Book 6 - Mystery of Shadow Mountain - Chapter 41: Parkour Forth

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httyyd
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I said I was going to do two chapters, but didn't want to split this chapter up, so this chapter is probably worth two.

 

I hope you guys enjoy and things are going to pick up quickly at the end of this chapter.

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Rest in Peace NarixuZen.  2004-2017

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Links to my chapters are below along with links to my other five fan-fics.

 

The Mystery of Shadow Mountain

Finally posted links to all chapters to all books in my signature.

Chapter 48 - Four's Company, Six's a Crowd

The Mystery of Shadow Mountain, my sixth fan-fic in three years!  Updates every Friday Night!

 

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Here are links to the chapters of my fan-fic, The Clue of the Missing Socks.

Chapters 1 and 2                         Chapter 3                                       Chapter 4

Chapter 5                                      Chapter 6                                        Chapter 7

Chapters 8 and 9                        Chapter 10                                     Chapter 11

Chapters 12 and 13                     Chapters 14, 15, and 16             Chapter 17

Chapter 18                                    Chapter 19                                      Chapter 20

Chapter 21 and 22                      Chapter 23                                     Chapter 24 and 25

Chapter 26 - There is a hidden surprise.  Can you find it?

Chapter 27                                   Chapter 28, Part 1                         Chapter 28, Part 2

Chapter 29                                   Chapter 30                                       Chapter 31

Chapter 32                                   Chapter 33                                       Chapter 34

Chapter 35                                   Chapter 36                                       Chapter 37

Chapter 38                                   Chapter 39                                       Chapter 40

Chapter 41                                   Chapter 42                                       Chapter 43

Chapter 44                                   Chapter 45, Parts 1 and 2

 

Here are links to my sequel fan-fic:

The Mysterious Frozen Fire

Chapter 1         Chapter 2         Chapter 3         Chapter 4         Chapter 5         Chapter 6

Chapter 7         Chapter 8         Chapter 9         Chapter 10       Chapter 11       Chapter 12

Chapter 13       Chapter 14       Chapter 15        Chapter 16       Chapter 17       Chapter 18  

Chapter 19       Chapter 20      Chapter 21        Chapter 22, Part 1       Chapter 22, Part 2 

Chapter 22, Part 3

Epilogue/Preview for my Third Story!

 

Here are links to my Tri-quel fan-fic:

Thoughts of Guilt

Chapters 1 and 2          Chapters 3 and 4          Chapter 5          Chapter 6          Chapter 7

Chapter 8          Chapter 9          Chapter 10          Chapter 11          Chapter 12, Part 1

Chapter 12, Part 2          Chapter 13         Chapter 14         Chapter 15         Chapter 16

Chapter 17 and 18         Chapter 19         Chapter 20         Chapter 21         Chapter 22

Chapter 23         Chapter 24         Chapter 25         Chapter 26         Chapter 27

Chapter 28         Chapter 29         Chapter 30         Chapter 31         Chapter 32

Chapter 33         Chapter 34         Chapter 35         Chapter 36 and 37

Chapter 38, Part 1         Chapter 39, Part 2         Chapter 40, Part 3         Chapter 41

Chapter 42, Parts 1 and 2         Chapter 43         Chapter 44

Chapter 45, Part 1         Chapter 45, Part 2

 

On the Edge of Mystery

Chapter 1          Chapter 2         Chapter 3        Chapters 4 & 5    Chapter 6, Parts 1 and 2   

Chapter 7          Chapter 8         Chapter 9            Chapter 10       Chapter 11        Chapter 12

Chapter 13        Chapter 14       Chapter 15          Chapter 16        Chapter 17       Chapter 18

Chapter 19        Chapter 20       Chapter 21          Chapter 22       Chapter 23      Chapter 24

Chapter 25        Chapter 26       Chapter 27         Chapter 28        Chapter 29 Parts 1 and 2 

Chapter 30       Chapter 31       Chapter 32 and 33                         Chapter 34 Parts 1 and 2 

Chapter 35 Part 1         Chapter 35 Part 2        Chapter 35 Part 3        Chapter 36

 

The Secret Symbol

Chapter 1    Chapter 2    Chapter 3    Chapter 4    Chapter 5

Chapter 6    Chapter 7     Chapter 8    Chapter 9    Chapter 10

Chapter 11    Chapter 12    Chapter 13    Chapter 14    Chapter 15

Chapter 16    Chapter 17    Chapter 18    Chapter 19    Chapter 20

Chapter 21   Chapter 22   Chapter 23   Chapter 24 and 25

Chapter 26    Chapter 27    Chapter 28    Chapter 29 and 30

Chapter 31    Chapter 32    Chapter 33    Chapter 34    Chapter 35

Chapter 36    Chapter 37    Chapter 38    Chapter 39

Chapter 40 and 41    Chapter 42    Chapter 43, 44, 45, and 46

 

The Legend of Shadow Mountain

Chapter 1    Chapter 2    Chapter 3    Chapter 4    Chapter 5

Chapter 6    Chapter 7    Chapter 8    Chapter 9    Chapter 10

Chapter 11    Chapter 12    Chapter 13    Chapter 14    Chapter 15

Chapter 16   Chapter 17    Chapter 18    Chapter 19    Chapter 20

Chapter 21    Chapter 22    Chapter 23    Chapter 24    Chapter 25

Chapter 26    Chapter 27    Chapter 28    Chapter 29    Chapter 30

Chapter 31    Chapter 32    Chapter 33    Chapter 34    Chapter 35

Chapter 36    Chapter 37    Chapter 38    Chapter 39    Chapter 40

Chapter 41    Chapter 42    Chapter 43    Chapter 44    Chapter 45 & 46

Chapter 47    Chapter 48

 

 

 

httyyd's picture
httyyd
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Drums R Round. Pi R Squared.

         Elsa runs into the next cave about fifteen yards before stopping.  A glow of light increases as I get closer to her.  Stopping at Elsa’s right side, I see the whole picture.

         “Ain’t it awesome,” declared Elsa and spread her arms out showing this new cavern off.  “Alright, parkour forth.”

         I smirk as Elsa shoes her hands at me to get on with it, I add, “Is it not ‘isn’t.’”

         “No,” my little sister replies.  “Not it is not.  Ha, double negative.”

         Annabeth comments, “For the first puzzle, this sure seems simple enough.  Work your way across, by any means necessary and don’t die.”

         “Can we just fly over top again, like last time?” I wonder out loud.

         Angie shakes her head, “Not so fast.  While there is still enough room to do so, look down there.”

         Following where Angie is pointing, I see water below, over the edge of where we stand, “We don’t know if that is the contaminated water or no-.”

         “See?” Angie goes on.  “Our dragons will barely get close to the ledge here, let alone even think of flying over a giant pool of giant eels!”

         At her voicing there are eels, the dragons start growling.

         “If the fifty-foot drop ain’t… Isn’t bad enough,” I shoot a glance at Elsa; she grins at my slip up.  “The menacing pool of doom with an extra helping of electrifying eels are waiting too.”

         “Like I said,” Elsa waves her hands at me again.  “Parkour forth.”

         “Well,” I quip, slightly sarcastically.  “This is going to be fun.”

         With my eyes finally used to the blackness of the caves, the glow I saw before is coming from a ring of fire encircling this cavern.  The fire is reflecting off the water which is further lighting the cavern.

         “By the way,” I randomly ask.  “How did you guys get in the cavern before, in this first place?”

         Cazi responds, “We had gone far enough north that we came to the edge of the islands.  We also found the cove back there but saw there no place for us to hide our dragons.  So, we explored the cove and the caves around.  That’s when I nearly stumbled right into a small camp.  Not knowing if it was a Dragon Hunters’ camp or one of Fira’s camps, we quickly back tracked.  When I got back out, Hannah said she had found a cave leading further in land and farther underground, large enough for all of our dragons to hid.  This cave’s only entrance was on the edge of the island almost literally in the ocean.  I took a few branches and began sweeping up the tracks we all made, viking and dragon.  As I was almost done, Asvord came with her group and I forwarded the information about the cave.  They went on and I finished up what we were doing.  Thinking about you four that went out, I stayed above and waited.  When Angie and Hyrith came back, I spotted them, met them, and led them back here.  I did the same for you two, but only saw Annabeth.  She then had me go on and she waited for you.  I did come back to tell her that from the one cave you could get into the cavern, so in case she did get cut off from finding you and returning to the main entrance, she could go the other way.  The rest you know.”

         Annabeth adds, “I saw you coming Jarl, but it took me forever to get over to you as you went the opposite way, not to mention that the Hunters’ patrols had started.  One of the reasons why I went into the cave, had Cazi show me the side entrance, and then find you that way because there was a patrol coming right behind you, though obviously did not know you were there.”

         I nod in appreciation for knowing how I found the, or rather, how Annabeth found me.

         Much like the one we were previously in, this cavern one is lower into the earth.  Although, counting the water, this cavern may be an extra few feet deep because of the water.  Eels of this size can be in shallow water, as I had briefly spotted, on Defenders of the Wing Island, such a place on the way to the water chamber.  I was too pre-occupied with the closeness of another clue; so, I did not think of it being new to me until now.  I could have asked Mala about it.

         Studying the cavern some more, I notice something interesting.  In certain areas scattered throughout the maze there are pods or half spheres with strands of something tethering off them towards the other side of the cavern.  If I had to guess; I be fire is involved.  I could have one of our dragons fire from here, but there might be something more to this and I do not want to mess something up.

         Annabeth looks at me and says, “What are you thinking?”

         “Just that,” I reply as I walk back to Fredrick.  “Thinking.”

         Reaching into my saddlebags, I bring out and attach to my belt three more Zippleback Gas bombs.

         Annabeth continues, “What are you going to do?”

         I simply say, “Parkour forth.”

         The first pod is above me on top of the platform.  Annabeth asks another question wondering if I want anybody else to go with me.  I respond that I do not because I want to see what we are up against.

         There is about a foot gap between the ledge and a platform.  Stepping onto it, the pillar the platform is attached to shitfted and settled for a few seconds.  The weight of my body is probably the first weight it has seen, or felt rather, for quite a long time.  I freeze as my friends take a step forward at me, but I raise my left hand for them to stop; Fredrick reacts a bit more than the others but stops just the same as he too sees my hand.

         “I’m fine,” I state.  “Just have to be careful.  This the reason why only one person should go.”

         Elsa spoke up, “Be careful… Stupid.  I only have one idiot brother.”

         I chuckle and smile, “That you for instilling confidence in me.”

         “You’re welcome,” she adds, but with a hint of worry.

         This first platform is pretty simple: Step up to each platform in a spiral like staircase; oh, and do not fall to your death.  Going up and around once, I see the pod as I saw before.  Now able to study it closer, feeling and smelling its contents, my hunch is right.  So, I take one of my Zippleback Gas Bombs from my belt lay it in the pod and then I retract the hidden blade from my right bracer to strike the bomb.  The moment the blade broke the casing the bomb ignited.  With only a small spark that was all it needed to light the materials in the pod.  I felt a puff of air but the blow to the bomb casing was so slight, I suffered no ill effects by doing this.

         After a moment or two, a strand, laced with the same materials as the pod’s contents, also caught fire and races forward along the strand.  The sound of it igniting as it went is as impressive as the sight of this spectacle.  As the fire crossed the center of the cavern, four more strands caught fire and went out in diagonal directions away from the center.  Not only that, two tethers also caught fire going up and down from the center.  When these started, the diagonal strands lit a fire in the center of four more pillars with various platforms around them.  The fires seem to be in fire place of sorts, but they fireplaces are a bit unique as they now shine upwards, spot lighting the ceiling.  And guess what is now illuminating off the ceiling?

         Above each pillar is the marks for each clue of this mystery!

         Come to think about it these marks have always been presented as puzzle pieces.  There were clues to find the puzzle pieces, but this mystery just keeps getting bigger by the second.

         Cazi is the first to remark to this amazing sight, “What the bliss is this?”

         Her quippy remark brought me back to reality, “Hey!”

         I declared, “You used my exclamation, but with your own spin.  I was going to say, ‘What the yak is that?’”

         “Well,” she retorts back.  “Wouldn’t my own spin make it mine, in my own style?”

         “Yes,” I agree, but then quip.  “At least I was your inspiration.”

         Cazi’s shoulders dropped after my remark, she grunts, and walks back a few steps before coming forward again.

         “Bliss… This is amazing…,” Cazi mutters but loud enough for us all to hear. “Whatever.”

         I half expect more strands to ignite, but waiting a few seconds, it does not happen.

         “I think it is done,” Angie remarked.

         With this new light shining on this puzzle, the other four pillars can be clearly seen with all the platforms.  There are two pillars of equal distance away from me.  Looking at the platforms, the pillar to my right will be the easier one to get to.  Both platforms are about fifteen yards away from me.  Also, looking up at the ceiling, the puzzle piece symbol of the Speed Stinger’s tail is the one to my left.  So, I look for a way over to that one.

         I see a few strands of vine hanging down from the ceiling.  Using these by swinging over, I can make my way over.  The first strand is only a foot or two away from the edge of the pillar’s top I am currently standing on.

         Reaching out to grab it, Annabeth then says in a worried tone, “Those vines may not hold your weight, so be careful.”

         “I am thinking the same thing,” I concurred, then took aim with my grappling hook and fired it to the top edge of the pillar.  “Just in case.”

         Tugging at the Gronckle Iron chain a few times, to make sure it is taught, I take a deep breath in and breathe out.  Then I step back, run a few strides forward, and leap out.  The first strand holds my weight as I swing.  This vine is a good thickness.  If I am not mistaken, this is actually a rope but a plant vine has grown over the rope so much so that it is more vine than rope.  The next strand is about five yards from me.  Swinging, I see that I will not make the jump successfully, so, I take one extra swing.  Now I can clearly make the jump, so much so that all I need is to merely grab the next vine and let go of the first one.  I do so with no problems.  My momentum could have carried me to jump on to the next vine but taking the extra swing to ensure that all I have to do is grab the next one, felt safer.  Grabbing the next vine, I see again that I could have leapt to the next pillar on the first try but wanted to be safer than unsure.

         But when I start to swing forward, the rope vine snaps!

         “Jarl!!” Annabeth screams.

         Though caught by surprise, I instinctively reach for my grappling hook line, grab as high as I could on the line, then contort my body so that I can use my feet to brace for the impact of hitting the pillar.  My feet slow me down enough that I only bump the side of the pillar.  The pillar shifts a bit and I freeze to not cause it too much of a stir.  From behind me, however, I hear a hissing sound.

         Glancing behind me, I see a Giant Eel standing up out of the water, I remark, “Hey, how’s it goin’?”

         Before it could do anything else, I white blast of fire is shot, striking the Giant Eel.  It cowers in fear, diving underneath the water.  Quickly reacting, I start pulling myself up the side of the pillar by walking up with my feet and grabbing the grappling hook line as I go.  Within seconds I am up about five yards before the eel could resurface and attack again.  It sees that I am out of its range and dives under again.

         “That was close,” I declare as I continue upwards.  “Thanks, Anora.”

         She gives a short roar, Annabeth replies, “Though they don’t want to fly over the area, they will by all means have no problem shooting at the eels.”

         I reach the top of the pillar and pull myself up and over the edge.  Rolling onto my back to take a brief breather, I then unhook the grappling hook from the chain, attach a new hook from my belt, and then retract the line by hand.

         Walking around the fireplace a couple of times, studying what I should be looking for, I spot something.  Underneath the fireplace is a little gap that is open from the other side and from the left and right but is covered up by the rock around the legs of the fireplace.

         Annabeth questions, “What are you seeing?”

         Reaching into the gap, I feel an object.  Pulling it out and holding it in the light, I see that it is an actual puzzle piece!

         “The first piece of this puzzle,” I declare.  “Each pillar has something I need to solve this first puzzle.”

         I ask for an empty saddlebag or shoulder bag.  Angie gives her shoulder bag, after dumping its contents in her saddlebags.  It only had a notebook, a charcoal pencil, a spy glass, and some dried fruit.  I am about to ask what I wanted Annabeth to do with it, but instead she does want I wanted without asking her.  She takes my bow, that I had before the new one I made, from the back of my Fredrick’s saddle, draws an arrow from my second quiver next to where the bow was, then wraps the shoulder strap of the bag around the arrow and makes a lose knot, and finally loads the arrow onto the bow and drawing back, she fires.  The arrow makes its mark a few inches below the top edge of pillar.  I untie the knot and taking the first puzzle piece I put it into the bag.

         Putting the strap over my head and onto my left shoulder, I push the bag around to my back, “Thank you.  You read my mind.”

         Annabeth grins, then I tease, “But I am glad the bag was on the arrow to make the arrow dip down, because you were aiming at me,” Annabeth opens her mouth to say something back, but I jump in.  “But you did that because you remembered from what I taught you that when firing an arrow with a heavier payload, you must aim higher than you think for the arrow to travel the distance that you want.”

         Even from over here, I hear Annabeth sigh, “Whoever came up with the idea of the Honey and Hatchet routine?”

         I quip, “I kind of did the reverse of that.”

         Alright, now back to business.  After placing the puzzle piece in the bag and securing the flap to keep the puzzle piece in the bag, as I will be physically active and I do not want it to fall out, I see that I obviously cannot go back the way I came.  From the first pillar, I could have gone to the right as there were vines that way too.  But now that the last vine on this side snapped, I have to go the next route.

         From the direct right side of the pillar, if facing the direction to the back of the cavern, I see a path of wooden platforms linked together by some sort of mesh bridge of ropes and chains.  Testing the first platform, it feels rather firm with very little giggling from the mesh bridge.  It seems firm enough, but to be safe her than sorry, I decide to run across the bridge.

         Going back to the edge of the pillar, I run forward.  The first platform is in front of me, but from here on, it alternates left and right at a diagonal.  So, my strides go back and forth.  But because I am going so fast, I skip the last platform, and dive into a somersault, stopping my momentum, rolling onto the next platform.

         I say under my breath, “I half expected the bridge to fall out from under me and I would have had to jump and somersault anyway.”

         Looking up I see that the symbol above is that of the Triple Stryke, the second symbol puzzle piece we found.  Also, looking in the same place as before, I find a second puzzle piece under the fireplace.  I take the first one and see how it fits with the one I have now.  They are both of the same material, though both are severely rusted, they do not go together.  The other two must be the two which fit together with these I have.

         Seeing what is in front of me, I plot a path.  There are platforms, but they are turned sideways, with only the forty or so foot drop directly ahead.  The platforms are four feet apart from each held in place by ropes.  The ropes are secured to the pillar I am standing on and attached to the next pillar in line by more ropes.  This is basically a rope bridge spanning the fifteen-yard gap without the part to walk on.

         I take my bow sword off my belt and unfold it to bow configuration and then move the specific parts of the bow to flatten it into the staff.  It is an improved version of the staff from my previous bow as this one lays flatter than the last bow.  I do not often use either of my bows as staffs.  Only do I use the staff configuration as a tool to aid me in parkouring.  Rarely, if ever, have I used the staffs as a weapon.  In the larger battles, I haven’t even used the staffs.

         With my staff ready, I fire my grappling hook to the next pillar for the same reason as I did last time.  I then set my staff on the platforms so that it is balanced between the two.  There are hand holds where I can comfortable hold onto the bow.  I do not let go of the bow as I set the bow on the platforms.  Stretching my arms out as far as I can, I reach the staff forward.  I do this to save as much energy as I can without having to leave the pillar.  Once I could reach no further, I gently lower my body and slide my legs off the pillar.  I am now holding up all of my weight by just my grip on my staff.  Keeping my forearms perpendicular to my biceps.  I use this “L” shape for both arms to keep my arms from tiring out.

         Now, I start making my way over.  I subtly swing back and forth a couple of times before I jump my staff forward by throwing my hips forward and reaching out my staff with my arms.  I jumped the staff about five feet forward.  Quickly, I find a rhythm jumping my staff all the way, doing it the same way I did the first time.  Each proceeding time, I made the staff jump a little further each time.  Three minutes later, I am within reach of the other pillar.  I take one big swing and kick my legs up and over to rest them on the pillar.  Little by little, I inch my legs forward and bring my staff closer to the pillar.  When I am able to get my bottom on the pillar, I sit up, and roll onto my back.

         “Whew,” I let out a sigh as I am a bit out of breath.

         A minute later, I unhook my grappling hook and replace it again.  I do as I did with the last two and look under the fire place to see yet another puzzle piece.  Just by looking at the third one, I know that it fits together with the other two.  I put it in the bag with the other two.  By the way, the symbol puzzle piece above this is the one that we know is for Berserker Island, though only by process of elimination.  It would be nice at some point to actually find that clue.

         I see another type of bridge in front of me, similar to the one before, but this time there are several platforms.  Some are on their sides, some are right side up, and some are over each other with various gaps between them.  Within a couple of minutes, I spot my path through this small maze.  By using my agility, I run basically a straight forward line yet combining jumping, dodging, and vaulting the platforms to trailblaze my way.

         First, I jump onto a platform and run forward.  Then I vault over a sideways platform facing me.  I work my way around to the right by running and jumping between a few platforms before I vault another platform.  As my feet land on the next platform, I jump up and roll to my right as there is no room for me to stand up.  I land onto the next platform, and it is literally a hop, skip, and a jump to the next platform.

         Repeating the process, I find the final puzzle piece and take note that it is under the Eruptodon symbol.  The path in front of me is a lot easier than the ones before.  However, it is still dangerous as there are leveled off stalagmites that are very small and could topple over easy if I am not careful.  I step across a few rows of these to the ledge platform on the other side, spanning about twenty yards across and about five yards to the far wall.  I then run towards the center of the fall wall, guided by the on-fire strands that are all leading towards a small fireplace.

         I look to what is in front of the fireplace on the wall and see an opening on the wall that looks like the puzzle pieces are for.  Taking them out of the shoulder bad, I put them in their respective slots.  They create a sort of wreath with a gap in the middle.  Pushing the puzzle pieces into the wall, I step back.  A few moments later, they start sinking themselves further into the wall as the center piece starts coming at me.  This piece makes a half rotation before falling onto the ground.  It rolls and taps my feet.  There is a housing in this cylinder.  Inside… Inside is a…

         “A Dragon Eye lens!” I declare.  “But twice if not three times the size of the Dragon Eye that Hiccup has.”

         “What?” Annabeth calls back.

         They must not be able to hear me, so I will wait to tell them when I get back.  As I put the larger Dragon Eye lens in the shoulder bag, I hear a faint rumbling noise and feel the ground start to vibrate.  My stomach sank as a terrible though went through my head.  I instinctively started running back the way I came.  The moment I made it across the stalagmites, the rumbling turns into thunder and the vibrations turn into the ground shaking!

         The cavern is going to cave in!

         I do not have much in the way of time to plot a path, so I just go.  By doing so, I found a much quicker way of going over the maze.  I made the turn to the rope platform bridge and the portion of the ceiling with the symbol from Berserker Island over me collapses and races downward!  With no time to wait, I just run over top the edge of the right platform bridge.  I run as fast as I can but not enough to lose my balance.  By this time, debris from the ceiling is falling down.  I hear what sounds like the pillar crumbling and falling down, but I do not stop to look back.

         When one is running for your life, you amaze yourself at what you can do.  I made it safely across the edge of the platforms by merely running across the top.  A lot easier than what I did before, but ten times as dangerous.  A minute later, I continue running forwards bypassing my initial route, and jumping off the pillar, grabbing onto the vine closest the pillar, swinging my way forward.  Just as I am reaching the peak of my swing on the other side, I let go, immediately reach for my grappling hook, fire it towards the cave my friends are in, and swing on the grappling line.  The arc takes me going towards the opening.  When I think I know I can make it, I detach the grappling line from my bracer, and fly through the air, crashing into Annabeth, Asvord, and Angie, who were standing near the edge.

         I scramble to my feet as I glance back around to see the entire cavern being obliterated by the cave-in, I exclaim, “Come on!”

         I let my friends start first running back through the cave.  As I jump on Fredrick to do the same, the ground beneath us starts to crack.  The sound is almost like a whole tree splitting in two.  Fredrick uses his wings to grant him some more power to get going and we escape into the other cavern.

         Not satisfied with the safety of this cavern, I tell my friends to continue on out the way that they came in.

         We all swiftly file out the last cave and then fly up into the air.  Finally, back outside, we look back at the island to see the entire area where we were under ground take everything that was above ground with it as it imploded.  The only thing close by it was the cove.  Only the edge of the cove remains.  The cave in took about a seventy-yard area of the ground above with it.

         Angie then asks the question of the minute, “I hope Vixxen did not hear that.  Do you think she did?”

         “Not unless she is the heaviest sleeper in the world,” I declared.  “Besides, the patrols no doubt heard it.”  As my friends look to me for what to do next, I quickly order, “I guess the rescue starts now.  Let’s go!”