31 – Drop Chute15-Sep-08
You are in a well-lit section of the vault at the north end of a long corridor. To the north is a large room filled with refuse. To the south is the elevator room, about 100 feet distant. Further south, you spotted movement of a large creature dashing across the corridor, but it was too far away to make out details.
Olive has rushed ahead to the edge of the elevator shaft room and activated his repulsion field. The rest of the party is still at the northern end of the lit corridor, just outside the doorway to the large refuse-filled room.
You remain wary for an assault, but the minutes pass without any further signs of movement.
Rasputin formulates and outlines a plan: “Right. The creature may have gone, it may be attempting to flank us, or it may be gathering up some friends. Let us create barriers across both open exits in the large room. We can keep watch over the room with the shaft while we search the room. If all seems clear at this point, we can make our approach to the shaft.”
Gene agrees: “Sounds good, Ras. Let’s move quickly.” Gene takes charge of the retainers. They move into the refuse-filled room and they begin constructing blockades while the remaining party members stand on guard.
Not everyone is convinced, however. Ibben’s immaterial voice speaks up (he is still invisible): “Pah, that will take too much time! I say we head down now while we have the chance.” He proceeds south, towards the elevator shaft.
Apollo shares Ibben’s opinion on the situation. “We are wasting time…” he mutters, as if to himself. Then, as if reaching some conclusion, he spins on his heel and strides quietly but purposefully towards where Rasputin and Gene have set about constructing a makeshift barricade. Allowing the light to once again follow its natural path, he drifts back into the view of the others and speaking with urgency in his voice states “We waste time here preparing for a battle that may not come – let us press on to our goal and be free of this stench-filled vault as quickly as we may. I fear, too, that no barricade we could build in such a short time would provide substantial defense against whatever awaits us out there”. Apollo gestures with a brief nod towards the distant southern corridor. Whilst waiting for a reply, Apollo almost automatically checks each of his irons in turn, confirming that both are loaded and ready for use, should the need arise.
Gene considers Apollo’s comments. “I guess you are right, this barrier will have to be sufficient, lets not wait for an attack.” Gene and the retainers abandon their task and prepare to move on.
Aka-Vasha looks on with annoyance as the party is split between setting up defense, and moving onwards.
Olive says nothing, continuing to hold his position near the elevator shaft room with repulsion field active until either an attack comes or the party decides to move forward or continue with construction of the barrier. Whatever the group decides, Olive will follow.
“No point not setting up defenses while our scouts are out scouting,” points out Rasputin mildly, and continues with the makeshift barrier along with the retainers (who are becoming somewhat confused as to what they are supposed to be doing).
(While Ibben and Yobo proceed to the drop chute, Rasputin and the retainers will continue with the barricade (they will take 1 full turn to complete). Olive stands guard near the elevator room, and the other party members remain at the north end of the corridor. They still have a clear line of sight to the elevator shaft and Yobo’s progress.)
With most of the party divided between guarding and half-hearted barricade building, Ibben – still cloaked in invisibility – and Yobo make their way south to the drop chute. Ibben reaches the shaft first, and peers down into its depth.
Similar in nature to the vertical shaft you found when first entering the vault, this one is dimly-lit, with open doorways on the east and west sides. The top of the shaft is blocked by a metallic sphincter; looking down you see that it continues for several hundred feet. Inside are two tracks opposite each other, running down the vertical length of the shaft. Handles protrude from these tracks, and unlike the first shaft, the tracks here are moving – one up, and the other down!
The rest of the party observes from their location in the refuse-filled room. With Ibben still invisible, they can only see Yobo. Apollo calls out in hushed tones: “Yobo, what can you see down there? How far down does it go?”
Yobo peers into the dimly-lit chute. His keen eyesight picks out several openings down the shaft that Ibben couldn’t see. These appear to be ‘exits’ at other levels; the first of which are about 30 feet below, there may be one or two more exits much further down. The diminutive mutant snake reports what he sees to the others.
Ibben tests the shaft with his echolocation and confirms that the doorways are open 30 feet below. Speaking quietly, he remarks: “We could grab a hold of the downward-moving handles and descend into the depths.”
What are your actions?