“Anyone got flashlights?” I fumbled blindly on the zipper of my bag until it finally opened, releasing a small flood of my belongings into the tunnels. After a bit of searching, I finally found what I was searching for. “Please watch out...” Why do people never do that if you tell them? With a more or less panicked cry everyone tried to cover their eyes as the bright light of a flashlight illuminated the tunnels. I tried to pick up as much of my stuff as possible why the others tried to adjust their eyes to the brightness. “So we have light. Nice. And we're alive. Anyone hurt?” Silence. “Guess that's good.” “And we seriously only have one flashlight? Seriously, who plans those missions?” “Uh... I have more...” I said while picking up another one from the floor. If I'm useless in battle, I could at least supply my group. That was what I thought when picking stuff for the mission. Guess it worked out just fine. And honestly, it made me just a little bit proud to have the useful equipment our Maniac in bullet proof armor didn't pick.
“We should split up.” The first words spoken after what seemed like an endless walk in darkness. “We need to find what attracted those dragons-” “They're not dragons, they're amphitheres” For a few moment everyone stared at Ethen in disbelieve. “Winged Snakes. Dragons have limbs, they have just wings. Like Quetzalcoatl, the winged snake of the Mayan gods.” “Doesn't matter what they are, if we don't find a way down here to get rid of them we're dead. And if we stick together here, we die of starvation before we find anything. So pick your partner.”
Minutes later, I walked side by side with a small girl humming the Indiana Jones theme deeper into the abyss. And while it seemed close to surreal to me to hear that stupid little jingle here deep in the darkness, it really helped me fight the fear deep in my heart. Still, I could feel that Velissia was humming for the exact same reason. What kind of person must one be to send a child like her into this hell? Maybe, just maybe, it had to do something with the huge ram-sheep-horse thing accompanying and protecting her with his life? And me too vowed that I would protect her, I couldn't bare the thought of getting a little girl hurt through my incompetence...
“So clear, little Miss takes the only one even more pathetic than her as her partner! Seriously, you need a little girl at your side to feel strong, girl?” I gift my partner with a silencing look, even if I already knew it would never stop his tirade. “Seriously, why didn't you take that Anna-freak? At least she can fight!” “Because you'd kill yourself against her partner?” “You mean I'd whip the floor with him, I hope? But seriously, why HER?” “Because we're friends.” “Argh! Befriend someone less useless, girl!” “She's not useless!” “Aww stop whiteknighting for that scum, moron!” I just shook my head and averted my eyes, trying to give Veli an assuring smile before I went ahead in silence. “Ah shit, fine, I let you play hero for once, but at least TRY to be cool then!”
Then, a slight rumbling in the distance interrupted our little conversation. And that rumbling was getting closer quickly... And a roar shook the whole temple.