Ice still didn't like it, but at least wasn't throwing as much of a fit as she had in the past. That would probably change if she had to have anything to do with the water. Nerius was on his own down there though, and it was easier than he'd expected to find the crystal. The greenish glow made it easy to see, though it was even further down than he'd expected. It was a good thing he had the amulet, he doubted he'd be able to hold his breath long enough to get down to it.
It was about twenty five feet down, and very dark, the light of the crystal made the stone easy to see, but didn't do much to light the surrounding area. Nerius really hoped there weren't any large, nasty critters living down there. Being able to sense danger was great, but didn't do much if he couldn't actually get away from a beastie.
He couldn't use his fire magic underwater either, which made for a somewhat limited ability to defend himself. But luckily, nothing popped out of the darkness as Nerius swam down to the crystal. It was wedged in a large crack through one of the stone outcrops; he'd brought the chisel down for that reason, larger tools he wouldn't have been able to effectively swing underwater. The chisel was adequate though, and after a bit of careful scraping, digging, and prying, Nerius was able to remove the chaos crystal.
Ice had continued to pace up above, still waiting for Nerius to return to the surface. She was never happy about water, but she liked the situation less and less the longer he was down there. The gem dragon wasn't even searching for gems at the point, there could have been a ruby right under her nose, and it wouldn't have distracted her.
She'd have to wait a bit longer though, because even though he'd retrieved the chaos crystal, Nerius sensed something else. More thrumming of magic, another crystal, even deeper down into the lake. This one wasn't water either though, too lite and airy. A wind crystal? Odd to find that element so far under water, but it easily could have been moved by creatures, tunnel collapse, or running water.
He couldn't see it from here, which was odd, the glow should have been visible, and Nerius hoped it wasn't under the stone floor somehow. As he got closer to it though, he realized the floor was more uneven than the rest, it looked like a large amount of stalactites had fallen in the past, and there were now large piles of rubble. Ice really wasn't liking how long he'd been down there, and the gem dragon slowly, hesitantly, walked closer to the edge of the water, peering in.
She was looking for Nerius, but of course couldn't see him, he'd swam down and away much too far to be visible from the shore. The stalactite pile was pretty far into the lake, not that he could tell from down there. He swam down further to the piles of rock, the thrum of magic was getting much stronger, he had to be close.
The stalactite piles weren't the easiest thing to search through, he had no hope of moving them, but after a bit of hunting, spotted a pale golden glow. It was half under a fallen stalactite, not enough to crush it, but enough to obscure the glow from to far away. It was easy to pick up though, just lightly wedged against the stone. Something else shiny caught his eye, and for a moment Nerius hoped it was another crystal, but it was too rounded. Just an ordinary crystal, but he'd take it just the same.
Nerius didn't sense any other sources of magic, a shame, but he had been quite fortunate with his find already. Two magical crystals within a few minutes of each other was nothing to complain about. It would be nice to get out of the water too, Nerius was well acclimated to cold, but even he found the temperature unpleasant. There could still be other gems of the non magical variety around, and he wasn't so eager to get out of the water that he wouldn't take a look around first. It was hard to see with only the dim light of the algae, but there was something that didn't look like stalagtite rock.
If Nerius wanted to get out of the water, than Ice really wanted him to get out of the water. She still couldn't see him, and he'd been down there an awfully long time, and the gem dragon made unhappy noises as she waited.
The shiny bit wasn't far, and it took only a few seconds for Nerius to swim over. It was rounded, pale, and shimmery (huh, that would describe himself too), but it in the poor lighting, Nerius couldn't tell specifically what it was. It was only lightly wedged between two fallen stalactites, and it wasn't hard to him to remove the mystery stone. It was something of value at least, and he looked around for anything else, so far it seemed like a lot of crystals and gems had gotten washed down into the lake.
...Wait, did something just move? Nerius had been looking for gems, not living creatures, but he was pretty sure the shadows had moved. It was hard to tell in the dim light, and he didn't see anything now, but...
Ice had no idea what was going on down there, but if she had, she would have wanted Nerius out of the water even more.
Nerius kept still as he stared into the murky water, looking for any sign of movement. All was still for a while, and Nerius was almost ready to think he hadn't really seen anything, but then he felt the crawling buzz of danger, and turned his head just in time to see a flash of scaly flesh vanish around an outcropping of stone.
Okay, it was time to get out of the water.
He didn't sense any more magic, and didn't have any way to defend himself down here, it just wasn't worth it. Nerius didn't want to swim straight up, and have whatever it was circling around underneath him. He knew which way was back to the shore, he'd swim in the that direction, and might even be able to use the fallen stalactites as cover.
Up above, Ice was starting to pace, scratching at the ground not to dig, but out of aggravation.
Nerius started his journey back to the shore, keeping low and to the stalactites. He still felt that crawling sense of danger, and every so often he could see a flash of scales out of the corner of his eyes. It probably wasn't a pliathor, or not a full sized one at least. The water wasn't that deep, and a fully grown pliathor wouldn't have fit, and certainly wouldn't be able to hide. It was still bigger than he was, the occasional view of scales was enough to tell that.
The swim was tense, but uneventful.. until he reached the end of the stalactites. The floor was still uneven, but it was also very open, and there was plenty of space for something big to swim at him.
Ice was still switching between scrabbling anxiously at the ground, and peering into the water. Though Nerius had gotten closer to the shore, she still couldn't see any sign of him.
Nerius cautiously looked around, he could still feel the buzzing sense of threat, but it wasn't any worse than it had been so far, and he couldn't see any sign of the creature. Now was as good a time as he'd get to make a break for it, though Nerius still wasn't looking forward to it. But he couldn't stay down here forever, and Nerius headed out into the open. He'd decided to try for stealth over speed, he doubted he could out swim the beast, and vigorous movements were likely to attract its attention.
And it worked... mostly. Nerius managed to make it most the way back to the ledge, he could even see the 'wall' from where he was. But that was where the uneventful part ended. Nerius suddenly felt a sharp spike of danger, and he reacted without really thinking, launching himself upward by pushing off the floor. He could see a flash of fangs as something large shot through where he had been. The motion was enough for even Ice up above to see, and the gem dragon's screech echoed across the cavern.
The time for stealth was over, the creature had spotted him, and wanted to eat him as a snack. Or the whole damn meal, really, Nerius was surely a far better meal that whatever lived down here.
It would take it a moment to circle back around, it couldn't swim backwards at least, and Nerius took the opportunity to swim for the surface ledge as fast as he could. He was almost to the surface, but in his peripheral vision he could see it turning back around for another go.
There was the ledge! He burst out of the water, grabbing onto the ledge a few yards away from the gem dragon, scrabbling as quickly as he could to get out of the water. He was halfway out of the water, but he wasn't fast enough, and Nerius felt fangs bite into his lower leg, and his scream of pain echoed throughout the lake cavern.
It didn't let go either, and it pulled, intent on dragging him back under the water. Nerius hadn't had the best balance on the ledge, as frantic as his climb had been, and he slipped a little at first, before scrabbling at the stone for a better grip. It helped, but not enough, and Nerius did the only thing he could think of, to twist around and hurl a spell at it. Fire wouldn't do anything to it in the water, but he could still constrict it. He outstretched a hand to the creature, before curling it into a gripping motion as he cast the pressurize spell.
The beast didn't like that, and it screeched as the spell took effect, pausing in its attempt to drag him under the water, but didn't let go. That wasn't good, but before Nerius could even start to think of a plan B, help came from an unexpected source. With an angry screech, Ice launched herself at the monster's face.
The gem dragon was tiny compared to the serpent like creature, but she went for the eyes. Her sharp, hard claws were made for burrowing through solid stone, and soft eyes and flesh offered little resistance. The creature shrieked, letting go of Nerius' leg as it tried to remove the familiar from its face. It had no forelimbs to help with that, and it thrashed its head side to side, trying to remove the angry gem dragon.
Nerius took advantage of the monster's distraction to clamber back up onto the ledge and out of the water. He was concerned about Ice, but he was no help in the water. But as it turned out, he didn't need too. Once he was safely away from the water monster, she let go of the beast's face, flying upwards into the cavern and out of the creature's reach. She hovered for a moment, before making a beeline back to the shore where Nerius was.
The monster shrieked again, but made no move to attack the flying familiar, and sunk back down under the water. Ice hardly noticed, who skidded to a landing beside Nerius, who grabbed his pack from the floor, before getting as far from the waterline as he could, limping over to the wall where he slid down to sit on the floor for a rest.
Well, that had been a more exciting swim than he'd been anticipating, and not in a good way. He didn't really want to do anything other than rest for the moment, but the gem dragon drew his attention. She was very concerned, making sad little chirps as she looked between his injured leg and his face. "Don't worry, I've survived worse," Nerius reassured the upset gem dragon, giving a pained smile, and patting her on the head. She didn't look very convinced, and gently flopped her head and forelimbs onto his non-injured leg.
It wasn't exactly ideal timing for this sort of injury either, he was still looking for a way out, but at least he could still walk on the leg. Nerius would have rather rested longer, but the leg was bleeding a good amount, and he'd best tend to it as soon as possible. Thankfully he had a first aid kit, and the knowledge of how to use it, and he took the kit out of his pack before turning his attention to the leg itself.
Nerius hissed in pain, grimacing as he rolled up the pants leg for a better look. Ice whined in sympathy, looking at him sadly, but there wasn't anything the gem dragon could do to help. The puncture wounds were deep, but thankfully the creature's teeth had been conical rather than serrated, and the skin wasn't too mangled. He'd need to sterilize it first, though he'd still want to get it looked at professionally later.
Silver: That's okay, things can change a bit. :3
Sept 27, 2021 5:42:43 GMT -6
Twilight-Claw: Since the Bellafaux are the dumbed down but bigger version of them. Love the fact that they got stats of their own now though! Finally they can be trained! <3
Sept 27, 2021 0:06:11 GMT -6
Twilight-Claw: Hmm, for some reason it doesn't feel as if the Bellaroxi has the right move set when looking at the old entry of them in text.
Sept 27, 2021 0:05:02 GMT -6
Renathan: -points at the sushi monster- Him go 3 Miles an Hour. Lookit him go.
Sept 26, 2021 21:31:10 GMT -6
Twilight-Claw: That just means rl has caught up with you, it can happen. X3
Sept 23, 2021 10:10:22 GMT -6
Renathan: I'm gonna have to get caught up on all the updates, I've let myself fallen behind sooo badly.
Sept 22, 2021 4:47:08 GMT -6