Welcome back. I hope everyone had a wonderful weekend. =)
Reader’s have voted to crawl through the vent in hopes of escaping the giant’s prison. Read on to find out what happens and be sure to vote at the end for the last choice in this adventure.
Giant Town Option Bb: Vent
Although the window sounds like the easy way out, you’re suspicious of it. It sounds too easy.
“Let’s try the vent,” you tell Alexander.
He hums a surprised “huh” but without further question, you hear him move and his large hand wraps around you. He must be able to see better in the dark because he doesn’t fumble around.
You lift into the air with a swift, nauseating whoosh. Then you hear something crack and the metal grate over the vent clangs against the floor.
“I know you can’t see,” Alexander says as he sets you down,”but you’re in the vent now. Walk directly away from my voice until you reach a wall, then reach up. There’ll be a ledge you can lift yourself onto. The vent continues like that in steps. When you hear the whoosh, you’ll know you’re near a fan. There are three. Good luck.”
Three fans. He didn’t give you any advice about getting past them but then, maybe he doesn’t know anything. Considering the size of the vent, maybe humans helped in their construction.
You hit a wall and reach up, exploring with your fingers until you find the ledge. You’re just tall enough to make this work. Hoisting yourself up, you feel around until you figure out the vent’s direction and then you continue on, listening to your breathing echo in the tight confines and your steps lightly swish against the stone floor.
The whooshing of the first fan starts not long after the next ledge. At first it’s faint but as you continue, it grows to the point that your ears throb with the whoop-whoop of the blades.
The floor sloops against your soles and, after exploring with your hands above you, you realize the vent is no longer square but circular.
Air presses against you like a strong wind. It’s moving but it’s not cool. Instead it’s warm and heavy with moisture.
You feel around the walls but don’t find anything like a lever or switch to shut the fan off. Since you can’t see the blades, you decide to simply try to stop the thing.
Taking your pack off, you pull out an anchor you brought for repelling. Although your rope is outside, you still have the rest of your gear. You get as close to the fan as you dare and place your hand on the floor, feeling the whoosh of air after each blade passes. You count. One, two, three. Then shove the anchor into the path of the next blade. You let go as soon as you feel resistance.
It’s a good thing you do because the blade grinds against the anchor, dragging it for a moment across the tunnel. It screeches, making the throb in your ears tighten to a high pitched ringing. But then silence. The air turns muggy on your skin.
Tentatively exploring, you find the fan has five blades. The bottom one is bent into a bow shape and your anchor feels mangled beyond recognition. You slip through the still blades and leave the anchor behind.
A moment after pulling your feet free, the bowed blade lets out a dying screech and snaps. The next blade hits your anchor and tosses it into the vent wall. You hear the thud and duck just in time to miss its rebound.
The whooshing returns with a slightly different sound. Less air resistance with only four blades.
Your heart’s barely returned to its normal rate by the time you reach the next fan. Due to your close call on the first one, you search the walls a little harder this time and find an odd indentation in the right hand wall. It’s round but doesn’t seem to have a handle or anything. Giving up on it, you turn and lean, preparing yourself for the next anchor placement.
The indentation gives way under your weight. It slides inward. Pushing it harder, you find it slides in and to the side, opening up what you’d guess is an access tunnel circumventing the fan. Relief runs through your veins.
The third fan’s a cinch since it has the same access tunnel. You’re sure the first one had it too, you just didn’t search hard enough to find it.
Exiting the vent into the vent room, you find a square room full of humming machinery. This room must keep air flowing throughout the entire city. You traverse it and peek out the door to find a walkway running to your right and left. To your right is a door and then the walkway ends with a railing. To your left it spirals downward into the city.
If you head right you can free Alexander. He might be telling you the truth and you’ll be shown the treasure. Or he might just be playing you in order to free himself.
If you head left, maybe you can find the treasure on your own but then you’ll be leaving Alexander to wait for the next treasure hunter to be dropped into his prison.
Bb1. Free Alexander?
Bb2. Leave him?
(Please post a comment with your choice. One vote per comment per day please but comment as much as you like=) Voting will end at 8pm Mountain Time Wednesday. Thursday I’ll post whichever option gets the most votes and we’ll see where the adventure finishes!)