Log:Exploring the Doom Garden
|Exploring the Doom Garden
21 July, 2017
The Lost venture into the garden to explore.
Isolde gives a look to the sand as they walk and she tries to stay on the stone. Not because of ruining her shoes, mainly for fear of what's in the sand if there is anything. "Guys, try not to go off the stones. Makes me paranoid because we all know there's probably something wanting to eat us." she murmurs. Paranoid? Maybe.
Staying on the stones doesn't see something too difficult of a task for Mina. She hops from one to the next, as needed. "Not sure that anything lives in the sands, but I'm not sure about everything else," she muses. And while she keeps an eye on the whole group, it's C.B. that she gives the most attention to. Because good boyfriends are hard to find, yo.
Beatrice is just a taller stone, that happens to be moving. She walks along the path with the slow deliberate motions of someone getting ready to take a charge from a Minotaur and respond with a Suplex.
Even C.B. seems to be doing okay with these stones. He occasionally glances back at Mina with an intense, fraught sort of look to him. Yossarian eventually hops out and just runs along the stones himself, because what Changeling could move as dexterously as a cat? Well...probably some Changelings, but certainly not C.B.
It's funny that Mina should mention things living in the sand, because by the rock Isolde is standing on, something moves under the sand, but never surfaces. Something small. Ish. Perhaps 6 inches across, but a good six feet long. But then it disappears.
"It's more like the Sand Worms from Beetlejuice. I always feel like I'm going to run into out here in the Hedge." Isolde chuckles. There's a bit of a look to the sand and she gives a frown, "Aw you gotta be kidding me..." she hisses out as she sees the thing move. "Something just moved in the sand." she shakes her head.
"Oh, great. Shai-Hulud." It's not the black and white monstrosity in her mind, but close enough, as Mina flashes a smile towards Isolde. Oh so casually, she checks her bow. Not paranoid, not at all. Watching Yossy as he moves along, and reassuringly back to C.B. "We've got this," she assures, making eye contact. She's a horrible liar, but she's also an optimist.
Beatrice continues on with care, since she is the unofficial pointwoman for this group. "Everything here is wanting to kill us. Do not suggest lingering in one place."
C.B. catches the second reference, but not the first. It's enough to make him take the safety off his pistol, which is still in hand. "What? What are you guys seeing?" His eyes scan the sand as though he can't believe he didn't notice anything -- his Danger Sense is usually top notch, after all. But he does make eye contact with Mina, and he nods back. "Well, we might not, but we sure as fuck might have to try." He's a realist, if anything. Then he nods in Beatrice's direction, hastening his pace. "Right. Move faster!" He does! Yossarian is way ahead of him.
For the moment, whatever it is under the sand doesn't bother the group. However, the path that leads to the cottage takes them right past the oak tree with the gallowsroot. Directly under the branches and those dangerous vines.
"Don't have to tell me to move twice." Isolde states as she heads up with the rest of the group, careful not to step off the stones and into the sand. She moves deftly over the stones, but makes sure not to get tangled in the Gallowsroot. "Don't let the Gallowsroot touch you." she reminds them.
Move faster. Stay away from the Gallowsroot. Don't die. They're directions that Mina takes to heart. "Right," she murmurs. A roll of her shoulders, and she's crouching down, staying the fuck away from those vines as best she can, even if she almost makes a four-legged lope a few times to make sure there's plenty of distance between her and them.
Beatrice continues along. Despite her hulking size she is very flexible. Sure, avoiding the gallowsroot requires her to do that absurd crouch walk from Metal Gear, but she does it with the grace of an unsuspicious crate of unusual size.
Yeah, C.B. takes all of those directions to heart, too -- until he doesn't. At some point, while trying to avoid those vines, he slips right off of his feet and into the sand...not the acidic sand, thank the gods for that, but into the sand he goes, with a very loud "FUCK!!!!" So...no one is going to not notice him falling in, at least.
True, his companions can certainly notice his fall easily enough, but they're not the only ones either. There's movement in the sand all around them, though nothing immediately by him. But at least one of those sand dwellers is starting to move toward him, almost circling toward him. And is he...sinking?
The fuck does indeed catch Isolde's attention. The Doctor spins around to see where CB went and when she sees him falling into the sand there's a look to the sand and then back to him as she bleeds glamour out as she moves forward. The Bright One reaches down quickly and with inhuman strength jerks CB up and out of the sand by the back of his shirt. Leaving him hanging in the air for a minute, "You're alright." she tells him with a smile and then settles him down. Damsel saved. Nothing to see here!
Mina spins around on her toes as she hears that familiar voice, giving familiar word. If a bit louder than she's used to. She looks panicked for a moment, and is starting to run for him, but Isolde is already there, yanking him handily out of the thankfully not red sand. "Jesus fuck," she says with a hand over her heart. Watching that movement in the sand, her own body coiled.
Beatrice glances back at the sound of distress. At the sight that everything is managed as far as CB goes she turns her attention instead towards the creatures in the sand. "Keep moving." She loses a half foot of the dead snake she holds in her hand, giving it a few experimental tugs to see how resilient the creature was in life to stretching. Perhaps it is now a rope, or a whip, or just bait.
C.B.'s legs wriggle in the air and he spits sand out of his mouth, looking a bit like he'd like to go off on a Daffy Duck-style rampage ending in 'You're despicable'...not aimed at anyone in particular, he just has that vibe. Lightning sputters everywhere. Isolde puts him down and, while he looks cross, he lets out a sigh. "Yeah. Thanks for that. You know what?" He stares back over at the entrance to the garden. "Maybe my noble fucking idea was actually a TERRIBLE noble fucking idea." It's the opposite of Beatrice's 'keep moving' advice.
Luckily, the rest of the walk toward the cottage is uneventful. For a moment, the creatures seem to gather around where CB fell in, writhing just under the sand, one surfacing just enough for them to see blood red scaly skin, before they seem to disperse, now that their meal has been rescued. The cottage itself is half crumbled and covered in the vines that someone said were probably carnivorous. But through some stroke of luck, those vines don't directly cover the doorway.
Isolde gives a bit of a nod to CB and then to Mina after CB is safely on the ground. She then gives a look to the surroundings as they get towards the cottage. "We sure we wanna go in?" she asks everyone.
Mina's heartbeat returns to something close to normal, as she watches C.B.. The nod from Isolde is returned, a breath taken in, back out. Right. Carrying on. "We've made it this far," she says, as if it covers her feelings on just about everything. But she waits, to see what the others have to say.
Beatrice examines the threshhold to the building with a frown, turning an eye over the nearby vines before looking back to the others. After a brief consideration she extends a hand to rap on the door, knocking. Yeah, element of surprise here.
The wood sounds, and feels, old, but there's no answering knock or anyone to open the door. There's no reaction at all to the knock, in fact.
"Nope." C.B. purses his lips. "Not sure." He glances over at Mina, then stares ahead as Beatrice goes so far as to knock. "What, are you crazy?!" But then...there's nothing, nothing in reaction, and he frowns.
"We're probably crazy, but if there's some creepy Hansel and Gretel type shit waiting behind the door we're out." Isolde states with a stiff nod of her head. Yep. Totally out.
Luckily, the house? Is /not/ made of gingerbread.
"I'm with Isolde. I am not a snack for some fucking witch." Thus speaks Mina, who is really a horrible meal plan for anyone. Too much dancer's build, too little delicious fatty bits. She moves over towards C.B., and her fingers wrap around his arm for a squeeze. Brief, but it seems like the woman needed the contact.
Beatrice scowls, reaching forward and twisting the doorknob to open the door and force the door open. She doesn't go inside, giving a moment to see what happens now that she has cracked the seal on the building.
The door lets out one of those stereotypical creepy creaks as it opens. Inside...it looks as though it was abandoned rather than someone moving out. It opens into a living room and looks into a kitchen and they can also see a door off the living room and one off the kitchen. Half the living room is crumbled in, and the rest of the cottage isn't much better. There are claw marks on the walls and a chair has been absolutely shredded.
C.B. glances over at Mina and squeezes her arm in return before his eyes move over to the door. He readies his gun. "Well?" His voice is positively lousy with irritation, but he doesn't make any move to get any closer. "Anybody in there?"
Isolde looks in and there's a bit of a frown, claw marks? "Looks like someone let a werewolf loose in here." she murmurs. She doesn't make a move to go in though. Because nope. Nopeanope.
Beatrice sniffs the air a few times before shaking her head. "Signs of struggle are old, not fresh." She thinks for a little while before saying quietly. "This stinks of an attack by Them. Take their victim and salt the earth with nightmares. So..." Beatrice steps inside, carefully shifting weight to test the floor. "We search this place, then we are done, yes?"
Once that squeeze is returned, Mina lets C.B.'s arm go. Turning, as Beatrice shoves the door open, and ...nothing. Except for those claw marks. "...fuck, werewolves. I didn't think about werewolves. Those are probably for serious too, aren't they?" Her brows furrow, and she lets out a breath. "Maybe," she allows, to Beatrice's words. "Whatever it was, it didn't go easily."
C.B. gives Beatrice a long, grim look. "Even that seems a little generous." He seems very unenthused about the idea of going in. Then he glances between Mina and Isolde and snorts. "Don't be ridiculous. Why would there be werewolves in the Hedge?" Then again...one can find almost anything in the Hedge, can't one...
Isolde steps into the crumbling cottage and starts to look over things. Oh this was going to be wonderful news for people. She heads for the claw marks first, checking to see if there's anything that she might see to give a clue as to what happened here. When she gives a closer look and figures out what they resemble there's a shudder, "They remind me of Briarwolf claws, but they are old." she frowns at that.
A bit deeper into the cottage, Mina wanders. Because the party splitting up is always a wise move. The girl needs to watch more horror movies. But she ends up in the living room, she's pretty sure. A lot of brow furrowing, but there's no grand flash of inspiration or knowledge that shows on her face.
Beatrice plods through the house carefully, eying the place as she goes. She checks both doors going into other rooms. "Is bedroom and cellar. Seems safe so far, but cellar is dark. We will need light to search it." She looks over to the collapsed part of the ceiling. "The roof is shit. Do not hit anything load bearing or break any walls if you enjoy life." After a little thought she moves over towards where light streams through the break in the ceiling, considering the areas where the light is touching the floor. "Ech... Not sure the cellar is under this spot, but could try to make, how you say... Skylight."
C.B. moves after Mina to the living room, but apart from that collapsed ceiling, there's not much to be found there. He keeps his gun out, frowning all the while. Then he nods grumpily over at Beatrice. "If you think this place is structurally sound enough to survive a 'skylight,' by all means." He waves the hand not holding the gun. "Sky away."
With the ease someone might pop open a can of soda, Beatrice selects a board that looks unimportant and digs her fingers into it, lifting it right out of whatever was holding it to the floor with a little grunt. "Sky awayed." She slides the entire board over a half foot before setting it back down, peering down at in the hole she revealed. She doesn't have any comment of what was revealed, simply moving away from the area to a more structurally sound part of the building.
With that board removed, the group can see a sliver of what's down in the cellar. it's not much, but it may be enough, because they see a skeleton, the clothes it was wearing all but disentigrated. One arm clutches a metal box of some sort, and the other was at one point holding a pistol. But with the scant amount of light that gets through, and since they're looking at it through a single board's removal, that's about all that can be seen.
There's a soft whistle as Beatrice pulls the board up, and opens the cellar up to their view a bit. "Remind me not to arm wrestle her," she deadpans to C.B.. Mina gives another look around the living room, but let's be honest - investigative muscle, she is not.
Isolde gives a chuckle, "That's how people lose arms, yes." she nods to Mina's observation on Beatrice. She looks to the hole in the floor and there's a bit of a frown, "Anyone volunteering to go down there?" she asks with a shake of her head.
C.B. snorts at Mina, smirking a little. "You should see what she does to fried chicken. It ain't pretty." Then he squats down to try and get a closer look, though of course there's only so much he can do from here. Yossarian comes over and looks at him, curiously. "I would fit down there easily," he states, blinking his yellow eyes between all parties. "Yossy...by yourself? That seems dangerous," C.B. says with a frown.
Beatrice rolls her eyes. "I can go down and retrieve the body, but a cat is fine too." She glances out the door towards where some of the vultures are. "Now we know something is here, and we are watched. Consider what happens afterwards."
Mina looks to those yellow eyes, and there's a furrow of brow. Concern showing on those pretty features, for her favorite feline. "If you do, be careful, Yossy. If you can take a look, we'll keep watch up here." A glance to C.B., a little frown of her own.
"We can go together," Yossarian says confidently, staring up at Beatrice. "I am observant. I can watch as you retrieve. I am a better choice than the others for that purpose." C.B.'s arms are folded, but he doesn't protest this arrangement. Perhaps because Beatrice is Beatrice.
Isolde gives CB a 'What's that supposed to mean?!' look, but she doesn't ask him. "We'll keep watch up here. If anything jumps us I'm sure Mina and I can handle it as a team." she tells them.
Beatrice passes the coil of dead snake she has been carrying around in a toss to C.B., thereby making it his problem. Fair trade for the cat, right? She walks over to the cellar, and starts the process of cautiously heading inside with the cat as companion. "Search the bedroom while we do this. People in cabins sometimes keep diaries. They're like facebook, but made of paper and with less pictures."
"Hey!" C.B. scowls over at Isolde. "Look, just because I fell in the damn sand doesn't mean I can't handle myself. I know how to use this thing," he waves the gun around, "and I got other tricks up my sleeve, so." That makes it plain that he is not planning on accompanying Beatrice and Yossy. "Yossy's right, though. He's small, and quiet, and he notices things. He's a good companion for Beatrice's muscle. Ahh, Jesus!" This is yelled as Beatrice throws the dead snake at him, which he still manages to catch. Then he gives her a snarky salute. "Aye aye, cap'n. A diary? Finally, something I'm well-suited for. And yes, I think /I/ know what a diary is, I can't speak for the rest of these millennials." Making an unfair assumption about Isolde, although he does give a smile to Mina. He's only so serious. Off to the bedroom he goes. "Be careful."
"Babe, I know that you do," Mina says to C.B.'s rant about the gun. "I remember." There's a flash in her eyes, a brief curve of her lips. "I suck at finding things," she admits. As if it wasn't obvious. The comment about millennials makes her roll her eyes, but there's a smile that follows. "Hey, I had a diary - just mine was supposedly voice-locked and pink," she says with a smirk. "Be safe, love. And you two." That, to Bea and Yossy. Then she's drawing her bow. Just in case. Because who knows what lurks in this place?
Isolde gives CB a bit of a laugh, "I didn't say you couldn't take care of yourself." she tells him. Then there's a bit of a nod to Beatrice before the Russian starts to head down. Then there's another look to CB, "I'm 85. I'm not a millennial kiddo." she muses at him.
C.B. raises his eyebrows at Mina, his expression incredulous. "/Voice/ locked?" Then he pats her on the shoulder again. "I'm staying up here." Yes, he's going to that bedroom, to search around. And he snorts at Isolde before he goes. "Finally, someone older than me! But not crankier, I bet."
The door to the cellar opens as easily as the front door did, and the steps, unsurprisingly, creak with each step taken. Luckily Beatrice makes it to the bottom without falling, and there is the skeleton, leaned against the wall, with its box and gun. But Beatrice almost trips over a hump of dirt on her way to the skeleton. Almost. The dirt is simply mounded up...almost like a grave. Except...there are two of them.
Beatrice glances to the cat wordlessly, before moving to step around the mounds. She shrugs out of her windbreaker, revealing the bullet proof undervest she wears beneath it as a precaution. She may be massive, but bullets are bullets. Once the windbreaker is converted into a makeshift sack with a few knots, she starts loading the bones of the corpse into it. The box, and the gun, are saved for last.
"It was totes legit," Mina insists to C.B., the child of the '90s that she is. "Hey, hey. No hating on me just because I didn't have a choice when I was born." There's a little frown on her lips, and there's a small furrow back between her brows. But she plays guard for the others, letting out a breath.
"I'm not 'hating on' you, Mina. I'm just teasing. Relax," C.B. says with a grin, coming out of the bedroom empty handed. But he squats down to peer into the hole so he can see how Beats and Yossy are doing. "Everything alright down there?"
Isolde is keeping an eye out on things, but there's a smile to CB when he comments on finally someone being older, "I am most assuredly not crankier than you. I have to have good bedside manner." she admits. Then she looks down to see if she can catch sight of the Russian and the cat.
"Aaaaah. Aaaaaah." They arn't really screams, Beatrice isn't theatrical enough for that. Still a bit unnerving, maybe. "The acoustics are excellent. You should have a poetry recital, yes? Talk about Milennials staying off your lawn?" Beatrice finishes scooping bones into the sack, adding the box on top but checking the gun instead of tucking it away. She holds it in her off hand reversed as she carries it and the windbreaker-sack back towards the exit from the basement.
"Good," C.B. tells Isolde with a smirk. "That's the way I like it. Yeah, I want them all to stay off my lawn except for Mina!" he calls down to Beatrice. Yossarian follows along after Beatrice, though he had flinched the -tiniest- bit at her 'screams.'
"I'll be all over your lawn, Ceebee. In one of those zero-gravity lawn chairs, reading on my Kindle, and sipping coffee that costs seven bucks for a small," Mina calls back to him with a smirk. Of course, he at least knows that she despises Kindles. Not taking her eyes off the door that they came in through, though, for the moment.
Beatrice tromps her way up, holding the pistol out sideways for whoever is quicker to accept it. "The weapon is hedgespun, skin itches holding it. Rid me of it." A shrug of a shoulder towards the basement. "Two mounds, maybe graves. Did not bring shovel nor do I care enough." She holds up her windbreaker a half foot. "Box and body are in sack. Now let us leave this place."
"So long as you're on my lawn in a string bikini, that's fine by me." Dangerous situation or not, C.B. always has time for snark. He takes the pistol Beatrice offers by the handle as he's comfortable with guns. Then he nods at Beatrice. "Let's get the fuck out of here."
Isolde gives a smile to CB and Mina, but doesn't comment on their back and forth banter, it was just nice to see. She then looks to Beatrice as she comes back up and agrees, "Yep, back out and lets not fall into sand or get eaten by snakes." she nods to this.
Mina gives a wink to C.B., an amused light in her eyes. "If there were already two graves, makes me wonder what they were protecting - but we'll find out somewhere a little less awful than here, yeah?"
Beatrice sticks the sack holding the box and the bones out the door, looking around to see if the vultures or other unpleasantness is reacting in any way. Paranoid maybe. After a moment she steps out as well. "I can burn this place, it is old tinder. Or we can spare it. Perhaps give to Autumn court."
"Maybe they'll want to examine the two bodies," C.B. says, looking to Beatrice as he turns the Hedgespun pistol over in his hands, examining it. "It's not nessarily awful if someone comes back in here, now that we've scouted the place. I dunno. If there's more to be gleaned from it, I hate to just burn it -- fun as that is. And given it tried to kill me."
Isolde gives a look out the door that Beatrice sticks the bag out the door. "Autumn might like to keep their Courtiers alive as we all do. So maybe we can put up a warning that there's something in the sand here and that the Gallowsroot is rampant." she offers to the others.
"Dear Adventurer," Mina muses, "Vines will eat you. Regular sand will drown you and the snakes in it will also eat you. Red sand will desolve you. Have fun. ex-oh-ex-oh." There's a little curve of lips. "But yes. Let's not burn it all down. Others might have use for it, figure out more."