17 Welcome to the Underground

Astounding was too small a word for what they had found. A large cavern was revealed when they had entered the crevice. The light came from two sources, the first being some kind of glowing, crystal spires that were scattered all along the ceiling and walls. The largest was roughly a foot taller than Devin and twice as thick as his chest was wide. The other source of light was produced by massive, bio-luminescent mushrooms that filled in the spaces between the crystal spires. The giant fungi were glowing in what looked like neon colors like green, pink, blue, and yellow. The air smelled of damp earth and something sour.

Now that both people could see, Sue removed her hand from Devin's shoulder and began to observe the wonder they had discovered. While she was looking at the glowing features Devin began scanning for another entrance that could be their potential ticket back to the surface. He finally found it in the form of a small vent of some kind that was punched into the wall just below the ceiling. It was half hidden behind one of the largest mushroom's cap. It was about the same size as a trash can lid and would be a tight fit for Devin himself, but Sue shouldn't have to much trouble.

"This is amazing! These are possibly a new species of fungi that has never been seen before and these crystals, magnificent!" Sue said as she gently caressed the surface of one of the crystal's glass-like facets.

"Sue, you might want to focus. We aren't out of here yet. Once we get back to the surface and contact the others then you can start studying things." Devin said as he stood underneath the hole he had found. Sue had at least enough consciousness to be embarrassed for losing focus. She stepped up next to Devin and looked at the hole he was glancing at.

"Do you think that that might lead out of here?" Sue asked as she tried to pierce the gloom that filled the tunnel.

"From what I can see it might." Devin said as he raised an eyebrow in intrigue.

"What do you mean by 'might'?" Sue asked as she looked at Devin before trying to pierce the gloom again.

"From what I can see of the tunnel it goes up about twenty feet before it curves off to the right." Devin said as he continued to look up.

"Well, standing here looking at it wont change anything. Can I give you a lift?" Sue said as she waved her hand and a small platform made of psionic energy formed in front of the two.

"Sure." Devin replied as he stepped on to the disc before it rose the two into the air. Soon they were before the opening and Devin decided to go first in case they ran into something hostile along the way. They both climbed for minutes before they reached the curve and Devin saw another curve farther up. Time crawled by about as fast as the two did up the tunnel.

After one last turn Devin spotted a dim light about a dozen feet from their current position.

"Sue, I can see a light." Devin said over his shoulder.

"Hurry, I'm starting to lose my grip here." Sue shouted. Devin renewed by the possibility of getting out of the tight confines. Breaching the exit of the tunnel, Devin was disappointed that it wasn't an exit to the surface, but another chamber. The difference between the last one and this one was that it was massive in size and there was no mushrooms to be found though the crystals were still there.

"Not another one." Sue groaned as she pulled herself from the hole.

"Shhhhh!" Devin said as he motioned for quiet. He could hear what sounded like voices coming from the opposite end of the chamber. Waving his hand to signal to stay low and follow him the two crept toward the voices they heard. Soon the muffled voices could be heard clearly.

"Your creature failed to do as we planned!" a nasally voice shouted from not too far from the pair's hiding spot behind a crystal. Glancing around the edge slowly Devin glimpsed a short, rotund man with a partially bald head and what looked like a pair of weird glasses on his face. This must be the Mole Man that Devin had heard mentioned. The woman that he was speaking to was head and shoulders above him in height. With black shoulder length hair and pale skin, she looked like a normal human. She was wearing a long sleeved top with a plunging neckline lined with red. An orange skirt held by a wide red belt with matching red gloves. The finishing pieces of her outfit being a pair of yellow high-heeled boots that ended below the knee and a red headdress with three matching red feathers.

"It was your devices that failed, Harvey." the mystery woman said with a sneer on her face. Devin could practically hear Mole Man's teeth grinding from where they hid.

"I told you to never call me that! Harvey is dead! Now there is only The Mole Man." the short man declared as he raised his stone short staff above his head. Devin could feel Sue looking over his shoulder as they listened in.

"What ever you say. How do we turn this short fall into something substantial?" the lady in the fiery clothes asked as she glanced at her nails in disinterest.

"Easy my dear Kala, we simply wait and see. I made sure that the payload that was supposed to block the light also had a double effect." The Mole Man said as he tapped the point of his staff on the ground with a chuckle.

"Oh? What do you mean by that?" the now identified Kala asked as she looked directly at the short man.

"Lets just say that those sun-lovers wont be the same soon." Mole Man said as he turned and glanced at a nearby crystal.

"Sue, who are these two? Do you know them?" Devin whispered over his shoulder trying to keep an eye on the two unknowns.

"Yeah, the short man is Harvey Elder or as he likes to be called now, The Mole Man. The other is the ruler of the Netherworld, Kala. They, along with another man called Tyrannus. They were in a three-way power split, but seeing this I'd say that these two are making a bid to remove Tyrannus." Sue explained as they watched the two converse.

Soon the two underworld leaders wandered off down a tunnel at the far end while still discussing future plans. The two in hiding stepped out after making sure that the two were gone.

"So that sounded real bad. We need to get out of here and let the others know that what ever was in those rockets is bad news." Devin said as he looked at Sue.

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"Yeah, but the question is. Which way is out?" Sue said as she looked around. It was at that time that Devin made out the sound of foot falls coming from several directions and in mere seconds the two were surrounded by what looked like dozens of yellow Gollums. The squeeks and muffled growls filled the massive room.

"Guess finding an exit will have to wait for now, huh?" Devin said as he went back to back with Sue before with a flick of each wrist, a pistol and one of Devin's new daggers appeared ready for use.

"Yeah, don't worry I'll take care of you and keep you safe." Sue said as psionic energy encased her fists. Her comment raising one of Devin's eyebrows.

"Alright, let's dance!" Devin shouted as he launched into the crowd of gold colored goblins.

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