Fairy Tail RP

Would you like to react to this message? Create an account in a few clicks or log in to continue.

• Patch Notes •                 • New User Guide •                • Guild Information •

    Digging For Answers

    Diana Winchester
    Diana Winchester

    Alt Account- Mythical- Quality Badge Level 1- Quality Badge Level 2- Quality Badge Level 3- Y-Rank- X-Rank- H-Rank- S-Rank- A-Rank- EXP Grinder- Jewel Grinder- Unknown Powerhouse- Unknown Legend- Achiever- Expert Achiever- Buddy Buddy- Sticking Around- Halloween Social- Halloween job event participant - Rich- Character Application Approved!- Magic Application Approved!- Complete Your First Job!- Obtain A Lineage!- Join A Faction!- Senior [500]- Novice [250]- Player 
    Lineage : Divine Huntress
    Position : None
    Posts : 730
    Cosmic Coins : 0
    Dungeon Tokens : 0
    Experience : ‭2,403,747

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Silent Reaper
    Second Magic: Lunar Guardian
    Third Magic:

    Digging For Answers Empty Digging For Answers

    Post by Diana Winchester on 9th April 2020, 5:15 pm

    Job Details:

    Job Title: 100 Year Free-form
    Rank: 100 Year
    Job Location: Anywhere
    Solo Word Count: 12,500 words
    Group Word Count: 25,000 words
    Additional Requirements: N/A
    Job Description: Whatever the player chooses
    Enemies: Whatever the player chooses
    Reward: 150,000 jewels OR a custom Artifact weapon/armor/item - Must specify which when handing in the job

    Job Sign-Up: Page 35, Post Number 865
    Diana Winchester
    Diana Winchester

    Alt Account- Mythical- Quality Badge Level 1- Quality Badge Level 2- Quality Badge Level 3- Y-Rank- X-Rank- H-Rank- S-Rank- A-Rank- EXP Grinder- Jewel Grinder- Unknown Powerhouse- Unknown Legend- Achiever- Expert Achiever- Buddy Buddy- Sticking Around- Halloween Social- Halloween job event participant - Rich- Character Application Approved!- Magic Application Approved!- Complete Your First Job!- Obtain A Lineage!- Join A Faction!- Senior [500]- Novice [250]- Player 
    Lineage : Divine Huntress
    Position : None
    Posts : 730
    Cosmic Coins : 0
    Dungeon Tokens : 0
    Experience : ‭2,403,747

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Silent Reaper
    Second Magic: Lunar Guardian
    Third Magic:

    Digging For Answers Empty Re: Digging For Answers

    Post by Diana Winchester on 9th April 2020, 6:37 pm

    -Mysterious Canyons, early morning-

    "I know I said that I wanted to go someplace warm for our next job, but I didn't mean THIS warm! It's 100 degrees Fahrenheit out here!" Ami lamented as she wiped sweat from her forehead and flapped her metallic wings. Diana knew where she was coming from. Even dressing in all-tan clothing with a tan headwrap that concealed everything but her eyes and carrying a hydration pack for water did little to alleviate the unrelenting heat as the pair approached the canyon entrance.

    Diana remembered it well from the shootout with the Marauders when she had come here on a job several months before and had encountered Ben, the man who had saved her from being cornered and killed in the cave that loomed roughly 1,000 meters to the left. She was tempted to send Ami to scout for hostiles who might be lying in wait on top of the canyon walls. Right now she was not seeing anything that indicated that there were any other humans in the area, but just because she did not see anything did not mean that danger was absent. Diana should know that... she had built a career off of going unseen until she was in position to kill the target. Sometimes it was the things one did not see that ended up being fatal.

    "I know that this is not the beach you were hoping to visit, but an old client of mine has requested my help." Diana calmly told Ami as a miniature dust storm kicked up. The red-eyed android looked towards Diana and shrugged her shoulders.

    "Eh, it's OK, Diana. You've gotta make money and that means taking work where you can find it. Even though it's really hot out here, I'm just glad to be away from the cold!" Ami brushed off Diana's sort-of apology with a cheerful dismissal. Diana was surprised as how lifelike Ami was and how she had a personality. The huntress was not sure if the android was programmed with a cheerful personality to contrast Diana's stoic personality, but the huntress was glad to have her as a traveling companion. Having a traveling partner who could double as an eye in the sky and pull triple duty as air support with an anti-vehicle arm cannon was an asset that was hard to beat. Having all of those capabilities in an android that could easily pass for human was an even bigger asset.

    The duo was now within 500 meters of the cave Diana and Ben had holed up in to fight off the Marauders all those months ago. Diana halfway expected more gun-carrying outlaws to come out of the cave looking for revenge. She also expected the mystery men from Silent Glaciers to burst out and make another attempt on her life, but so far neither organization had made itself known. Maybe she was just being paranoid, which came with the territory when one worked in the shadows.

    "So, who's this old client you're here for?" Ami asked Diana.

    "A professor at Crocus Magicka University named Charles Fauntleroy. He has found a site that belonged to a people who lived here long ago. I have worked with him in the past and he asked for my help on this project." Diana told Ami about how she knew Professor Fauntleroy. He was an older man who was a jovial sort... except when Dr. Anna was mentioned. Professor Fauntleroy intensely disliked Dr. Anna, who he saw as a rival who had gotten lucky by enlisting the help of a Wizard Saint that one time and had used that lucky find to catapult herself to prominence. The glaring implication was that the female doctor did not "deserve" her fame for discovering a lost temple of the Lestrek people. At least that was the story he told.

    Diana was not sure whether Professor Fauntleroy's rivalry was due to a perception that Dr. Anna was muscling in on his privileged position or if there was more to the story than she knew. Perhaps one day the elderly academic would fill her in on the details, but that would have to be his choice. All she knew for certain was that the older man disliked the woman as much as he liked tea. Charles liked tea so much that he carried a thermos of it wherever he went; not even the prospect of facing spectral Gelae warriors got him to drop the thermos. He was so fond of the drink that in his tent at the base camp he kept a lacrima-powered burner and kettle with which to make tea.

    Speaking of which, where was Professor Fauntleroy's base camp?

    Diana paused to consult the job notice and learned that it was located deeper in the canyon. The estimated distance from the canyon entrance was about 7,000 meters, which was fairly deep into the area. Diana folded up the notice and put it back into her left side pocket before moving on with Ami following dutifully behind her. They still had some walking to do before they could arrive at the camp and get details on the job from the man himself.

    [Post Word Count: 864]
    [Total Word Count: 864/12,500]
    Diana Winchester
    Diana Winchester

    Alt Account- Mythical- Quality Badge Level 1- Quality Badge Level 2- Quality Badge Level 3- Y-Rank- X-Rank- H-Rank- S-Rank- A-Rank- EXP Grinder- Jewel Grinder- Unknown Powerhouse- Unknown Legend- Achiever- Expert Achiever- Buddy Buddy- Sticking Around- Halloween Social- Halloween job event participant - Rich- Character Application Approved!- Magic Application Approved!- Complete Your First Job!- Obtain A Lineage!- Join A Faction!- Senior [500]- Novice [250]- Player 
    Lineage : Divine Huntress
    Position : None
    Posts : 730
    Cosmic Coins : 0
    Dungeon Tokens : 0
    Experience : ‭2,403,747

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Silent Reaper
    Second Magic: Lunar Guardian
    Third Magic:

    Digging For Answers Empty Re: Digging For Answers

    Post by Diana Winchester on 11th April 2020, 8:43 am

    -One hour later, Professor Fauntleroy's base camp-

    It had taken awhile to get to the camp, but Diana and Ami finally made it after the lengthy walk through the canyon while the walls loomed over them. Diana had been wary of the very real possibility of an ambush from the top of the walls; aside from the cavern they had passed, there was no real cover if an ambush did happen. Luck was with them and the pair had encountered no threats other than miniature dust storms, the relentless heat, and the monotonous scenery of the canyon.

    The job notice was accurate and the pair came across the base camp. As luck would have it, the very first person they met was none other than the professor himself, who was supervising the setup of a lacrima-powered generator for his tent while young men and women clad in khaki clothing milled about performing other tasks of importance like setting up more tents for the base camp and moving crates of supplies from a wagon drawn by mechanical horses. He was so busy pouring more tea into his cup that he failed to notice the two young woman behind him until Ami spoke.

    "Hi there!" Ami greeted the man. Doing his best not to spill any of the precious drink in the cup or the thermos, the older man nevertheless almost jumped out of his khaki clothing when he heard Ami's voice. He turned around to face them.

    "Welcome, welcome! I'm so glad to see you, Miss Winchester!" Professor Fauntleroy greeted Diana, holding the ubiquitous cup of tea in his right hand and the thermos of tea in his left hand. Diana raised a hand in greeting and Ami followed suit. He guided the pair to his tent, opened the flap, and began to explain why he had called for Diana's help.

    -Inside Professor Fauntleroy's tent-

    Inside the tent the level of organization was the same as the last time Diana had helped him. There was a rectangular table in the center which was loaded down with stacks of papers, books, and the occasional notebook perched precariously on top of the stacks of papers. To the right was a clear table with a lacrima-powered burner and a tea kettle. A new addition was a large corkboard on a stand placed behind the table and in the right corner. In the center of the corkboard was a giant map of the area pinned to the board by red-colored pins. All around it were papers pinned to the left anr right of the map by a rainbow of different-colored pins that seemed to have been grabbed at random.

    To the left of them were stacks of crates that contained supplies like shaving cream, beef jerky, and packets of tea. Diana was amused to see the crate of tea packets. She then turned back to the professor to pay attention to his explanation.

    "I'm glad that you made it, Miss Winchester! You see, my rival Dr. Anna is set to arrive here in a week's time to begin her own dig and I want to find something I can take back to the university before she gets here!" He explained to her in an agitated tone of voice. Diana knew something of the tension between them, so she did not need an explanation of that. What she needed was to know whether Professor Fauntleroy had a dig site set up so that he could make the best use of the seven-day head start he had on his rival.

    "Do you have a dig site set up?" Diana asked him. The professor took a sip from the cup and nodded.

    "As a matter of fact, I do. It's about 2,500 meters from here and I've already got workers excavating a site where only hours ago one of my assistants found shards of pottery lying on the ground." He answered in the affirmative. Ami glanced at the map on the corkboard and then at the papers around it. She could not make heads or tails of the papers because there was no organization to them; they were haphazardly placed wherever there was room for them. There were also so many papers competing for the limited space on the board that some of them overlapped, making reading them a challenge.

    "What do you think you have discovered, Professor? Do you think you have discovered a place of significance to another civilization?" Diana asked her client. He simply shrugged his shoulders.

    "I am not certain yet. However, we have seven days to find out and I intend to make full use of that time." He answered with certainty. Diana decided not to press the issue and instead turned to the subject of the dig site. She was sure that he would have something to say on that matter.

    "How is the excavation proceeding?" Diana asked him. The academic walked towards the map and Ami obligingly moved out of the way to let him get to it. He pointed to an area circled in red and began to answer with a red face.

    "It is going... slowly. You see, there was another logistical mishap. We brought plenty of food and water but left a good portion of our excavation tools back at the university. It is quite embarrassing, really." The professor admitted to Diana and Ami. Diana was confounded as to how that mishap came about, but the sheer expanse of the logistics of the operation meant that something inevitably fell between the cracks. She found it funny that the tools needed to excavate were the item that had been left behind. At least they had brought plenty of food and water this time so that they did not have to subsist off of beef jerky.

    "Say, would you like to visit the site?" Professor Fauntleroy asked Diana. The blonde nodded. Ami also expressed an interest in paying the area a visit.

    "Excellent! We will go there right away! Follow me!" The professor said to them, guiding them out of the tent and towards the site where the professor hoped to make a find that would put him ahead of his rival.

    [Post Word Count: 1,032]
    [Total Word Count: 1,896/12,500]
    Diana Winchester
    Diana Winchester

    Alt Account- Mythical- Quality Badge Level 1- Quality Badge Level 2- Quality Badge Level 3- Y-Rank- X-Rank- H-Rank- S-Rank- A-Rank- EXP Grinder- Jewel Grinder- Unknown Powerhouse- Unknown Legend- Achiever- Expert Achiever- Buddy Buddy- Sticking Around- Halloween Social- Halloween job event participant - Rich- Character Application Approved!- Magic Application Approved!- Complete Your First Job!- Obtain A Lineage!- Join A Faction!- Senior [500]- Novice [250]- Player 
    Lineage : Divine Huntress
    Position : None
    Posts : 730
    Cosmic Coins : 0
    Dungeon Tokens : 0
    Experience : ‭2,403,747

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Silent Reaper
    Second Magic: Lunar Guardian
    Third Magic:

    Digging For Answers Empty Re: Digging For Answers

    Post by Diana Winchester on 12th April 2020, 1:51 pm

    -On the way to the dig site-

    "I am failing to understand how we keep experiencing logistical difficulties. I am starting to believe that I am being deliberately sabotaged by someone who does not want me to succeed." Professor Fauntleroy said out of the blue as the trio were walking towards the site. Ami walked in silence while Diana thought about who it was that would want to see the professor fail. The most obvious culprit was this "Dr. Anna" he kept bringing up. If she was truly his rival, it would stand to reason that she would try to make him look bad any way she could, especially by arranging delays in the arrival of needed items like food and excavation tools. The university would not take kindly to its time and resources being wasted and might question the professor's competence, leading to a stalled-out career or even an early retirement.

    "If the difficulties are the result of sabotage, do you think the culprit is this Dr. Anna?" Diana asked him. He nodded.

    "I do not have irrefutable evidence, but I would not put such a thing past her. You see, she can no longer coast on the discovery of the Lestrek people and now needs a new discovery to keep her career going. I am her greatest competition and she would give anything to see me taken down a few pegs." Professor Fauntleroy answered with a brief explanation of why he thought the female academic was behind the logistical difficulties he had experienced. He then sipped from his tea cup, an opening in the conversation that Diana took advantage of.

    "So she needs to make a new discovery to keep her career going? And you need to make one as well?" Diana asked him. She did not fully understand the nature of university academia. She knew that professors were obligated to teach, to attend professional seminars, and to write a book at least once every five years, but that was where her meager knowledge of the system ended. The man nodded.

    "Yes, Miss Winchester. Despite what you may think, academia can be a ruthless business. She is starting to feel the pressure from the Archaeology department and is looking for her next big discovery to keep the wolves from the door." He answered calmly and with a hint of satisfaction at the discomfort his alleged rival was feeling. Diana remained silent, but Ami asked a question that the blonde was thinking but did not have the courage to ask.

    "Do you think that this Dr. Anna lady is gonna get here much earlier than a week to try and find some relics before you do?" Ami asked the elderly scholar. The professor nodded before opening the thermos and pouring out another cup of tea.

    "I believe so, young lady. If there is any action that she can take to spite me and make herself look good, she will take it." Professor Fauntleroy answered with certainty. The sound of metal tools hitting rock got closer as the trio approached the excavation site. A few seconds later Diana saw a small army of slightly over two dozen young men and women dressed in khaki clothing wielding shovels to move the hard dirt around the area where the pot shards had been found by the assistant.

    The site itself was 500 x 500 meters and had been cordoned off by four wooden stakes and high-visibility orange tape to mark the boundaries. The dirt was being gently deposited in waiting wheelbarrows to be taken to a pair of nearby tents to be gently sifted through for any more pot shards or other valuables. The hole that had been dug so far was only about a meter deep because everyone was so spread out, but the assistants were working diligently to excavate and recover anything of value from the hard dirt.

    "How Dr. Anna and her Wizard Saint helper found the temple was pure and utter nonsense, something out of a child's comic book. I heard that the Wizard Saint was walking through the area when they tripped and fell over a stone square buried in the sand that housed a hidden lever. Once the Wizard Saint found the lever, they pulled it and a hidden staircase that led to the temple opened up. Dr. Anna's find was dumb luck, plain and simple!" The elderly scholar commented without prompting. He did not look towards Diana or Ami, instead keeping his eyes focused on those laboring on his behalf. The pair let him stand in silence while he sipped from his cup. His lips then curled into a sinister smile.

    "I heard that this time Dr. Anna does not have her Wizard Saint helper with her. I wonder how she will fare without such a helper at her side. Maybe Dr. Anna can stumble onto a discovery of her own... or maybe not." Professor Fauntleroy said to himself in malicious glee. The statement had undertones that went beyond schadenfreude and into much more unpleasant territory. It implied that Dr. Anna was an amateur who could only effectively do her job when she had high-powered helpers like Wizard Saints holding her hand. There were also undertones of privilege to it since Professor Fauntleroy's family had been with the university since its founding and Dr. Anna's family had not. The elderly scholar was defending his privileged position against the upstart looking to make her career at his expense... at least that was what Diana got out of it.

    Diana was not in any position to criticize the professor for his thinking. She had done a lot worse than to gloat over a rival's discomfort; she had killed people at the behest of her parents and lately had killed them for money. Diana had also come from a privileged background... her family was a banking family from Bellum before their untimely deaths over four years ago. Now that she was the last one still alive she was technically their heir, but she doubted that she had any claim to the property or money since she had been missing from Bellum until a few months ago. Sorting out that legal mess could wait until later... right now she had a job to do.

    "Would you two care to go to the sorting tent and see if my assistants have found anything?" Professor Fauntleroy asked Diana and Ami.

    "Certainly." Diana answered calmly.

    "Yes, please!" Ami answered enthusiastically.

    "Very well then. This way!" The older man cheerfully said before turning away from the ongoing excavation and walking towards the two tents about 200 meters away. Diana and Ami followed silently behind him as the assistants continued to do their work.

    [Post Word Count: 1,120]
    [Total Word Count: 3,016/12,500]
    Diana Winchester
    Diana Winchester

    Alt Account- Mythical- Quality Badge Level 1- Quality Badge Level 2- Quality Badge Level 3- Y-Rank- X-Rank- H-Rank- S-Rank- A-Rank- EXP Grinder- Jewel Grinder- Unknown Powerhouse- Unknown Legend- Achiever- Expert Achiever- Buddy Buddy- Sticking Around- Halloween Social- Halloween job event participant - Rich- Character Application Approved!- Magic Application Approved!- Complete Your First Job!- Obtain A Lineage!- Join A Faction!- Senior [500]- Novice [250]- Player 
    Lineage : Divine Huntress
    Position : None
    Posts : 730
    Cosmic Coins : 0
    Dungeon Tokens : 0
    Experience : ‭2,403,747

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Silent Reaper
    Second Magic: Lunar Guardian
    Third Magic:

    Digging For Answers Empty Re: Digging For Answers

    Post by Diana Winchester on 14th April 2020, 6:19 pm

    -Inside the Sorting Tent-

    The professor pulled aside the tent flap and allowed Diana and Ami to enter the sorting tent before he went in behind them. Diana saw two long, rectangular folding tables set up on opposite ends of the tent. To her left was the sorting area where four assistants wearing white cloth gloves sifted through small plastic bins of dirt to locate any artifacts that might lie hidden within them. On the far end of the tent was a carefully arranged display of items that had been recovered so far, which amounted to the same pot shards that the assistant had discovered in the area where the dig site was now. Professor Fauntleroy was not pleased with the lack of items on display.

    "As you can see, progress is... slow." Professor Fauntleroy said diplomatically as the four workers to the left of the trio continued to sift through the dirt. Diana could tell that he was not happy about the situation in the slightest. The use of manual tools was slowing down the dig and was exhausting the assistants who wielded them, but the young helpers were still working to find something that could keep the professor's career going just a little bit longer. Diana appreciated that about Professor Fauntleroy. Even though he was frustrated with the lack of progress and eager to get a leg up on his rival, he recognized that his assistants were working diligently on his behalf and was not going to take out his frustrations on them.

    "Is there anything I can do to help?" Diana asked him. The academic took a long sip of tea and glanced at the pot shards before turning to her and giving her a calm response.

    "Unless you can conjure more tools out of thin air with your magic, I am afraid that there is nothing that you can do for us." Professor Fauntleroy answered apologetically. Diana kept quiet and listened to the sounds of dirt sifting to her left and the clang of tools on hard dirt a short distance away. Diana started to wonder why she had even been called out here if there was nothing for her to do, but perhaps there was a role that she had yet to play. All she had to do was be patient and see what happened before giving up on the job.

    Ami stood around and awkwardly moved the dirt with the toe of her right shoe as Diana watched her. Suddenly the tent flap was pulled open and in hurried a sweaty young man with sweat-stained khaki clothing and close-cut black hair glistening.

    "Professor, we found an opening! We found an opening in the dirt! It leads down to something that looks like a vault!" He exclaimed. Diana, Ami, and Professor Fauntleroy turned towards him simultaneously. The professor emptied his tea cup, then walked over to him and said two simple words.

    "Show me." The professor ordered. The young man nodded and guided the scholar out of the tent while Diana and Ami wordlessly followed behind him. Things were starting to get interesting again.

    -At the dig site-

    Diana and Ami followed behind the professor and his assistant, who pointed them towards a gathering of khaki-clad youths with shouldered tools and curious facial expressions. They were standing in a semicircle around the hole, which was just wide enough for one person to go down... if there were a rope ladder or something that they could use to safely descend. Diana knew that she could use Ami's flight ability to get to the bottom safely, but the hole was not wide enough for both of them to descend.

    "Interesting." The professor commented. He turned to Diana and Ami, who were looking at the opening. The professor looked at Ami's black metallic wings and got an idea.

    "Say, could you widen the hole a few meters for Miss Winchester and her friend so that they can go down there on our behalf?" Professor Fauntleroy asked the spectating crew. The crew obliged and began to carefully widen the hole so that the winged android could fly above it and lower Diana without issue. The process took ten minutes of careful work, but once it was ready the pair prepared to descend on behalf of Professor Fauntleroy, who was an older man and not very athletic. He was also mundane and could not fight if there was trouble, but Diana and Ami were able to defend themselves.

    "With your permission, I will go down there and see if it is safe for your crew." Diana offered to explore on the professor's behalf. The man thought it over a moment and then nodded his consent. Ami flexed her wings and grabbed Diana around the waist, lifting off straight into the air and hovering over the widened opening before slowly descending while the professor and his helpers watched.

    "Good luck, Miss Winchester! Let us know the moment you land!" Professor Fauntleroy bade them with a salute of a tea cup raised high. Diana nodded and the pair descended into the dark to see what they could find below.

    [Post Word Count: 857]
    [Total Word Count: 3,873/12,500]
    Diana Winchester
    Diana Winchester

    Alt Account- Mythical- Quality Badge Level 1- Quality Badge Level 2- Quality Badge Level 3- Y-Rank- X-Rank- H-Rank- S-Rank- A-Rank- EXP Grinder- Jewel Grinder- Unknown Powerhouse- Unknown Legend- Achiever- Expert Achiever- Buddy Buddy- Sticking Around- Halloween Social- Halloween job event participant - Rich- Character Application Approved!- Magic Application Approved!- Complete Your First Job!- Obtain A Lineage!- Join A Faction!- Senior [500]- Novice [250]- Player 
    Lineage : Divine Huntress
    Position : None
    Posts : 730
    Cosmic Coins : 0
    Dungeon Tokens : 0
    Experience : ‭2,403,747

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Silent Reaper
    Second Magic: Lunar Guardian
    Third Magic:

    Digging For Answers Empty Re: Digging For Answers

    Post by Diana Winchester on 16th April 2020, 4:44 pm

    -At the bottom, 30 meters down-

    "Wow, it's dark down here!" Ami commented just before Diana's feet touched the ground and the android released her owner. Diana's feet touched the ground and the blonde instantly activated her night vision mode to get a look around.

    "I do not know how long it has been since this area was last exposed to sunlight. I am willing to wager that it has been centuries." Diana commented to Ami. The pair heard shouting coming from above and looked up to see Professor Fauntleroy peering down at them with his tea cup held firmly in hand. The way the sun was positioned in the sky made the man look like he had a halo around his head.

    "HELLO! ARE YOU TWO ALL RIGHT DOWN THERE? HOW DEEP IS THE HOLE?" The professor inquired.

    "YEAH, WE'RE FINE! THE HOLE'S ABOUT THIRTY METERS DEEP!" Ami shouted back while Diana looked around the area. The huntress looked ahead of them and saw the vault that the black-haired youth rushed into the tent to tell the professor about. It was only fifty meters away and the door was carved out of a single nondescript slab of stone with no decorations on it. Something incoherent was asked from above and Ami sighed.

    "Look, I can't understand a single word that professor dude's saying! I'm gonna go up and tell him what's going on. I'll be back as quick as I can, Diana!" Ami said before taking off straight up into the air. The huntress tried to look for any special identifying marks on the walls or on the door, but she did not see anything special like a carving of a name in an ancient language or a symbol like a bird or other animal. Just who did this vault belong to?

    Diana continued to look forward while waiting for Ami to get back from communicating with the professor. She was not detecting anything that could be dangerous such as ghosts. Maybe it was just an underground treasure vault filled with valuables that the professor could claim to further his career. After the harrowing encounter with the hostile soldiers in Silent Glaciers Diana hoped that this job would be an easy one where she would not have to fight. So far that was turning out to be the case.

    After standing in silence for several minutes Diana heard Ami touch down next to her. The blonde turned to the android and listened to the latter tell her about what the professor had to say.

    "The professor got our message about how deep the hole was. He and his assistants are working on making a rope ladder so that more of them can come down here and examine the vault. In the meantime, our job is to figure out how to get the door open." Ami informed Diana of what was going on topside.

    "Very well then. I have not seen any danger yet, so I am going to the vault door. Maybe there is a nearby hidden panel that conceals a lever that opens the door." Diana said to her faithful companion before walking carefully towards the massive stone door. Ami followed close behind Diana with arm cannon at the ready. It did not take long for them to reach the giant stone slab, which was even more impressive up close. Ami walked over to it and tapped on it with her arm cannon, causing the sound of metal hitting stone to fill the air but otherwise doing nothing to complete their current objective.

    "Oh well. It was worth a try. Lemme try something else." Ami said casually before backing up ten steps and aiming her arm cannon at the center of the slab. Ami began charging a shot and within seconds was ready to shoot. A concerned Diana stopped her companion from blasting the door open with a raised hand and a one-word command.

    "Wait." Diana calmly ordered. Ami dispelled the charge and looked at Diana quizzically.

    "If there is any treasure on the other side, it would be destroyed the moment you fire and the beam punches through the stone." Diana calmly explained her reason for the order. Ami did not argue. She lowered the beam cannon and crossed her arms.

    "OK. I won't shoot." Ami replied calmly. She proceeded to walk towards the wall and pushed on it with her right hand to lean on it. Moments later a five-meter section of wall on which she leaned gave away and Ami shrieked as she nearly fell over. Diana looked towards the android; the latter had nearly fallen over but managed to avoid falling sideways by grabbing the corner with her left hand and righting herself with her wings.

    "I'm OK!" Ami called out. Diana approached her and noticed a pile of rubble where the section of stone wall once was. It had been concealing a perfectly square alcove with a lever  mounted on the wall that most likely opened the door. Ami turned around and saw what Diana was looking at.

    "Hey, I bet that lever will open the door!" Ami gave voice to what Diana was thinking. There was only one way to find out if the lever opened the door or not and that was to pull it. The question now was who would be the one to pull it.

    [Post Word Count: 896]
    [Total Word Count: 4,769/12,500]
    Diana Winchester
    Diana Winchester

    Alt Account- Mythical- Quality Badge Level 1- Quality Badge Level 2- Quality Badge Level 3- Y-Rank- X-Rank- H-Rank- S-Rank- A-Rank- EXP Grinder- Jewel Grinder- Unknown Powerhouse- Unknown Legend- Achiever- Expert Achiever- Buddy Buddy- Sticking Around- Halloween Social- Halloween job event participant - Rich- Character Application Approved!- Magic Application Approved!- Complete Your First Job!- Obtain A Lineage!- Join A Faction!- Senior [500]- Novice [250]- Player 
    Lineage : Divine Huntress
    Position : None
    Posts : 730
    Cosmic Coins : 0
    Dungeon Tokens : 0
    Experience : ‭2,403,747

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Silent Reaper
    Second Magic: Lunar Guardian
    Third Magic:

    Digging For Answers Empty Re: Digging For Answers

    Post by Diana Winchester on 22nd April 2020, 12:56 pm

    "I've got this! I'll pull it!" Ami exclaimed before walking over to the lever, reaching out with both hands, and gripping it tightly. Ami then pulled down on the lever until it reached the bottom, then let go of it and let it return to the top. A mechanism was engaged and the sound of stone grinding against stone could be heard as the stone slab was slowly pulled away to the right, revealing what it had been guarding for who knew how long. Once Professor Fauntleroy's crew had built the rope ladder it would be their job to determine just how long everything behind the door had been down here. It would be Diana and Ami's job to protect them if the spirits of the ancient people whose subterranean vault this was took offense to the living and attacked Professor Fauntleroy and his crew.

    The slab had parted to reveal a vault about the size of a modern sports stadium, but instead of treasure Diana saw buildings sitting against the perimeter that resembled single-story houses made of stone. Diana was genuinely intrigued by this find. The professor had to know what was down here right away. Ami peered inside the opened vault and was less than impressed with what she saw.

    "All I see is a bunch of stone houses standing around. What kinda lame treasure is that?" Ami asked Diana with obvious disappointment on her voice. The android had clearly expected gold jewelry, gold bars, diamonds, that sort of treasure.

    "Ami, I need you to go tell the professor about what we discovered down here. Also, tell them that they should bring plenty of light sources." Diana requested of her disappointed android companion. The android flashed a thumbs-up.

    "All right, I'll go tell him what we found behind the door. Just wait here for me!" Ami said before taking flight and disappearing through the opening thirty meters above them. In the meantime Diana waited at the door for word from Professor Fauntleroy before going inside. While she was eager to begin exploring right away, the huntress would be patient and wait for her companion to return with news of the professor's reaction and further instructions before proceeding into the vault. It would take awhile for Ami to return, but Diana had nothing but time on her hands. A big payday for a successful mission was always worth the wait... her experience with Angela Helton had reinforced the belief that patience was the key to getting through inconvenient situations such as long waits.

    -Ten minutes later-

    "OK, I've told the professor about what we found. He told us that we needed to stay put until he and the others finish putting together that rope ladder. By his estimate that'll take about... another two hours." Ami relayed the professor's instructions to Diana. Diana kept quiet when she heard that, but Ami was less reserved about expressing what her owner was thinking. The two-hour figure was not one that the android could handle and was visibly upset about.

    "Well, looks like we have nothing to do down here but stare into the darkness. I wonder if the professor lied to us so that he could refill that thermos of his before coming down here." Ami commented about their situation and posited that the professor deliberately overestimated the time it would take so that he would have time to drink tea before exploring the vault. Diana did not think that was the case... a thirty-meter long rope ladder would require a lot of work to make and a suitable anchoring point needed to be found to support the weight of people climbing up and down it. Still, Diana was mildly amused that her android companion would come up with such a humorous hypothesis on her own. Ami had a lot of personality, which was a good thing because Diana did not have much of one other than someone who habitually wore a mask of calm for the world to see.

    Being in her profession made Diana cultivate the impression that there was nothing special about her. She led others to believe that she was only a powerful mage in a world full of powerful mages. As far as the outside world knew Diana Winchester was only one of many powerful freelance mages making their way in the world by taking on jobs for anyone who would hire them. The truth was that Diana was a contract killer who masqueraded as a Guildless mage so that she could keep up her cover story as a run-of-the-mill mage who happened to be powerful as a result of almost a year of constant hard work. Her strength benefited her in more ways than one... few clients would turn down an H-rank mage who offered their services and few people at her guild hall dared question her choice to take jobs that did not involve killing someone.

    Diana would return to the shadows soon enough, but for now she just wanted to spend a little longer in the light of day. She wanted to see what it was like for people who did not have to lead a double life. But the happy thoughts were chased away by a grim realization.

    She had every chance to walk away from the double life when her family was poisoned, but for some reason she chose to stick with it.

    Everything that had happened to her since that day was by her own choice.

    She had chosen this path. No one else.

    The darkness that loomed ahead of Diana was appropriate foreshadowing of her final fate once her life was over. Whether it ended due to having reached the end of her allotted days or whether it was violently terminated long before her time did not matter. Darkness was all that awaited her at the end.

    Diana was not one to panic, but she felt a growing sense of apprehension while looking into the darkness that loomed ahead of her.

    [Post Word Count: 1,001]
    [Total Word Count: 5,770/12,500]
    Diana Winchester
    Diana Winchester

    Alt Account- Mythical- Quality Badge Level 1- Quality Badge Level 2- Quality Badge Level 3- Y-Rank- X-Rank- H-Rank- S-Rank- A-Rank- EXP Grinder- Jewel Grinder- Unknown Powerhouse- Unknown Legend- Achiever- Expert Achiever- Buddy Buddy- Sticking Around- Halloween Social- Halloween job event participant - Rich- Character Application Approved!- Magic Application Approved!- Complete Your First Job!- Obtain A Lineage!- Join A Faction!- Senior [500]- Novice [250]- Player 
    Lineage : Divine Huntress
    Position : None
    Posts : 730
    Cosmic Coins : 0
    Dungeon Tokens : 0
    Experience : ‭2,403,747

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Silent Reaper
    Second Magic: Lunar Guardian
    Third Magic:

    Digging For Answers Empty Re: Digging For Answers

    Post by Diana Winchester on 25th April 2020, 1:54 pm

    -One hour later-

    "Man, what's taking them so long? I coulda flown down here with an armful of lanterns by now! I could even carried the professor and his helpers down here by the time they finish that ladder!" Ami complained while pacing back and forth between the alcove containing the lever and the opposite wall. The android was not taking the long wait very well and neither was Diana. Every second she stared at the darkness looming beyond the doorframe reminded her of what would happen to her should she die without at least trying for redemption. The huntress hated having time to think because her thoughts drifted towards the afterlife and other grim topics that she tried her best to avoid thinking about. Still, she could not put off such thoughts indefinitely... she would eventually have to reckon with what she did during her mortal life and she did not want to die without having tried to do something to balance the books by doing some good with her skills.

    Diana did not respond to her companion's statement. She was trying to move on from the current train of thought, but moving was difficult to do because she had ignored the topic for so long and the more she thought about it the harder it was to move on. Ami abandoned her pacing route and walked over to Diana.

    "Are you OK, Diana?" Ami asked her owner. Diana was not sure how to respond to the query, but she responded anyway.

    "I am OK so far, but it has been awhile since I have seen sunlight. I am hoping that the professor has not forgotten about us." Diana answered truthfully... from a certain point of view. Technically she walked in sunlight all the time, but her mind did not. Her mind was still trapped in the shadows she had been cast into when she was ten years old.

    "Yeah, I'm getting kinda unhappy down here too. You'd think they'd at least drop a letter to us or something. Maybe even some food." Ami continued to talk to Diana as if the former was trying to cheer up her owner. Diana was not terribly unhappy because she had lived with her situation for over a decade, but she appreciated what Ami was trying to do even if the android did not fully understand the meaning behind Diana's words. It was for the best that Ami did not understand what it was like to have to live a double life.

    Diana cheered up a little bit and looked towards the column of sunlight coming down through the hole and tried to think happy thoughts... or at least more pleasant thoughts than thoughts of darkness and the double life she had been leading for over a decade. The arrival of Ami was one bright spot in Diana's life, as was taking Siren as an apprentice.

    -One hour later-

    Diana's good cheer had long since faded and looking at the sunlight was not boosting her mood anymore. Ami was starting to grow restless again. She had begun pacing ten minutes ago and now she was starting to pace back and forth between the entrance to the vault and the column of sunlight. The huntress was sipping from her hydration pack and beginning to think that the professor had forgotten about them when she saw something fall from the top of the hole and hit the ground just in front of Ami, who shrieked and jumped back.

    Diana walked over to the object and took a closer look at it. It was a rope ladder. The professor and his assistants had come through after all!

    "HELLO DOWN THERE! DID YOU THINK THAT WE HAD FORGOTTEN ABOUT YOU TWO?" A strong male voice asked them from above. Diana actually smiled a bit and Ami forgot all about her surprise and looked up. Diana had never been so glad to hear from the older man. Ami walked over to Diana.

    "Hey Diana, do I need to relay any sort of message to him?" Ami asked. Diana looked towards the rope ladder and saw it start to sway to and fro. The huntress looked up and saw five people climbing down with backpacks loaded with something heavy.

    "No thanks, Ami. Not this time." Diana replied. It took about three minutes for the people to climb down and when they reached bottom they took off their backpacks and pulled out six lanterns apiece, which they then set on the ground. They had brought means of lighting the darkness with them, something that cheered up Diana more than it should considering that the shadows were how she made her living.

    "Put the lanterns at twenty-five meter intervals throughout this corridor. We shouldn't need more than eight if we put four on each side." The black-haired youth who had come into the professor's tent with news of the hole instructed his fellows on the placement of the lanterns. Two of them immediately went to work placing the lanterns while the other two stayed beside the youth. Ami looked towards him and asked a question.

    "Hey, where's the professor?" Ami asked the young man.

    "Professor Fauntleroy's currently supervising the distribution of our shipment of excavation tools that got here about an hour after you two first went down here. He'll be supervising things on the surface while I run things down here. My name's Zach." The youth explained the reason for the professor's absence to Ami before introducing himself to Ami and Diana.

    "I thought he'd be down here to explore the vault with us." Ami mused aloud, a thought with which Diana silently agreed.

    "He'll be down here once everything's set up on the surface. In the meantime we've been instructed to do a sweep through the vault to get an idea of what's inside." Zach said to them. Ami and Diana did not argue with him because they were both eager to check out what was inside of the vault they had been standing outside of for the past two hours or so. Now was their chance to see what the people the vault belonged to had hidden down here.

    "OK! I'm ready!" Ami said excitedly. Diana too was glad to do something besides stand around. The two workers who had been instructed to place lanterns along the sides of the corridor had returned to Zach.

    "OK, the lanterns are in place. At the twenty-five meter setting they'll last us seven days without a recharge." A blonde young woman informed Zach.

    "All right then. We're set out here, so let's check out what's in the vault." Zach said before he collected a lantern in his right hand and led the way. The other four assistants took two lanterns apiece and followed him. Ami and Diana grabbed two lanterns apiece and followed Zach and the others into the vault.

    [Post Word Count: 1,150]
    [Total Word Count: 6,920/12,500]
    Diana Winchester
    Diana Winchester

    Alt Account- Mythical- Quality Badge Level 1- Quality Badge Level 2- Quality Badge Level 3- Y-Rank- X-Rank- H-Rank- S-Rank- A-Rank- EXP Grinder- Jewel Grinder- Unknown Powerhouse- Unknown Legend- Achiever- Expert Achiever- Buddy Buddy- Sticking Around- Halloween Social- Halloween job event participant - Rich- Character Application Approved!- Magic Application Approved!- Complete Your First Job!- Obtain A Lineage!- Join A Faction!- Senior [500]- Novice [250]- Player 
    Lineage : Divine Huntress
    Position : None
    Posts : 730
    Cosmic Coins : 0
    Dungeon Tokens : 0
    Experience : ‭2,403,747

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Silent Reaper
    Second Magic: Lunar Guardian
    Third Magic:

    Digging For Answers Empty Re: Digging For Answers

    Post by Diana Winchester on 28th April 2020, 12:11 pm

    -Inside the vault-

    With lanterns in hand Diana and Ami followed Zach and the rest of his crew into the stadium-sized vault with walls that were lined with one-story stone houses. Two of the assistants began setting up lanterns on both sides of the entrance while Diana and Ami followed Zach over to a one-story stone house in the center of those against the left wall. Once there Zach instructed Ami to set her two lanterns down on both sides of the entrance to the house and the android complied.

    "I'm not sure if these houses were meant to be lived in. These look more like they were intended to hold treasure." Zach opined to Diana and Ami. Diana could have told him that based on the stone slab that blocked entry into this place until a couple of hours ago, but the huntress let him speak without comment. Ami, on the other hand, had a question for him.

    "What kinda treasure are we talking about? Valuable artwork? Gold? Silver?" Ami asked him. The black-haired youth thought about it for a moment, then gave his answer.

    "I'd say that all of those options are on the table." Zach answered. Ami was pleased to hear that. So was Diana. She was glad to hear that her two-hour wait in darkness was not in vain, but part of her also wanted Professor Fauntleroy to succeed in making a big discovery so that he could keep his job a while longer. One day Diana would be in the same boat he was in... she too would have to fight to keep her job when the younger generation came along and started making a name for themselves.

    "I'll go in first." Zach said to Diana and Ami. Diana was concerned because the house might be rigged with traps, but she did not want to challenge his authority in front of the others, so she let it slide. He turned on his lantern and Diana watched him disappear into the house with a glowing yellow light that pushed back the darkness. She handed Ami her two lanterns and then followed Zach inside.

    -Inside the house-

    Zach was standing about two meters ahead of her and was focused on something straight ahead. Diana looked over his shoulder and saw what had caught his attention. In the lantern light multiple small metallic objects were gleaming on a stone table with stone chairs at the left and right ends.

    "Those are definitely coins. I don't know what they're made out of. I'll have to take a closer look." Zach said to her as she stepped out from behind him to get a closer look at the objects. He pulled a pair of white cotton gloves out of his pocket and put them on, then walked towards the table and picked one of the coins up in his left hand. He held it close and examined it under the lantern light to determine what metal the coins were made of.

    "Hmmm... this looks to be a silver coin. It's not of the best craftsmanship because there's a lot of rough surfaces and the profile of the head is kinda crooked. I think it was an early attempt at making metal currency for the people this vault belonged to." Zach opined to Diana, showing her the coin in question. The curious huntress peered at it and saw that what the youth said was true. The surface of the coin was not smooth and the profile of the head was not exactly even... the head was crudely chiseled and small but noticeable chunks of metal were missing from the cheek and neck. Still, it was not bad for a first attempt at metal currency.

    "Say, do you think that you can get your winged friend to take this coin to Professor Fauntleroy so that we can show him that there's something down here?" Zach asked Diana. Diana did not have to take long to think about it. Ami would be the perfect courier for the coin since she could simply fly out and take it directly to the professor instead of Diana or another person having to walk out of the vault, climb the ladder, and then locate the professor, who may or may not be in his tent. While there was no life-or-death time constraint, Diana thought that the professor would appreciate a swift courier.

    "I can make it happen. I will talk to Ami and get her to take the coin directly to him." Diana answered calmly. She extended a hand and Zach placed the coin directly into her palm.

    "I will go find Ami. Be careful until I get back." Diana told Zack. He nodded and Diana walked out of the house and back into the vault to go find Ami.

    -Outside the house-

    Diana walked into the lantern light with the coin in her hand and paused in place to look for Ami. The last time she had seen the winged android Ami was holding two lanterns and waiting outside the house. Either Ami had gotten bored and wandered off or Ami had been pressed into the service of the other assistants for some task. Diana had a task of her own for the faithful android, but first the huntress needed to find Ami.

    Using her natural night vision, Diana looked for a person with metallic wings on their back but was not able to find them. Maybe one of the assistants knew where Ami had gone off to. Diana did not need to go look for an assistant because the same blonde from earlier approached Diana and initiated conversation.

    "Are you looking for your winged friend?" The blonde asked Diana.

    "Yes. Zach had something that Ami needed to take directly to the professor." Diana answered.

    "We sent her to get more lanterns from the surface. She should be back any minute now." The young woman answered.

    "I'M BACK!" Ami shouted, letting her presence be known to one and all. In her arms was a standard wooden crate full of what Diana presumed to be lanterns. The assistant's face paled when she saw Ami walking around with a wooden crate in her arms like the android was carrying an armful of towels. Diana was somewhat amused by the assistant's reaction. The huntress did not know the weight limit of what Ami could lift and carry, but she figured that a wooden crate was well within her abilities.

    "Where do you want them?" Ami asked the young woman.

    "Um... over here, please." She meekly answered, pointing to the left of the entrance. Ami obligingly brought them over to the pair of blondes and set them to the left of the entrance to the house. The assistant, not knowing how to react to the sight of a teenage-looking girl carrying a crate with contemptuous ease, thanked Ami and turned to Diana.

    "Your companion is... um, pretty strong. A lot stronger than her size would suggest." The blonde complimented Diana's companion on her strength.

    "Ami is full of surprises." Diana commented in return. The assistant looked surprised when she heard the android's name.

    "So Ami's her name?" Came the question. Diana nodded.

    "OK. I didn't know what her name was, but now I do. Anyway, I'd better start setting up lanterns around the entrances to the other houses. Thanks for letting me borrow Ami for a moment!" The young woman excused herself and walked over to the crate of lanterns. Ami obligingly pulled off the top of the crate for the blonde to get what she needed. Diana watched as the blonde took two lanterns and the other three khaki-clad youths followed the blonde's lead. Diana was glad for all the lanterns to light the darkness. Even though the lanterns were lacrima-based and did not put out heat, just watching the lanterns glow made Diana feel a little warmer and safer.

    Out of the corner of her eye Diana saw the gleaming coin in her hand and remembered what Zach had asked her to do.

    Ami needed to get this coin to the professor as soon as possible.

    [Post Word Count: 1,358]
    [Total Word Count: 8,278/12,500]
    Diana Winchester
    Diana Winchester

    Alt Account- Mythical- Quality Badge Level 1- Quality Badge Level 2- Quality Badge Level 3- Y-Rank- X-Rank- H-Rank- S-Rank- A-Rank- EXP Grinder- Jewel Grinder- Unknown Powerhouse- Unknown Legend- Achiever- Expert Achiever- Buddy Buddy- Sticking Around- Halloween Social- Halloween job event participant - Rich- Character Application Approved!- Magic Application Approved!- Complete Your First Job!- Obtain A Lineage!- Join A Faction!- Senior [500]- Novice [250]- Player 
    Lineage : Divine Huntress
    Position : None
    Posts : 730
    Cosmic Coins : 0
    Dungeon Tokens : 0
    Experience : ‭2,403,747

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Silent Reaper
    Second Magic: Lunar Guardian
    Third Magic:

    Digging For Answers Empty Re: Digging For Answers

    Post by Diana Winchester on 29th April 2020, 12:58 pm

    Remembering the request that Zach had made of Diana, Diana approached the waiting Ami and spoke to her.

    "Zach requested that I ask you to take this silver coin to Professor Fauntleroy on the surface since you are faster than either of us and we have business to take care of down here. Can you do that for us?" Diana asked Ami. Ami flashed a thumbs-up. Diana then placed the coin in Ami's left hand and the android's fingers closed on it.

    "I've got this, Diana! I'll be back as soon as I can!" Ami told her before walking briskly towards the vault entrance. Once she was clear of the assistants Ami took flight and disappeared into the column of sunlight, leaving Diana in the vault to see if Zach had discovered anything new while she was busy. The blonde turned towards the doorway and was about to enter the house when Zach emerged with lantern in hand.

    "Did you get Ami to take the coin to the professor?" Zach asked her.

    "Ami has the coin and is on the way to him as we speak." Diana confirmed that she had gotten Ami to carry the coin to the professor. The huntress did not need to twist Ami's arm because the winged android was eager to please her owner, something that made Diana feel a little uncomfortable because the situation reminded her of her unpleasant childhood. Back then Diana had to toe the line and do what she was told or she would be subject to unpleasant consequences like being shocked with a taser, having her head shoved underwater in a bathtub or sink, or being slapped in the face so hard that she spun and hit the ground. Ami's eagerness made Diana wonder whether the android was doing her owner's bidding because she wanted to or because she feared punishment up to and including deactivation if she refused to obey her owner.

    "Great! I'm sure the professor will be glad to see that we have something to show for this trip other than a bunch of pot shards." Zach said to Diana, who nodded. She was glad that this expedition had produced something of value that the professor could show to his sponsors. She would have hated for the professor to have to return to the university empty-handed and face the prospect of losing his job because at his age Professor Fauntleroy might not be able to learn a new skill or trade before retirement. He looked to be well over retirement age already and tenure was the only thing keeping him at the university. Without a steady stream of discoveries to keep him relevant, it would be only a matter of time before Professor Fauntleroy was gently nudged out of his job... or simply shoved out.

    At least now he should be able to keep his job a while longer. Even though he had a lot of disdain for Dr. Anna and viewed her as an upstart who got lucky with the discovery of the temple built by the Lestrek people, Professor Fauntleroy seemed to genuinely like what he did for a living. He seemed to genuinely enjoy traveling to new places and uncovering artifacts from ancient peoples who had long ago died out.

    The pair stood facing each other when the blonde assistant who had borrowed Ami to lug a crate of lanterns down into the vault jogged over to them with some very interesting news.

    "Zach, we found a house with a stone table loaded with silver bars!" The young woman exclaimed. Zach and Diana turned to face her.

    "Lemme get this straight, Kim. You said that there's a stone table loaded with silver bars?" Zach repeated back to the young woman, whose name was revealed to be Kim. Kim nodded.

    "Yeah!" Kim answered with an economy of words.

    "I want to see this. The professor's definitely gonna like getting those." Zach stated. Diana silently agreed with him. She too wanted to see the silver bars, if only to see what silver bars looked like. She had seen silver coins in a museum and she had seen her sister Lucia's silver jewelry, but she had never seen silver in the form of solid bars before.

    "Follow me!" Kim said excitedly before taking off at a brisk walk, leaving Zach and Diana to catch up with her. The blonde assistant had taken off for the house that stood directly across from where they were standing and the storage of silver in the house opposite the one with silver coins made the huntress wonder if that was coincidence or not. The trio would find out soon enough. Having to hurry to catch up with the obviously excited Kim, Zach and Diana walked briskly through the center of the vault and past newly placed lanterns that made the center glow with yellow light. It was only a matter of moments before they could gaze upon the treasure and it still felt like it would take them all day to cross the room.

    -Inside the house-

    "There it is! Look at all that silver!" Kim exclaimed, pointing towards it with her right hand. True to her word, the stone table was loaded with silver bars arranged in neat pyramidal stacks that glimmered in the light of the lanterns set just inside the doorway. At the base of the silver pyramid sat stacks of silver coins, a detail which immediately caught Zach's attention.

    "Look, there's more of those coins just like the ones Diana and I found in the house just across from here! I'm willing to bet that this building was an early mint responsible for making silver coinage!" Zach hypothesized with clear excitement in his voice. Diana was not sure of that. From what she recalled in history class, early mints were deliberately placed in temples so that the deity the temple was dedicated to would also protect the valuable metal stored within... at least in theory. However, she was not a trained archaeologist while Zack and Kim were university students who were training to go into the field. The huntress would defer to their judgment on the matter.

    "You may be right, Zach!" Kim chimed in. All three people were mesmerized by the gleaming silver bars and coins, especially Diana. She had never seen silver bars before and was oddly fascinated by them.

    "Have you ever seen anything like this before, Diana?" Zach asked the blonde mage.

    "No. Never." Diana answered truthfully. She had been born into wealth and privilege, but the only precious metal she had been around was gold and silver jewelry that her mother and two oldest sisters Lucia and Melody wore. Then there was that field trip to the Crocus Museum that she had taken when she was sixteen, where she and her class got to see silver coins made by a long-lost civilization that once lived in... Desierto, was it? She thought that it was in Desierto. She also recalled that the name of the civilization was "Museria", but she was not entirely certain.

    "How are we gonna transport all of this treasure to the professor?" Kim asked the question that was suddenly on everyone's mind.

    "Well, we could box it up and have Diana's friend Ami fly it up to the surface." Zach forwarded a possible answer to the question. Kim was quick to speak in Ami's defense.

    "I don't think it would be right for us to order around Diana's friend like she was our own personal courier. We'd also have to pack the silver carefully so that we don't overload her. If we use Ami's help, Diana will have to be the one to ask her." Kim said to Zach. Diana was surprised by Kim's concern for Ami, especially since the assistant had no idea as to Ami's true nature. Did Kim deduce that Ami was an android or was Kim always concerned about the rights of others?

    "As soon as Ami gets back, I will ask her if she is willing to help carry the silver to the surface." Diana told Zach and Kim. Diana agreed to do so because she was aiding the expedition like Professor Fauntleroy had ordered her to. She also did not want to seem like she was holding the enterprise hostage by using her control over Ami as leverage. Diana would be paid sufficiently for her time and effort once the job was complete, so there was no need for her to hold anything hostage for more money. Besides, Diana kind of liked working with the professor and his assistants.

    [Post Word Count: 1,436]
    [Total Word Count: 9,714/12,500]
    Diana Winchester
    Diana Winchester

    Alt Account- Mythical- Quality Badge Level 1- Quality Badge Level 2- Quality Badge Level 3- Y-Rank- X-Rank- H-Rank- S-Rank- A-Rank- EXP Grinder- Jewel Grinder- Unknown Powerhouse- Unknown Legend- Achiever- Expert Achiever- Buddy Buddy- Sticking Around- Halloween Social- Halloween job event participant - Rich- Character Application Approved!- Magic Application Approved!- Complete Your First Job!- Obtain A Lineage!- Join A Faction!- Senior [500]- Novice [250]- Player 
    Lineage : Divine Huntress
    Position : None
    Posts : 730
    Cosmic Coins : 0
    Dungeon Tokens : 0
    Experience : ‭2,403,747

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Silent Reaper
    Second Magic: Lunar Guardian
    Third Magic:

    Digging For Answers Empty Re: Digging For Answers

    Post by Diana Winchester on 30th April 2020, 12:37 pm

    "I'M BACK!" Ami declared as she flew into the center of the vault, then landed on her feet and skidded for about three meters before coming to a stop. Once the android had landed she immediately sought out Diana, who was still inside the house with the silver bars and trying to figure out how to move them. It had been decided that Ami was going to carry the bulk of the bars, but then that led to the question of how to safely pack them for transport. Diana, Kim, and Zach were busy discussing that very question when Ami entered.

    -Inside the Silver House-

    "Now that we've decided who's going to move them, the next question is how we're going to pack them." Zach told the trio the next order of business.

    "We can't use our backpacks because the bars are too heavy for them. Our backpacks are kinda small and weren't made to carry heavy loads, so if we put more than three in our bags there's a good chance they'll rip and drop the bars onto the floor. And then we've gotta walk to the rope ladder and climb up thirty meters." Kim pointed out.

    "While we have manpower in abundance and could assign a silver bar to a person, it would take too long to transport one bar at a time in a backpack and climb the rope ladder up and down. Transporting the silver that way would exhaust all but the most physically fit person after three trips, if not four. Then we have to consider that most of the workers above ground have already labored on excavation with manual tools and will be tired, which would slow things down even more." Diana chimed in. Zach and Kim nodded in agreement.

    "That's true, but we have Ami, so we have a quick and easy way to carry it if we can just figure out one thing. That brings us back to our original question... how are we gonna pack the metal for carrying?" Zach brought the discussion back around to the question that prompted it. Kim and Diana looked at the lanterns and simultaneously came up with an idea.

    "Hey, why don't we use the crate that the lanterns were packed in?" Kim suggested, beating Diana to the punch. Zach thought about it for a moment and then nodded in approval.

    "That can work. All we need to do is put every last bar in there and put a lid on it." Zach seconded the idea just as Ami walked in.

    "Hey guys! Need me to carry something else?" Ami asked them. Diana turned to the winged android and voiced the request.

    "Yes, Ami, we need you to transport those silver bars. If we place them in the same wooden crate that the lanterns were boxed in, do you think you can fly the crate to the surface?" Diana asked Ami, stepping back to permit the winged android a view of the gleaming silver. The android did not take very long to give her response. She flashed a thumbs-up.

    "I can do that. Just box it up for me and I'll fly it to the surface!" Ami replied in the affirmative. Now that the trio had gotten Ami's consent to use her as a courier, the android turned to leave.

    "I'll go get the crate for you so that you can start putting it in for me to move!" Ami explained before leaving the Silver House, for lack of a better name for it. Diana, Kim, and Zach looked at the pyramid of silver bars and an eyeball count tallied at least thirty silver bars to move to the crate once it got here. It would be a slow process, but they could manage it.

    "Do you think that Ami can fly with them once we get them loaded?" Zach asked Diana.

    "I honestly have no idea. I do not know what her lifting and carrying capacity is." Diana answered truthfully. She would have to ask Ami when the latter returned.

    "If she can carry a crate full of those lanterns, I think that a box of silver bars is well within her ability." Kim opined, then looked towards Diana.

    "But we should ask her first before we make her fly with it. I don't want the weight to tear her arms off or something!" Kim quickly added in an effort to placate Ami's owner should the blonde mage take offense at such a casual remark. Diana did not take offense because Kim was mindful of the fact that Ami was not hers to order around. Contrary to what some people back at the guild hall thought, she did not repay every slight against her with violence. If that were really the case, The Chairman would rule over an office of the dead instead of an office full of live employees. Instead the huntress lived up to her codename of "Stiletto" by being precise enough to kill only the people she needed to instead of killing everything that moved.

    The trio heard a soft THUMP come from outside and Ami strolled in with a smile.

    "The crate's just outside the door. You guys can start boxing up the metal whenever you're ready!" Ami cheerfully informed them.

    "OK. Thanks Ami!" Zach thanked Ami before the trio got to work carrying the silver out of the Silver House to the crate.

    -Thirty-five minutes later, outside the Silver House-

    "That's the last of it. All thirty bars!" Zach sighed as he put the lid on the crate. The trio looked towards Ami, who nodded and walked over to the crate, then picked it up and held it.

    "Hmmm... this crate weighs about four tons. That's well within my range, which is currently ten tons. I can carry this with no problem!" Ami said to the trio, providing the answer to the very important question of how much she could safely carry without risking damage to her body. Diana was quietly relieved. She kind of liked Ami and her cheerful disposition and did not want her faithful companion to get hurt carrying objects for the professor and his assistants. Since the crate was well within what Ami could safely carry, Diana's worry started to drain away.

    Ami walked off with the crate in her arms and flew out of the vault once she was clear of the assistants, leaving the trio standing in the center and trying to think of something meaningful to do with their time.

    The entirety of the vault had been lit by carefully placed lanterns, so there was no need to do that anymore. The silver coins would not be a problem to carry because they could be safely split up among a few assistants and carried in a backpack without the risks that came with carrying heavy metal bars. Zach, Kim, and Diana could accomplish that task in one trip without undue difficulty, but they wanted to hear that the silver bars got to where they needed to be before they considered loading their backpacks with silver coins. Receiving that cargo would be sure to please Professor Fauntleroy and give him something exciting to show to the university board members as well as sponsors.

    [Post Word Count: 1,210]
    [Total Word Count: 10,924/12,500]
    Diana Winchester
    Diana Winchester

    Alt Account- Mythical- Quality Badge Level 1- Quality Badge Level 2- Quality Badge Level 3- Y-Rank- X-Rank- H-Rank- S-Rank- A-Rank- EXP Grinder- Jewel Grinder- Unknown Powerhouse- Unknown Legend- Achiever- Expert Achiever- Buddy Buddy- Sticking Around- Halloween Social- Halloween job event participant - Rich- Character Application Approved!- Magic Application Approved!- Complete Your First Job!- Obtain A Lineage!- Join A Faction!- Senior [500]- Novice [250]- Player 
    Lineage : Divine Huntress
    Position : None
    Posts : 730
    Cosmic Coins : 0
    Dungeon Tokens : 0
    Experience : ‭2,403,747

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Silent Reaper
    Second Magic: Lunar Guardian
    Third Magic:

    Digging For Answers Empty Re: Digging For Answers

    Post by Diana Winchester on 1st May 2020, 10:07 am

    -In the vault, fifteen minutes later-

    Instead of standing around in darkness waiting for Ami to return from her errand, Zack and Kim had chosen to load their backpacks with the silver coins and take them to the surface in person while Diana remained behind to make sure that things ran smoothly in the vault and help the other assistants if they needed help until Zach and Kim could get back. It was the perfect excuse for them to get out of the dark vault and back into the daylight for awhile. While Diana did not particularly want to stay underground, but at least there was plenty of lantern light to keep the dark thoughts at bay until she could get back to the surface and see real daylight for the first time since going thirty meters underground. Still, she could bear it for the payday that waited for her once the job was complete. She had not gotten this far in her career by giving up whenever things got tough.

    Diana watched the other assistants work in silence and watched for any last-minute threats like angry spirits coming to take vengeance on the living for entering their vault and taking the precious metal housed within it, but so far everything was quiet, which was just fine by her. She would take "easy money" earned by standing around in the darkness like she had taken the "easy money" from being Angela Helton's shopping partner/club partner for a day. Unlike some mages Diana did not feel like she had to fight something to earn a payday. As she watched the assistants work she felt like this would be an easy payday because the most difficult part of the job, which was getting the vault open, was over. Now all she had to do was wait until Ami, Zach, and Kim got back and carry out any more instructions that Professor Fauntleroy or Zach had for her.

    Speaking of Ami, the winged android began a controlled descent from above and blocked out the sun as she descended to rejoin Diana. With her jet-black metallic wings and the way her body was framed by the column of sunlight as she blocked out the sun Ami looked like a dark angel coming to claim the huntress, but that was Diana's dark thinking trying to assert itself. Ami was no dark angel... if anything she was a blessing to the huntress who needed someone to help her and watch her back while she masqueraded as a Guildless mage, who arguably had as tough a job as a contract killer.

    Guildless mages did not have a formal support network like guild mages did. While Guildless mages had a lot of freedom and did not have to answer to a Guild Master or Guild Aces, they also had no one to turn to should they need help with a particularly tough job, need a particular piece of equipment, or need medical treatment. They also had to take whatever jobs they could find by word of mouth or by stumbling upon them instead of perusing a literal job board with jobs just waiting to be taken.

    "Hi Diana! The professor was glad to see those silver bars!" Ami informed her owner of how the professor had received the precious metal. Diana was pleased to hear that the hard work of Zach, Kim, Ami, and herself had not been wasted. That news was a ray of sunshine in the darkness.

    "Did he happen to say which ancient people built and owned this underground vault?" Diana asked Ami. The latter shook her head.

    "Not at all, Diana. In fact, I think the professor doesn't know who built and owned the vault. He's really interested in the silver, though." Ami answered with a piece of news that Diana found interesting. Diana was pretty sure that the professor had found something that he could use to extend his career and possibly outdo Dr. Anna, but then she remembered that in seven days Dr. Anna was coming out to Mysterious Canyon to pursue a find of her own. She knew that Professor Fauntleroy did not care for the female doctor in the slightest, considering her a lucky amateur who had made a big find only with the help of a Wizard Saint. Diana also knew that the older man would defend his find tooth and nail; the huntress did not want to be around when the inevitable turf war between the two academics started. Those kinds of disputes could get messy.

    "Has Professor Fauntleroy given me any additional instructions?" Diana asked Ami. Again Ami shook her head.

    "He hasn't given you any new instructions, Diana. He just wants you to stay down here and make sure that everything runs smoothly." Ami told her. Diana was not very excited to spend the entire time she was in Mysterious Canyon in a dark hole, but several months ago she had been cornered in that cave near the canyon entrance by Marauders until Ben came to her rescue, so the experience was not a new one to her. She would just have to follow her current instructions until the professor or Zach told her differently.

    "OK. I will stay down here until I am told to return to the surface." Diana said to Ami. It would be slow going, but all Diana had to do was wait out the clock. She could do that.

    -Eight hours later, on the surface, nightfall-

    After eight hours spent standing in the vault and doing nothing but standing around and looking at ancient stone houses, it was good to finally feel sand under her boots again.

    Diana had spent so much time underground that she was starting to worry that she would never get to see daylight again. That was technically true because when Diana had finally received permission from Zach to leave the vault and go to the surface it was nighttime, but that was a trivial concern for someone who had spent over half their life in darkness. When Ami lifted Diana past the rope ladder and out of the vault into the moonlight, Diana breathed air from the surface for the first time in over eight hours. She stretched her legs and looked around the deserted dig site that was dotted with holes and piles of dirt. Excavation had stopped for the night; looking at the expanse of the site made Diana feel oddly alone despite having Ami by her side and the professor's tent being only a brief walk away from here.

    Diana then looked towards the sorting tent and saw a lit lantern sitting on a table inside the tent, so chances were good that the professor was in there burning the midnight oil. Chances were also good that at least Zach or Kim were with him trying to determine the identity of the civilization the vault had belonged to. With nothing better to do and still under contract to the professor until the job was considered complete, Diana decided to pay the tent a visit. With Ami following close behind her, Diana walked towards the sorting tent and reached it after nearly two minutes of walking.

    Reaching out with her right hand, Diana pulled aside the tent flap and went inside. Ami followed right behind her, making sure that her wings did not catch on the flap and pull the entire tent down when she entered.

    [Post Word Count: 1,242]
    [Total Word Count: 12,166/12,500]


    Last edited by Diana Winchester on 1st May 2020, 11:10 am; edited 1 time in total
    Diana Winchester
    Diana Winchester

    Alt Account- Mythical- Quality Badge Level 1- Quality Badge Level 2- Quality Badge Level 3- Y-Rank- X-Rank- H-Rank- S-Rank- A-Rank- EXP Grinder- Jewel Grinder- Unknown Powerhouse- Unknown Legend- Achiever- Expert Achiever- Buddy Buddy- Sticking Around- Halloween Social- Halloween job event participant - Rich- Character Application Approved!- Magic Application Approved!- Complete Your First Job!- Obtain A Lineage!- Join A Faction!- Senior [500]- Novice [250]- Player 
    Lineage : Divine Huntress
    Position : None
    Posts : 730
    Cosmic Coins : 0
    Dungeon Tokens : 0
    Experience : ‭2,403,747

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Silent Reaper
    Second Magic: Lunar Guardian
    Third Magic:

    Digging For Answers Empty Re: Digging For Answers

    Post by Diana Winchester on 1st May 2020, 11:09 am

    -Inside the Sorting Tent-

    "Oh, hello Diana! Your companion Ami has been most helpful to us today! Without her muscle we would have had to carry the silver bars out by hand, which would have been quite tedious and rather exhausting!" Professor Fauntleroy warmly greeted Diana and Ami. In his hand was the tea cup and sitting on a table next to the lantern that had caught her attention was the thermos of tea that he always seemed to have on hand. Next to the sorting table on the right side of the room was the crate that Ami had hauled out of the vault and on the table itself was a small pyramidal stack of three bars of silver. To the right of the stack and sitting on brown wax paper was the collection of silver coins that Zack and Kim had carried out of the vault.

    "I am glad that we could be of service." Diana replied to him. The professor looked at her and Ami like he had wanted to ask something before looking back at the gathered silver and taking a sip of tea from his cup. Taking a drink of his favorite beverage seemed to restore his confidence because the elderly scholar soon asked Diana the question that was clearly on his mind.

    "I am embarrassed to ask you this because I should have planned ahead for this sort of thing, but I will ask anyway. I need someone to stay here and make sure that none of the silver disappears. Would you and Ami be kind enough to stay and watch over the sorting tent and its valuables until morning?" Professor Fauntleroy asked them. Diana and Ami did not take long to make up their mind. They would be glad to help out a little while longer.

    "Sure!" Ami answered cheerfully.

    "I would be glad to." Diana answered calmly. The professor looked pleased to hear that and smiled.

    "I apologize for making you two do this after the long hours of work you had already done in the vault, but I need to make sure that what we have found today does not disappear into the night. We were lucky to find the vault at all and even luckier to find anything of value inside of it. I may never make such a discovery again and I... I want to make sure that all the work you, Ami, and my assistants put in is not wasted." Professor Fauntleroy apologized to them for what amounted to an overtime shift with emotion in his voice. Gone was the stuffy tenured professor who saw Dr. Anna as a rude upstart looking to take his place. She was now dealing with a man who wanted to stay in the field just a little while longer, a man who wanted to protect what might be his last major discovery before retirement. Diana might be being played like a cheap kazoo, but part of her doubted it. Professor Fauntleroy seemed sincere and Diana liked helping him out, so she would take a chance and accept the last-minute request.

    "It is no problem." Diana assured the man.

    "I don't need to sleep!" Ami chimed in. The professor seemed relieved that they had accepted his last-minute request for help protecting the valuables that had been recovered hours earlier.

    "Thank you both for doing this. I will return first thing in the morning." Professor Fauntleroy assured them before taking his thermos and leaving the tent for the evening. Diana and Ami then stood at opposite ends of the tent. Diana guarded the silver while Ami watched the entrance. This would be easy work because Diana was not going to sleep tonight anyway and Ami did not need to sleep at all. All they needed to do was make it until sunrise and the job would be complete.

    -Eight hours later, early morning-

    Diana and Ami had made it through the night and were greeted by Professor Fauntleroy with his ever-present cup of tea and thermos of tea plus a bag of Jewels for payment. Diana accepted the Jewels and Ami was excited to see the payday that they had worked so hard to get.

    "Thank you for watching over the silver, Diana and Ami. My assistants and I will have a lot of work to do in identifying the people who once lived here, but thanks to you and Ami we have a lot to work with. Not many early peoples had the metalworking skills or the access to silver necessary to make silver coinage, so that should narrow the list down quite a bit." Professor Fauntleroy thanked them for standing watch before assuring them that their work had not been wasted. Diana and Ami were glad to be of help and were glad to see another job completed. Now Diana could go home and sleep for awhile before looking for the next job.

    "We were glad to be of service. Good luck with your research." Diana said to the professor before leaving the tent with Ami following close behind. The professor bade them farewell and turned to start his research just as Zach and Kim entered the tent with armloads of books to help him. Diana and Ami had done their part to aid the professor and his assistants... now the rest was up to them.

    [Post Word Count: 894]
    [Total Word Count: 13,060/12,500]

      Current date/time is 19th October 2020, 2:57 pm