor. "We do know where we're going, right?"

"There only looks to be one direction we could go forward in, so I'm pretty sure we're on the right track."

3 minutes ago, xinoehp512 said:
Quote

You feel like getting lost? :P 

 

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Might be a little difficult, but sure!

 

Edited by Invocation
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5 minutes ago, Invocation said:

"There only looks to be one direction we could go forward in, so I'm pretty sure we're on the right track.

 

Nekorb nodded and continued to follow.

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Corette followed Rig out of the glowing cave, watching as he gently pushed Allri out into the main tunnel. Nearly all of her drowsiness had worn off by now, and she held her dagger in a firm but easy hand as Althea shook the strange woman awake. 

Corette let go of her Cadmium, taking a long breath in, then out. Rig still had her oxygen tank; she’d need it back soon, but they might have bigger problems. She burned Bronze, just in time for the woman to manifest two handfuls of iridescent light. A wave of investiture washed out from the woman, clear and high and ringing like a struck singing bowl.

Corette stepped back, flicking her eyes to the sides and twirling the blade in her hands to an overhand grip, hiding it behind the flat of her forearm. 

“Well whoever she is, she’s Invested - if that wasn’t obvious,” she hissed. “Epic, I’d guess, from her bronze signature.”

@TrailRunnin @Sorana @Invocation

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Rig stood abruptly as light erupted from the woman's hands. His hand dipped to his waist reflexively, grabbing for his cane. Corette had called her an Epic; that was the same as Karin, wasn't it? He changed his hand's course, instead swooping to grab the coins he had used to move Allri. 

"We certainly didn't kidnap you," he started, curious as to why she might think that. "And seeing as there's more of us than you, maybe you ought to introduce yourself first?" Rig kept his tone nice and friendly, even going so far as to give the pale woman a smile, but began burning steel. He had been wrong about his safety in these caves twice, now; it wouldn't happen again. As he waited for a response he yanked the tubes from his nostrils and proffered the device to Corette; they were away from the spores for now, at least.

@Invocation @ZincAboutIt @Sorana 

Edited by TrailRunnin
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46 minutes ago, Invocation said:

Eos felt herself being shaken. Maybe the train had started moving again...but then why were there hands touching her? Something was wrong. She fought her way out of the soupy clutches of her slumber and jumped up from where she was laying, auroral lights already drifting about her hands in preparation to fry whoever had ahold of her. "Who are you people? Where's Benny? Did you kidnap me?"

Slowly Althea got to her feet. "I just saved your life." She stated calmly and looked at the woman with her read eyes. "You are in a cave, down below Alleycity."

A hand made a small gesture towards the light. "I can only advice you to stop threatenings us, and tell us why you are here, where you come from." An epic. Meant she had to find out about her weakness as well, sonner or later at least. It also made it difficult to really judge her strength. Epic were interesting. There were so many layers to them, powers beneath powers. The weaknesses only added to the whole general fascination. She had spend hours upon hours studying them, but every tie she met one, was interesting. The personal aspect that influenced their weakness made it close to impossible to anticipate them without studying the person behind the Epic first. She looked at the stranger, lying beneath so many others she hadn't seen coming and added.

"We don't mean harm, otherwise you would still be back there, dying admist the mushrooms."

But if she was an Epic, then there was a chance that her powers would corrupt her. Just as they had corrupted Solace. The memory hurt, but she hid it for now, pushed the pain and the fear back into a corner of her mind that she could ignore. Focus. She had to focus on the task at hand.

@Invocation

@ZincAboutIt

@TrailRunnin

Edited by Sorana
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"Wait, mushrooms? A cave? Last thing I remember, I was on a train going East. Who are any of you, and where's my pet? Tell me that and I'll tell you as much as I can." Eos was well and truly confused now. She had been trying to meet up with an old fling in Coven territory, but now she was here? And what did they mean they saved her life? Was she being eaten by mushrooms?

@Sorana @ZincAboutIt @TrailRunnin

41 minutes ago, xinoehp512 said:

Nekorb nodded and continued to follow.

Malu got comfortable after a few dozen steps of nothing but slickness, so when he went to step and his foot found nothing but air, he had no time to do anything except grab Nekorb by the shirt as he toppled, dragging them both bodily down into a pitch-dark offshoot at the bottom of a cavern well. "Rust. This is what I get for not watching where I walk. Sorry to drag you here too, Nekorb. You okay?"

@xinoehp512

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Corette could feel Rig burning Steel beside her, a comforting and steady beat next to the whipsawing ring of the Epic’s power. Everyone spoke calmly, but they were all on edge. Too many deadly surprises for anyone to relax now. Corette smiled, cool and soft, but she was already running through several possible scenarios. Only a few were good.

Rig pushed the tank into her hands, and she quickly slid it into her pack one-handed, keeping a firm grip on her long knife. She listened to the Epic speak, cocking her head with interest. 

“Seems like you’re not the only one who entered the Alleyverse down here, Rig,” she said quietly. Corette spared a momentary thought for all the people who had stumbled through down here and died, alone and forgotten. Her smile grew a bit colder.

”We’re an excavation team,” Corette said, louder now. “Sent down to explore these caverns, map the place, see what we can find. As far as your...pet.” She shrugged. “Didn’t see anything, though I’d hazard a guess it’s back in there.”

Or lost to the formless Void that shifts between realities, she thought, though kept that to herself.

@Invocation @Sorana @TrailRunnin

Edited by ZincAboutIt
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EDIT: Ack, ninja'd by Invo.:P

Rig cocked his head to the side, considering what Corette had said. It made sense--the clothing the woman wore wasn't what a person would usually wear to venture into the caves, and she seemed disoriented in much the same way as he had been upon first entering the caves. He lowered his hand and slipped all but one of the coins back into his pocket, satisfied by the soft clink they made against one another as they settled. He met Corette's eyes, asking a silent question. What now? They hadn't planned on running into anyone but the original expedition down here; should they turn back and present Stancel with the new girl, or press on with a new recruit?

"Alright, Epic." Rig started. "What do we call you? I'm Rigex." He kept his tone cool and professional; he wasn't sure exactly what epics were or what they could do, but judging by Althea and Corette's reactions they weren't to be easily trusted. Of course, no one really was. He looked over at Althea more closely; it seemed she had taken on something of a leadership role among the rest of the scouts. He would have to keep an eye on her.

@ZincAboutIt @Invocation

Edited by TrailRunnin
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"Nononono, he's here somewhere. I can feel him. Benny! C'mere buddy!" She whistled, high-high-low, and did her best to get him to come through their bond. With a little pitterpatter of tiny feet, Benny the binturong (:P) ran up from the same direction they'd come, black fur streaked with luminescent residue, and scrambled up onto Eos's shoulders like an overly-large, mostly-tail, fur scarf. She finally let the glow around her hands die.

"I suppose I owe you all an introduction, then. My name is Eos."

@ZincAboutIt @TrailRunnin @Sorana

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Sarah had removed a towel from her pack and tied it around her face. This is why I never leave home without a towel, she thought, satisfied with the effectiveness of her mask. Stepping through the haze of mushrooms, she noticed a woman lying face down, nestled among the fungi. Althea made a beeline for her and began to shake her awake. Their Scout Leaders, who had managed to awaken themselves, gathered around, and the woman began to posture threateningly. Sarah glanced around the cavern for any other signs of life as Althea began to explain the situation to the newcomer. It appears that finding random strangers in these caves will be a common-place occurrence, she thought, amused. As the conversation progressed, Sarah found herself with little to contribute. Instead, she began to survey the cavern, poking her stick through the mushrooms and rounding the perimeter. Every motion released a cloud of spores, sending rushes of dizziness to her head, and she wondered what the purpose of the gasses were. Was is to keep away predators? If so, what predators? She had never had much patience for studying, but is seemed to her that a massive worm with Soothing abilities would have little interest in mushrooms. That meant that there had to be something else down here. 

She finished her round of the cave, noting the exits on a her map; the tablet had included an application that was apparently meant to assist in mapping, but Sarah was far more comfortable with a bit of paper. The cavern was shaped like a long tunnel, sloping gently downwards. She had peered into the darkness at the point where the luminescent mushroom field came to an end, put her headlight had barely been able to penetrate. As far as she could tell, it ended in a some sort of a drop, but she couldn't discern the depth. 

"There's some sort of a drop ahead," she called back at the group. "We'll need some rope." Even as she said this, she was fishing a length out from her pack and tying it around her waist.

Quote

It won't let me tag anyone at the moment, but this post is relevant to anyone within earshot. 

Edit: It fixed itself. I still have no idea how.

@ZincAboutIt @Sorana @TrailRunnin @AonEne @Invocation @I think I am here.

Edited by Rushu42
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Corette stepped back a bit at the flurry of glowing fur that scampered through the tunnel and up onto the Epic’s shoulder. Eos, she’d called herself - almost certainly an epithet. Epics never bothered to keep their old names after coming into power. 

She met Rig’s eyes and saw the question there, one she herself had been wondering: what to do with the new girl? Well, if it had been up to her, Corette likely would have left Eos to her final slumber. No point in picking up strays. Especially ones who had no idea what they were doing. Rig was an exception - Corette has never seen anyone adapt so quickly. Most newcomers went through a minor breakdown, especially if they fell through on accident. 

Corette shrugged, then flicked her eyes down towards the knife she still hid in her hand, then up to the coin between Rig’s fingers, then finally back to his eyes. She raised a meaningful brow. Killing Eos would be a bit of a challenge but nothing they couldn’t handle, especially with Althea along. Corette didn’t miss Rig’s sidelong glance at the Elsecaller, gaze keen and a bit suspicious.

Jealous? Maybe. Rig seemed the type to enjoy control, and Althea had taken up something of a guiding role for the others. For her part, Corette didn’t much care who lead or who followed. When she walked, she walked under her own command and rust what others thought.

Just then, Sarah’s voice echoed out from behind them, back in the cavern. A drop ahead? Well, that sounded interesting - more interesting than this anyway. 

Corette gave Eos one more look, then said, “I’m Corette. We’re scouting ahead; the main body of the expedition should be coming up soon. You can stay with us, or you can go back down this tunnel til you reach a large cavern. Should be about an hour’s walk, maybe more. Make your choice.” 

She made eye contact with Rig again and cocked her head back to the mushroom cavern. “Come on Rig,” she said, reaching into her bag and pulling out a spare kerchief. She handed it to him. “Let’s go see about this drop. Who needs rope, when you’ve got a Coinshot?”

@Invocation @TrailRunnin

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Eos barely had to think about it. She was there, she was going to help. She strode after Corette.

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